Breaking Local News
State tax collections in the fiscal year's first quarter are more than $34 million below estimates. Figures from the State Budget Office show that tax collections are down for the 5th straight month. September's tax collections were about $2 million below estimates. Deputy Revenue Secretary Mark Muchow tells the Charleston Daily Mail that the decline is due to sluggish wages and consumer spending. He says the state will need revenue growth of at least 2.8 percent over the next nine months to avoid a deficit.
An investigation is underway after a bank robbery at the Poca Valley Bank in Putnam County on Wednesday. Kanawha County Sheriff's deputies were called to the bank along Route 62 in Poca around 1pm yesterday in search of a man described as 5'5" and 150 lbs. with fake hair and a mustache. The investigation continues today.
The Charleston Boulevard Rod Run and Doo Wop is happening this weekend after a kickoff yesterday in Nitro. The antique and classic cars will be on display along Kanawha Boulevard today through Sunday. Hours for the car show are 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday and 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday. There's also live music each night and fireworks at 9:15 p.m. Saturday.
As part of an investigation about a missing man, detectives with the Charleston Police Department went to an apartment on 83rd Street in Marmet Wednesday afternoon. They were investigating the disappearance of Kareem Hunter, a 28 year old man from Charleston, who was last seen September 23. Evidence at the apartment led detectives to contact the Kanawha County Sheriff's Office and seek a search warrant. Detectives are looking into a disturbance at the apartments the night of Hunter's disappearance. The investigation continues today..
Judge Michael Thornsbury is set to plead guilty today to his alleged role in covering up drug allegations against the late Mingo County Sheriff Eugene Crum. This story has started to make national news now - ABC News for one. The US Attorney's Office says there is a plea agreement with Judge Thornsbury, meaning he'll plead guilty to violating the Sixth Amendment by depriving a criminal defendant his right to legal counsel of his choice, and other charges will be dropped. The maximum penalty for Thornsbury's accpeted charge is 10 years. Prosecutors say Thornsbury, along with Mingo County prosecutor Michael Sparks and County Commissioner David Baisden, came up with a scheme to save Crum's reputation by stopping an FBI informant from revealing drug deals he allegedly made with the sheriff.
The same group that sued to overturn Virginia's marriage ban in August announced Tuesday that three West Virginia couples are suing. Lambda Legal is suing on behalf of the same sex couples, arguing that not allowing same sex marriage leaves the couples feeling like second class citizens. Nancy Michael and Jane Fenton of St. Albans, a along with their 6-year-old son, Drew, are among the couples suing.
Ten people are still recovering after a Sunday car accident.at Quincy Hollow and Route 60 in Kanawha County. Deputies say a Chevrolet Silverado pickup driven by 29-year old Heather Marchal of Campbell’s Creek, hit a vehicle in front of her which was stopped at an intersection. The impact forward damaged three other cars. Cpl Brian Humphreys says Marchal, her five children (aged 8 months to 11 years), and four others in the other vehicles were taken to area hospitals. Deputies found heroin in Marchal's car, but so far there are no charges. An investigation is ongoing and anyone with information is asked to contact Deputy S. W. Hunter at 304-357-0169.
More now on a fatal accident that happened Monday night. The Kanawha County Sheriff's office says a driver who lost control was killed in a rollover accident on Bellwood Drive in the Lakewood area. When first responders arrived they found a black Toyota Avalon overturned in a ditch along the roadside, after hitting a metal storm water pass-through and becoming airborne.
The driver has been identified as 19 year old Ethan Charles Glenn, who died before first responders arrived. A passenger, 19 year old Donovan Goodwin, had just minor injuries.
Mingo County Commissioner David Baisden appeared in court Tuesday and pleaded guilty to a federal extortion charge. In court, Baisden admitted to demanding Appalachian Tire sell him tires for his personal vehicle at a discounted rate reserved for government vehicles. Baisden will be sentenced in January, and will face a maximum of 20 years in prison. He also has to resign from the Mingo County Commission before his sentencing. The investigation is ongoing into whether the late Sheriff Eugene Crum received prescription painkillers illegally. Baisden has also been mentioned in that investigation, as part of a possible cover up.
A foundation was set up after a settlement following the Upper Big Branch Mine Disaster, and now the grants are starting to be awarded for research. US Attorney Booth Goodwin announced about $10 million in mine safety research grants have been awarded so far, that will help scientists work on making mines safer. West Virginia University and Virginia Tech are among those receiving money to conduct studies. Alpha Natural Resources funded the foundation as part of its $209 million settlement that helped them avoid prosecution after the Upper Big Branch Mine disaster in 2010.