Breaking Local News
A federal lawsuit blames a Charleston airport runway construction project for the January 9th chemical spill. The consolidated lawsuit filed Friday in Charleston said Yeager Airport's now-complete runway extension never safeguarded against stormwater runoff. Plaintiffs say the airport let water flow downhill to the Freedom Industries site below, which eroded the foundation of the tank that spilled. The lawsuit said effects of the runway project that started in 2004 "significantly caused or contributed" to Freedom leaking coal-cleaning chemicals into the Elk River on Jan. 9. The lawsuit also targets a former and current Freedom executive, the company that produces the chemical, the water company and its parent and runway project contractors. The airport says it was never notified by Freedom that there was a problem.
Kerry Harvey is facing charges for stabbing her ex-boyfriend and his new girlfriend, and awaits trial in Kanawha County. The trial has been delayed after attorneys told the judge that Harvey suffered from battered woman syndrome at the time of the stabbings last August. A psychologist will look into it, and the trial will start Septembr 15th.
The University of Charleston will begin offering an associate degree in nursing at its Beckley campus this fall. The program was recently approved by the West Virginia Board of Examiners for Registered Professional Nurses. The university says the program is geared toward working adults, offered on alternate weekends, and can be completed in 18 months. It will offer a combination of face-to-face instruction, laboratory work and clinical work in area hospitals. A maximum of 15 students will be accepted this fall, and another 15 in January.
Seven housing programs in West Virginia have been awarded federal grants totaling more than $842,000. The grants from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development will be used to assist homeless individuals and families, along with communities experiencing homelessness. Programs receiving grants include the Huntington West Virginia Housing Authority, Kanawha Valley Collective/KVC Planning Project, and Raleigh County Community Action Association. U.S. Senators Jay Rockefeller and Joe Manchin, and Rep. Nick Rahall announced the grants Monday in a news release.
The four people injured Sunday in a boating accident in Kanawha County have been identified. The West Virginia Division of Natural Resources says the four were hurt near Chesapeake on Sunday, and the person driving was 22-year old Steven Garrison of Winifrede. Passengers were as Nichole Garrison of Winifrede, Mary Snodgrass of Gallagher and Blake Snodgrass of Gallagher. Blake Snodgrass was in critical condition Monday at CAMC General Hospital, and the others have been treated and released. The boat hit a parked barge as it was headed downstream.
West Virginia State Police are continuing their investigation into an ATV crash in Logan County that killed a 14-year old Sunday night. Troopers say it happened on Pine Creek off Route 44 near Omar in Logan County. The victim was Tyler Frye, and the teen was alone when the ATV crashed. No cause has been given for the accident just yet. There was a prayer service for the Frye Family Monday night at the Logan Middle School Gym.
Police have arrested eight mountaintop removal mining protesters for trespassing at Alpha Natural Resources headquarters in Bristol, Virginia. For two hours Friday morning, protesters from Mountain Justice and Radical Action for Mountains and People's Survival say they blocked the entrance to Alpha. They oppose the opening of two new mines on Coal River Mountain in southern West Virginia. Both activist groups are based in West Virginia. The protest didn't prevent anyone from getting to work, but several locked themselves together and another dangled from a flagpole and hung a flag saying, "Save Coal River Mountain."
A former Mingo County judge who pleaded guilty to a corruption charge is appealing his 50-month prison sentence. The Williamson Daily News reports that Michael Thornsbury's attorney has filed a notice of appeal with the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond, Virginia. Thornsbury pleaded guilty to conspiring to deprive campaign sign maker George White of his constitutional rights. Prosecutors said Thornsbury participated in a scheme to protect the late Sheriff Eugene Crum from accusations that the sheriff bought prescription painkillers from White. U.S. District Judge Thomas Johnston earlier this month agreed with prosecutors who argued that Thornsbury deserved more prison time than the 30 to 37 months suggested by federal sentencing guidelines.
West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey is warning residents about a flood of counterfeit $10 bills. Morrisey says a Charleston bank recently alerted his office to a large number of bogus bills being passed at stores in the area. He says the bills all have the serial number IL 31448733B. The U.S. Secret Service says anyone who receives a counterfeit bill should try to note the description of the person passing it as well as any relevant license plate number. The recipient should then write his or her initials and the date in the white border area of the bill, place it in an envelope and turn it over to police or the Secret Service.
FestivALL got going in Charleston over the weekend, and despite the rainy start, the crowds turned out for concerts, 5K, and parade. Sunday the local chefs were showcased as part of Taste-of-ALL. Today you can catch the Dawn-til-Dusk East End Garden Showcase on the historic East End, and those participating gardens will be open all week. There's also a Meet-N-Greet for the Disney Jungle Book characters Baloo and Mowgli, and film screenings of Oscar-nominated animated shorts. Todand and tomorrow are also the days for West Virginia Squares, similar to the game show Hollywood Squares, but all of the questions will be West Virginia-based. Peter Marshall hosts, and PBS will be filiming it. Find out more at www.festivallcharleston.com