Breaking Local News

Child Endangerment Charged In Drug Bust

There was no running water but police say there was drug residue out in the open. Now, a Logan County couple is facing drug, child endangerment and child neglect charges. Investigators say Everett Spears and Kimberley Mounts are being charged after state police confiscated several bags of marijuana seeds and drug paraphernalia that they say were within reach of the children. Officers say five children between the ages of one and six were found, all sleeping together in a single room with needles, spoons and drug residue nearby.

Huntington Shooter Arrested

A man with a gun, an hour-long standoff and now an arrest in Huntington. Police say 43-year-old Jerry Blake first took a gun to his wife's work place, an office at a Huntington medical professional building, around eight-thirty this morning. They say Blake fired a number of shots at the facility but that no one was hurt. He then went to his home where police finally talked him into surrendering. Blake has now been arraigned in County Magistrate Court in Huntington on two counts of wanton endangerment and one of domestic assault.


Private households in Kanawha County are looking for help from the Federal Emergency Management Agency after the storms went thru the region back in June. Right now according to emergency managers in the county FEMA is just assisting with public infrastructure repairs. However FEMA representatives have been visting homes to access damage. They also say they need to know if you have insurance and you won't be reimbursed for food loss or generator fuel.

Abuse Allegations False

The Roman Catholic bishop of West Virginia wrote in an email to supporters Monday that he is grateful that two men have come forward to defend him against allegations that he sexually abused one of them in the 1970s, and that their assertions provide proof that he's innocent. In an email to clergy, parishioners and employees of the Diocese of Wheeling-Charleston, Bishop Michael Bransfield said he has never abused anyone. The letter also was posted on the diocese website. It comes after allegations surfaced during a recently completed Philadelphia priest-abuse trial in which a witness testified that a priest who abused him told him that Bransfield was sexually involved with a young teen. The alleged victim and another man told The Philadelphia Inquirer in a story published Sunday that the allegations were false. Bransfield remains under investigation for another claim, which he denies.

Arson Arrest

An arrest has been made in connection with a several arson fires in Nicholas county. 21 year old Austin Cox faces dozens of felony charges in connection with the fires that occured from January until this month. Although police don't believe anyone else was involved, they say the investigation is continuning. Without going into specifics, Nicholas County Sheriff's Chief Deputy Paul O' Dell says it took countless man hours to tie Cox to the fires as they uncovered new leads in as the investigation went on.

Drowning victim identified

The first drowning in nearly a decade occured over the weekend at a lake in Beech Fork State Park. We now know it was Evan Ferguson who rescuers say swam outside of the roped off area, went under water and never came back up. Lavalette divers were able to recover the 21 year old's body Monday morning.

Toddler Death Update

As the investingation into the circumstances surrounding the death of 3 year old girl from Jackson County continues, child neglect charges are expected to be filed against her foster parents sometime this week. Jackson Sheriff's deputies say, "Jasmine" was left in the SuV for three hours before they noticed she was missing and when they found her she was dead. It happened Sunday when the family got back from church and everyone got out of the vehicle. The toddler apparently fell asleep in her car seat in the third row of the suv and they didn't realize she was still in the car.

Ramey Steps Down

The Lincoln County Commission will meet this morning and are expected to accept the resignation of Commissioner Thomas Ramey, Jr. and come up wtiha plan to pick his replacement. He resigned from his seat late Monday afternoon. He is expected to plead guilty to charges that The U.S. Attorney's Office says Ramey lied to FBI agents during an investigation into voter fraud. He has a federal court hearing on August 8th. Ramey's seat will be on the November ballot. Both the Democratic and Republican parties will meet to nominate candidates for that race.

Mountain State University

Mountain State University is cutting its workforce in half in the wake of losing its accreditation. The private Beckley-based university says in a news release that affected employees were notified of the reduction Monday. Their last day of employment is Sept. 21. The university-wide cuts include administrative, faculty and staff positions. Mountain State didn't say how many jobs are being cut. The school has campuses in Beckley, Martinsburg, Florida, North Carolina and Pennsylvania. Interim President Richard E. Sours says in the release that the school has set up a career center to help workers losing their jobs. Earlier this month, the regional Higher Learning Commission withdrew Mountain State's accreditation, citing leadership, organizational and integrity issues. The decision is effective Aug. 27 but Mountain State plans to appea.

Human Error at Prison

We now know it may have been a case of human error that resulted in the recent unsuccessful escape at West Virginia's maximum security prison by three convicted murderers. Prisoners William Keith "Bobby" Lowe, Daniel Smith and Stephen Wilson weren't in their units at the Mount Olive Correctional Complex when the night head count was taken earlier this month. An official investigation is still underway. The three never made it outside the facility but did clear at least one interior fence and ran from officers before being captured. All of this happens at a time that statewide inmate crowding in a major concern as is trying to keep enough guards on staff.

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