Multiple traffic accidents were reported across the region once the wintry mix arrived this morning. State and local police began assisting in weather related incidents in Lynchburg, Campbell and Bedford counties shortly after 5:00 this morning. Authorities say some of the trouble could have been avoided. At least one person is charged with reckless driving after their pickup truck flipped over in Campbell County. The accident occurred on Wards Road near the Route 460 exit. No one was injured in that crash; but the driver has also been charged with not having a valid license.
The problems faced by Amherst County’s first responders are not unique to the locality–The County is working on ways to stabilize a number of shortcomings within the county’s emergency services. A study conducted by the Virginia Fire Services Board showed similar concerns in every locality that participated last year. Areas in need of improvement ranged from purchasing of equipment to a lack of communication between personnel and the limited amount of information shared between other emergency departments. An advisor working with county staff has suggested that county officials meet with career and volunteer personnel to develop a strategic plan. One proposal is implementing a mandated standard operational procedure, in place of guidelines that are currently being used.
The Appomattox Visitor Information Center will be looking toward upcoming changes–while the current site will be more reminiscent of yesteryear. The center will be moving to the other side of the train depot/station. According to the Times-Virginian, the facility where the center is now located will be researched, refurbished and restored back to its original condition as a train station of the late 1800s. A time frame for the work has not been set; but according to the article, officials would like to get some of the project completed by April 2015…the 150th anniversary of the end the Civil War.
An Evington man faces 95 years of incarceration, after pleading guilty last week to 10 charges involving possession of child pornography. 52 year old, Mark Raymond Chevalier was found guilty on all charges—he had faced 15 charges, but According to the Altavista Journal, was not prosecuted on five second offense possession of child pornography charges as part of a plea agreement. The charges stemmed from an investigation that was begun in 2011. A sentencing date has not been set.
A Lynchburg man will spend the next five and a half years in prison after pleading guilty to holding up a Chinese restaurant with a BB gun. 19 year old, John Laprice Tucker was charged with robbery and use of a firearm in commission of a felony. The sentencing includes time in connection to a separate incident, in which Tucker admitted to stealing a man’s cellphone in February of last year.
Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation has awarded an Amherst County farm the 2013 James River Basin Clean Water Farm Award, for implemented numerous agriculture practices that protect and enhance water quality at nearby Stonehouse Creek Lake. Some conservation efforts have been thought undesirable to traditional farmers, but experts say many practices will help the bottom line with increased productivity. According to the Robert E. Lee Soil & Water District, agricultural producers can voluntarily sign up for federal and state conservation programs and receive cost-share reimbursement for practices. To learn more visit: www.dcr.virginia.gov
Four men are facing multiple meth charges. Search warrants were executed Monday in Campbell County as part of a State Police investigation. 33 year old Bradley M. St. Clair, 45 year old Terrell L. Gravely Jr., 41 year old Vincent W. Jankowski Jr., and 48 year old Harry W. Andrews Jr. were taken into custody without incident; all are charged with manufacturing methamphetamine, possession of two or more meth-related ingredients and possession of methamphetamine. The investigation is ongoing.
A man was arrested yesterday morning at a Campbell County convenience store. Authorities say the suspect was taken into custody after officers from the Appomattox County Sheriff’s Office, Lynchburg Police Department, and State Police responded to a drug related call at Moore’s Country Store on Route 460 at about 9:30 Tuesday. Investigators say the suspect faces now multiple charges, including one count of distribution of a controlled substance–two counts of assaulting a police officer and resisting arrest; he is being held at the Blue Ridge Regional Jail.
The Bedford County School superintendent’s budget to take effect July 1 includes the same insurance coverage plan as the current fiscal year. But rising health care cost makes that no longer a viable option; and time is running out for a final Fiscal Year 2015 budget to be adopted. Open enrollment begins in May; a decision must be made on insurance by April. One option would be to enact a wellness plan that differentiates premiums for degrees of health; but no decision has been made. According to the News and Advance, the schools could use a placeholder for insurance in a proposal to the Board of Supervisors while details are finalized. But school officials must adopt a preliminary budget next week.
As part of the First Fridays series, The Lynchburg Museum is exhibiting a number of objects from the Point of Honor Collection. The items belong to Katharine Garland Diggs. Upon her death in 1971, Miss Diggs donated money for the establishment of a public museum in Lynchburg. The money she left was used to begin the restoration of Point of Honor and to establish a trust fund for its future. She also bequeathed many of her personal and family belongings from the 19th and early 20th centuries. It’s those items that will be on display for the First Friday of March. The collection includes jewelry, family photographs, glassware, a family cookbook, and a portrait; the items will remain on display through the weekend. The collection can be viewed free of charge on Friday, March 7 from 5:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m.