LPD has new Deputy Chief

Lynchburg Police Department Capt. Ken R. Edwards was promoted to Deputy Chief Thursday, rounding out the department’s senior command staff after former Police Chief Raul Diaz resigned in August. The News and Advance reports that current Police Chief Ryan Zuidema, who preceded Edwards as deputy chief, made the announcement Friday at the department’s swearing-in ceremony for new officers. Zuidema said he tapped Edwards for the role based on his lengthy experience with the LPD

Northam wants more money for broadband access

Gov. Ralph Northam

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) – Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam says he wants lawmakers to approve spending $50 million to make it easier for people to get faster internet service. Northam said Friday [at an event in Bedford County] that his forthcoming state budget plan will include adding $50 million to the Virginia Telecommunications Initiative. The program encourages internet service providers to expand broadband access to underserved areas. Northam said he wants the money to be part of a multi-year commitment of $250 million to boost broadband access. Lawmakers in both parties have long said that expanding high-speed internet to rural communities is a priority. The Democratic governor will present his full budget next week. The Republican-controlled General Assembly will take up Northam’s spending plans next year.

Herring to run for Governor in 2021

Its official – Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring says he’s going to run for governor. That from the Associated Press, after the Democrat told the Washington Post he’s planning to run in 2021. Virginia does not allow governors to seek consecutive terms, meaning current Gov. Ralph Northam cannot run for re-election. Herring became attorney general in 2014. He easily won re-election last year and has been a frequent critic of the president and a vocal supporter of same-sex marriage, immigrant-friendly policies, and stricter gun control. Other Democrats who may run for governor in 2011 include Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax and Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney.

Gill stepping down as Flames football coach

Image: LU Athletics Facebook

JMU is not the only college in the state looking for a new head football coach after he left the Dukes this weekend for East Carolina – Liberty University head coach Turner Gill announced today he is retiring after 7 seasons. The former Nebraska quarterback helped oversee Liberty’s transition to full FBS football status this past season

Lynchburg police investigate use of force incident

(from Lynchburg PD) On November 24, 2018, at approximately 01:40 a.m., Lynchburg Department of Emergency Services dispatchers received a call into 9 -1-1 about a group of about 15 people acting disorderly and getting ready to fight in front of the Dish Restaurant at 1120 Main St. Patrol officers with the Lynchburg Police Department responded to the area and observed the group as it transitioned into a physical fight. In order to maintain the safety of the those in the area, including the officer, OC pepper spray was deployed by the officer to break up the fight. By that time, the crowd had grown to around 50-60 people in front of the business and in the street.

As a result, the officers shifted their focus to the crowd in order to restore peace and safety to the immediate area. Most of the crowd complied with the officers’ orders to disperse and cease any disorderly activity. However, two individuals were taken into custody during the incident. After having received several verbal warnings, Veshawn Darrell Fuller, 30 -year -old of Lynchburg, was arrested for Public Intoxication, Resisting Arrest, Obstruction of Justice, and Loitering. While that arrest was taking place, Donald Jamal Lipford III,28 -year old of Lynchburg, aggressively approached officers on the scene and assaulted one of them when he was told to get back. Lipford then resisted as the officers attempted to take him into custody and a police K9 was deployed to help them gain control of Lipford.

The officers were eventually able to do so, and Lipford was subsequently charged with Assault and Battery on a Police Officer, Disorderly Conduct, and Obstruction of Justice. Additionally, Lipford was already wanted on an outstanding Capias of Failing to Comply with a Court Order. During the two arrests, 3 of the officers received minor injuries, all of whom have returned to full duty. Any injury to the suspects also appeared to be minor. As with all LPD use of force incidents, an administrative internal investigation will be conducted. This will include a review of the officers’ use of force through the chain of command and our Professional Standards Unit. Additionally, the Department is constantly reviewing and analyzing

Our policies and procedures to ensure we are following best practices and conforming to updated legal standards. Large groups of disorderly and unruly people present a significant safety risk to the community and our officers. Therefore, it is important that our law enforcement officers establish peace and order to incidents like this before the situation escalates and become more violent and uncontrollable. During this incident, Lynchburg Police Department officers exercised restraint and provided opportunities for those arrested to choose a different outcome for themselves. We strive to work cooperatively with all members of the community whenever we can, and we will not be deterred from that mission based on the actions of a few nor will we neglect our essential responsibility to keep the peace and maintain order in our community.


Schedule set to honor George H.W. Bush

Reuters photo

(ABC News) The official schedule for ceremonies honoring the late George H.W. Bush was released on Saturday. The four-day tribute includes lying in state at the U.S. Capitol for parts of three days, a funeral at the Washington National Cathedral and eventual burial at the George Bush Presidential Library and Museum. The ceremonies will begin on Monday with a departure ceremony at Ellington Field Joint Reserve Base in Houston at 10:30 a.m. Central time. Bush’s remains will be flown from Houston to Joint Base Andrews in Prince George’s County, Maryland.

There will also be a ceremony on arrival of the former president’s remains at Joint Base Andrews at 3:30 p.m. Eastern time on Monday. From there, the president’s casket will be taken to the U.S. Capitol in Washington George H.W. Bush’s casket will lie in state from 5 p.m. Monday until 10 a.m. on Wednesday. A guard of honor will be in attendance, and the public will be allowed into the Capitol from 7:30 p.m. Monday until 8:45 a.m. Wednesday. Sen. John McCain, a war hero like Bush, is the last person to lie in state at the Capitol following his death in August. Bush called McCain “a patriot of the highest order” following his death.

There will be a departure ceremony for Bush at the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday at 10 a.m. and his casket will arrive at the Washington National Cathedral five miles away at 11 a.m. The funeral at the Washington National Cathedral, set to be attended by a wide array of former presidents and politicians, including Donald Trump, will last 90 minutes. Following the funeral, Bush will return to Joint Base Andrews at 1:15 p.m. and depart back to Houston. His arrival at Ellington Field is expected at 4:30 p.m. Central time on Wednesday. Bush will then lie in repose at St. Martin’s Episcopal Church in Houston, where first lady Barbara Bush’s funeral was held in April.

The president’s casket will depart by railroad on Thursday at 12:30 p.m. CT and arrive at Texas A&M University in College Station, home to the George Bush Presidential Library and Museum, at 3:45 p.m. Bush, an admirer of trains, has had a special one with a glass viewing car designed to carry his remains to internment.

Liberty students create independent news site

LYNCHBURG, Va. (AP) – Students at the country’s largest evangelical Christian university have started an independent news site where articles won’t have to be approved by school officials. The Lynchburg News & Advance reports that a group of students at Liberty University have started the Lynchburg Torch. The new site was spearheaded by student Jack Panyard. He was ousted earlier this year as editor-in-chief of the school’s official newspaper, the Liberty Champion.

Liberty President Jerry Falwell Jr. vetoed a student’s column focusing on vulgar comments made by Donald Trump from running in the Champion during the 2016 presidential campaign. Falwell is a strong supporter of President Trump and said he pulled the article because it was “redundant” with a medical student’s pro-Hillary Clinton letter to the editor on the opinion page.

Goodlatte issues statement on passing of former President Bush

WASHINGTON, DC – Congressman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) issued the following statement today following the news that George H.W. Bush, the 41st President of the United States of America, has died at age 94. “I was deeply saddened to learn of the passing of former President George H.W. Bush. He led an amazing life of public service. He guided our nation and the world with his leadership during the end of the Cold War and the first war in Iraq. In 1988, I had the honor of chairing his campaign for President in the 6th District of Virginia and attending the Republican National Convention in New Orleans as a delegate. President Bush will be remembered as a dedicated public servant. My thoughts and prayers are with his family.”

Campbell County man sentenced for murder of father

A Campbell County man convicted of murdering his father just under a year ago will serve 15 years in prison for the shooting, a judge determined this morning. Tyler Staples, 20, pleaded guilty to second-degree murder of his father, 40-year-old John Staples II, midway through his trial in July. A fight between the two last December ended with John “Chopper” Staples with 11 gunshots wounds to his back. (from News & Advance)

Cline wins 6th District race for Congress

The newest Congressman in the 6th Congressional District is no stranger to elected office. Republican Ben Cline turned back a challenge from Democrat Jennifer Lewis last night, as WLNI’s Gene Marrano reports:

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