Amherst County saw a slight uptick in marijuana arrests last year. According to statistics obtained by the Sheriff’s Office, there were 83 marijuana violations in 2014— compared to the 78 in reported in 2013. Arrests, offficials say primarily occurred in the Madison Heights area. Roughly 60 percent of offenders during both years were men under the age of 30, but did include some charges against minors. According to the New Era Progress, there were few instances of marijuana manufacturing in the county over the course of two years. In Virginia, a charge of possession of pot could results in 30 days jail and/or a fine of $500.
The state Senate is considering stiffer penalties for trespassing on train trestles and bridges. According to the News & Advance, since 1969, there have been at least 13 fatalities locally, on the trestle over the James River between Lynchburg and Amherst County. The two most recent incidents, occurring in November 2011 and November 2014. Senate Bill 1416 would change is from a Class 4, to a Class 2 misdemeanor meaning caught trespassing on a train trestle, bridge, tunnel or railway yard would be punishable by a fine of up to $1,000 and jail. The original bill was tabled to sort out a number of issues. It’s set to return to the courts committee today.
Lynchburg City School officials, on Tuesday, reviewed an early draft of the 2015-2016 academic calendar. If the measures are passed as laid out then classes would start one week earlier in August and end one week later in June. Administrators say, it would shorten summer, and reduce the summer learning loss, while still giving students time off for summer activities, students and staff would have more breaks in the year. LCS has planned public input sessions throughout the month of February; open to parents, guardians, and staff before a final version is submitted to the Board for a vote next month.
A Liberty University student is facing charges after police say he was hit by a car Tuesday afternoon. Police say the student, Michael Bryant wasn’t paying attention when he stepped into the road. The accident occurred on Odd Fellows Road, the same place another student was hit in October. Bryant had no broken bones and was released from the hospital; he now faces unlawful pedestrian in roadway charges. LU tells media outlets, the city was requiring a signal at the location not allow just a crosswalk. Because of the danger existing on this road, the school is rushing the construction of its new dorm to move students onto campus.
Authorities are warning female realtors in Central and Southern Virginia after several suspicious calls. The Virginia Association of Realtors tells media outlets, in the past week, a man has called several female agents across the region requesting them to show him homes properties that are located in remote places at night OR in areas they do not generally cover. Sources say the individual refuses to meet them during the day, in a public location, or at their office. VAR says there is no caller ID information is not made available. Law enforcement agencies urge female realtors to take precautions when scheduling appointments and showing homes.
Five people were rescued from a burning home in Lynchburg early this morning. Crews were called to a home on Dudley Street, off of Florida Avenue just before 3:00 am. Officials say two adults and three children were able to escape out a second floor window onto the porch roof, where crews were able to help them down with a rescue ladder; 5 pets were also rescued. All received medical attention on site and no one had to go to the hospital. The fire was extinguished within 15 minutes; the cause of the blaze was an electrical fault on the first floor. The house is reported to be a total loss. The family is being assisted by the Red Cross.
Four Pittsylvania County teenagers required emergency medical assistance, some needing hospitalization after ingesting a mystery drug. Sources say the teens, ages 15 to 19 took an unknown, “unprescribed chemical or synthetic substance” in the past week. Media outlets report, investigators are working with chemist to identify the compound and the source behind the distribution. The sheriff’s office is asking anyone whom may have recently come into possession of these street available capsules containing a powdered substance not to risk ingesting the capsule. Experts say there is a high probability of unintended medical consequences.
A man who led police on a high speed car chase that ended in a crash in Nelson County last summer will spend the next five years in prison. 31 year old, Kenneth Michael Moore Jr., had been linked to a methamphetamine ring operating in Nelson County, Waynesboro and Charlottesville. On Wednesday, he pled guilty to four charges; possession of methamphetamine with the intent to distribute, eluding police, knowingly possessing a stolen firearm and having a gun while in possession of narcotics. The incident in which Moore led police through Augusta County into Nelson County, before losing control of his vehicle occurred on July 28 of last year.
The Appomattox Board of Supervisors, today, will be prioritizing capital improvement projects, and deciding what the county hopes to accomplish during the upcoming fiscal year. The News & Advance reports, among the documents up for consideration during today’s work session are items from the county’s planning commission and about $500,000 worth of school projects. According to the article, most of the work is at the middle and high schools. No money was set aside for capital improvement for the current fiscal year last spring so the list will include those projects as well. Financing options for chosen projects will also be discussed.
A bill that would require the state to keep at least three of the four remaining training centers open is picking up support from more legislators. SB 1300, doesn’t specify which locations must be preserved; but does delay action on a training center in Northern Virginia that is currently marked to close next. It would push back the site’s scheduled end date in 2016. The bill was forwarded to a Senate finance subcommittee and state would be given until November to make that decision. The president of the Central Virginia Training Center family association, says while not a decisive victory it is promising that it’s advancing for further review.