Breaking Local News

Attorneys for Freedom Officials Want Trial Moved

Attorneys for two former executives charged in a chemical spill say their clients can't get a fair trial in West Virginia. Attorneys for former Freedom Industries officials Gary Southern and Dennis Farrell asked a federal judge this week to move their trial to a district outside the state. The defense motion says a survey found an overwhelming presumption of guilt among potential jurors. The motion also says one in six West Virginians was affected by a water crisis resulting from the January 2014 chemical spill. Southern and Farrell face pollution charges stemming from the spill. Southern also faces fraud charges stemming from the company's bankruptcy

Lawsuit Could Be Coming After Train Derailment

A lawsuit could be coming after the CSX train derailment in Fayette County in February. WCHS TV says legal offices from three states met Tuesday night with victims of the train derailment and explosion, and are getting ready to file a major lawsuit against CSX Railroad and anyone else connect to the derailment. It won't cost victims anything to sign on as part of the suit, and an official filing could come soon.

Investigation is On After Bodies Are Found Near St. Albans

Monday afternoon someone called 911 about a dead body at a home on Ferrell Road near Saint Albans. Sgt B-D Humphreys with the Kanawha County Sheriff's Office said by the time an ambulance arrived another person was found dead in the home. Both were adult males, and the cause of death has not yet been determined, and there were no traumatic injuries or signs of violence. Autopsies are pending with the medical examiner, who will determine the cause of death.

Buses to be Inspected More Frequently

Bus inspections are increasing right now. As part of a joint effort with the Federal Motor Carriers Safety Administration, the Public Service Commission says its officers are increasing inspections of motorcoaches, tour buses and other commercial passenger buses. The sweep, which will continue through the end of May, looks for mechanical problems with brakes, suspension, lights, emergency exits and engine defects. Bus drivers are also inspected make sure they're compliant.

Former Mountain State Students Wait on Settlement

Former Mountain State University students are waiting on their money after a settlement was approved back in February. About 2,300 former students are sharing more than $11 million and there's no word yet when the first checks might be cut. The Charleson Gazette reports the money can’t go out until the Charleston- and Montgomery-based accounting and consulting firm Smith, Cochran and Hicks, finishes processing all the claims. West Virginia University also needs to finalize its purchase of MSU’s Beckley campus.

Sinkhole Closes Intersection Indefinitely

A Charleston intersection is closed indefinitely because of a sinkhole. The street gave out at Florida Street and Third Avenue on Charleston’s West Side on Monday morning and may have been caused by a leak from one of the water lines in the area. The Charleston Gazette reports that buses from nearby Mary C. Snow Elementary School will have to be rerouted until repairs are wrapped up, and there's no exact timeline for that.

High Court Rules on Drug Lawsuits

The state's high court will allow doctors and pharmacists to be sued by prescription drug addicts for causing the addictions. The state Supreme Court ruled in a 3-2 decision last week that just because plaintiffs have engaged in criminal conduct, it doesn’t mean their lawsuits against those who authorized the medication should be thrown out. Instead, it will be up to a jury whether there was negligence.

Bond Revoked and Capital High Student is Arrested

A student who pleaded guilty to forcing a 15-year-old female to have sex with him has been arrested after his bond was revoked. Kanawha County Sheriff's Office spokesman Sgt. Bryan Humphreys says the 17-year-old male student at Capital High School was arrested Friday night. Prosecutors asked a circuit judge to revoke the bond. The reason was unclear because the motion is sealed. The teen boy was awaiting sentencing for his guilty plea to first-degree sexual abuse in the Jan. 26 incident at the school, but there are reports he wants to withdraw the plea.

Attorney General's Office Warns of Vacation Scams

If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey is warning of possible vacation scams, which could involve postcards, phone calls or emails offering free vacations or big discounts. Some tips to protect yourself....be wary of any company that asks to be paid via money order or pre-paid debit card. Also let it be a red flag if there are too few details, and be leary of vacation offers that are "today only." If you think you're been a victim of a scam, contact the Attorney General's office.

Flags are at Half Staff today

Flags will be at half staff today at state buildings. Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin ordered all U.S. and state flags to be lowered today in honor of Peace Officers Memorial Day, which honors federal, state and local law enforcement officers who have fallen or been disabled in the line of duty. It is held in conjunction with Police Week, which is observed May 10 through May 16.

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