Breaking Local News

Voters May Decide on Library Funding

Budget woes continue, and now the Kanawha County Library Board of Directors has voted in favor of putting an excess levy on the November ballot. The school board will have to chime in, but a $3 million excess levy could be before voters this fall. An excess levy was defeated last year. The library is also requesting over $4 million in funding from the city of Charleston and the Kanawha County Commission.

Man Sentenced for Rite Aid Theft

Sentencing is coming up in April for a man who pleaded guilty to conspiracy in connection with a robbery at a Rite Aid in the summer of 2012. The store in South Charleston initially reported a shoplifting incident, and when a clerk noticed a bottle of liquor being stolen the clerk tried to intervene, and was assulted. Dominque Sanders said the clerk was fighting with a woman and he left the store with a bottle of liquor. He'll face one to five years in prison when he's sentenced April 30.

Report On Sissonville Pipeline Explosion Says It Was Preventable

The National Transportation Safety Board said in a new report released Monday that the natural gas pipeline that ruptured in 2012 near Sissonville could have been prevented. The NTSB said the rupture was caused by external corrosion that could have been discovered by the pipeline operator, and added that it took ten minutes for the operator to realize it was a rupture, despite alerts that the pressure in the pipeline was starting to deteriorate. Three homes were destroyed and part of Interstate 77 was burned after the pipeline ruptured. More than an hour passed before the pipeline was shut down. . The NTSB issued three safety recommendations to the Columbia Gas Transmission Corporation and one to the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration as a result of the report.

Cross Lanes Accident Could Lead to Criminal Charges

The Kanawha County Sheriff’s Office is investigating an accident that happened on Big Tyler Road in Cross Lanes Monday morning. Depuites say a Buick SUV attempted to pass an uninvolved vehicle in a no-passing zone while driving toward Dunbar. A Ford Explorer was being driven by a 16 year old driver toward Cross Lanes, and the Buick hit the Ford head-on.
Both drivers were trapped in their vehicles until they were extricated by members of the Tyler Mountain Volunteer and Institute Volunteer Fire Departments, and taken to the hospital by Kanawha County Emergency Ambulance Authority personnel with non-life threatening, but serious, injuries. Cpl B-D Humphreys says the driver of the Buick will likely face criminal charges.

Man Wanted in Two States Arrested in Charleston Area

A fugitive wanted in two states spent time in the South Central Regional Jail over the weekend. 42-year old John Barta was arrested after allegedly holding a man at knifepoint for two hours in the Knights Inn in Kanawha City. The victim told police he wanted to leave, but Barta wouldn't let him and held a knife to his throat. The victim eventually got away and was able to call 911 from his cellphone. Barta is facing kidnapping charges, and parole violations out of Virginia and Indiana.

Nitro Voters Approve Levy

Nitro voters headed to the polls over the weekend and okayed a special levy to increase taxes for supporting several public services. The 84 percent yes vote will give about $369,000 dollars each year for the city, and the money will go toward park improvements, street maintenance and repairs, street lights, police and fire wages, and the library. It's a 4-year levy that will go into effect July 1st. Property taxes will go up by less than a hundred dollars per year on a $100,000 house.

Man Convicted in Dancer's Death

A man convicted of fatally stabbing a Beckley dancer will spend the rest of his life in prison. A Raleigh County jury deliberated less than 40 minutes before finding 33-year old Jeremy Lambert guilty of first-degree murder. The jury recommended life without mercy, meaning Lambert has no chance for parole. Prosecutors say Lambert stabbed his girlfriend, 35-year old Cyan Maroney 23 times at her Beckley home on Oct. 2, 2011. Maroney was a dancer with the West Virginia Dance Company. Defense lawyers said Lambert suffered from post-traumatic stress order after he was deployed to Kuwait.

Purse Snatcher Faces Charges

A St. Albans man is facing charges after allegedly stealing a purse from a couple outside a store in Charleston. Aaron Stover is accused of bumping the man out of the way and swiping the woman's purse, but police quickly caught up with him near the Patrick Street Bridge and took him into custody. He's facing robbery charges.

WV Jobless Rate Drops

West Virginia's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell slightly to 5.9 percent in January. WorkForce West Virginia says the number of unemployed residents fell 700 in January to 46,900. In the goods-producing sector, employment gains were seen in construction, mining and logging, while the state experienced job losses in manufacturing. In the service sector, employment gains were seen in information, financial activities, leisure and hospitalities and in other services. There were declines in trade, transportation and utilities, professional and business services, educational and health services, and government. The national unemployment rate fell to 6.6 percent in January from 6.7 percent in December.

Chemical Spill Investigation Widens

FBI investigators looked through records Thursday at Diversified Services That's the company that transported chemicals for Freedom Industries. FBI agents took away computers, paperwork, and boxes yesterday afternoon. Freedom Industries is at the center of the investigation into the January 9th chemical spill that contaminated the Elk River. Diversified Services is the company that hauled the crude MCHM off when the Department of Environmental Protection ordered it be removed from the Charleston facility.

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