Breaking Local News
The Putnam County fair continues this week and runs through Saturday at the Putnam County Fairgrounds in Eleanor. In addition to the 4-H market shows and exhibits, the fair has the demolition derby, mud run, tractor pulls, motocross, concerts, and of course the food and midway. Kids five and under get in free, otherwise daily admission is $8. Gates open at 4pm today and there's a Kids Tractor Pull at 6:30, and karaoke at 7:30.
It appears West Side Elementary is getting a new name. After a vote makes it officials, the school will be renamed in honor of Kanawha County's first black principal of a desegregated school - Mary C Snow. She was principal at Glenwood Elementary for several years. The Daily Mail reports school board members are confident a vote is coming this Thursday, despite the move not being listed on the official agenda. A group of ministers has been pushing for the name designation since February. The official name will be the Mary C. Snow West Side Elementary School
The West Virginia Attorney General's office warns of a scam on your cell phone. You may see a text message that says you've won a $1000 Target gift card and it contains a link to a fake Target website that prompts you to enter personal information and a social security number. The scam uses the Target logo, but Target has nothing to do with it. If you get the message, just delete it.
More now on a shooting early Thursday that claimed the life of a man from Rand. Kanawha County Sheriff's deputies were called to the 5300 block of Elaine Dr. and found 21-year old William Cordle II of Rand. The initial investigation showed some type of disagreement between Cordle and 19-year old Brent Burdette led to the shooting. Burdette has been arrested and faces first degree homicide charges. The investigation continues.
First the loss of accreditation, and now a class action lawsuit has been filed against Mountain State University. The revoked accreditation makes students' degrees worthless, and now three students are suing the school, former President Charles Polk, and the Board of Trustees. Papers were filed Wednesday in Kanawha County Circuit Court, and the students are seeking class action status, meaning others could join. The plaintiffs say the suit should cover anyone enrolled since 2008. Mountain State is appealing the loss of accreditation with the Higher Learning Commission.
The state Board of Education voted this week to give the Lincoln County school system preliminary full accreditation status. Up next for the school system, a full audit this fall and if that goes okay Lincoln County would regain full control of its schools. The state took over in 2000 over the state of disrepair of the buildings, illegal hiring practices and low student test scores. In December 2010, the state returned control of most of the system's operations to Lincoln County, and full accreditation would be the next step.
Any damages from the June 29 storms that haven't yet been reported should be reported to emergency managers. FEMA has been in the area assessing damage this week, and the information they collect along with reports gathered by local emergency management officials will go into a report for the governor. That will be used to formally request public assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency. West Virginia Transportation Secretary Paul Mattox has estimated the cost of cleaning up the highways alone is near $14 million. The state is looking to recover most of the costs for repairs.
25-year old Ethan Chic Colbert awaits sentencing after being convicted this week of child neglect in the death of 11-year old Jahlil Clemments. The boy ran into traffic and was struck by a car, as he tried to get help for his mother, who was allegedly being beaten on the side of the road by Chic Colbert. The judge this week threw out the more serious murder and kidnapping charges, saying there wasn't enough evidence to support them, but the child neglect charges remained. Sentencing is next month, and Chic Colbert could get seven to thirty-one years behind bars.
Accused Kanawha County sniper Shawn Lester is facing a new charge. Lester was indicted this week by a federal grand jury on a drug charge for distributing cocaine and oxycodone between 2005 and 2011 near Sissonville. Lester also faces a federal gun possession charge and has entered a guilty plea for that. He awaits a September sentencing. The federal charges are separate from the state charges related to the murders of Jeannie Patton, Okey Meadows Jr., and Gary Carrier in 2003. The trial on the state charges is scheduled to start later this month and last into August or September.
A low-cost housing project in Charleston gets the green light. The new project will have fewer townhouses than some traditional housing projects, as a way to make life more comfortable for those who live there and deter crime. The Municipal Planning Commission unanimously approved the project Wednesday. Construction will start this fall on Charleston's West side and will take about a year.