Breaking Local News
The Cookskin holiday light display will begin later than usual because of damage from Superstorm Sandy. The light show typically happens the day after Thanksgiving, but the Kanawha County Parks and Recreation Commission voted last week to postpone it until Saturday Dec. 1.
A suspect in an October murder now has a warrant out for his arrest. Police are looking for 24-year old Richard Bernard Hilliard of Kanawha County. He is described as 6 feet tall and weighing about 200 pounds, with black hair and brown eyes. There was a shooting Oct. 11 near Milton and Richards streets in Charleston and 26-year old David Juaboi Booker of Charleston was killed. After an investigation, Charleston police issued the first-degree murder arrest warrant for Hilliard. Anyone with information on where Hilliard is should call Charleston Police.
Investigations are underway into animal cruelty. Point Pleasant police are investigating reports of cats being tortured and killed. The Point Pleasant Register reports there have ben two separate incidents of cats being dumped into the Ohio River after being tortured.
In an unrelated case, more than 70 animals were seized recently in Preston County. The Dominion Post newspaper reports that the malnourished animals included 29 dogs, 14 cats, five guinea pigs, two pot belly pigs, 20 chickens and a goat. Four people were arrested in that case.
A brush fire in the town of Twilight in Boone County spread to a thousand acres Monday, but that fire has been contained. The fire has been burning for three days. The West Virginia Division of Forestry says the fire was caused by a burning coal seam that caught leaves on fire. Forestry crews and their equipment will move to Big Ugly Creek Road in Lincoln County this morning where another brush fire has begun spreading.
Charleston firefighters are investigating another suspicious fire. A vacant West Side home burned Saturday night, and investigators say the fire started in the basement of the home at 2609 7th Avenue. Nobody was hurt, and firefighters were able to knock the flames down before they spread to other nearby houses. Investigators think the fire is arson and somebody has set the home on fire before. This is added to a list of suspicious fires on the West Side in the past few weeks.
Charleston police are still investigating a suspicious package sent to the mayor's home Friday morning. Charleston Mayor Danny Jones received a dead pigeon, gift wrapped at the end of his driveway about 8 a.m. Friday and a threatening note to the mayor was attached. Charleston police say in a news release they are processing the evidence and want anybody with information on the package to call the Charleston Police Department.
A new fire station in Sissonville is open now. It's named after longtime chief Thomas K. Johnson who was with the fire department in some capacity from 1961 to 2011 and then retired. Two years ago, the fire station burned to the ground, and this weekend's ribbon cutting marked a moment of victory for firefighters who not only lost their place of employment with the fire, but also the history of the building. Station 26 is up and running now, rebuilt largely with FEMA assistance and public donations. The fire station had been running out of Charleston Auto.
A Kanawha County jury on Friday found that three members of the West Side's Bob Burdette Center board violated a sexual orientation discrimination policy. The jury concluded that the board did not appoint a woman to head the nonprofit afterschool program because they'd discovered she is a lesbian through her Facebook page. Jessica Hudson had accepted the job offer and quit another job when the offer from the Bob Burdette Center was rescinded. No money was awarded in the trial.
Efforts are increasing to boost recylcing in West Virginia. The state is awarding nearly $1.5 million in recycling assistance grants to 32 agencies, including solid waste authorities, private industries and counties. The money will help buy vehicles as well as educational material to assist recycling programs. The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection says the recycling assistance grants are generated through a $1 assessment on every ton of solid waste disposed at state landfills.
A former West Virginia pharmacist has been sentenced to six months in federal prison, along with one year of supervised release and a $5,000 fine. 77-year old James P. Wooley pleaded guilty in February, essentially admitting that he new certain prescriptions for controlled substances were not valid. Wooley was the owner and operator of Stronsnider Drug Store Inc., which did business as SAV-RITE Pharmacy in two locations near Kermit in Mingo County. Others have also been sentenced to prison time as part of the investigation.