Local News

  • Indictments include drug, fraud charges


    INDEPENDENCE – Indictments against three Independence residents have recently been unsealed.

    The Grayson County Circuit Court grand jury met July 22 and returned several sealed indictments. They were not made public until those named in the indictments were charged.

    The included:

  • Two ejected in Cliffview crash

    Staff Report

    A wreck on Cliffview Road on Oct. 4 sent all three occupants to the hospital due to not wearing seatbelts, police said.

    According to Trooper S.E. Kinney, the Virginia State Police was called to an automobile accident on Cliffview during the early morning hours of Oct. 4. The accident occurred at 2:50 a.m., about .2 mile north of Creekview Drive, near Galax.

  • Claims found in former VA employee's possession

    A large number of documents, including veterans’ claims, were discovered in a storage unit belonging to a former veterans’ office employee who worked at Richmond’s McGuire Veterans Administration Medical Center.

    Virginia Department of Veterans Services retrieved and secured the documents at the agency’s Richmond headquarters, and are reviewing documents so that affected veterans can be notified and assisted in filing claims.

    The Virginia attorney general notified the Virginia State Police and requested a criminal investigation.

  • Officers recognized for work on homicide investigation

    Staff Reports

    Two local police officers have been commended for their work in collecting evidence at the scene of a double homicide in Galax earlier this year.

    Detective Aaron Criner of the Galax Police Department and Special Agent Russell Edwards of the Virginia State Police were the recipients of the 2016 Dr. Paul Ferrara Virginia Forensic Science Academy Crime Scene Officer of the Year Award.

    Both men were nominated by Galax Police Chief Rick Clark.

  • Grant pays for extended school year research

    HILLSVILLE – Carroll County Public Schools has received more than $300,000 in state and private grants for school security upgrades, the AmeriCorps program and research into extended-year educational programs.

    According to a release from Governor Terry McAuliffe’s office, $6 million was awarded to 96 school divisions and five regional educational programs to provide school security equipment to protect students and education professionals.

  • Architects pitch GES options

    Four architectural and engineering firms, over the course of two meetings, pitched options for renovating and expanding the existing Galax Elementary School or, in one case, building a new school on property off of Kipling Lane that the school system bought for that purpose.

    Attending and evaluating the pitches were members of the Galax School Board and Galax City Council.

  • Warning issued about fraudulent bulldog puppy website

    Consumers are warned about the fraudulent website “Ice Dream Bulldogs,” which claims to sell bulldog puppies, but instead steals customer’s money and does not have puppies for sale.

    The Better Business Bureau Serving Western Virginia issued the alert after it found multiple problems with the website and business practices.

    The website mirrors a similar scam first reported by BBB in 2015 and 2016. Those websites — comfortbulldogs.com, and tinyyorkiepupshome.com — used similar tactics and also listed Southwest Virginia addresses.

  • Griffith seeks 4th term in Congress

    U.S. Rep. Morgan Griffith’s 9th Congressional District seat is up for election this November, and the incumbent Republican is facing two challengers on the ballot, plus a write-in candidate.

    Griffith stopped by The Gazette offices to answer a few questions on the campaign trail.

    He has served the past five-and-half years in the U.S. House of Representatives — he’s in his third term — and 17 in the Virginia House of Delegates, from 1994 to 2011.

  • Hammer claims to know cold case details

    Copyright 2016, Civitas Media. Reprinted with permission.

    WEST JEFFERSON, N.C. ― In a letter written from his Virginia prison cell, convicted murderer Freddie P. Hammer has told the Jefferson Post he knows details about two local cold cases that have long stumped investigators.

  • Early SOL scores look good for Galax

    Preliminary SOL scores indicate that Galax has again excelled, according to Superintendent Bill Sturgill.

    “It’s still unofficial … we scored better in math this year than our three-year average,” he said, noting that “we’re seeing the same trend with English.”

    Sturgill informed the Galax School Board about the early results at the Sept. 13 meeting. He said he felt that the targeted remediation classes during mornings during intersession weeks were directly responsible for the upswing.