Local News

  • Swine Flu: Panic or Pandemic?

    Two confirmed cases of swine flu had been reported in Virginia as of last Friday, and the Mount Rogers Health District is preparing to address an outbreak, should one occur.

    Health officials recommended that the public take precautions against the spread of the disease.

    The two confirmed cases are an adult male from eastern Virginia and an adult female from central Virginia. They both had traveled to Mexico, had mild illnesses and are recovering well, according to state health officials.

  • Crossroads to offer bachelor, master degrees

    Even as more Wytheville Community College students fill classes at the Crossroads Institute in Galax, educational opportunities there continue to expand.

    Crossroads Executive Director Oliver McBride said last week that the educational and entrepreneurial facility has a plan to add select bachelor and master degrees through New College Institute of Martinsville to go along with the associate degrees offered by the community college.

    These include degree tracks that will not only serve individuals’ needs, but the community’s, as well.

  • Bank robbery suspect gets life in prison

    An Arkansas man charged with robbing the Whitetop branch of Grayson National Bank on May 8, 2008, was convicted in Baxter County Circuit Court on April 23 of robbing the Gassville, Ark., bank on Nov. 18, 2008.

    The jury deliberated only five minutes before finding Richard Joseph Bauer, 70, guilty of one count of aggravated robbery and four counts of kidnapping – one for each bank employee that he admitted to tying up.

    Circuit Court Judge John Putman sentenced Bauer to 40 years for the robbery conviction and life in prison for each kidnapping charge.

  • Two Carroll men safe after river incident

    FRIES — Fries Fire Department, New River Trail State Park Police, Carroll County deputies responded and more were called in a report of two in trouble in the New River near Buck Dam. Fortunately, the rescuers weren't needed.

    Though the report to authorities identified those who fell out of a canoe and got submerged in the water just upstream from Buck Dam as children, the two involved were men who pulled themselves out of the water.

  • Child injured in dog attack

    A 4-year-old child received severe injuries to the leg last Saturday, after being attacked by a pit bull on Webster Street in Galax, according to the Galax Police Department.

    The child was transported to Twin County Regional Hospital and then to Roanoke Memorial to undergo surgery for injuries suffered in the attack.

    An adult, Tyonda Dashonda Ravenell, was also injured in the attack and was treated and released at TCRH.

  • Carroll hires rec director, PSA engineer

    HILLSVILLE — Carroll County Public Service Authority officials say they expect to save money with the hiring of an engineer to work on its water and sewer projects, in a Monday statement announcing they have filled the position.

    Jessica Montgomery will serve in this capacity, providing services that the county previously had to contract for, said Gary Larrowe, county administrator and PSA director.

  • Murder appeal nixed

    HILLSVILLE — Yet another legal option has been denied for a former Hillsville woman seeking to overturn her 2006 conviction for second-degree murder of a prominent Carroll County farmer.

    Elva Rosemary “Chick” Nixon has exhausted another of her options with the court system on her conviction in the Jan. 5, 2004, ambush that led to the death of 75-year-old Donald Brady from four gunshot wounds.

    A jury sentenced Nixon to 33 years in prison as punishment for the death, as well as robbery and use of a firearm.

  • Fighting the meth epidemic in Galax

    Sure, Galax has a methamphetamine problem, Megan Brown said as she stood on her porch a few minutes' drive from the city's busy downtown.

    "I don't know hardly anyone who hasn't used it," she said.

    Galax is more widely known for its furniture industry, the Christmas tree farms that dot surrounding counties, and the annual fiddlers' convention that draws thousands of people from around the world.

  • N.C. man acquitted in fiddlers' fracas

    INDEPENDENCE — A jury in Grayson County last week found a North Carolina man not guilty of all charges stemming from an Aug. 10, 2007 incident at the Galax Old Fiddlers' Convention.

    Galax police had charged Teddy Ray Nixon of Jonesville, N.C. with malicious wounding, reckless driving and leaving the scene of an accident after Nixon allegedly struck a pedestrian with his vehicle near Felts Park.

    According to a police report, Capt. James Cox was on bike patrol in the park when he heard screaming from the back gate off Railroad Avenue.

  • Will Carroll, Hillsville stick with decals?

    HILLSVILLE — Citizens speaking to Carroll Supervisors' Chairman David Hutchins about county decals for personal vehicles have been blunt about their feelings.

    "I've had numerous people tell me the stupidest thing Carroll County's ever done is put those decals on there," he recalls.

    Hutchins said that statement was often followed by the suggestion that the county should just get rid of the decals and collect the revenue another way.

    Hillsville Town Council will also look into the possibility.