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Today's News

  • Chase reaches 120 mph, ends in crash

    HILLSVILLE– A high-speed pursuit on March 6 around 2:45 p.m. led to an arrest by Hillsville Police Department, after a driver tried to elude law enforcement, eventually crashing along Interstate 77.

    According to a report by HPD Capt. Shannon Goad, the driver; Dennis Lee Waiters Jr. of Charlotte, N.C., was traveling at nearly 90 mph in the northbound lanes of I-77 around Exit 14 in Hillsville when Officer David Johnson detected the offense while running stationary radar.

  • 'Zombie outbreak' teaches crisis skills

    HILLSVILLE – A mutated strain of the Zika virus is causing the infected to exhibit zombie-like behavior, and it’s up to a team of middle school students to handle the outbreak.

    It’s not the plot of a movie; it’s the scenario presented to students at Carroll County Middle School, as they participated in a project that demonstrated all the effort and hard work that it takes to deal with public safety and combat severe or dangerous situations.

  • Three more sentenced for drug conspiracy

    ABINGDON ― Three more locals were sentenced to federal prison last week, resulting from Operation Rolling Thunder, a joint investigation into a local methamphetamine distribution network.

    The defendants were sentenced March 6 in the Western District of Virginia Federal Court in Abingdon, in proceedings held before Judge James P. Jones. All pleaded guilty last year to charges conspiracy to distribute meth.

    They include:

  • Land bought for new school could still benefit students

    As the city moves forward with plans to renovate and expand Galax Elementary, what will become of the property the school system initially bought to build a new school?

    The school system bought 62 acres of land near Fries Road that was originally going to be the site of a new GES, before cost estimates made it clear that renovating and upgrading the existing building would be much more feasible.

    At a recent school board meeting, Superintendent Bill Sturgill said he still felt good about the land purchase, and talked about alternative plans for its use.

  • Objections to closing fell on deaf ears

    For six years, local legislators have campaigned on behalf of our community to reverse the impending closure of the Southwestern Virginia Training Center in Carroll County.

    But this year, with the mental health facility still slated to close by the end of June, after 40 years, there’s a deep sense of loss and discouragement. Our state representatives’ efforts once again were denied advancement in the 2018 General Assembly, which is set to adjourn this week.

  • A Galax icon, Verl Brown steps aside

    Time always wins, even over the timeless. Verl Brown has decided that for him, it’s time to let go.

  • A year after death, deputy still inspires

    A year ago, on March 9, Carroll County Sheriff’s Deputy Curtis Bartlett died in the line of duty when his cruiser hit a tractor-trailer while responding to a call for help from his fellow officers, who were engaged in a pursuit.

    Curtis, a veteran, law enforcement and school resource officer, personal trainer and internet fitness celebrity, was beloved by the community. His funeral at Galax First Baptist Church — where his father, Sam Bartlett, is pastor — drew expressions of grief, sympathy and support for his family, friends and coworkers.

  • 2017 a dangerous year for local police

    The March 2017 crash that killed Carroll County Deputy Curtis Bartlett was part of a dangerous trend for Twin County law enforcement in 2017.

    In case after case, suspects would flee the scene or refuse to stop, causing officers to chase them down at high speeds. In some cases, the suspects rammed police vehicles, shot at officers or got into physical altercations.

    “Sadly, it just keeps getting more dangerous every year,” said Carroll Sheriff J.B. Gardner. “It would be a tremendous blessing if we never had to chase anyone ever again.”

  • Ballots set for May elections

    Staff Reports

    The deadline for candidates to file for this year’s town council races has passed, and the ballots are set for the May election.

    March 6 was the deadline for candidates to turn in their paperwork to local voter registrars, and each locality has at least one challenger going up against incumbents seeking re-election.

    Incumbents C.M. Mitchell (who serves as mayor), Willie Greene (who serves as vice mayor) and John Garner are seeking re-election in Galax, joined on the ballot by newcomers Travis Haynes and Sharon Ritchie.

  • What are the 5 germiest places during flu season?

    Flu season is in full swing, and health officials say the best way to fight it is to get vaccinated.

    It takes two weeks for the shot to become effective, so in the meantime, the best protection is good hygiene.

    Frequently touched surfaces at work or school should be cleaned and disinfected especially if someone is ill. Flu viruses spread mainly by droplets made when someone with flu coughs, sneezes or talks. They can infect you from six feet away.