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Today's News

  • Indictments charge theft from elderly patients

    ABINDGON — A senior social worker for Grayson County and the companion provider she hired have been indicted by a federal grand jury on charges they committed fraud to steal money from a pair of elderly patients.
    The grand jury on Thursday charged Jennifer Edward Hall, 36, and Bernard Dale Satterfield, 46, both of Galax, with crimes related to the defendants’ scheme to steal money from elderly patients under their care as employees of the Grayson County Department of Social Services.

  • Calls keep Galax firefighters busy during carnival

    The Galax Fire Department was busy last week, not only with its weeklong July 4 carnival, but also with various fire and emergency calls.  
    While in Felts Park, the department was called to the following incidents:
    • assisting Glade Creek Fire Department on July 1 at 1:30 p.m. with a vehicle accident and the landing of a medevac helicopter.
    • responding to a house fire at 303 Edgewood Drive in Galax, owned by James Rupert Fink Jr. and Denise Burnette, on July 2 at 3:30 p.m.

  • Wildfire warning issued

    Dry weather and sweltering temperatures have created an atmosphere throughout much of Virginia that may increase the likelihood of wildfires igniting, Gov. Bob McDonnell said in a statement Wednesday.
    The humid conditions and summer thunderstorms that often mark this season in the state have been largely absent this year. As a result, there's more brown brush on the ground that can easily spark.

  • Are Virginia schools missing the mark?

    Virginia was on the cutting edge of education reform when it rolled out state standards in math, English and other subjects in 1995.
    These days, the mantle of reform resides elsewhere, along with federal money that helps pay for it.
    "When people talk about leading states, they don't talk about Virginia any more," said Andy Rotherham, a former state Board of Education member who co-founded nonprofit Bellwether Education.
    "We're resting on accomplishments instead of looking forward as we should," he said.

  • 'Luxury' RV park planned in Carroll

    HILLSVILLE — A development company called Morris International has plans to build a luxury recreational vehicle resort adjacent to the New River Trail State Park in the Gambetta section of Carroll County.
    The plans for the Chestnut Creek resort call for a total of 30 RV sites in two phases, just off Gambetta Road., according to information available on the company's Web site, morrisinternationalproperties.com.

  • Man charged with drug possession

    Christopher S. Dunagan, 20, of Hiwassee was arrested by Galax Police Capt. James Cox after a traffic stop on July 1, according to the Galax Police Department. 
    Dunagan was stopped for suspicion of driving under the influence after a citizen complaint. Subsequent to his arrest for driving under the influence of drugs, Cox obtained warrants charging him with possession with intent to distribute a variety of drugs — morphine, hydromorphine, Suboxone,  Klonopin and Xanax.

  • Carroll renews school food contract with Chartwells

    HILLSVILLE — It hasn't been all gravy during the first year of Chartwells serving meals in the Carroll schools, but educators feel the company is worth its salt to renew.
    The Carroll County School Board approved the second year of a contract with the private food service company, feeling that they will do a better job at cutting the mustard now they've had a year with the program.

  • New state laws in effect

    In a year dominated by a $4 million budget shortfall, state lawmakers still managed to pass roughly 900 bills that took effect on July 1. The measures run the gamut from seat belts to guns to the promotion of offshore drilling to economic development.
    Here’s a selection of the highlights:

    Firearms
    Lawmakers approved several measures this year amending gun ownership rules.

  • Hancock pleads guilty to drug charges

    ROANOKE — A Hillsville man pleaded guilty in federal court June 30 to one count of conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine.
    Benjamin Lee Hancock, one of six Twin County residents charged in an 11-count indictment, appeared with his attorney to answer charges of conspiracy and distribution of meth in U.S. District Court in Roanoke, where he agreed to plead guilty to the one count.
    "Count 1 charges me with conspiracy to distribute more than 500 grams of a mixture containing methamphetamine," the plea agreement, signed by Hancock, says.

  • Putting wind to work (VIDEO)

     FANCY GAP — The windmill-raising Thursday on Gary Horton's farm generated lots of interest in the community for the first attempt to make commercial-grade renewable energy in Carroll County.

    Dozens of people, including Virginia state Senator Roscoe Reynolds and business developers Dallas Garrett and Bernie Deck, showed up on the farm on the ridge to see what happened with the windmill installation by Red Hill General Store.