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News Archive

Notice to readers: How error on miners' deaths occurred

The Virginian-Pilot
Many of our readers woke up this morning to a banner headline in a black box on the top of the front page announcing that 12 coal miners had been found alive. As we know now, that was an erroneous report.Here’s how it got into the paper:Television reports came out around midnight with the news of survivors being found, and the Associated Press moved a story soon after. The story quoted the West Virginia governor and others who were celebrating the news, though the story also noted that there had . . .

Small liquor bottles seized from local catering firm

By MICHELLE WASHINGTONThe Virginian-Pilot
NORFOLK — Bureaucratic scrutiny led the state to an unusual windfall – 3,708 miniature bottles of liquor. State Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control agents confiscated the single-serving stockpile back in September, during a routine inspection at The Gourmet Gang catering company’s office in the 6000 block of Robin Hood Road. The company had a contract with World Airways to provide boxed lunches for flights leaving from a military base and headed to Georgia. The lunches included a . . .

Warner aide keeps press secretary job under Kaine

The Virginian-Pilot
RICHMOND — The press secretary to Gov. Mark R. Warner will stay on the job for four more years, Gov.-elect Timothy M. Kaine announced Tuesday.Kevin Hall, 43, is a Richmond native and a graduate of the College of William and Mary. Before Warner hired him, Hall was a night editor with The Associated Press in Richmond. Previously, Hall worked for the Virginia News Network, which provided news and sports programming for 65 radio affiliates across the state.

Region passed over again on Homeland Security list

By TIM McGLONE The Virginian-Pilot
Is Memphis, Tenn., at greater risk of a terrorist attack than Virginia Beach? Or Norfolk? Or the entire Hampton Roads?The U.S. Department of Homeland Security apparently believes it is. For the fourth year in a row, Hampton Roads was shut out of eligibility for Urban Area Security Initiative grants, according to a department announcement Tuesday. Hampton Roads was passed over in favor of cities such as Memphis; Louisville, Ky.; Baton Rouge, La.; and Santa Ana, Calif.; the latter considered . . .

Beach Boys to headline concert for governor’s inauguration

The Virginian-Pilot
RICHMOND — The Beach Boys will headline the inaugural concert for Gov.-elect Tim Kaine, inauguration officials announced Tuesday. The concert is scheduled for the evening of Jan. 13 at the Kaplan Arena at William & Mary Hall.Tickets to the concert can be purchased by calling (866) 492-6326. The inauguration ceremony is being held in Williamsburg this year because renovations are under way at the state Capitol.A more detailed list of inaugural events is available at www.kaineinaugural.com.

Suffolk lawyer is poised to fill vacant District Court post

By stephanie heinatzThe Virginian-Pilot
SUFFOLK –– A lifelong Suffolk resident who has practiced law in the city for more than three decades may soon fill a vacant judgeship in General District Court.William Richard Savage III , a 62-year-old partner with the downtown Suffolk law firm of Glasscock, Gardy & Savage , is expected to be sworn in next week to an interim position on the bench.When the General Assembly convenes later this month, two local lawmakers – Republicans Sen. Fred Quayle and Del. Chris Jones – will formally nominate . . .

Kaine taps Navy vet as commerce and trade secretary

The Virginian-Pilot
RICHMOND — Gov.-elect Tim Kaine has chosen a Navy veteran and attorney with international business experience to be his secretary of commerce and trade. Patrick O. Gottschalk, 52, of Henrico County, is a partner in the firm Cantor, Arkema, P.C. He specializes in corporate law, mergers and acquisitions, international business transactions and immigration matters .“He’s a deal-maker,” Kaine said in a Wednesday morning press conference, “and he’s worked in economic deals all over the commonwealth.”Gottschalk . . .

Speed involved in plunge from bridge-tunnel, investigators say

The Virginian-Pilot
VIRGINIA BEACH — The man whose sport utility vehicle ran off the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel on New Year’s Eve was speeding, an official said.Florencio Hernandez, a 22-year-old migrant worker, was killed about 7:30 p.m. Saturday when his Chevrolet Suburban hit a guard rail, flipped over the railing, and sank in about 35 feet of water in the Chesapeake Bay.It was the second crash in 2005 in which a vehicle ran off the bridge-tunnel. In March, a truck crashed through the bridge-tunnel’s . . .

Ex-city treasurer gets six months in jail

The Virginian-Pilot
FRANKLIN –– The former treasurer of this small city just outside Suffolk will spend the next six months in jail for embezzling more than $22,000 of city money in 2004. John Robert “Bobby” Cornwell was originally sentenced to 10 years in prison, but Circuit Judge Rodham T. Delk Jr. suspended most of the time on the condition that Cornwell get mental health counseling and be on supervised probation for five years after his release.Cornwell pleaded guilty to the embezzlement charge last March . . .

Suffolk prosecutors won’t seek child neglect charge

By stephanie heinatzThe Virginian-Pilot
SUFFOLK –– Prosecutors decided Tuesday not to pursue a felony child neglect charge against a Suffolk mother whose son fell from a ladder last summer and broke several bones.It was the second time in as many years that Joni Maxine Allen had faced child abuse charges. Allen garnered national attention in 2004 after a neighbor videotaped her 3-year-old son playing with a handgun. In an agreement with the state, she later pleaded guilty to contributing to the delinquency of a minor, and was ordered . . .

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