WVAS Local

Montgomery Police Investigate a Saturday Homicide

May 15, 2017

   An adult male was found shot to death in Montgomery over the weekend. In a statement, police report that the man was fatally shot in the 100 block of West Patton Avenue around 10 o’clock Saturday night. His name has not been released. Any details on what may have led to the shooting or any possible suspects have not been given. Police are asking that anyone with information on the fatal shooting to call police at 625-2831 or the Secret Witness line at 625-4-thousand or CrimeStoppers, which is 215-STOP.

Alabama Legislature Approves General Fund Budget

May 12, 2017

The Alabama Legislature has approved a general fund budget. The House of Representatives yesterday passed the 1.8 billion dollar spending plan by a vote of 93 to 6. It had already passed the Senate. House Ways and Means General Fund Committee Chairman Steve Clouse says the budget puts about 93 million dollars in reserve. He says that money will likely be needed in the next budget after the state has used up all the BP oil spill settlement money that is currently shoring up Medicaid. The general fund budget now goes to Governor Kay Ivey for her signature.

Body Found in Lowndes County

May 11, 2017

   Authorities are asking for the public’s help in a death investigation in Lowndes County. The State Bureau of Investigation is reporting that the body of Shmeko Shontae Sturdivant was found off Benton Road Monday afternoon. An investigator with the Lowndes County Sheriff’s Office told the Lowndes Signal that the woman’s body had been set on fire and left on the side of the road. No other information has been provided. Investigators are asking that anyone with information on this incident to call SBI at 334-242-1142 or, to remain anonymous, the SBI Crime Tip Line at 800-392-8011.

Montgomery Police Officer Arrested on Drug Charges

May 10, 2017

   Montgomery police have arrested one of their own in a drug trafficking investigation.  The department initiated a criminal probe after receiving information that the officer, identified as 38 year old Amanda Millwood, was allegedly involved with controlled and illegal drugs. According to a police department release, Millwood was arrested late last night along with two other suspects for unlawful distribution of a controlled substance.  Also charged in the case were 34 year old Constance Millwood and 36 year old Beverlee Gardner.

Dozens of Bills in Limbo as Session Winds Down

May 9, 2017

   Legislators today begin the final six days of the regular session that will determine the fate of dozens of bills.     One of the more prominent pieces of legislation outlines new legislative districts. Federal judges ordered the state to redraw lines before the 2018 election after ruling the districts were unconstitutionally gerrymandered along racial lines. Black lawmakers say the updated maps contain very few changes. Lawmakers are also bringing back up the prison construction plan.

 The State Bureau of Investigation is looking into a fatal shooting in Phenix City that involved a police officer. A release from the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency states that the incident happened yesterday afternoon just before 5 o’clock in the vicinity of 12th place and 11th Avenue. It’s being reported that the shooting came at the end of a vehicular pursuit between police and a suspect.

The Alabama Department of Public Health is investigating an outbreak associated with a college baseball tournament in Montgomery. At this time, reports estimate that 25 to 30 individuals have experienced gastrointestinal illness that includes the following symptoms: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, cramping and lethargy. Some ill persons have visited various emergency rooms in the area. No food items or water sources have been implicated yet, and there are no known organisms associated with the outbreak.

 Alabama State University officials yesterday lauded the Alabama Attorney General’s actions to end an audit of ASU nearly five years after its inception. Acting Attorney General Chris McCool announced the closure of the case Tuesday. His statement says a special grand jury heard from dozens of witnesses and experts analyzed financial records and no indictments were returned. Interim President of ASU Dr. Leon Wilson says the university has been vindicated.

State Education Budget Nears Passage

May 4, 2017

   The State Education Budget is close to final passage. A unanimous vote from the House of Representatives yesterday sends it back to the Senate. The 6.4 billion dollar spending plan would keep state schools mostly funded at the same levels as last year, though some increases would be seen for K-12 schools. It includes money to hire an additional 152 teachers in fourth thru sixth grades. The budget previously stalled in the Senate when a legislator filibustered the plan, saying it needed more money for grade schools. 

   A legislative committee has approved new legislative districts over the objections of black Democrats who argued it continues racial gerrymandering to maintain Republican dominance. The House Constitution, Campaigns and Election Committee voted Tuesday to send the plan to the House floor. Lawmakers must redo the map after federal judges ruled lawmakers had improperly made race a predominant factor when drawing boundaries.