WVAS Local

Alabama State University hosted its third annual “I Love ASU – Sting A Thon” over the weekend at the ASU Dunn-Oliver Acadome. Numerous local musicians performed for the crowd of hundreds who came out to support ASU despite the rain.

ASU President, Dr. Leon Wilson says the ‘Sting A Thon’ gives people the opportunity to show their support and give back to the University. ASU’s Vice President of Institutional Advancement, Zillah Fluker said ASU has existed this long because of the Marion Nine, who founded the University in 1867.

   Storms moving through the Deep South yesterday left damage in southeastern Alabama and west central Georgia after flooding caused a death in North Carolina earlier in the week. In Alabama, Pike County Emergency Management personnel report trees on top of houses and a mobile home off its foundation along U.S. 29 between Troy and the Banks community. Some minor structural damage was reported in Montgomery County along with fallen trees. At one point around 5-thousand people were without power in the area.

A wealth of positive discourse and information dissemination took place at last night’s town hall meeting and block party in front of Sidney Lanier High School. Panelists tackled the subject of violence in the Montgomery community and how to combat it. Montgomery County District Attorney Daryl Bailey says an increase in positive role models would help. Montgomery County Sheriff Derrick Cunningham advised parents to take advantage of the programs that are available. He says summer youth camps are currently taking applications.

Marshals Warn of Jury Duty Scam

Apr 26, 2017

   The U-S Marshals Service for the Middle District of Alabama has issued a reminder about an ongoing jury-duty phone scam. People are warned to be vigilant against scammers posing as a U-S Marshal, Deputy Marshal or other law enforcement officials. The scheme basically involves someone posing as a law enforcement representative calling people to advise that they have missed federal jury duty. The scammer then says arrest can be avoided by paying a fine immediately. At that point information is provided on how the fine can be paid.

Alabama Beginning to Dry Out Again

Apr 25, 2017

   Last fall a major drought affected much of Alabama for several months before enough rain fell to alleviate the dry conditions. Unfortunately the state seems to be on a path to parched acreage once again. According to the most recent U-S Drought Monitor, more than 93 percent of the state is considered abnormally dry. Of that percentage, almost 43 percent is classified as being in moderate drought. So far, only 2.6 percent meets the criteria for severe drought. The monitor also estimates that Alabama has received about half the rain it normally does over the last 30 days.

Crime victims are calling for personal information such as addresses and telephone numbers to be removed from Alabama's court records website. They say that information should remain private in order to keep them safe from their perpetrators. A review of Alacourt.com by The Associated Press found the full names, home addresses, telephone numbers and other information of rape victims as well as children who have been molested.

Officer-Involved Shooting in Macon County

Apr 20, 2017

An officer was involved in a shooting in Macon County yesterday. A release from the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency indicates that a Macon County Sheriff’s Department official fired a weapon at a suspect on U-S Highway 80 near Tuskegee. It happened not far from the Brownsville Community. The circumstances of the shooting were not given. Authorities say the suspect was taken to Columbus Medical Center with gunshot wounds, but the extent of those injuries wasn’t disclosed. The State Bureau of Investigation is handling the case.

 Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore lost his effort to regain his job today as the Alabama Supreme Court upheld his suspension for urging defiance of the federal courts' landmark rulings allowing gays and lesbians to marry. Moore's fate was in the hands of specially appointed judges who were selected at random after his colleagues on the state's highest court recused themselves, and these judges upheld both the findings that Moore violated judicial ethics with his actions and his suspension for the remainder of his term.

   The recent Facebook murder victim, Robert Godwin, has an Alabama State University connection. Godwin’s cousin Waynetta Callen attends ASU as a theater major. She attended a vigil in his honor today at the university. Several students and faculty gave remarks. Godwin was murdered on Easter Sunday and a video of the crime was placed on Facebook by the alleged shooter. Godwin will be laid to rest Friday in Ohio. 

The first of three engagement forums was held last night for parents and teachers to ask questions regarding the state intervention of Montgomery Public Schools. State Department of Education officials were on hand to detail how the intervention will work, including State Schools Superintendent Michael Sentance. Sentance says it will take several years to return the system to a desired level of academic performance. In all, 27 schools within the system are being taken over by the state, while the rest remain under the supervision of the Montgomery Public School System.