www.wvgazettemail.com http://www.wvgazettemail.com Gazette archive feed en-us Copyright 2016, Charleston Newspapers, Charleston, WV Newspapers Funerals for: December 05, 2016 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/OBIT01/312059985 OBIT01 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/OBIT01/312059985 Mon, 5 Dec 2016 00:01:00 -0500 Abbott, Cleo 1 p.m., Curry Funeral Home, Alum Creek.

Blake, John 11 a.m, Allen Funeral Home, Hurricane.

Cole, Geneva 1:30 p.m., Hafer Funeral Home, Elkview.

Crawford, Bernard 11 a.m., Wilcoxen Funeral Home, Point Pleasant.

Harlow, William Noon, Leonard Johnson Funeral Home, Marmet.

Hinzman, William 11 a.m., Waybright Funeral Home, Ripley.

Hoffer, Patty 1 p.m., Roush Funeral Home, Ravenswood.

Hudson, Marcia 11 a.m., Deal Funeral Home, Point Pleasant.

Kennedy, Mary 11 a.m., Ascension Catholic Church, Hurricane.

Layne, Arley 1 p.m., Mt. Pisgah Baptist Church, Stumptown.

Moore, Kamdon 7 p.m., Matics Funeral Home, Clendenin.

Rhodes, Shirley 1 p.m., Greene

Snouffer, Jane 1 p.m., Waybright Funeral Home, Ripley.

Sutton, Edward Noon, Kimble Funeral Home, Marlinton.

Thomas, Tricia 6 p.m., Snodgrass Funeral Home, South Charleston.

William Bartlett, Sr. http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/OBIT/312059990 OBIT http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/OBIT/312059990 Mon, 5 Dec 2016 00:01:00 -0500 William Donald Bartlett, Sr., 92, of Ravenswood, died Saturday, December 3, 2016. Visitation will be 5 to 7 p.m., Monday, December 5, at Roush Funeral Home, Ravenswood, with a celebration of Bill's life at 7 p.m. Military graveside service will be 11 a.m., Tuesday, December 6, at Shinnston Memorial Cemetery, Shinnston.

Anna Boyd http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/OBIT/312059994 OBIT http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/OBIT/312059994 Mon, 5 Dec 2016 00:01:00 -0500 Anna Faye Boyd, 68, of Chelyan, passed away December 2, 2016, at CAMC Memorial Division following a short illness.

She was a retired Eastern Seaboard Dispatcher for United Parcel Service (UPS) and a lifelong resident of Kanawha County.

Preceding her in death were her parents, Bernard N. and Stella Maye Hanshaw Mullins.

Surviving are her husband, Jesse Boyd; son and daughter-in-law, Russell and Kristine Boyd of Chelyan; sister and brother-in-law, Wanda and George Gregg of Greenville, Texas; and grandchildren, Cameron Boyd and Logan Boyd.

In keeping with Anna Faye's wishes, her body will be cremated and there will be no other services.

Fidler and Frame Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements. To send the family online condolences or sign the guest book, please visit our website at fidlerandframefuneralhome.com.

David Click http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/OBIT/312059993 OBIT http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/OBIT/312059993 Mon, 5 Dec 2016 00:01:00 -0500 David Elmer Click, 50, of Leon, passed away November 30, 2016. In keeping with David's wishes, there will be no public services. Casto Funeral Home is serving the Click family.

Nora Davis http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/OBIT/312059998 OBIT http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/OBIT/312059998 Mon, 5 Dec 2016 00:01:00 -0500 Nora J. Davis, age 101, of Loudendale, passed away Saturday December 3, 2016. The family will hold a celebration of her life at the Loudendale Church of the Nazarene at a later date.

Dunbar council OKs police car purchase http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/GZ01/161209723 GZ01 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/GZ01/161209723 Mon, 5 Dec 2016 21:47:11 -0500 Caitlin Cook By Caitlin Cook Dunbar City Council members approved the purchase of two new police vehicles during its Monday night meeting.

The move will reduce the average mileage of Dunbar's police fleet.

"These two cars will enhance our fleet," Dunbar Police Chief Jesse Bailes said. "You constantly have to replace high-mileage vehicles."

The force's highest mileage vehicle has more than 110,000 miles on it.

"If [police officers] have to get into a high-speed pursuit, they need to be driving vehicles of good quality," Bailes said.

The Dunbar Police Department aims to keep the average mileage on its cars around 59,000. After that, the maintenance issues start to mount.

"You've got to remember some of these vehicles are driven 24 hours a day," Bailes said. "It is very important that we maintain a safe fleet. The three most important things in law enforcement are you have to have a transportation to get to the call; you've got to have communications to receive the call; and you have to have officer safety."

The new Ford Interceptors will cost $25,100 each. Bailes expects the cars to ready to be integrated into the fleet within the next three months.

Also on Monday, council approved the demolition of a house at 2207 Fairlawn Ave.

Weather permitting, Dunbar Building Inspector Director Hugh Leishman hopes to have the structure down within the next few weeks.

The building, which has been vacant for some time, recently caught fire, Leishman said.

"It's just there right now," Leishman said. "It's in an isolated area and not really a danger to anyone."

The owners of the property gave it to the city. But the city is restricted in how it will move forward with the space as the entire property lies within a flood plan and some within a flood way, meaning the city cannot build certain structures in the area potentially vulnerable to floods.

Leishman would like to see a community garden on the property.

"We have a community garden on 16th Street that's packed every year," he said. "There's a bigger demand for community garden access."

He added the city also owns several of the properties around the 2207 Fairlawn location.

"It's just going to be a larger piece of property - it's flat, good soil," Leishman said. "And apparently, at some point in time, long ago, there was a community garden in that area. And if don't use it for that we can always use it for an access road to the back side of the ball fields."

Charleston council approves Kanawha Boulevard bike lane plan http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/GZ01/161209724 GZ01 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/GZ01/161209724 Mon, 5 Dec 2016 21:24:13 -0500 Elaina Sauber By Elaina Sauber After nearly a year of red tape involving state and federal agencies, the city of Charleston has hired a company to construct long-awaited bicycle lanes along a stretch of Kanawha Boulevard.

City Council voted unanimously to accept a base bid of $4.8 million from McClanahan Construction Company to construct what's formally known as the Kanawha Trestle Walk and Bikeway System.

City officials set up the bid package to include several alternatives that may be added later on, depending on the money left over.

Most of the alternates include bump outs and a few crosswalks along a reconfigured Kanawha Boulevard.

"Obviously, we want to do as much of the project as was designed," said City Manager David Molgaard. "We set it up with a base bid and multiple alternates so we could be assured to do the project within the resources we had available."

With paving season coming to a close, Molgaard said the project likely won't be completed until the end of next summer.

"We fully recognize this project is not going to be done as quickly as it might have other been, had we been able to award this contract during paving season ... but we saw no reason to delay awarding the contract," he said.

Molgaard noted that there wasn't enough funding to include about $600,000 worth of sidewalk repairs to the north side of the boulevard, the side furthest away from the Kanawha River.

He also noted that this project does not include the new overlook planned for Magic Island. That project will be paid for with city funds, he said.

"By pulling out and not using federal or state money, we avoid additional delay and review," Molgaard said. "We can always change [the design] if we need to as a result of funding."

TRC Engineering designed the bike lanes, which will stretch about 1.3 miles along Kanawha Boulevard from Patrick Street to Magic Island.

All four lanes of traffic will remain on that stretch of the boulevard, but the lanes would be narrowed to 10.5 feet in width, according to project renderings. The median would also be removed.

The project received $2.66 million in federal funding, according to previous Gazette-Mail reports.

The project was held up during the spring and summer as the state Department of Transportation's Grant Administration Unit reviewed the final designs, which then had to be submitted to the Federal Highway Administration before the city could issue a request for proposals to potential bidders.

Also on Monday, council members voted to let the city buy a property at 1812 Oakridge Drive, next to Charleston Fire Department Station No. 4, for $84,000.

A house and detached garage sits on the property in question, which will both be razed to alleviate a safety issue and provide more parking for fire fighters' personal vehicles.

Molgaard said the garage blocks the view for firetrucks pulling out of the bays, "so it's very difficult to see incoming traffic."

He said the city plans to tear the structures down and put in a driveway to better access the space behind the fire station.

Also on Monday, council voted to:

n Amend the city's current budget to add a custodian position at the city-owned Morris Square building next to Appalachian Power Park.

n Adopt a regional All Hazards Mitigation Plan prepared by the Regional Intergovernmental Council as an official plan.

n Authorize a grant application to the Kanawha Valley Council on Philanthropy in the amount of $30,000 for phase two of the Project West Invest Program.

Councilwoman Susie Salisbury said another $30,000 grant has already been secured from another organization. The combined $60,000 would be used to make improvements to homeowners' residences that are on the same blocks as those officers who have purchased houses on the West Side through the project. Those improvements would include painting, exterior work and window alarm systems. The labor is provided by prison inmates.

n Approve a change order to the Civic Center renovation project in the amount of nearly $500,000.

A piece of the additional expense is attributed to a "skyrail system" in the ballroom pre-function area, which will allow window cleaners to access the floor-to-ceiling glass wall facing the Elk River.

Another expense in the change order provides for flood-proofing the south wall of the building that sits along the Elk River.

n Approve a proposal by Stephens Auto Center in the amount of $30,989 to buy one 2017 Ford Interceptor utility vehicle for the Charleston Police Department. It will replace one that was totaled in October.

n Approve a proposal by Summit Mowers in the amount of $57,900 to buy three TRX Remote Control Slope Mowers to be used by the Public Grounds Department.

Reach Elaina Sauber at elaina.sauber@wvgazettemail.com, 304-348-3051 or follow @ElainaSauber on Twitter.

West Virginia Associated Press boys basketball poll - Dec. 5 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/GZ0203/161209725 GZ0203 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/GZ0203/161209725 Mon, 5 Dec 2016 20:40:29 -0500 The Associated Press high school boys basketball poll with first-place votes in parentheses and total points:

Team Pts

1. Capital (5) 85

(tie) Woodrow Wilson (4) 85

3. Martinsburg 56

4. Huntington (1) 55

5. South Charleston 54

6. George Washington 47

7. University 45

8. Morgantown 34

(tie) Musselman 34

10. Parkersburg 26

Others receiving votes: Hedgesville 9, Hurricane 8, Parkersburg South 3, Ripley 3, Greenbrier East 2, Buckhannon-Upshur 2, John Marshall 1, Wheeling Park 1.

1. Fairmont Senior (10) 100

2. Poca 68

3. Westside 63

4. Bluefield 49

5. Mingo Central 47

6. Chapmanville 45

7. Sissonville 42

8. Bridgeport 19

9. Robert C. Byrd 16

(tie) Logan 16

Others receiving votes: Shady Spring 12, Wyoming East 12, PikeView 11, Philip Barbour 10, Winfield 9, Wayne 6, Grafton 5, Independence 5, Lincoln 5, Herbert Hoover 4, North Marion 3, Frankfort 2, Weir 1.

1. Notre Dame (7) 91

2. Ravenswood (1) 74

3. Wheeling Central (1) 58

4. Saint Joseph Central 53

5. Parkersburg Catholic (1) 42

(tie) Fayetteville 42

7. Tug Valley 41

8. Tucker County 36

9. Bishop Donahue 33

10. Magnolia 22

Others receiving votes: Trinity 14, South Harrison 8, Gilmer County 8, Charleston Catholic 8, Madonna 7, Doddridge County 4, Van 3, Williamstown 2, Summers County 2, Buffalo 1, Mount View 1.

Kanawha Valley AAA boys basketball preview: Capital looks to plug holes http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/GZ0203/161209726 GZ0203 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/GZ0203/161209726 Mon, 5 Dec 2016 20:31:32 -0500 By Terry Fletcher For the Gazette-Mail By By Terry Fletcher For the Gazette-Mail Capital boys basketball coach Matt Greene relied heavily on his bench last season, but the second-year coach says those role players are ready to step into the spotlight as the Cougars try building upon last year's 23-4 mark and make the state tournament for the second straight year.

Capital returns just one starter in 5-foot-8 senior guard Leondre Rogers, but 6-3 sophomore Kerry Martin Jr. and 6-4 junior Anthony Pittman will help fill the void left by Miguel "Crunchy" Bays, who led the Cougars with 15.5 points per contest last year. Martin and Pittman just led the Cougars to the Class AAA state football semifinals in November and were an integral part of Capital's postseason run in basketball last season. Both were named to the Gazette-Mail boys basketball All-Kanawha Valley rookie team in March.

"They came off the bench last year, but both of them had good summers," Greene said of Martin and Pittman. "Coming off the bench wasn't a knock on their ability - it's how selfless they were. Both of them played starters' minutes, so they'll be fine stepping in."

Rogers, an All-Kanawha Valley second-team pick, will provide the steady hand and is poised to improve his 14.7 scoring average from a year ago.

"He's been doing a great job of leading," said Greene of his senior guard. "I don't know of a better point guard in the state. I'm probably partial, but I don't know of one I would take over him. He's improved his 15-foot jumper, he's worked on his game ... he'll have a good year."

With Martin and Pittman just finishing up football, Greene expects 6-1 senior Calvin Wilder and 6-3 sophomore Khamari Welch, along with Anthony Deane, Kevin Pinkett and Jabar Thompson, to all contribute early on and give the up-tempo Cougars some much needed depth.

"We can probably go eight- or nine-deep with the way we like to press and get up and down," said Greene. "We picked up five or 10 more guys from football, but we're going with the guys we have now and hopefully build a cohesive unit after they play some time together."

Capital received an influx of players after football season last year, and after a couple midseason bumps, the Cougars found their stride and rode an eight-game winning streak into the state tournament before falling to Parkersburg South in double-overtime.

Greene said he is more prepared this year for those late additions.

"We're learning how to get guys in the right spots, and how to handle different things on and off the court," he said. "We played our best basketball toward the end of the season and look to continue that this season. It'll take us a little bit, but the guys have a good attitude and we'll get where we need to be."

Capital hosts Parkersburg Dec. 16 in its season opener.

Here's a look at the rest of the Class AAA teams in the Kanawha Valley:

Junior Justin Phillips and senior Tracy Conliffe return to lead a deep Patriots team that posted a 13-9 mark last season.

Phillips (18.3 points per game) and Conliffe (13.8) led GW in scoring, but will receive help from sophomore Bunky Brown, seniors Treyvon Isabell, Ben Arthur and Isaiah Harris, along with juniors Matthew and Alex Cook.

First-year players Zach Kearns and Anthony Clendenin are also expected to contribute to a lineup that coach Rick Greene expects to be 10-deep.

Coach Vic Herbert will rely on depth and experience as the Black Eagles look to make the state tournament after last season's 13-10 record.

Gone is Kanawha Valley Player of the Year Brandon Knapper (28.7 points per game), but SC brings back 6-3 senior Tamon Scruggs (12.9) and 6-1 sophomore E.J. Phillips (10.8) to lead the charge. Bryce Davis, a 6-3 sophomore, along with Isaiah Hodges, Cam Allen, James Moore, Bubba Hampton, Trey Gibson and Trenton Sweeney, will all compete for significant minutes.

GW transfer Larry Bryson will also contribute.

The Redskins welcome back four starters, hoping to improve on last year's 12-15 campaign.

Back is leading scorer Nick Muto, a 6-4 junior who averaged 15.2 points in 2015-16, along with 6-1 senior Braxton Dobert (13.1 points per game), and coach Lance Sutherland expects production out of 5-10 junior Evan Dearing, 6-1 junior Michael Watson and 6-4 sophomore Joe Muto, among others. Steven Shine, a 6-4 transfer from Florida, will also have an impact, as well as junior Nathan Giacomo, who did not play last year.

Coach Bryan Faber was dealt a few blows in the offseason, but will look to some multi-sport athletes and a handful of freshmen as the Red Dragons try to post a winning record after last year's 10-13 showing.

Dajuan Dawson, SA's leading scorer last season at 14 points per game, is out because of eligibility issues, and Ayon Lunsford moved to South Carolina. Senior John Klassen, who averaged 11.5 points and three assists last year, will slide into a leadership role, while 6-4 junior Deonte Patterson is back after missing last season with a knee injury.

Football standout junior Jason Barrett returns after sitting out last season, and sophomore baseball star Jake Carr will also see major minutes. Freshmen Rodney Toler, Casey Kemplin and Ethan Clay are also expected to contribute.

Coach Ryan Carter will have to replace his top five scorers from a season ago as the Warriors try to keep momentum after last year's 14-9 campaign.

Gone are leading scorers Josh Carpenter (14.2 points per game) and Zac Warden (12.6), along with talented role players Henry Barron-Houchins (9.6), Dajon Watkins and Quan Brock, but Carter returns senior Dom Reed and juniors Noah Underwood and Mason Burke. Juniors Jacob Clark, Tyrone Wood, Michael Scites and sophomores Brian Massey and Quisean Gray are also back.

Young roster starting to jell for West Virginia State men's hoops http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/GZ0208/161209727 GZ0208 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/GZ0208/161209727 Mon, 5 Dec 2016 20:25:22 -0500 Michael Carvelli By Michael Carvelli As he entered this season, West Virginia State men's basketball coach Bryan Poore knew that there would be a bit of a learning curve.

With a roster full of freshmen and transfers that hadn't gotten to play together much, the veteran coach was aware there would be a stretch where the Yellow Jackets would be working out some early kinks as they started to get comfortable with one another.

Yet even through some of those growing pains WVSU is going through in the first few weeks of the season, Poore is seeing some positives from his group.

"We're still a work in progress because we've got about four guys in that locker room right now that played here last year," Poore said. "These guys just met each other a few months ago. We can't expect to be out there fully flowing yet, but we can scratch and claw to gain some confidence early so we can see how good we really are at the end of the year."

West Virginia State currently sits at 3-3 on the season. It has, however, started to see things begin to fall into place as it starts to form an idea of what the team will become as it gains more experience. It's seeing the way Brent Bauer is becoming the team's go-to option at point guard - averaging 15.7 points and more than six assists per game after having to go back to the drawing board late in the offseason when Frank Webb left the program.

The Yellow Jackets are seeing a couple of freshmen emerge as major impact players. Ernest Jenkins and Jayson Hankins have turned in several solid performances to open the season. Jenkins is fresh off one of the top shooting performances in school history, making 10 3-pointers en route to a 33-point outburst in a victory over Urbana, and leads the team while ranking sixth in the Mountain East Conference at 18.7 points per game.

Hankins, meanwhile, is averaging 14.3 points and a team-best 7.2 rebounds per contest. He registered a double-double in a tough loss to Notre Dame College last week when he scored 13 points and grabbed 10 rebounds.

"It's a tribute to their high school programs because they came in prepared to step in and do what we've asked them to do," Poore said. "They know how to play, they have good instincts and do some things that you just can't really coach. Those two freshmen, to be playing the minutes they're playing right now in this league and to play as well as they are, it bodes well for our future."

The thing Poore has liked about his team up to this point is the way it has responded to adversity after tough games like the Notre Dame loss, where the contest was decided by a layup in the closing seconds. So far, when they've been hit with tough losses, the Yellow Jackets have kept pushing forward - something Poore believes is going to be a vital attribute for the team to have if it is going to survive the ups and downs of playing in the Mountain East on a nightly basis.

"The thing I am pleased with is the attitude and demeanor when they come in for practice," Poore said. "After a tough loss like the Notre Dame game, I told them that we can't let that bleed over into future performances. It's got to sting tonight but we have to come back the next day with some bounce to us, and that's how they looked the next day in practice.

"We have to keep moving forward and that's the attitude this group has taken. That's the part of this team I really like."

Marshall men's basketball set for visit to old rival Chattanooga http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/GZ0202/161209728 GZ0202 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/GZ0202/161209728 Mon, 5 Dec 2016 20:24:04 -0500 Doug Smock By Doug Smock For old-school Marshall basketball fans, Tuesday night represents a considerable dose of nostalgia.

The Thundering Herd travels to Tennessee-Chattanooga, that old Southern Conference rival of decades ago. The school prefers "Chattanooga" these days, even using a "C" for the logo.

This is the same Moc program that won 69-68 in Huntington in November 2010. The Herd will play in McKenzie Arena, but don't be fooled. It's still affectionately called "The Roundhouse," and this is MU's 17th visit, first in 19 years.

A few things haven't changed at all: The Mocs still play in the Southern Conference, and they're contenders. Last season, they were better than that.

After winning their 11th regular season league championship, first-year coach Matt McCall's Mocs won the conference tournament and advanced to the NCAAs. They finished 29-6, with the number of wins a school record.

Starting 6-2 with a win over Tennessee, they have the weapons to do it again. Marshall (5-2) faces a stern challenge in the 7 p.m. contest.

"This team might be the best team we've faced," said Herd coach Dan D'Antoni. "Their team is one who went all the way to the NCAAs last year, they returned almost everybody. They're senior-laden and their style of play, we're almost playing a mirror of ourselves, offensively and defensively."

Indeed the four Mocs who have started all eight games are seniors: Justin Tuoyo, Greg Pryor, Tre' McLean and Johnathan Burroughs-Cook. McLean (12.3 points, 4.9 rebounds) is the SoCon's preseason player of the year, and Tuoyo (14.8 points, 7.9 rebounds) is a two-time defensive player of the year.

The 6-foot-10 Tuoyo is shooting 63.2 percent from the floor, and he already has 29 blocks, extending his school record to 210.

He's going to get his share against smaller Herd players. The key is to deny him the ball offensively and get him away from the basket defensively.

"We'll have to deny him, push him up, get him out of his comfort zone a little bit," D'Antoni said. "He does hang around the rim and block a lot of shots."

Chattanooga is on a three-game winning streak, the latest 79-52 Saturday over Louisiana-Monroe. The Mocs forced 23 turnovers.

Conversely, the Herd is coming off an 89-80 loss at Eastern Kentucky, its second setback in as many road games. It took the shine off the Herd's solid win at home over Ohio.

"This team didn't come out with enough energy," D'Antoni said. "This team's got to learn that just because you win one game doesn't mean you win the next one, that they're going to roll over. We haven't played well away from home yet."

The biggest positive? Perhaps knowing the Herd can play with four guards, if need be, at least for a few minutes. Ky're Allison, who finished with 14 points and a steal, played the extra guard role.

The Herd cut a 16-point lead to three in the final minutes, but don't expect that to be a full-game strategy.

"The reason that the four-guard worked is I waited until it got down to the 4:00 mark, when they would start playing the clock, and not attack until maybe 12, 13 seconds," D'Antoni said. "So they got a little reluctant with the ball, just trying to hold out, which allowed us to pressure more. They turned the ball over and we went down and scored.

"That's a little misleading; if they kept on attacking, it might not have been the same."

Terrence Thompson will miss the game, his second in a row, with an abdominal injury. He has been considered day-to-day.

BRIEFLY: Marshall trails the all-time series 28-19, and is 6-16 in Chattanooga. The Mocs won that 2010 game in Huntington when DeAndre Kane was whistled for a charging foul on what would have been the game-winning basket. ... MU games still account for sixth- and seventh-largest crowds at The Roundhouse - 10,491 in 1984 and 10,727 in 1987. ... Jon Elmore leads the Herd in points (21.4), assists (5.9) and steals (12). He ranks second, third and third, respectively in Conference USA. Austin Loop is first in 3-pointers made (24, 3.4 average) and third in percentage (.471).

Kanawha Valley AA and A boys basketball preview: Ragle takes the reins at Poca http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/GZ0203/161209729 GZ0203 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/GZ0203/161209729 Mon, 5 Dec 2016 20:22:29 -0500 By Terry Fletcher For the Gazette-Mail By By Terry Fletcher For the Gazette-Mail At first glance, it appears to have been a rough offseason for the Poca boys basketball team.

Just two months after the Dots fell to Fairmont Senior in the Class AA state title game, longtime coach Allen Osborne stepped down after 38 years at the helm.

In August, the Dots' leading scorer, Elijah Cuffee, announced he would be attending Liberty Christian Academy in Lynchburg, Virginia, for his senior season.

But first-year coach Derek Ragle still has a lot to work with as the Dots look to reclaim the top spot in a new and improved Class AA.

"So far, it's been pretty good," said Ragle of the transition into his new role. "I've been an assistant here for three years, so I'm familiar with the kids and the program. I haven't really changed things too much, but it's not exactly how Coach Osborne ran things. The kids have adjusted well."

One of those familiar faces is 6-foot-4, 200-pound senior Luke Frampton. Frampton, who recently signed with Division I Davidson, averaged 17.8 points per game last season to help the Dots finish 23-5.

"Luke is the best player in the state and he makes guys around him better," said Ragle. "I expect him to be a leader. He's started every game since he's been in school, so he's has a wealth of experience. There's not many situations we'll see that he hasn't been through."

Frampton will be flanked by a core group of seniors in 6-5 post-player Chase Dotson, 6-3 guard J.T. Phillips and 6-0 forward Carson Cottrill, along with 6-2 sophomore Bronson Skeens.

"We have a group of seniors that have won 77 games over their career," said Ragle. "That's a lot of basketball - a lot of meaningful basketball. We were one of six teams playing that Saturday at the end of last season, and we look forward to competing for a spot in the state tournament at the end of this season."

While the loss of Cuffee, who led the Cardinal Conference in scoring at 19.8 points per game last year, is a blow to the stat sheet, his absence has been a non-factor in the preseason.

"They've been great and really don't talk about [Cuffee leaving] much," Ragle said of his team. "We worry about who is here and we can't worry about who isn't."

What's of a bigger concern to Ragle is a stronger Class AA schedule and a beefed up Cardinal Conference slate.

The Dots have added former Class AAA foes Nitro and Winfield to their schedule and will square off against Fairmont Senior in a rematch of last season's title tilt on Jan. 16, 2017.

"I think double-A is going to be a very tough division," said Ragle. "The Cardinal Conference is the best since I've been at Poca. I was talking with a coach over the summer, and we both said that teams one through eight can beat anyone on any given night. It's going to be very, very competitive."

Senior guards James McKneely (5-10) and Trace Jarrett (5-11) and junior guard Mitchell Hoffman (5-9) will also be expected to contribute.

The Dots open their season Dec. 9 at Nitro.

Nitro: Coach Kevin Musilli returns for a Wildcats team that went 9-17 last year as a Class AAA program.

Senior Austin Woodrum returns as the team's leading scorer after averaging 15 points last year, while 6-3 seniors Seth Brooks and Michael Martin and sophomore guard Joel Sweat provide depth. George Washington transfer Deshawn Womack will start at point guard, and freshmen Nolan Woodrum, Landon Roque and Andrew Mahairas will also contribute.

Winfield: Leading scorer Braeden McGrew returns to help the Generals try to improve on last year's 9-15 record as they rejoin Class AA.

McGrew, a junior, averaged 14 points and four assists last season, and will receive help from senior Tate Hancock, who missed last year with an ankle injury.

Coach Bryan England expects production from junior Andrew Huff, senior Kyle Machel, Bryan Fisher and Zach Strong, while sophomore Bryant Moore and freshmen Christian Frye and Nick Vance are also in the mix for playing time.

Herbert Hoover: The Huskies lost five seniors and four of their top six players from last season, but are hoping to build on last year's 15-8 record.

Gone are top scorers Matt Justice (16.8 points per game) and Wes Barry (11.4), but coach Josh Daniel returns two experienced veterans in Kody McGraw and Chase King. Reserves Gavin Robertson and Austin Stafford are expected to take on more prominent roles and freshmen Grant Bonner and Josh Swecker will also contribute.

Hoover will play all of its home games at Elkview Middle School in Elkview.

Sissonville: The Indians return their top four scorers from last season's 15-10 team as they look to navigate an even-tougher Class AA schedule.

Senior Chance Brown (17.6 points per game), junior Nate Samples (12.3), senior Seth Bowlin (11.7) and junior Zach McCutcheon (9.4) all return, while 6-2 junior Michael Pinkerton and 5-11 junior Austin Slate add height to coach Rich Skeen's lineup.

Senior Bryce Taylor, sophomore Brady Jones and junior Hunter Thomas will also see the floor.

Charleston Catholic: The Irish return seven seniors as they look to improve on last year's 12-12 mark and make it back to the state tournament after their streak of 11 straight trips was snapped.

Catholic lost its top two scorers from last season in Hayden McCarty (12.3 points per game) and Sam Jenkins (11.3), but return 5-11 senior Michael Martin (10.9) and senior point guard Luke McKown.

Coach Matt Morrison will look for more offensive production from senior Matt Adkins and 6-2 seniors James Ross and Kevin Imani. Dom Martin, a 6-1 junior, and sophomore Robbie Williams will also contribute.

Buffalo: First-year coach Adam Scott takes over an experienced group as the Bison hope to improve on last year's 6-17 record.

Buffalo loses top scorer Devin Rich, but returns 6-2 junior Tyler Morlachetta and 5-9 senior Logan Hunt, along with 6-1 senior Austin Starcher and football standout Ethan Burgess.

Seniors Nathan Casto, Chandler Williams, Drake Fertig and Jarrett Bailey provide depth in the backcourt, and 6-1 junior John Booth and 6-2 sophomore Ty Parkins adds to the Bison's frontcourt.

Roundup: Capital, Woodrow Wilson boys tied atop first AAA basketball poll http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/GZ0203/161209730 GZ0203 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/GZ0203/161209730 Mon, 5 Dec 2016 20:20:46 -0500 Staff reports By Staff reports Capital and Woodrow Wilson each received 85 poll points to sit tied for first in the Associated Press West Virginia High School Boys Basketball Preseason Poll.

The Cougars garnered five first-place votes, while Woodrow picked up four. Martinsburg is third with 56 points, while Huntington received the remaining first-place vote to earn 55 points and sit in fourth. South Charleston (54) rounds out the top five and George Washington (47) is sixth.

Fairmont Senior is the unanimous first-place pick in Class AA, picking up all 10 first-place votes. Poca is second with 68 points, followed by Westside (63), Bluefield (49) and Mingo Central (47).

In Class A, Notre Dame leads the way with seven first-place votes and 91 poll points. Ravenswood is second with one first-place nomination and 74 points, followed by Wheeling Central (one first-place vote, 58 points), St. Joseph (53) and Parkersburg Catholic (one first-place vote, 42 points).

n George Washington will be hosting the Legends Tipoff Classic Saturday 11:30 a.m., with a special ceremony honoring some of the state's legendary coaches from 4-5 p.m.

The coaches in attendance will be Dave Barksdale, Gordon McClanahan, Tex Williams, Willie Akers, Don Nuckols, Fred Aldridge, Bobby Dawson, Bill McClanahan, Gary Norris, Chuck Elkins and Jim Fout.

The event kicks off with a junior-varsity matchup between George Washington and Wheeling Park, followed by Wheeling Park's varsity vs. St. Albans at 1 p.m. Wyoming East will play Riverside at 2:30, with Nitro and Charleston Catholic squaring off at 5:30.


MEC HOOPS: The University of Charleston's Jordyn Peck has been named the Mountain East Conference women's basketball player of the week.

Peck, a senior from Ohio, averaged 26 points in a 2-0 week for the Golden Eagles. She opened the week with 18 points in a victory over Urbana, then poured in 34 points in a win over Notre Dame. She shot 54 percent from the field last week and also contributed three rebounds per game.

n Fairmont State's Matt Bingaya has been named the MEC's men's basketball player of the week.

Bingaya, a senior forward from Ohio, led the 11th-ranked Falcons to a pair of wins over top-five teams last week, averaging 26 points and eight rebounds. He scored 28 points on 8 of 14 shooting and had five assists in the overtime win over No. 4 Wheeling Jesuit, and then added 24 points (8 of 15 from the field) with eight rebounds against top-ranked West Liberty. He finished the week shooting 59 percent from the field and made 16 of 17 from the free throw line (94 percent).


WVU FOOTBALL: West Virginia University's Tyler Orlosky has been named as one of three finalists for the Rimington Trophy, given annually to the most outstanding center in college football.

Orlosky, a two-time team captain and Midseason All-American (USA Today and FoxSports.com) at WVU, he has played 49 career games and started 41, all at the center position. While grading out at 90 percent or higher every game for the past two years, he has helped lead the Mountaineers' offense to average 506.9 yards of total offense per game - good for No. 12 nationally. Off the field, Orlosky was named a three-time All-Big 12 Academic team honoree, to the Big 12 Conference Commissioner's Honor Roll, WVU's Garrett Ford Academic Honor Roll, and earned the Louis D. Meisel Award for the highest senior GPA on the team.


WVU HOOPS: The West Virginia University women's basketball team climbed three spots to No. 13 in the Associated Press Top 25 Poll released Monday.

Last week, West Virginia picked up a 94-53 victory over Morehead State on Wednesday and a 66-61 win over Ole Miss in the SEC/Big 12 Challenge on Sunday. The Mountaineers, 9-0, are off to their best start since opening the 2010-11 season with a 16-0 record. West Virginia has won 30 consecutive games against nonconference opponents at the WVU Coliseum and 11 straight at home.

Kanawha school board may drop tech credit requirement http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/GZ0114/161209731 GZ0114 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/GZ0114/161209731 Mon, 5 Dec 2016 20:11:57 -0500 Staff reports By Staff reports The Kanawha County school board is considering eliminating its requirement for students to earn a technology course credit, bringing its mandated number of credits for graduation down to the state-required-minimum of 24.

"Now we integrate technology in all of our courses," said Missy Ruddle, Kanawha's assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction. "We don't consider it an add-on as we did in the past."

She said that if the board eventually approves the change, it will take effect next school year.

Ruddle said that years ago, the technology credit was fulfilled through taking a business computer applications course where students would learn how to use Microsoft Word and PowerPoint and other programs. She said there were eventually a list of courses that would award that credit, including certain business classes and computer science.

"We just really don't have the need for that now, because it's integrated with kids in first grade doing PowerPoint," she said of the commonly used digital slideshow presentation program.

With the school system's distribution of tablet computers to students and teachers through its Learning 20/20 initiative, Kanawha's middle and high schools have gone "one-to-one" -- there's at least one computer per student. In the fall of last school year, the county's elementary schools had about one computer for every four students.

Ruddle said the school system still teaches a lot of the courses that granted the technology credit, but she doesn't want to require it. She noted students at Capital High, the system's "fine arts magnet," would often like to take another fine arts class.

The board had its official "first reading" of the proposed policy change Monday, and the change will now go on a public comment period that usually lasts 30 days. The proposed policy change will be available to view at kcs.kana.k12.wv.us/Repository/proposed-policies. People can email comments to proposedpolicy@mail.kana.k12.wv.us or mail them to the attending of Superintendent Ron Duerring at 200 Elizabeth St., Charleston, WV 25311.

Manchin threatens to block other bills without UMW benefit action http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/GZ0101/161209732 GZ0101 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/GZ0101/161209732 Mon, 5 Dec 2016 19:50:54 -0500 Ken Ward Jr. By Ken Ward Jr. As the clock continues to tick on the health care and pension benefits for thousands of retired coal miners, a group of Democratic senators said Monday that they would block other legislation - perhaps including this week's critical government funding bill - unless Congress acts to save those miners' benefits.

Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., joined three other senators in that threat, issued as House lawmakers continue work on a "continuing resolution" that the United Mine Workers has indicated may be the last hope for the union's retirees.

"These miners cannot wait another day and it's up to us to protect what they've earned for a lifetime of dangerous, backbreaking work," said the statement. "We are confident this bill would pass on the floor and we demand action to provide long-term certainty for these miners."

Other senators who joined in the statement were Sens. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio; Bob Casey, D-Pa.; and Mark Warner, D-Va.

As of late Monday afternoon, the House funding bill - needed to keep the government operating beyond Friday - had not been formally released by the House leadership or the House Committee on Appropriations, and there were indications the official language might not come until today.

A statement from the office of Rep. Evan Jenkins, R-W.Va., and an Appropriations Committee member, said only that Jenkins would "continue to push for keeping the promise made to our miners and their families by protecting the health care benefits and pensions they have earned."

Without some action, more than 16,000 UMW retirees or family members are scheduled to lose their health care benefits at the end of the month, a result of the coal industry downturn and company bankruptcies that resulted from it.

Retired miners are facing uncertainty because a key UMW pension plan is severely underfunded after suffering significant investment losses during the 2008 Wall Street financial crisis and the downturn in the coal industry that has forced some major operators into bankruptcy court.

If the plan becomes insolvent, the miners and their families face benefit cuts and the federal Pension Benefit Guarantee Corp. will assume billions of dollars in liabilities. About 89,000 miners or family members currently receive pensions, and another 22,000 have vested in the plan, but are not yet receiving pensions, according to the UMW.

UMW-backed legislation would allow the pensions and benefits to be funded through part of a transfer of up to $490 million a year in general tax dollars that already flows through the federal Abandoned Mine Lands program, as part of the complex formula that provides additional money for the abandoned mine cleanup program and UMW benefit programs.

Manchin and the other Democrats said Monday that if the union legislation doesn't get some sort of vote, they "will block all attempts to pass legislation by unanimous consent" in the Senate.

They said that they hope to force House and Senate leadership to either include the year-end spending bill or allow a separate vote on the measure.

"For several months, we have joined thousands of our states' retired coal miners and their families to call for a vote on this bipartisan, paid-for bill," their statement said. "And for several months those calls have gone unanswered."

Asked if Manchin was willing to risk a government shutdown over the UMW legislation, a spokesman said that, "Senator Manchin is using every option available to keep the government open and pass the Miners Protection Act."

The Miners Protection Act is the most recent in a long line of federal government actions aimed at protecting coal miners, whose work often leaves them sick or disabled but whose industry has frequently tried to dodge long-term liabilities for health care benefits and pensions.

Reach Ken Ward Jr. at kward@wvgazettemail.com, 304-348-1702 or follow @kenwardjr on Twitter.

Charleston police race relations training begins http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/GZ0118/161209733 GZ0118 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/GZ0118/161209733 Mon, 5 Dec 2016 19:36:40 -0500 Erin Beck By Erin Beck Over the next two weeks, officers with the Charleston Police Department will participate in day-long trainings meant to encourage them to acknowledge their own biases about other cultures and build stronger relationships with communities of color.

The Call to Action for Racial Equality coalition and Charleston police announced an initiative to improve race relations in October. For more than a year, faith leaders and community activists worked on the plan. They said at the time the plan included de-escalation training, more transparency, body cameras, a youth advisory council, roll-call presentations by community leaders, annual awards for police officers, talks between police and community members about ways to reduce recidivism, and anti-racism training.

The anti-racism training began Monday. Organizers said over a two-week span, they aimed to train every member of the department.

Kenyatta Grant, who does similar cultural competency training work for the West Virginia Coalition Against Domestic Violence and has led similar trainings for other police agencies in the state, was chosen to lead the effort. She and other local organizers developed the training.

"We want to really sit down and have an honest dialogue and conversation about race relations not only in our country but in West Virginia and how to rebuild trust in communities of color," she said.

She said trainers were talking about how communities of color came to distrust law enforcement and how they could rebuild trust by building relationships, and encouraging officers to be more sensitive to cultural differences.

She said the trainers were also learning about the challenges of being a police officer, as well as providing a nonjudgemental space for officers to open up about their preconceived notions about minority groups in order for those notions to be explored and challenged.

The training does not include any test to measure learning, but Grant said an evaluation does ask officers to report whether the training was useful.

Chief Brent Webster said they hadn't thought about enacting Charleston Police Department policy that would ensure future police officers take the training.

"I think we'll try to continue to train in this area in a lot of different ways," he said.

Organizers would not allow press at the training.

"We want to honor their space and make sure they know it's just us," Grant said. "We just really want to have an honest conversation."

Black people made up 11.8 percent of the population in Charleston from 2010 to 2014, according to the U.S. Census Bureau American Community Survey. Meanwhile, they make up about 28 percent to 30 percent of arrests by the Charleston Police Department, Webster has said.

In 2013, 1,271 white adults were arrested in Charleston, according to FBI statistics. During that same year, 550 black adults were arrested. That's equal to about 30 percent of the city's arrests.

And while black people and white people use drugs at roughly equal rates, black people are more likely to be arrested for it in Charleston.

According to the 2013 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 9.5 percent of white respondents reported illicit drug use, while 10.5 percent of black people reported illicit drug use.

For possession of drugs in Charleston, 259 white adults were arrested in 2013, while 193 black adults were arrested. That's equal to about 42 percent of arrests, even though they make up about 11.8 percent of the population.

As for the body cameras, Webster said officers began using them in late September. He said police officers who routinely come in contact with the public, including the patrol division and officers on bikes or walking beats, are using the body cameras every day.

He said they may need to buy more so that they will have enough during special events.

"It's basically a $900 computer attached to somebody's body," he said. "So far it's working very well. We just want to identify more funding and get more of them."

Webster also provided a copy of the body camera policy, which states that the officer should begin recording when responding to a call for service or beginning an investigative encounter with a member of the public, that during life-threatening events the officer should activate the camera "at the first reasonable opportunity," and that additional responding officers should activate "as soon as practical." The policy also says they should tell the subjects of the recordings that they are being recorded "as close to the inception of the encounter as is reasonably and safely possible," and ask before recording in private residences. The policy was developed with assistance from the American Civil Liberties Union of West Virginia.

Reach Erin Beck at erin.beck@wvgazettemail.com, 304-348-5163, Facebook.com/erinbeckwv, or follow @erinbeckwv on Twitter.

WV lawmakers hear about possible school voucher legislation http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/GZ0114/161209734 GZ0114 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/GZ0114/161209734 Mon, 5 Dec 2016 19:20:00 -0500 Ryan Quinn By Ryan Quinn West Virginia lawmakers heard Monday about possible legislation that would benefit families of homeschool and private school students, including "Education Savings Accounts" that could give families public money to pay tuition to private schools, including religious schools, and other education costs.

The discussion at Monday's Joint Standing Committee on Education meeting - which also featured more talk about a possible "Tim Tebow" bill that could allow homeschool and more private school students to participate in public school sports and other activities - occurred as West Virginia public school systems face enrollment declines, funding drops and school consolidations.

Last school year, West Virginia had 11,080 homeschool students and 10,405 private school pupils, according to the state Department of Education. The public school enrollment, at 277,137, was about 13 times the combined private and homeschool total.

This year's public school enrollment is 273,170, a drop of nearly 4,000 students from last school year. The department doesn't yet have private and homeschool enrollment numbers for this school year.

Public school enrollment dropped nearly 2,760 students from the 2014-15 school year to last school year. At the time, that was the biggest one-year decrease in about 15 years - although the establishment of the state's free public school pre-kindergarten program since 2002-03 might limit direct comparability over that time.

House Education Chairman Paul Espinosa, R-Jefferson, said he invited the pro-Educational Savings Account speakers from the Cardinal Institute for West Virginia Policy; the Goldwater Institute, an Arizona-based group that describes itself as "a national leader for constitutionally limited government" and has anti-tax activist Grover Norquist on its Board of Directors; and EdChoice, an Indiana-based group advocating for "school choice" policies.

In January, the Cardinal Institute and another group released the "Wild and Wasteful West Virginia" report that targeted West Virginia Public Broadcasting, West Liberty University athletics, Glenville and Bluefield state colleges and called for eliminating state grants for fairs and festivals and most state funding for the arts and state museums. The Cardinal Institute now has an Education Savings Account report.

Espinosa and Senate Education Chairman Dave Sypolt, R-Preston, have both in the past pushed charter schools, another "school choice" initiative that West Virginia doesn't have.

The Legislature did pass a law (HB 4175) last session that significantly reduced rules for West Virginia home-schooled students, as well as for parents who want to home-school their children.

Among other things, the bill nixed requirements for annual assessment reporting for home-schooled students, allowed parents to administer their kids' tests if the parents' chosen test vendors allow it, lowered the threshold that home-schoolers must pass on tests to achieve "acceptable progress" and required that county school superintendents show probable cause before seeking court orders to deny home-schooling for kids.

Espinosa said Monday he doesn't know whether he'll actually push Education Savings Account, "Tim Tebow" or charter school bills in the upcoming session in January. He said it was too early to name any bill he wants to focus on, saying he needs to speak with the many new members of the Legislature about what their priorities are.

He noted that last session, the House and Senate passed resolutions to study Education Savings Accounts.

"I think the more input that parents have and students have into choosing educational options that best fit their needs, the better," Espinosa said.

Presenters at Monday's meeting of the Joint Standing Committee, which includes members of the House and Senate education committees, argued the Education Savings Accounts would likely have a limited impact on public school system enrollment, following what they said was the trend in other states.

Jonathan Butcher, education director for the Goldwater Institute, argued the Education Savings Account program helped an Arizona family get the proper education for a child with a speech problem and on the autism spectrum. He said Arizona's participating families essentially get a debit card for the expenses and have to fill out expense reports.

Brittany Corona, EdChoice's director of state policy, argued parental choice programs help both the students involved and those in public schools.

Martin F. Lueken, EdChoice's director of fiscal policy and analysis, handed out a report he prepared arguing that a certain setup of Education Savings Accounts, one similar to Nevada's version, could save West Virginia $40.9 million. The report said this setup would put into each participating student's account "90 percent of the state's share of the Total Basic Program Allowance per pupil" under the state school aid funding formula, and those students would be banned from simultaneously enrolling in a public school.

Lueken said the 90 percent amount would be $3,605. Corona said families could use the money in their accounts to pay education-related costs for their kids, including private school tuition and pay for tutors.

It could also fund education materials for homeschool students and could be saved up for college costs.

But Lueken said his savings figures didn't take into account the possible cost of all or part of the West Virginia students already in private school or homeschool - nearly 21,500 last school year - trying to get Education Savings Accounts.

Currently, these students' families pay taxes and the state doesn't have to fund their educations in return, meaning the state currently saves money due to those students' nonparticipation in public schools, even if that nonparticipation may cause issues for county public school systems. Public school systems generally have their state school funding automatically cut for each student lost, and not all costs - including costs to maintain increasingly empty school buildings and buses - can easily be cut in response.

Reach Ryan Quinn at

ryan.quinn@wvgazettemail.com, facebook.com/ryanedwinquinn,

304-348-1254 or follow

@RyanEQuinn on Twitter.

Report: West Virginia State football coach Jon Anderson headed to University of Sioux Falls http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/GZ0208/161209735 GZ0208 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/GZ0208/161209735 Mon, 5 Dec 2016 19:17:27 -0500 Michael Carvelli By Michael Carvelli West Virginia State football coach Jon Anderson is expected to be named the coach at the University of Sioux Falls. A Gazette-Mail source confirmed a report from The Argus Leader in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

Anderson, who came to West Virginia State after serving as an assistant at Sioux Falls, will take over for former coach Jed Stugart after Stugart accepted the head coaching position at Lindenwood University.

According to the newspaper, Sioux Falls is expected to introduce Anderson as the coach in a Tuesday press conference.

Anderson and West Virginia State athletic director Nate Burton both declined to comment when reached Monday evening by the Gazette-Mail.

Under Anderson's watch, the Yellow Jackets have gone 10-34 in the last four seasons and went 3-8 this season - capping the year with two victories in their last two games. The 2016 season was the first time Anderson's team did not win more games than it did in the previous year, as the Yellow Jackets showed gradual improvement from the time he took over.

In 2015, West Virginia State went 5-6 - giving the program the most wins it has had in a single season since 2008 when the Yellow Jackets won seven games.

His teams at WVSU have been among the best passing offenses in the Mountain East Conference the last two seasons. Quarterback Matt Kinnick led the MEC in passing in 2015 and the Yellow Jackets averaged nearly 300 yards per game through the air this season.

During his previous stint at Sioux Falls, Anderson was a linebackers coach and special teams coordinator from eight years before spending the last three as the school's defensive coordinator.

Sioux Falls went 12-1 last season, winning its first NSIC championship before losing to Harding in the second round of the Division II playoffs. The Cougars have gone to the playoffs in three consecutive seasons.

Dunbar man sentenced to 18 months for selling heroin http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/GZ0118/161209736 GZ0118 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/GZ0118/161209736 Mon, 5 Dec 2016 18:49:53 -0500 Staff reports By Staff reports A Dunbar man was sentenced to 18 months in federal prison on Monday for distribution of heroin.

Christian Bowles, 25, pleaded guilty to the charge earlier this year. He admitted that in March 2015, he sold more than four grams of heroin outside his home to a police informant in exchange for $1,000, according to a news release from U.S. Attorney Carol Casto's office.

Bowles also admitted that he was involved in distributing more than 20 grams of heroin, according to the release. The Charleston Police Department conducted the investigation.

Trial delayed for man charged in child's death http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/GZ0118/161209737 GZ0118 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161205/GZ0118/161209737 Mon, 5 Dec 2016 18:43:43 -0500 Staff reports By Staff reports A judge on Monday delayed the trial for a South Charleston man charged with murder for allegedly killing a 2-year-old boy and stuffing his body in a freezer for several hours before calling authorities,

The trial for Jarrel Stricklen was set to begin Monday, but Kanawha Circuit Judge Charles King said he would have to set a new date for the trial, after a psychological report to determine if Stricklen is competent to stand trial had not yet been provided to the judge, according to lawyers.

King set a competency hearing for Dec. 15 and said he would set a new trial date at that hearing.

Stricklen, 23, is accused of killing Gavin Aldridge in May 2015. He had agreed to watch the child and first told police the child drowned in the bathtub, according to charging documents. When pressed about how could the boy's body was when paramedics arrived, Stricklen allegedly admitted to putting the child in the freezer.

Aldridge, according to the state Medical Examiner's Office, died from "physical assault with fatal asphyxiation."