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Suits Over West Virginia Warehouse Fire in Federal Court

The Free Press WV

Three lawsuits seeking damages following the industrial warehouse fire that burned for a week in Parkersburg have been moved from state to federal court.

The defendants sought the transfer from Wood County Circuit Court because of the large number of plaintiffs and sum of money in question.

The blaze began October 21 in the 420,000-square-foot (39,000-square-meter) property owned by Intercontinental Export Import Inc., or IEI Plastics.

The lawsuits allege IEI and others failed to take appropriate steps to prevent the fire, that people in West Virginia and Ohio exposed to the smoke and airborne particles will require medical monitoring and that possible damages exceed $5 million.

City of Glenville Police Report

The Gilmer Free Press
City of Glenville, WV Police Report
Crime/Ordinance Violation
Officer
Disposition
Location
Speeding Gadney Warnings Issued for Speeding, Unsigned Registration, and No Proof of Insurance W. Main Street
Speeding Gadney Warning W. Main Street
No Seatbelt Gadney Cited N. Lewis Street
Cell phone while driving Huffman Cited for Cell phone while driving and Warning Issued for Unsigned Registration College Street
Speeding Gadney Warning W. Main Street
Alarm investigation Huffman All doors were secure contacted key holder Sheridan Street
Driving while Suspended Huffman Cited Walnut Street
Vehicle Unlock Huffman Vehicle Unlocked Foodland plaza
Welfare Check Huffman Vehicle Left the area prior to my arrival US WY 33 E
MVC Huffman Vehicle left the area prior to my arrival phone pole minimal damage contacted phone company Mineral Road
Vehicle Unlock Huffman Vehicle Unlocked Sycamore Road
Assist Another Agency Huffman/Garrett Assisted GCSD/WVSP with an Escaped inmate. Suspect located. FCI Gilmer
Serve Warrants Huffman Suspect arrested for WV Parole Board Center Street
Wrongful Occupation Huffman Served with Wrongful Occupation Center Street
Speeding Huffman Warning W. Main Street
Dog Barking Complaint Huffman Owners warned about the dog barking advised if the problem continued they could be cited S. Lewis Street
Trash Complaint Huffman No One home red tagged door for trash S. Lewis Street
Non Active Domestic Huffman Referred to WVSP due to being out of City Kanawha Street
Assist Another Agency Huffman/Garrett/Gadney Assisted WVSP and GCSD serving DVPO and making an arrest Kanawha Street
Defective Equipment Gadney Warning N. Lewis Street
Cell phone While Driving Gadney Cited N. Lewis Street
Defective Equipment Gadney Warning Fairground Road
Defective Equipment Gadney Warning N. Lewis Street
Defective Equipment Gadney Warning Fairground Road
Defective Equipment Gadney Warning S. Lewis Street
Cell phone while driving Huffman Cited Fairground Road
Defective Equipment Gadney Warning Fairground Road
Defective Equipment Gadney Warning N. Lewis Street
Speeding Gadney Cited College Street
Defective Equipment Gadney Warning N. Lewis Street
Failure to stop for stop sign Gadney Cited for Stop Sign Violation and Expired Registration Fairground Road
Stop Sign violation Gadney Cited Fairground Road
Defective Equipment Gadney Warning W. Main Street
Cell phone while driving Garrett Cited W. Main Street
Defective Equipment Garrett Warning N. Lewis Street
Stop Sign Violation Garrett Warning N. Lewis Street
Defective Equipment Gadney Warning N. Lewis Street
Cell phone while driving Gadney Cited Fairground Road
Speeding Gadney Warning W. Main Street
Speeding Gadney Cited W. Main Street
Defective Equipment Gadney Warning N. Lewis Street
Speeding Gadney Cited W. Main Street
Defective Equipment Gadney Warnings Issued for Defective Equipment and Unsigned Registration card River Street
Vehicle Unlock Huffman Vehicle Unlocked Foodland Plaza
Tree in roadway Huffman Tree fell on power lines and was blocking roadway Mon Power contacted Pine Street
Shots fired Huffman No Shots were fired sound was tree falling onto power lines Pine Street
Speeding Garrett Warning W. Main Street
Expired MVI Gadney Cited W. Main Street
Expired MVI Gadney Warning W. Main Street
Speeding Gadney Cited W. Main Street
Active domestic Gadney All Verbal parties were separated E. Main Street
Shoplifting Huffman Cited Go Mart
Vehicle Unlock Huffman Vehicle Unlocked Powell Street
Battery on a School Employee Huffman Investigation Started Gilmer Co High
Speeding Huffman Cited for Speeding and No Seatbelt, Warning Issued for Unsigned Registration W. Main Street
No Seatbelt Huffman Cited W. Main Street
Speeding Huffman Warning College Street
Speeding Garrett Warning W. Main Street
Driving without headlights Garrett Warning College Street
Illegal lighting Garrett Warning W. Main Street
Speeding Huffman Warning College Street
Speeding Huffman Warning College Street
Reckless driver Garrett Negative Contact WV HWY 5 E
Threats Garrett Caller advised didn’t want to file charges just wanted to let someone know Howard Street
Suicide Gadney Male Subject pronounced DOS Center Street
Stop Sign Violation Gadney Warning N. Lewis Street
Stop Sign Violation Gadney Cited N. Lewis Street
Speeding Gadney Cited N. Lewis Street
Speeding Gadney Cited for Speeding and failure to produce operators N. Lewis Street
Defective Equipment Gadney Warning N. Lewis Street
Defective Equipment Gadney Warning N. Lewis Street
Defective Equipment Gadney Warning S. Lewis Street
No MVI Gadney Cited for No MVI and Warnings issued for No Proof of Registration and Defective Equipment Fairground Road
Stop Sign Violation Gadney Warning Fairground Road
Speeding Gadney Cited N. Lewis Street
Defective Equipment Gadney Warning Fairground Road
Defective Equipment Gadney Warning Linn Street
Defective Equipment Gadney Warning Fairground Road
Serve Warrants Huffman Suspect arrested and transported to CRJ Magistrate Court
Threats Huffman Suspect left the scene prior to my arrival.  No Direct Threats were made to individuals at the restaurant.  Suspect was later located and advised he was not allowed to be on the property or would be arrested for Trespassing Corner Stone
Vehicle unlock Huffman Vehicle Unlocked Gilmer Elementary
Trash Complaint Huffman Warning Issued and was told that he had to have all the trash cleaned up or would be cited N. Lewis Street
Motor Vehicle Crash Huffman No Report Completed subjects exchanged information Foodland
Speeding Garrett Warning W. Main Street
Speeding Garrett Warning W. Main Street
Speeding Garrett Warning W. Main Street
Active Domestic Huffman/Garrett All verbal, no physical contact parties were separated Walnut Street
Large Altercation Huffman Altercation with approximately 30 people involved, fight was broken up and EMS made a transport to the hospital, attempted to locate suspects Powell Street/Go Mart
Defective Equipment Gadney Warning N. Lewis Street
Driving without headlights Gadney Cited E. Main Street
Speeding Gadney Warning N. Lewis Street
Red ribbon Week Presentation Huffman Assisted with a Drug awareness presentation Gilmer Elementary
Speeding Huffman Cited W. Main Street
Assist CPS Huffman Assisted CPS with a referral Glenville
Vehicle Unlock Huffman Vehicle Unlocked Gilmer Co High
Speeding Huffman Cited for Speeding and No Seatbelt, warnings Issued for Unsigned registration and failure to change address W. Main Street
Speeding Garrett Cited W. Main Street
Active Domestic Huffman All Verbal parties separated E. Main  St
Reckless Driver Garrett Negative contact with the vehicle W. Main Street
Speeding Huffman Warning W. Main Street
Speeding Gadney Warning N. Lewis Street
MVC Garrett Accident Report Completed High St
MVC Gadney Accident Report Completed W. Main Street
Vehicle Unlock Huffman Vehicle unlocked Conrad Motel
Speeding Gadney Warning W. Main Street
Expired MVI Gadney Warning N. Lewis Street
Speeding Gadney Cited Mineral Road
Improper Registration Gadney Cited for Improper Registration and No Proof of Registration Mineral Road
Defective Equipment Gadney Warning Mineral Road
Cell phone while Driving Gadney Cited Fairground Road
Defective Equipment Gadney Warning S. Lewis Street
Speeding Gadney Cited Mineral Road
Assist Another Agency Gadney Assisted WVSP with active Domestic Wabash Ave
Defective Equipment Gadney Warning N. Lewis Street
Defective Equipment Gadney Warning Fairground Road
Defective Equipment Gadney Warning Fairground Road
Speeding Gadney Cited N. Lewis Street
Improper Lighting Gadney Suspect arrested for DUI W. Main Street
Defective Equipment Gadney Warning W. Main Street
Speeding Gadney Cited W. Main Street
Defective Equipment Gadney Warning College Street
Speeding Huffman Warnings Issued for Speeding and Unsigned Registration College Street
Active Domestic Huffman 1 male and 1 female arrested for Domestic Battery Charges Mountaineer Mart
Vehicle Unlock Huffman Vehicle Unlocked Conrad Motel

Gilmer County Magistrate Court Report

The Free Press WV
Magistrate Court of Gilmer County, West Virginia
Defendant Offense Disposition
Sampson, John Curtis No Proof of Insurance Guilty Plea
Goodwin, Robin Anita Expiration of Registration and Certificate of Title Guilty Plea
Riggs, Curtis Victor Forging, Uttering, or Attempting to Employ as True, A Forged Writing to the Prejudice Transferred to Circuit Court
Sampson, John Curtis Speeding Guilty Plea
Pulice, Neil Jason Unlawful Disposal Litter > 500 lbs. Guilty Plea Agreement
Pulice, Neil Jason Mandatory Disposal - Subscribe to and Use of Collection Service Dismissed - Plea Agreement
Pulice, Neil Jason Prohibition - Open Dump Dismissed - Plea Agreement
Phares II, David Charles No Insurance Guilty Plea
Blake, Bryon Scott Driving while license suspended or revoked Guilty Plea Agreement
Roberts, Michael Lee Expired Registration No Contest Plea / Nolo Contender
Roberts, Michael Lee No Insurance No Contest Plea / Nolo Contender
Black, Heather Battery Upon Another by Making Physical Contact with Force Causing Pain or Injury Guilty Plea
Black, Heather Brandishing Deadly Weapons Threatening or Causing Breach of Peace; Criminal Penalties Dismissed - Plea Agreement
Mepoyle, Anthony William Cell Phone No Contest Plea / Nolo Contender
Mepoyle, Anthony William No Proof of Insurance Dismissed - Proof of Insurance
Ferrell, Robert Gil Driving a Vehicle while in an Impaired State No Contest Plea / Nolo Contender
Pennebaker, Brian Howard Domestic Battery - Unlawful Use of Contact of Insulting/Provoking Nature Dismissed - Plea Agreement
Neff, Angel Knowingly or Intentionally Possessing a Controlled Substance without Valid Prescription No Contest Plea / Nolo Contender
Hedges, Daniel Pierce Passing School Bus Proceedings Differed
McCumbers, Steven Wayne No Vehicle Insurance Dismissed - Proof of Insurance
Conrad II, Ronald Gene Underage Consumption No Contest Plea / Nolo Contender
Gibson Caleb Ray Operation without Certificate of Inspection or Failure to Produce Certificate; Penalty for Misdemeanor Guilty Plea
Sprouse, Elvis Lee No Seatbelt No Contest Plea / Nolo Contender
Sprouse, Elvis Lee No Insurance Dismissed - Proof of Insurance
Phillips, Joseph Ray Public Intoxication Guilty Plea
Stevens, Rosaria Frances Speeding Guilty Plea
Blankenship, Josef A Possession of Meth No Contest Per Plea Agreement
Blankenship, Josef A Possession of controlled substance - Marijuana < 15 grams Dismissed - Plea Agreement
Pennebaker, Brian Howard Possession of controlled substance < 15 grams No Contest Per Plea Agreement
Yu, Jonghoon No Operators Dismissed
Lambert, Donald Devon Speeding Guilty Plea
Riggs, Curtis Victor Obtaining Money, Property and Services by False Pretenses; Penalties (Larceny) (5) Transferred to Circuit Court
Riggs, Curtis Victor Wearing Hoods or Face Coverings (4) Transferred to Circuit Court
McNally, Elvin Bronson No Operators Guilty Plea
Roberts, Carl Eugene Illegal Burning of Refuse Guilty Plea
Neville, Jerrett No Proof of Insurance Dismissed

Gilmer County Man Admits to Illegal Possession of A Firearm

The Free Press WV

Jeremy Allen Wolfe, of Glenville, West Virginia has admitted to illegal possession of a firearm, Acting United States Attorney Betsy Steinfeld Jividen announced.

Wolfe , age 32, pled guilty to one count of “Felon in Possession of Firearm.”

In November 2014, Wolfe was found in possession of multiple firearms, including three rifles and two shotguns, in Calhoun County, WV.

Wolfe, having been convicted of a crime punishable by imprisonment for a term exceeding one year, that is, Delivery of a Controlled Substance, in Gilmer County, WV is prohibited from possessing firearms.

He faces up to ten years in prison and a fine up to $250,000. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the actual sentence imposed will be based upon the seriousness of the offenses and the prior criminal history, if any, of the defendant.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Andrew R. Cogar prosecuted the case on behalf of the government. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives and the West Virginia State Police investigated.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Michael John Aloi presided.

ICYMI™: Former Boone County Board of Education Members Indicted

The Free Press WV

Two former members of the Boone County Board of Education were named in indictments on misdemeanor crimes unsealed last week in Boone County Circuit Court.

Mark Edward Sumpter, of Madison, and Danny Lee Cantley, of Racine, were named in three counts each.

They allegedly took gifts from school board vendors while they were in elected office, court documents said.

Boone County Prosecutor Keith Randolph has confirmed the indictments, but declined further comment only to say the defendants are innocent until proven guilty.

According to court documents, Sumpter received several automobile tires from King’s Tire Sevices, Inc. and Martin’s Peterbilt of West Virginia in 2015 and 2016.

It is alleged Cantley received NASCAR tickets from King’s Tire Service, Inc. on three occasions in 2014.

The indictments follow guilty pleas earlier this month from former Boone County Schools Transportation Director Bryan Jarrell and former bus mechanic Tracy Harvey on embezzlement charges. They are scheduled to be sentenced next month.

When Jarrell and Harvey were first charged, State Police Sgt. Charles Sutphin hinted other school officials were under investigation.

We’re looking into some possible misrepresentations and misuse of money on a couple of other individuals also. We are still investigating, Sutphin said at the time.

Circuit Court arraignments for Sumpter and Cantley are scheduled for October 23, 2017.

Thirty People Indicted for Stolen Firearms and Methamphetamine Distribution Operation

The Free Press WV

Thirty people are facing federal charges after police broke up a scheme involving the theft and sale of firearms and drugs in Upshur County.

A federal grand jury indictment from August 29, 2017 has been unsealed, revealing 12 people from Upshur, Barbour, and Lewis counties, along with one person from Virginia named in a 20-count firearms indictment. The charges are connected to a period of less than one year, from October 2016 to August 2017.

  • Michael Lynn Lough, 32, Buckhannon, West Virginia
  • Timothy Glen Woods, 28, French Creek, West Virginia
  • Lisa Kay Knight, 24, Upshur, West Virginia
  • Dustin Cain Anderson, 23, Buckhannon, West Virginia
  • Benjamin Tyler Nazelrod, 26, Buckhannon, West Virginia
  • Reggie Joe McLain, aka “McLain,” 37, Buckhannon, West Virginia
  • Aaron Matthew McLain, 36, Volga, West Virginia
  • Carla Denise Jones, 55, Volga, West Virginia
  • Bobby Ray Johnson, Jr., 27, Buckhannon, West Virginia
  • Roger Lee Clem, II, aka “Woody,” 30, Weston, West Virginia
  • Kimberly A. Warner, aka “Kimmie,” 26, Buckhannon, West Virginia
  • Danielle Paige Tanner, 22, Glen Allen, Virginia

The gun theft scheme led to the recovery of 100 out of 120 stolen firearms by law enforcement, according to Randolph J. Bernard, Criminal Chief for the U.S. Attorneys Office.

The second indictment names 17 more people from Upshur, Lewis, Harrison, Marion, and Barbour counties in a 50-count indictment. Those listed stand accused of distributing methamphetamine in Upshur County from March 2016 to August 2017.

  • Amanda Me Bachman, aka “AB,” 33, Buckhannon, West Virginia
  • Rocky Douglas Idleman,, 38, Clarksburg, West Virginia
  • Thunderbolt Dean Whaley, 40, French Creek, West Virginia
  • Cassandra Tahj Riffle, aka “Cassie Hickman,” 31, Buckhannon, West Virginia
  • Melissa Ann Masuga, 33, Buckhannon, West Virginia
  • Elizabeth Ellen Golden, aka “Liz,” 42, Buckhannon, West Virginia
  • Steven Larry Harper, aka “Skip,” 39, Buckhannon, West Virginia
  • Reggie Joe McLain, 37, Buckhannon, West Virginia
  • Brett Allen Reed, 23, Buckhannon, West Virginia
  • Jerry Lee Stewart, Jr., 27, Weston, West Virginia
  • Angela Dawn White, 46, Buckhannon, West Virginia
  • Clarrisa Michelle Adkins, 24, Wallace, West Virginia
  • Michael Lewis Woodyard, 26, Clarksburg, West Virginia
  • Crystal Michelle Haggarty, 34, Bridgeport, West Virginia
  • Cassie Chase Poland, 18, Fairmont, West Virginia
  • Casey Jo Richards, 28, Bridgeport, West Virginia
  • Austin Jay Robinson, 18, Belington, West Virginia

24 of 30 wanted in the indictment were in custody as of 2 p.m. Wednesday afternoon.

“Self-report; turn yourself in, basically,” Bernard said. “I think that is in everybody’s best interest, including those who have been charged.”

Bernard described this is as simply a first step. The investigation revealed stolen firearms were used as barter and used in furtherance of the distribution of methamphetamine.

“Now that it’s arrived, we are going to be aggressive,” Bernard said. “This is the first step. It is gratifying and satisfying, but there is a lot of work left to do.”

The Bureau of Alcohol, Firearms, Tobacco and Explosives, The Mountain Region Drug & Violent Crime Task Force, the Greater Harrison Drug &Violent Crime Task Force, a HIDTA-funded initiative, the West Virginia State Police, Upshur County Sheriff’s Office, Lewis County Sheriff’s Office, the Buckhannon Police Department, and the Weston Police Department are investigating.

“Every time we make an arrest, every time we dismantle one of these organizations, I think we’ve done a service to the community,” Bernard said. “And we’ll continue doing it.”

G-ICYMI™: WV Same-Sex Couple

The Free Press WV
The Free Press WV

Why WV same-sex couple filed lawsuit instead of complaint with state

Samantha Brookover and Amanda Abramovich wanted to prevent discrimination against other same-sex couples, so they filed a complaint with the West Virginia Human Rights Commission.

But in the end, they filed a lawsuit in federal court instead, arguing that their constitutional rights had been violated.

They felt like too much of a “burden” to the state Human Rights Commission, Brookover said.

West Virginia’s Human Rights Act protects people from discrimination in housing, employment and public accommodations. It says that all West Virginians — regardless of race, religion, color, national origin, ancestry, sex, age, blindness or disability — should have equal rights in areas of public accommodation.

Public accommodations, like the Gilmer County clerk’s office, where Brookover and Abramovich applied for a marriage license and deputy clerk Debbie Allen told them, in February 2016, that what they were doing was wrong, and that God would judge them.

West Virginia’s Human Rights Act does not explicitly mention sexual orientation. But Cameron McKinney, attorney for the West Virginia Human Rights Commission, said he could have proceeded with the case anyway. The West Virginia Human Rights Commission is a state agency created by the West Virginia Human Rights Act. It is “charged with the responsibility of working to eliminate discrimination in West Virginia,” according to its website.

McKinney said he could have made the argument the women were discriminated against based on sex.

The Free Press WV
Samantha Brookover (left) and Amanda Abramovich.

In other words, they were each doing something Allen didn’t think a woman should do — marry another woman.

After a person files a complaint with the Human Rights Commission, an investigator makes a recommendation as to whether there is probable cause. McKinney said they had received the complaint, and were investigating it, when the women asked to withdraw the case and said they planned to pursue a lawsuit instead.

“The only decision we made was that it was probably within our jurisdictional reach,” McKinney said.

Brookover and Abramovich filed a suit in April of 2017, represented by attorneys from Americans United for Separation of Church and State and cooperating counsel for Fairness West Virginia, an LGBT rights advocacy organization.

McKinney did not give names, but Brookover confirmed this week that she and Abramovich were the couple involved. A judge had dismissed the case Wednesday, after the parties agreed that Gilmer County would pay them $10,000, apologize, and Fairness West Virginia would hold a workplace sensitivity training.

“Americans United, this is a sole focus for them,” Brookover said. “Where the Human Rights Commission is, I feel, a little less in tune with the LGBT community.”

Brookover said they felt like “a burden” to the state Human Rights Commission.

“I felt like I was using up a lot of their resources and a lot of their time and effort,” she said. “Americans United took us further under their wing.”

“They were great and they were very concerned,” she said, referring to the Human Rights Commission. 

But, “we kept getting bounced around an awful lot,” she said.

Earlier this year, the West Virginia Supreme Court found that Steward Butler, who attacked a same-sex couple in Huntington after he saw the two men kissing, could not be charged with a hate crime.

West Virginia’s hate crimes code also does not mention sexual orientation, but it does protect people on the basis of sex discrimination.

Cabell prosecutors had, like McKinney, argued that discrimination against a same-sex couple could fall under sex discrimination. They argued that Butler attacked based on his own views of how men should behave. Some federal courts have found that discrimination against same-sex couples can fall under sex discrimination.

Not long after the state Supreme Court found that the criminal statute cannot be interpreted that way, McKinney noted that the West Virginia Human Rights Act — the civil statute — is to be “liberally construed to provide people as much benefit as possible.”

“I think that there is room for an opposite interpretation from what they reached in the criminal case,” he said. “I don’t know what Allen Loughry would say,” he said, referring to the chief justice who wrote the opinion in Butler’s case. 

The couple’s lawsuit, he noted, doesn’t cite West Virginia law.

“So far we just don’t have that case,” McKinney said.

McKinney said the only other person who had approached the commission about sexual orientation discrimination, whom he was aware of, was a woman from Huntington. He told her she had the option of filing with the commission, but state law “presented some risk to her.”

“The best approach is for the Legislature to amend the law,” he said. “Businesses and young, working people don’t want to go to backward places that are not open and receptive to all kinds.”

Andrew Schneider, executive director of Fairness West Virginia, said McKinney and another HRC employee have contacted him before about cases, and that “we’re in touch with each other so we make sure no one falls through the cracks.”

He added though, “I think a lot of people from the LGBT community are probably discouraged from approaching them, fearing that the law doesn’t protect them.”

As for whether any LGBT people contact the West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey’s office with discrimination complaints, earlier this year, Steven Travis, of the attorney general’s office, said, in response to a public records request, that the office “does not receive these complaints but rather acts as legal counsel for the West Virginia Human Rights Commission who receives, investigates, and refers claims for prosecution to our office.”

~~  Erin Beck - Gazette-Mail  ~~

Attorneys: Gilmer County Clerk Apologizes To Lesbian Couple

The Free Press WV

A lesbian couple are receiving a public apology and $10,000 in damages from a county clerk’s office in West Virginia where they were disparaged when applying for a marriage license last year, the couple’s attorneys said Wednesday.

Amanda Abramovich and Samantha Brookover sued Gilmer County Deputy Clerk Debbie Allen and Clerk Jean Butcher, saying Allen told the couple while processing their application that they were an “abomination,” what they were doing was wrong and that God would “deal” with them.

As part of the settlement, the clerk’s office has agreed to issue a public apology in a news release that also will announce the monetary settlement and include a promise to refrain from such treatment in the future, Americans United for Separation of Church and State and the Mayer Brown law firm, the two groups that filed the suit, said in a statement.

The lawsuit alleged the clerks violated the couple’s equal-protection rights under the constitution, citing the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2015 ruling upholding the rights of same-sex couples to wed.

The couple also alleged that when Brookover’s mother complained to Butcher about the treatment by her deputy clerk, Butcher said they deserved it and the next same-sex couple that sought a license would get the same or worse from her office.

The clerk’s statement will promise that “all people seeking services and doing business with the county will be treated courteously and with respect regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity,” Americans United said.

“Our clients, they absolutely wanted to make sure it doesn’t happen again,” said Eric Rothschild, senior litigation attorney for Washington-based Americans United. The group didn’t hear from anyone else with similar complaints after filing the suit in April in the Northern District of West Virginia, he said.

Butcher said Wednesday that she didn’t know about the apology and settlement and referred calls to the county’s outside lawyer, who didn’t immediately respond to telephone messages.

Judge Irene Keeley dismissed the case Wednesday after both sides filed a joint stipulation saying they had reached a settlement agreement.

Mother, Student Sue Calhoun Board, Principal Over Alleged Bullying

The Free Press WV

A Calhoun County mother and her minor son alleges that a school board and principal failed to stop student bullying.

HS, a minor by and through his parent Melissa Starcher filed a complaint July 27 in Calhoun Circuit Court against Calhoun County Board of Education and Calhoun County Middle/High School Principal Melanie B. Arthur alleging negligence and other counts.

According to the complaint, the plaintiffs allege that HS was a victim of “consistent and repeated acts of harassment, intimidation, bullying and sexual assault” from several students while attending Calhoun County Middle/High School. The plaintiffs allege that it is their belief that the bullying students have not been disciplined.

The plaintiffs hold Calhoun County Board of Education and Arthur responsible because the defendants allegedly failed to keep the school free form harassment, intimidation and bullying.

The plaintiffs request a trial by jury and seeks compensatory and punitive damages, pre- and post-judgment interest, costs, attorney’s fees and such other fair and just relief. They are represented by Kevin S. Kaufman of Kaufman & McPherson PLLC in Bridgeport.

Calhoun Circuit Court case number 17-C-15

Morrisey Urges U.S. Supreme Court to Overturn Gun Ruling

West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey, joined by four other states, has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn an appeals court ruling they say infringes on gun rights.

In a brief Tuesday, they argue that the 4th U.S. Circuit Court majority erred in concluding police can frisk someone they believe has a weapon.

Morrisey, joined by attorneys general from Indiana, Michigan, Texas and Utah, said innocent gun owners have the right to carry weapons “without the fear of being unreasonably searched.”

They argue that existing case law requires police determine someone is dangerous as well as armed. Otherwise, people will have to choose between their right to bear arms and freedom from unreasonable searches.

“It is wrong to deem an individual dangerous solely because they are armed,” Morrisey said.

The Free Press WV


The brief notes that half the people own guns in West Virginia, which is one of a dozen states that don’t require a permit for carrying a concealed weapon. Another 25 states’ laws say authorities shall issue permits for concealed guns provided they meet certain statutory requirements.

The Supreme Court has not yet decided whether to hear the case.

It involved Shaquille Robinson, a felon with an illegal gun in his pocket. He was arrested by Ranson police in West Virginia’s Eastern Panhandle after an anonymous tip about someone seen loading a handgun in a parking lot known for drug trafficking. Police responding to the tip stopped the car in which Robinson was a passenger because neither he nor the driver was wearing a seat belt and searched Robinson.

His attorney argued the search was illegal and violated Robinson’s civil rights, that the tip identified seemingly legal conduct and the traffic stop provided no basis for frisking him.

The 4th Circuit Court, in a 12-4 decision in January, rejected that argument and concluded that “an officer who makes a lawful traffic stop and who has a reasonable suspicion that one of the automobile’s occupants is armed may frisk that individual for the officer’s protection and the safety of everyone on the scene.”

Judge Paul Niemeyer wrote for the majority: “The danger justifying a protective frisk arises from the combination of a forced police encounter and the presence of a weapon, not from any illegality of the weapon’s possession.”

Judge Orderes EQT to Show Formulas Used in Royalty Payments

The Free Press WV

A Judge has ordered EQT to produce the documents and formulas its royalty owners have asked for in a dispute dating back to 2013.

The suit, filed four years ago by the Kay Company LLC and other lessors, accused EQT of improperly deducting post-production costs from their royalty payments.

EQT had been ordered by federal Magistrate Judge James Seibert to produce the information, despite the company’s characterization of the request as “unduly burdensome.“ EQT also contended the data was “protected work product.“

But U.S. District Judge John Bailey affirmed Seibert’s ruling in a 13-page order filed July 18. In it, Bailey noted that EQT had claimed there are “so many individual types of lease language that a class is improper and unmanageable.“

“This court is not totally convinced that the resistance is meritorious in that West Virginia has limited the categories of leases,“ Bailey wrote, pointing out the lessors were “seeking information as to how (EQT) classifies the numerous leases in the payment of royalties.“

“These attempts have been thwarted or delayed by the actions of the defendants,“ Bailey wrote. “For example, when asked about a list by which the defendants determine how to pay royalties to the various lessors, (EQT) took the position that such a list did not exist or that the list was work product. This court found such a position untenable.“

Bailey cited the transcript from the magisterial proceeding, in which Siebert had asked the lawyers who, at EQT, makes a mathematical calculation on how to pay and was told, “they look at it lease by lease.“

“Finally, after over four years, someone has admitted that they have two or more formulae for calculating royalty payments,“ Bailey wrote. “As a corollary, therefore, the defendants have to have a list as to which leases are determined by which formula.“

EQT’s legal team could not be reached for comment.

EQT Acquisition of Rice Energy Challenged by a Hedge Fund

The Free Press WV

An activist hedge fund is seeking to stop EQT Corp.’s planned acquisition of Rice Energy, which would create the largest natural gas producing company in the United States.

Jana Partners LLC, a New York-based firm, filed papers with the Securities and Exchange Commission on Monday, July 03, saying it had acquired 10,117,000 shares of EQT stock, or about 5.8 percent of total shares, and was prepared to run two people for seats on the EQT board of directors next year.

In its filing, Jana said it had acquired the stock because it believes EQT shares are undervalued.

Jana said it plans to contact EQT’s board and shareholders about stopping the Rice acquisition and about separating EQT’s midstream business from its exploration and production business.

Jana is an activist hedge fund that makes its money in part by buying large stakes in companies and persuading them to spin off certain business segments or pressuring them to put themselves up for sale. Jana played a role earlier this year in Amazon’s announcement that it would acquire Whole Foods. Jana bought a 9 percent stake in Whole Foods and forced an end to that company’s expansion plans. When Amazon announced it was buying Whole Foods for $13.7 billion, Jana made a profit of more than $300 million, according to some estimates.

Last month, in an interview with Texas Monthly, Whole Foods CEO John Mackey referred to Jana as “greedy bastards.”

~~  Jim Ross ~~

Gilmer County Circuit Court Report

The Free Press WV

On Monday, May 22, 2017 Chief Judge Facemire held motion day in Gilmer County.


•  Seven juvenile cases were heard.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Robert Potter

He was before the Court and he was readmitted to probation and home confinement for a period of 5 years.

His attorney was Eric Wildman.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Charles Pritt

Upon his former plea was sent for 60 days diagnosis and classification at the penitentiary and his sentencing was deferred until August 28, 2017 at 9:30 AM.

His attorney was Clinton Bischoff.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Patty Reynolds

She was sentenced to 6 months in Central Regional Jail followed by 1 year in Central Regional Jail with sentence suspended and she was placed on 5 years probation with 150 hours per year of community service.

Her attorney was Clinton Bischoff and special prosecutor Shannon Jones worked out this plea deal and dismissed all felony charges against her.


•  The felony charges were also dismissed against William Reynolds who also pled to 2 misdemeanor counts in an information filed against him.

His sentencing is set for July 06, 2017 at 9:00 AM.

He has been in jail since August of last year and he made bond today and was released pending his sentencing.

His attorney was Brian Bailey and Shannon Jones was also the special prosecutor.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Margaret White

She was before the Court for reduction of bond, and it was reduced to $10,000.00 and home confinement.

Her attorney was Eric Hencil.


•  One guardian matter was reset for June 26, 2017 at 9:50 AM.

Gilmer County Circuit Court Report

The Free Press WV

On Monday May 08, 2017 Judge Jack Alsop held Court in Glenville


•  Eight juvenile matters were heard, 5 were rest for June 12, 2017 in the afternoon with the afternoon’s docket on this date were cancelled.


•  The case of State of West Virginia vs. Michael Puffenbarger

It was reset for an evidentiary hearing because he disputed the amount of restitution.

His hearing is now set for June 12, 2017 at 10:50 AM.

His attorney is Christopher Pritt.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Eric Williams

He was sentenced to 1-10 years in the penitentiary with restitution being set at $26,380 for all victims in the matter.

He was represented by Thomas Kupec.



On Tuesday, May 16, 2017 Chief Judge Richard A. Facemire heard 4 cases in Gilmer County.


•  Two fugitives from justice were before the Court, both being represented by Paul Knisely.

Edward Jackson waived to return to Ohio and authorities there have until 4 PM May 25, 2017 to pick him up or Central Regional Jail will release him.

Gregory Bolden was before the court wanted by the state of Michigan and he refused to waive extradition so Judge Facemire directed the prosecuting attorney to seek at governor’s warrant and the state has 60 days to obtain that and then another hearing will be set.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Charles Collins

He entered a Kennedy no contest plea to sexual assault in the 3rd degree with the remaining 29 counts being dismissed by the prosecutor.

He will be sentenced in Braxton County at 2:30 PM on July 05, 2017.

His attorney is Joseph Spano.


•  State of West Virginia vs. David Curry

He pled to 1 count of failure to meet an obligation to provide support to a minor.

His sentencing is set for July 24, 2017 at 9:00 AM following Mike Haley, probation officer, doing presentence investigations on both defendants.

Curry was represented by Paul Knisely also.

Gilmer County Family Court Report

The Free Press WV

•  May 10, 2017 -  Joshua Jackson of FCI Gilmer divorced Sylvia Jackson of Columbus, Ohio


•  May 15, 2017 -  Emily Stuart (26) of Shock, WV divorced Jerama Stuart (23) of Glenville, WV


•  May 15, 2017 -  Rocky Jamison (60) of Sand Fork, WV divorced Wendy Jamison (34) of Weston, WV


•  May 15, 2017 -  Felicia Hall (27) of Glenville, WV divorced Daniel Ray Hall (29) of Cox’s Mills, WV


•  May 15, 2017 -  Kimberly Hess (27) of Sand Fork, WV divorced Jeremy Hess (30) of Glenville, WV


•  May 15, 2017 -  Kristan Ramey (29) of Glenville, WV divorced Eric Ramey (38) of Glenville, WV

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Readers' Recent Comments

The whole child concept is admirable, but with GCHS grads being behind in proficiency for academic subjects we need to make changes to drastically improve learning to enable our kids to compete in the highly competitive modern world.

Our being the 52nd worse off among 55 WV counties for college remediation rates is undeniable proof.

Administrators must determine legitimate causes of our bottom ranking for use in improving learning instead of applying usual low payoff tinkering to be passed off as progress.

By B. K. Brooks on 12.15.2017

From the entry: 'Gilmer County Board of Education Minutes of Regular Meeting - 11.27.17'.

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That’s the #### dems new ploy, they can’t win on policy so they charge sexual harassment.

By The Silent Majority on 12.15.2017

From the entry: 'Meet the Miss USA Contestant from Gilmer County, WV Accusing Trump of Sexual Misconduct'.

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Why was there no outrage like this when Billy Boy was doing his deed in the White House? and other places?

Oh, I forgot.  He was the media’s boy?

By HOW COME NOW ? on 12.14.2017

From the entry: 'Meet the Miss USA Contestant from Gilmer County, WV Accusing Trump of Sexual Misconduct'.

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Wanna bet that in green counties when results sag there is no hesitancy to make administrative changes when needed? In Gilmer County the approach has been to hide facts and to manufacture rosy ones to report to citizens.

By Moore on 12.11.2017

From the entry: 'More college-going students in WV need remedial classes'.

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This is basically the process for an improvement plan. A school board specifies student achievement standards and it assigns a superintendent to work with central office staff and school administrators to produce a comprehensive plan for making needed changes. After putting a plan in place results are closely monitored by a school board while holding a superintendent personally accountable for achieving the standards.

By School Board Member In A Top Performing County on 12.10.2017

From the entry: 'More college-going students in WV need remedial classes'.

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Did I miss the County Commission Agenda for the December meeting?  The GFP site is displaying a little differently and I can’t seem to find it.  Do they still meet on First and Third Fridays??

By Searching on 12.10.2017

From the entry: 'More college-going students in WV need remedial classes'.

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The no excuse rate for Gilmer County is 59% and there are only three other WV counties worse off. This alarming information flags dire need for the County’s school board to do its job by implementing an improvement plan.

By Gilmer Students Ripped Off on 12.08.2017

From the entry: 'More college-going students in WV need remedial classes'.

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“We’re going to see a sea change in American agriculture as the next generation gets on the land,“

Yeah, right.  That will last about as long as it takes to discover exactly how hard farming is, and the amount of work it takes to make even a minimal living.

Sincerely

Pat McGroyne

By Pat McGroyne on 11.30.2017

From the entry: 'A Growing Number Of Young Americans Are Leaving Desk Jobs To Farm'.

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I always thought a Harvard education was something special.  Well, I guess it is.  Just a week ago they had ‘sex week’.  One of the course offerings was analsex101.  That’s right.  Google it.  Plenty of coverage. True story.

By Harvard 'taint what it used to be? on 11.23.2017

From the entry: 'Feds Threaten To Sue Harvard Over Asian-American Admissions'.

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This is nothing new.  It has been happening for years and no attempt to stop it.  Just quiet it down when word leaks out.  The court system thumbs their noses and laughs at ‘their hillbillies’.

Remember the hub-bub about $100,000.00 bathrooms in the Capitol building a few months ago?

Think they have them all remodeled so those whom you elected can krap in style the next legislative session?  lol

By Web on 11.18.2017

From the entry: 'Legislators Turn Focus on Supreme Court Spending Following Report on Luxury Purchases'.

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The justices are part of the aristocracy. Does anybody think that they care what the peons think?

By Skip Beyer on 11.18.2017

From the entry: 'Legislators Turn Focus on Supreme Court Spending Following Report on Luxury Purchases'.

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Why are Gilmer’s voters kept in the dark about activities of the two LSICs in the County? No published agendas before meetings, no published meeting minutes, and plans with details for school improvements are not disclosed. Violation of WV’s open meeting laws? To top it off memberships of LSIC’s and who selected the individuals are kept secret from voters.

By Gilmer Voter on 11.16.2017

From the entry: 'Board of Education Takes Action on Policies to Provide Flexibility to Counties'.

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LSIC plans are short on specifics for measurable academic improvements to be achieved. That way no matter what happens extraordinary successes can be proclaimed. The strategy is designed to make meaningful accountability impossible for school system administrators.

By More Of Same For WV Schools on 11.15.2017

From the entry: 'Board of Education Takes Action on Policies to Provide Flexibility to Counties'.

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A food pantry opens at Marshall University?

For students I can understand.
But its also for faculty and staff?

Really now?  Their salaries are that poor they need access to a food pantry?

Times area really tough in West Virginia.  Really are.

By Tough Times at Marshall University on 11.14.2017

From the entry: 'West Virginia News'.

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LSIC=Local School Improvement Council. Each WV school has one. Google to learn what each one is supposed to do to improve a school. Ask for plans for your schools.

By POGO on 11.13.2017

From the entry: 'Board of Education Takes Action on Policies to Provide Flexibility to Counties'.

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What is this “LSIC” commenter speaks about?
Who and what is that all about?

By reader on 11.12.2017

From the entry: 'Board of Education Takes Action on Policies to Provide Flexibility to Counties'.

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Fellow West Virginian’s.  What is being seen here is Paine’s return to ‘power’ and the continued 20 years charade by the WVBOE.

They spend your tax dollars.  They do their best to cover their failed efforts.  They cheat our children of a good education. 

They play (think manipulate) with the grading system every couple years, making it impossible to follow students upward or downward progressions.

Don’t expect any good, any progress, any improvement to happen in West Virginia.  It’s not in the cards.  Well, that is not in the ‘administrators’.

By 20 years of WVBOE 'playing' school on 11.12.2017

From the entry: 'Board of Education Takes Action on Policies to Provide Flexibility to Counties'.

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All high schools in WV have ACT Profile Reports for each graduating class.

The only performance information typically cited in school districts is average ACT scores for graduating classes.

If you can get copies of Reports for your high schools read them to independently evaluate testing results for career and college readiness, science, technology engineering and math (STEM), and other categories.

Chances are that your local administrators gloated that average ACT scores for graduating classes are commendable to give your high schools passing marks, but other testing outcomes in the Reports may show otherwise.

It is doubtful if LSIC members for your high schools know about the Reports to be grounds for demanding academic improvement plans. Check Reports for high schools in your school district to make up your own minds.

By WVDOE Fact Checker on 11.11.2017

From the entry: 'Board of Education Takes Action on Policies to Provide Flexibility to Counties'.

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Policy 2510 is an admission by the West Virginia Board of Education of their own failure.

Dumb down the standards in order that students can get a passing grade.

You grand pooh-bahs in Charleston BOE should be ashamed of yourselves!  But you have no shame. Obviously so.

Steve Paine, leading the failure of education in West Virginia.

By # 2510 policy--WVBOE ADMITS OWN FAILURE on 11.10.2017

From the entry: 'Board of Education Takes Action on Policies to Provide Flexibility to Counties'.

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With a deal like this—WHY—are we selling road bonds and—WHY—were all the motor vehicle fees INCREASED on West Virginia’s citizens?  WHY ! ?

Thanks for nothing Jim Justice and the WV legislators.

By WEST VIRGINIA TAXPAYER on 11.10.2017

From the entry: 'WV Signes $84 Billion Shale Gas Deal with China Energy'.

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The Rosie Bell will be a nice addition to the Park !

A thank you to Donna Waddell and her leadership and the FRN for making the Park happen !

By Thank America's Rosie's ! on 11.10.2017

From the entry: 'What This Bell Means to Gilmer County'.

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Aren’t they supposed to have agendas AND minutes for each and every meeting, by law?  They put it right there on the agendas that there were None. And months’ go by without even Seeing an Agenda.  It’s a citizen’s right to go in and ask to see them ALL.  Someone needs to look into this.  Especially with all the speculation that goes on around legal issues in the county!

By GilmerCountyCommission? on 11.03.2017

From the entry: 'Did You Know?'.

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The grade 7 spike in math in comparison to lowered performances in higher grades begs the question about reasons. What is being done to ensure that math skills will not drop by graduation time? Has anyone looked at adverse effects of block scheduling and other factors?

By Answers Needed on 11.03.2017

From the entry: 'SEEING MATH IN NEW WAYS'.

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We’ll.  It’s a step forward to see the Commission AGENDA - but what about the minutes?  The last two agendas have said “ Approve County Commission Minutes-None”      Aren’t there supposed to legally be minutes for the public to read?????  This makes NO sense unless things are going on that the Commission doesn’t want the public to know.  Obviously.  SHOW THE MINUTES Jean Butcher, do your job!

By 304 More Issues on 11.02.2017

From the entry: 'Did You Know?'.

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This posting is very informative and it documents what can be done with innovative approaches to teaching math. For too long we were fed the party line that all was well in our schools for math and everything else. That myth prevailed because facts were hidden to hold down the County’s demands for accountability. Hats are off to Kelly Barr and Traci DeWall.

During intervention it was commonly known that school board members made repeated requests for all kinds of student progress information, but it was kept from them. That era has ended and the County’s school board is expected to focus on its top priority responsibility that is to continually improve student learning in our schools. Our kids can perform if they are given the chance.

By Gilmer County Parents on 11.02.2017

From the entry: 'SEEING MATH IN NEW WAYS'.

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Gilmer look at this Did You Know. If you look at the State’s data on Zoom Dashboard to review changes in mastery of math and reading for the GCHS’s 11th grade for the 2011 and 2017 testing years it is clear the you have a problem with your math program. In 2011 the math pass rate was 36.92 compared to 37.29% in 2017. Progress with reading was truly commendable. The pass rate went from 26.98 in 2011 to 64.41% in 2017. Why the lack of progress for math? We know that your school board members are trying to get information about plans for improvements for math and science, but is full disclosure of details any better than it was under intervention? Let us know.

By B. Cummings on 10.30.2017

From the entry: 'Did You Know?'.

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Lots to learn kids. By the way,  How’s the Commission coming along with the September meeting minutes?

By 304 on 10.30.2017

From the entry: 'GSC Criminal Justice Students Take Part in Scenario-Based Training with RJA'.

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Most of America lives in denial of toll the government approved ‘life-style’ that is shortening everyone’s lives.

We are living in an era where the government has been lobbied (think bought) in approval of many, many things that are destructive to life.

This article shows the result of a cumulative toll effect that vaccines, pesticides, GMO foods, chemtrails, and other poisons are taking on the American population.

This is likely the globalists dream of “depopulation” coming true.  Enjoy what time you, your children, and grandchildren have left.

By Your Government Taking Care of You on 10.25.2017

From the entry: 'Americans Are Retiring Later, Dying Sooner and Sicker In-Between'.

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I don’t care Who or What he killed.  He shouldn’t be doing it in a West Virginia Police hat.  It sends a bad message to do it with a Police hat on.

By Hunter on 10.24.2017

From the entry: 'Special Antlerless Deer Season Opens October 21 and December 26-27'.

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Your outrage is misplaced Hunter. He killed Bambi, who will no longer will frolic through the forest.

By Democrats Against Deer Hunting on 10.23.2017

From the entry: 'Special Antlerless Deer Season Opens October 21 and December 26-27'.

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It doesn’t seem like Gilmer County Law Officials seem to care about the murders in the area. In my opinion. We don’t hear anything from the law on Any of the pertinent local situations.  Why IS that?  We know MUCH more about national news that we know about the goings on in Gilmer. Crimes, drug busts, investigations and Answers to those investigations.  Why don’t we Ever hear any news from the Sheriff’s Department??  Still wondering why Deputy Wheeler was reassigned to school patrol officer and who took over his murder investigative duties.  Can’t get anyone to pick up the phone or an answer when I call.  Maybe someone on the Gilmer Free Press can shed some light?

By Where is the Law? on 10.23.2017

From the entry: 'Governor Justice, DOT Sec. Smith Announce First GARVEE Bond Sale for Roads, Bridges'.

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“We should welcome refugees and immigrants to the United States because it’s good for our society, for our economy, and for our nation.“

WRONG - Diversity in populations has been proven to be, not helpful to society, but harmful.  Immigrant groups who refuse to assimilate are a problem not a benefit, and will remain a problem until they do assimilate.

It’s understood that not all Muslims are terrorists, but for practical purposes all terrorists are Muslims.  And please spare me the Timothy McVey arguments.  McVey and his ilk were loners.  Muslim terrorists are part of an organized movement.

I think almost all immigration should cease until the present immigrant population can be dealt with, through assimilation or otherwise.

Sincerely

Pat McGroyne

By Pat McGroyne on 10.22.2017

From the entry: 'Trump’s Muslim Bans Impoverish Us All'.

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Will the persons involved in Poor Fred’s murder ever be held accountable?  Ever?  Yet they walk among us every day?

Did not realize it has been 7 years since poor ol’ Willard met his fate?  There is plenty dirt kicked around there to cover the wrong doings too?

By Poor Fred is Dead on 10.21.2017

From the entry: 'Did You Know?'.

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Hold on Gub’ner Justiss….
The juery stil’ be outs on yer barrering’ game….

Ways to er’ly ta be countin’ hens an roosters….

By no chickens yet... on 10.21.2017

From the entry: 'Governor Justice, DOT Sec. Smith Announce First GARVEE Bond Sale for Roads, Bridges'.

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Wanna get votes for the school levy? Simply get truth out about where the County stands with low reading, math, and science scores and publicize a rational plan for fixing problems.

By Truth Will Win Levy Votes on 10.21.2017

From the entry: 'ICYMI™: Former Boone County Board of Education Members Indicted'.

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I get it that it’s a pose for the camera, but should he Really be wearing a Police hat for hunting?

By Hunter on 10.20.2017

From the entry: 'Special Antlerless Deer Season Opens October 21 and December 26-27'.

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Nice to see the Gilmer County Commission finally reveal their meeting minutes after long lapses of no information.  Can’t help but wonder if this was posted specifically because of the topic -  Sheriff Gerwig being assigned to another estate case before closing out others. Memories of Willard F. Cottrill today. d. 10/20/10 R.I.P.  The minutes should be interesting.  Let freedom ring.

By MC on 10.20.2017

From the entry: 'Did You Know?'.

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From WV Zoom Dash Board. GCES 6th grade student proficiency rate=20% for math and 31% for reading. Gilmer County demands a K-12 improvement plan everyone can understand and promote!!! We have had enough of the everything is just fine claims.

By School Kids Are Cheated on 10.20.2017

From the entry: 'ICYMI™: Former Boone County Board of Education Members Indicted'.

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It is a common occurrence for school administrators to carefully select one small piece of information to purposely give a school a rosy performance rating for student learning and to hide unflattering information from an LSIC and a local BOE. The way to prevent the censorship is for superintendents to routinely provide access to all testing results so performance evaluations for a school can be based on a full set of facts.

By WVDOE Employee For Complete Transparency on 10.19.2017

From the entry: 'ICYMI™: Former Boone County Board of Education Members Indicted'.

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The community has observed that there is an improved way of doing business by the GCBOE and the new superintendent after the State pulled out. One problem to solve after the State’s neglect for six years of intervention is low student success at the GCHS for math and science. There is documentation on the ZoomWV Dashboard kept by the WV Education Department. The pass rate for GCHS students for M & S is in the 30s. What is the HS’s LSIC group doing to improve those scores? Does it have a detailed improvement plan for the school and if it does it should be disclosed. M and S under achievement underscores why it is important to know what the County’s LSICs are doing to improve our schools academically.

By Gilmer Business Executive on 10.19.2017

From the entry: 'New 4-H Office in Glenville'.

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Should not have to get LSIC membership from principals. The information should be published for the public record for all interested citizens including taxpayers to know. Gilmer’s secrecy has been a long time tool used to undermine accountability and it must stop!

By Stop Secrecy! on 10.19.2017

From the entry: 'ICYMI™: Former Boone County Board of Education Members Indicted'.

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Is it true the GC Board of Education sold this to 4H for one dollar?  I should hope so!

This community has always supported our children and their 4H works.

Very good of our Board of Education to do this!
Thank all you board members!
Doing what you were elected to do!
Take care of the kids and community!

By WONDERFULL USE OF TRAILER on 10.17.2017

From the entry: 'New 4-H Office in Glenville'.

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We 4-H supporters wish to express our appreciation to Mrs. Hurley and the other board of Education members with the 100% vote to hold and sell this trailer for 4-H use/utilization.  This new office space for the very nominal fee is much appreciated.

Kudos to Hurley for staying in contact with the past 4-H director and making sure all was well and agenda requirements were met.  We had heard we were not going to get the trailer.  Thanks goodness the fake news was totally wrong.

Moving out of the old infirmary building will be a real blessing.  The group has learned a valuable lesson.

Do not take the word of ANY others about what the Board of Ed tries to do for each and every community in Gilmer County.  Go to the source.

By Thanks Mz. Hurley & Board of Ed ! on 10.17.2017

From the entry: 'New 4-H Office in Glenville'.

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smile It’s no secret that the Gilmer Board of Ed sets up a public meeting with the LSIC of each school presenting every year agenda and all. Always have.
 
If you want to know who’s on it or when it meets call your school Principal.  That’s who sets up this internal governance committee per code and will probably be glad to talk with you about it.

By Just Takes a Phone Call on 10.17.2017

From the entry: 'ICYMI™: Former Boone County Board of Education Members Indicted'.

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Why the secrecy in not disclosing names of those on the County’s LSIC councils and when they meet with published agendas and official meeting minutes?

By Transparency Suffering on 10.16.2017

From the entry: 'ICYMI™: Former Boone County Board of Education Members Indicted'.

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This information is generally unknown in Gilmer County. Google WVDOE LSIC and chick on the item for frequently asked questions about local school improvement councils. Details covers how individuals are selected to serve on councils and what councils are supposed to do to continually improve our schools with keen focus on student learning.

By How Gilmer's LSICs Should Work on 10.16.2017

From the entry: 'ICYMI™: Former Boone County Board of Education Members Indicted'.

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I love the picture of Kenny because that is a true reflection of him.  I never saw him without a smile on his face.  Even when we would speak on the phone sharing our cancer struggles, Kenny would be laughing.  He always brightened my day when times were hard for me.  Linda, God bless you for what wonderful care you took of Kenny.  When we spoke he was always eager to tell me all you had done for him & how loved & cared about that made him feel.  He always said he could never have made it without you.  God bless you & May God bring you the peace, comfort, & happiness Kenny would want you to have.  My prayers are with you.

By Sue Holvey on 10.15.2017

From the entry: 'Kenneth Jackson Foglesong'.

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Still keeping up on Gilmer County after ending of your intervention. Been reading your test score information too. Your Local School Improvement Councils are responsible for defining specific approaches for improving student performances. The WV Statute covering roles of councils is 18-5a-2. The Department of Eduction has details on its web site for how councils are selected, their responsibilities, and how elected school boards fit in. Too often the problem has been that detailed results for student performance testing were withheld from councils and their members do not know that there are student performance problems in critical need of correcting. The solution is to ensure that all council members are fully advised of testing results and the full range of their official responsibilities.

By WVDOE Observer on 10.14.2017

From the entry: 'ICYMI™: Former Boone County Board of Education Members Indicted'.

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Look at the WVDOE’s Zoom Dashboard. The State’s official results for 2017 testing are alarming. Eleventh graders tested out to be 37% proficient in math compared to 36% in science for 10th graders. Our kids can do much better than this. When will an improvement plan for the high school be developed for application with meaningful built in accountability?

By Fix GCHS' Science And Math Problems on 10.14.2017

From the entry: 'ICYMI™: Former Boone County Board of Education Members Indicted'.

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Don’t believe all the Liberal propaganda being printed as facts….fake news from the left is an epidemic…if we cared so much about pollution and respiratory illnesses, we’d have outlawed cigarettes decades ago…don’t kill West Virginia’s economy over a few objectors.

By Truth?? on 10.13.2017

From the entry: 'Health Consequences from Carbon Pollution Rollback'.

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My child graduated from the GCHS with a high GPA and an ACT exceeding 30. Sounded good at first. At WVU the child was deficient in science and math and dual credit classes taken at the HS didn’t measure up. What is the GCBOE doing to make academic improvements at the HS and when will parents and taxpayers in general be informed of the details?

By GCHS Science and Math Programs Suffering on 10.12.2017

From the entry: 'ICYMI™: Former Boone County Board of Education Members Indicted'.

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Here’s a prediction for you:

Half the money will be wasted on environmental impact statements, feasibility studies and the like.

Of the remaining half, most will go to wages and salaries, and damned few roads or bridges will be repaired.

Anyone want to dispute that?

Sincerely

Pat McGroyne

By Pat McGroyne on 10.10.2017

From the entry: 'Politics Aside, Voters Say, They Want WV’s Roads Fixed'.

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What a scoop!  One county gets 18% of pie!

Mon County wins!  Everyone else looses.

By nepotism will rule the day! on 10.09.2017

From the entry: 'Governor Justice Issues Statement on Passage of Roads to Prosperity Bond Referendum'.

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There have been repeated pleas for a detailed accounting for all the County’s education money spent on facilities and everything associated with them during State control. Why has nothing been done to verify how public money was spent? With use of modern computer records it should be relatively simple to do detailed accounting. Without one and the continuing secrecy lid suspicions are worsened. Didn’t the County have a seizable surplus before intervention and now we face going into the red?

By Where Did Gilmer's School Money Go? on 10.07.2017

From the entry: 'ICYMI™: Former Boone County Board of Education Members Indicted'.

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Positive press out of GSC is always good for the community and the College.

What is not good for the community and GSC is the ongoing telephone scam GSC has nothing to do with.

The phone will ring, there is a GSC entry on caller ID, and a 304-462 number is given. If you answer thinking that it is a legitimate GSC call you get surprised.

The caller, usually with a strange accent, will make a pitch for money and it is obviously a scam.

It is common for the caller to try to convince a person that a grand child or another relative is in bad trouble and thousands of dollars are needed quickly for a lawyer or some other expense.

When the 304 number is called back there is nothing there. It would help if GSC officials would alert the public to the cruel scam and to involve high level law enforcement to stop the nuisance calls.

By Fed Up Glenville Resident on 10.05.2017

From the entry: 'GSC History Book Authors to be on hand for Signing'.

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So sorry.  You and your family have my thoughts and prayers. Butch, you may not remember me but you did such a wonderful job at my farm in Lewis County, dozing, ditching, etc. etc.  a few years ago.  I so appreciated your work. God Bless you and your family during this difficult time.

By Betty Woofter on 10.03.2017

From the entry: 'Florence Marie Hall'.

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West Virginia has 55 counties.

Mon County will get almost 20% of the highway money.  Actually about 1/8th.

Does that seem lop-sided to anyone? 

One county gets one-fifth.  Who gets the ‘payola’ ?

By watcher on 10.01.2017

From the entry: 'Latest Numbers on Road Bond Vote'.

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Nice letter and thought Senator Manchin.

Maybe now a letter to Milan corp, requesting Heather Bresch requesting a epi-pen price roll back?

By How About it Mr. Manchin? on 09.29.2017

From the entry: 'Manchin Letter Urges for Patient Access to Non-Opioid Painkillers'.

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That is the standard operating procedure for the Charleston Board of Ed and their mismanagement style. 

Is it any wonder the state has financial issues?

By truth seeker's answer on 09.28.2017

From the entry: 'ICYMI™: Former Boone County Board of Education Members Indicted'.

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Apparently the 5 year, GC school news embargo, by the West Virginia Board of Education has been lifted ?  Hope so.

By will we get more news? on 09.28.2017

From the entry: 'Gilmer County Board of Education Regular Meeting Minutes'.

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We want investigative accounting for all the County’s school money spent on facilities during intervention. We are entitled to details for planning money, money paid out to architects, all money sent on Leading Creek, everything spent on the Arbuckle land plan and Cedar Creek, what was spent to get us at the new GCES, and a complete list for all money paid out for no bid work from start to where we are today.

By Citizens Deserve Facts on 09.28.2017

From the entry: 'ICYMI™: Former Boone County Board of Education Members Indicted'.

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Can someone explain to me why in Gilmer County schools projects were given to certain companies without any bid? Even when these companies kept screwing up, they kept getting paid for fixing their own screw ups? A good example is our supposed to be brand new elementary school. I hear these all the time. What is the real truth?

By truth seeker on 09.27.2017

From the entry: 'ICYMI™: Former Boone County Board of Education Members Indicted'.

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Where are all the Obama and Clinton haters now? Why aren’t they comment about the state of the country and the world now?

By wondering on 09.27.2017

From the entry: 'National News'.

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Most likely this road bond deal, will make millionaires of elected officials, families, friends.

The WVDOT has a proven track record on spending.  One not to brag about?

The ‘assisted’ suicide of the former DOT manager has been hushed too?

By reader6 on 09.25.2017

From the entry: 'ICYMI™: Former Boone County Board of Education Members Indicted'.

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The posting about Boone is a wake up call for the Governor’s road vote coming up.

WV has a bad reputation for graft and corruption when public funds are involved. With the amount of money involved for the road building program with bond money there would be vast opportunities for waste and mismanagement.

Just look at wasted money in County school systems under WVDOE intervention while local control was eliminated. 

Governor Justice should inform voters what he would do to ensure that the new road money would be spent wisely with iron clad accountability for every penny spent.

By Money To Burn on 09.25.2017

From the entry: 'ICYMI™: Former Boone County Board of Education Members Indicted'.

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There is an epidemic of misuse of County school funds in WV. We read about it all the time. That is what happens when finances are purposely packaged in ways to make it too complicated for board members to track and proper local level oversight cannot occur. This problem is one for Governor to solve.

By Boone Is Not Unique on 09.25.2017

From the entry: 'ICYMI™: Former Boone County Board of Education Members Indicted'.

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The same is being asked of the commission.  Meeting minutes and videos used to be available until fall of last year.  Now we hardly ever see even the agenda, let alone ever seeing the follow up minutes.  WHY DID THIS INFORMATION STOP?? Is someone hiding something because it surely would seem so.  We need to know what’s going on in this town and the Free Press is one of the few ways we can do it.  PLEASE bring back the public meetings videos!!

By Watcher on 09.11.2017

From the entry: 'Gilmer County Commission Meeting - 09.01.17'.

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Appreciation is given to the City for posting meeting minutes on the GFP to be an example of good government by keeping citizens informed.

Why can’t the same be done with school board meeting minutes? Everyone knows that during intervention what got on agendas was censored and what happened during meetings was kept to a minimum to avoid information getting into the public record.

With the State out of here a request is made to the school board to exercise its authority to ensure that citizens are kept informed.

By Why Continuing Secrecy? on 09.11.2017

From the entry: 'Gilmer County Commission Meeting - 09.01.17'.

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Interesting.  Deputy Clerk is the same one who tells people that come with an issue - that they should “go to church” if they’re angry This discrimination issue didn’t just happen once.  This is Gilmer County.

By Fact on 09.07.2017

From the entry: 'G-ICYMI™: WV Same-Sex Couple'.

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With the uproar about the excess levy passing again, it does not have a chance unless it is proven that a much better job will be done in managing the County’s school money than occurred during intervention.

For an example, why was new playground equipment purchased for the new GCES when perfectly good equipment at abandoned schools could have been used?

By Concerned Voter on 09.07.2017

From the entry: 'Paine Says Educators ‘Gave Up’ Because of A-F Grading System'.

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So nice to read of this hometown hero story!

So many stories like this have likely been lost to time.

By GFP reader on 09.06.2017

From the entry: 'Rosie the Riveter Ruby Coberly from Glenville Tells Her Story'.

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So sorry to hear of the death of Karol. I was to Ill to come to funeral, but. My thoughts and prayers was with the family. Classmate 1956.

By Nancy (Rose) Westfall on 09.03.2017

From the entry: 'Leota Karol Hatmaker'.

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Read the Sept 1st Gazette article about four WV school systems with major noteworthy gains in student proficiency in mastering subjects.

The Counties were Doddridge, Mingo, Taylor and Wayne. The proficiency increases were related to factors including curriculum changes, improved planning targeted to achieving specific goals,and use of modern tracking procedures to monitor results.

If other counties can do it Gilmer can too with the smallest school system in WV. For starters our administrators should learn what the four counties did and to adapt the practices to our school system.

It was insulting for some officials to claim that Gilmer’s citizens do not understand what is going on in our school system, they do not care, and nothing can be done about it anyway because of our poverty.

Citizens know more than they are given credit for and if the excess levy gains a chance of passing changes for the better must be demonstrated to voters.

By No More Excuses Accepted on 09.01.2017

From the entry: 'Paine Says Educators ‘Gave Up’ Because of A-F Grading System'.

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This is why Gilmer County must go on its own way by setting high standards, deciding on ways to achieve them for all children regardless of their pedigrees and family net worth. Part of it must include real time, unambiguous progress reports to establish accountability for school system administrators and the County’s school board.

A-F was a hoax. A WV school could get failing grades for student learning to end up with an overall A or B. Any wonder that we were stuck at 50th place with that brand of State cover-up?

By Gilmer--Go It Alone on 08.31.2017

From the entry: 'Paine Says Educators ‘Gave Up’ Because of A-F Grading System'.

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Yes, and in another year or two the grading system will change again.

And again and again and again.

The WV Board of Ed has played this gave for years, in order to ‘look’ accountable, but to escape any long term accountability.  Just keep changing the game.

By ~the people know~ on 08.31.2017

From the entry: 'Paine Says Educators ‘Gave Up’ Because of A-F Grading System'.

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