Thanks to the weather, driving anywhere is a slippery slope this evening.
We'll have live updates from across the region.
And A teenager accused of attempting to murder her family is in custody.
Tonight on News 7 Sports - we'll visit with Tech's Ernest Wilford and talk about how he beat his demons to come back on the verge of a record setting year.
And no record - but a postponement for the Dazzle game set for tomorrow night.
There are signs that the snow will continue through the evening and totals will be impressive for the higher elevations by morning. Details coming up.
News 7 is next.
[SOT - 23:15]
[INQ=I shouldn't have...]
((JESSICA ELLIOT/MOTORIST; I SHOULDN'T HAVE GOTTEN OUT OF BED THIS MORNING, I SHOULD HAVE JUST ROLLED OVER BY THE FIREPLACE, I'M TELLING YOU.))
[OUTQ=I'm telling you.]
Winter weather causes some snarls for motorists across Virginia.
Transportation officials say staying home may just be the best idea.
Good evening, I'm Shannon Young.
And I'm Keith Humphry.
Snow today has closed schools, churches and business, and caused numerous traffic headaches throughout the region.
And more's on the way.
[DOUBLE BOXES=Keith-SHannon & Richard/PATIO SET;]
We start our coverage tonight with Richard Lesko.
Well Keith and Shannon, VDOT officials say stay off the road if it's at all possible. Roads have been slick in the Roanoke Valley since the snow started falling around 1-o'clock this afternoon.
Dozens of accidents were reported in just the first few hours of the storm.
Now VDOT officials say tonight, the roads could be worse than they have been all day.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=As the temperature falls...]
[SUPER=01-Laura Bullock/VDOT Spokesperson; ::00]
[SUPER=01-Jessica Elliot/Motorist; :30]
[OUT Q=not be able to plow.]
[SOT - 26:29]
[INQ=As the temperature]
((LAURA BULLOCK/VDOT SPOKESPERSON; AS THE TEMPERATURE FALLS AS THE SUN GOES DOWN THERE'S THE POSSIBILITY THAT THE SNOW COULD BECOME RATHER ICY. IF THERE'S AN ICY CRUSTING ON THE ROAD, OF COURSE IT'S GOING TO BE MORE SLIPPERY THAT IT IS NOW. AND PEOPLE NEED TO BE AWARE OF THAT.))
[OUTQ=be aware of that.]
During the day it was slow going on Interstate 5-81, and virtually every other major road in the Roanoke Valley.
Minor accidents caused by snow slicked roadways had traffic down to a crawl, and some motorists waiting for help.
[SOT - 22:55]
((JESSICA ELLIOT/MOTORIST; WHAT HAPPENED WAS I STARTED TO LOSE CONTROL AND I FINALLY GOT BACK AND SOMEONE HIT ME FROM BEHIND.))
[OUTQ=hit me from behind.]
VDOT Crews are busy clearing the major roads, before plowing secondary and neighborhood roads.
Meanwhile, you can help VDOT get the roads clear, by keeping your car OFF the road.
[SOT - 27:09]
[INQ=A really good pointer...]
((A REALLY GOOD POINTER FOR US IS FOR PEOPLE TO PARK IN THEIR DRIVEWAYS, DON'T PARK ON THE STREET, BECAUSE SNOWPLOWS CANNOT PLOW THE STREET IF THE CARS ARE BLOCKING THEIR WAY, THE SAME FOR A CUL-DE-SAC OR A COURT. IF FOLKS ARE PARKED THERE WE WILL NOT BE ABLE TO PLOW.))
[OUTQ=be able to plow]))
VDOT officials say it could take some time before plows start to clear residential areas. They will be focusing on clearing Interstate 81 and major highways until the snow stops falling.
[DOUBLE BOXES=Richard PATIO SET/Teresa Microwave;]
But meanwhile, Route 2-20 has been the scene for some of the more significant backups. Teresa Hamilton is there with more.
[Double Boxes=Richard and Teresa/Microwave]
(Richard tosses to Teresa)
( ad lib)
(Rollcue: much different story to our south.)
[OUTQ=2 1/2 hours this afternoon.]
( ad lib)
[Double Boxes=Teresa and Robin/Microwave]
With the storm watch in effect through tomorrow, more school cancellations are sure to come, some already have.
[DOUBLE BOXES=Robin & Myranda/Microwave;]
New River Valley Bureau Chief Myranda Stephens joins us now with more on that end of the spectrum.
Robin, school closings go hand in hand with the type of weather we're experiencing.
But, depending on who you talk to that could be a good or bad.
(///// SOT /////)
[SUPER=01-Walter Bryant/Parent; :04]
[SUPER=03-Montgomery Co.; :11]
[SUPER=01-Preston Bryant/Prices Fork Elementary Student; :17]
[SUPER=01-David Oatley/VT Student; :44]
[SUPER=01-Zahra Pakdel/VT Student; :48]
[OUT Q= BE OUT OF SCHOOL ]
((When the snow gets to fallin', schools get to closin'.
((WALTER BRYANT: THEY SAY WE'RE GOING TO GET A LOT OF SNOW AND WE CAME TO GET THE LITTLE GUY BECAUSE WE DON'T WANT HIM RIDING THE BUS YOU KNOW TIME THEY GET LOADING AND EVERYTHING IT ALL BE PRETTY SLICK 38:37))
And while many parents were concerned about their kids' travel home, the KIDS were just happy to go home.
((REPORTER: WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO WHEN YOU GET HOME? PRESTON BRYANT: STAY IN THE HOUSE AND SLEEP 38:53))
Students in grades K-through-12 weren't the only ones who got a break today.
Afternoon and evening classes were also cancelled at both Radford University and New River Community College.
But, the heavy snow didn't stop Virginia Tech from closing its doors.
Students there had to suck it up and bundle up as they walked to class.
Still, many didn't seem to mind.
((DAVID OATLEY: IT'S NOT BAD IT'S THE END OF THE DAY AND WE GOT BUSES TO GET AROUND SO IT'S NOT TOO DIFFICULT 44:35))
[IN Q=IT'S OKAY]
((IT'S OKAY BECAUSE I'M IN THE ENGINEERING PROGRAM AND I HAVE TO MUCH TO DO. IF I'M OUT OF THE SCHOOL I'D BE BEHIND, I DON'T WANT TO BE OUT OF SCHOOL 45:05))
[OUT Q=OF SCHOOL]))
Now, University officials say they do take into consideration the roads and driving conditions for their commuters...
[DOUBLE BOXES=Myranda & Keith-Shannon/Microwave;]
But, most of the time, the rule is, if the Blacksburg Transit is running, so are classes.
However, they tell me tomorrow may be a different story.
It started out with a few light flakes, but snow is beginning to pile up in central Virginia as well, leaving wrecks and cancellations behind.
Accumulation is nearing an inch in areas around Lynchburg, and that has led to some slippery roadways.
Police in and around Lynchburg report numerous accidents already, most of them involving cars that have slid off the road.
It seems many folks are ready for the white stuff.
It was a busy day at the Town Square Kroger where officials say sales have already beaten their Thanksgiving numbers.
Customers are getting food staples in case they're stuck indoors because of the storm.
Most wanted to get in out before any kind of snow accumulation.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=i was ]
((DIANN CLARK/CUSTOMER; I WAS OUT EARLIER JUST LOOKING AROUND AND THE SNOW STARTED FALLING AND I SAID WELL I BETTER JUST GRAB A FEW THINGS, MOSTLY DESSERTS, SO ACTUALLY I'M DON'T HAVE A LOT OF PREPARATION MAYBE SOME BREAD BUT OTHER THAN THAT I DON'T NEED ANYTHING.))
[OUT Q=NEED ANYTHING.]
A rush order of winter weather supplies is on its way to Roanoke's Home Depot.
Today customers were buying up the supply of large shovels and bags of ice melter crystals.
There's more news ahead tonight, including a guilty verdict in the trial of a Martinsville teenager accused of killing another student.
Plus a Campbell County woman gets a scolding and a prison sentence from a judge.
A Henry County man has been sentenced to 18 years in prison for the shooting death of a Martinsville high school football and track star.
A jury found Curtis Robertson guilty of second- degree murder after one hour of deliberation. Prosecutors say Robertson shot and killed 19 -year- old Delvin Hairston on a Martinsville street back in May, to settle an on-going feud.
Robertson's lawyers argued that he was in the wrong place at the wrong time, and that someone else had pulled the trigger.
His codefendant Christopher Wilson will be tried in January on first degree murder charges stemming from the shooting.
A Campbell County woman is maintaining her innocence even as she heads to prison for killing her husband last winter.
48-year-old Elizabeth Farinacci was convicted in September of the shooting death of Frank Farinacci last February.
Farinacci claims rival bike gang members killed her husband, but the judge told Farinacci her testimony was not credible.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=You were crass]
((JUDGE SAMUEL JOHNSTON/CAMPBELL CO. CIRCUIT COURT: YOU WERE CRASS, YOU WERE RUDE, YOU WERE JUST OFFENSIVE. AND THE JURY.. THIS WAS AN ASSASSINATION, AND I DON'T HAVE THE JURY'S MIND TO READ, BUT THE REASON YOU DIDN'T GET LIFE IN PRISON IS BECAUSE YOUR HUSBAND WAS ALSO A MURDERER.))
[SUPER=01-Judge J. Samuel Johnston/Campbell Co. Circuit Court; :00]
[OUT Q=was also a murderer.]
Investigators say Frank Farinacci killed Nelson County resident Jeffrey Quick, but Quick's body has never been found.
Elizabeth Farinacci has been offered immunity from prosecution, if she would help lead authorities to his body.
Nelson County authorities say Farinacci has given them three different stories about her involvement in Quick's murder.
Richard Burrow wants jurors who sit in judgment of him next week to visit the D-Day Memorial he helped build.
His lawyers asked the judge to take the entire jury to Bedford for "a view" of the National Memorial during the trial.
(///// SOT /////)
((SEEING THE MEMORIAL, AND BEING AT THE MEMORIAL AND EXPERIENCING IT IS DIRECTLY RELEVANT TO SOME OF THE EVIDENCE THAT IS GOING TO COME INTO CASE. WHAT IT MEANS TO PEOPLE. WHAT IT MEANS TO RICHARD BURROW.))
[SUPER=01-John Lichtenstein/Burrow's Attorney]
[OUT Q=means to Richard Burrow.]
The prosecutor opposes the request.
Pat Hogeboom says this is a fraud case, not a murder trial.
(///// SOT /////)
((THE ISSUE IS NOT WHETHER THE MONUMENT WAS BUILT. THE ISSUE IS WHAT WENT INTO BUILDING THE THING. AND THAT CAN BE EXPLAINED AND WILL BE EXPLAINED BY THE VARIOUS WITNESSES WHAT A NOBLE PROJECT IT IS.))
[SUPER=01-Pat Hogeboom/Assistant US Attorney]
[OUT Q=noble project it is.]
Hogeboom told the judge today that the D-Day Foundation discovered- -only after Burrow left last June- -that he'd given the Bank bogus information about contributors. The government alleges Burrow defrauded the bank by claiming the donors had made certain payments on their pledges when in fact the money was not coming in.
The trial begins Monday in Lynchburg.
Profit warnings from Hewlet-Packard and Disney sent Wall Street lower today.
[TAKE DOW & NASDAQ PAGE]
The DOW fell five points.
NASDAQ dropped 19.
A 15- year- old girl accused of setting her family's house on fire is in custody.
Deputies found Jessica Hess last night, at a gas station in Eden, North Carolina.
She was in her grandparents' van.
She's charged with attempted capital murder, arson and grand larceny.
Investigators say she set fire to her grandparents' house as they slept early Tuesday morning, tying their bedroom door shut with a sheet.
Her father was also inside, but all three got out safely.
Henry County authorities say they will try to have Jessica extradited to Virginia to face charges.
The new delegate for Virginia's 24th House district was sworn in today amid a new controversy involving his predecessor, Vance Wilkins.
Ben Cline took the oath today in the House chamber where the portraits of past speakers traditionally hang.
Republicans lawmakers are planning a similar tribute to former Amherst delegate Wilkins.
Wilkins was the first Republican speaker in more than a century.
He resigned earlier this year following allegations of sexual harassment.
Some Democratic lawmakers say that taxpayers should not be paying for the six-thousand dollar portrait.
[IN Q=IT WOULD BE AN OPPORTUNITY]
[SUPER=01-Del. Viola Baskerville/(D) Richmond; :00]
[SUPER=01-Del. Ben Cline/(R) Amherst; :06]
[OUT Q=TRADITION SHOULD CONTINUE.]
Republican lawmakers say a portrait of Bedford delegate Lacey Putney is also "being discussed."
Putney is currently the acting Speaker and the longest-serving House member in Virginia's history.
Coming up tonight on News 7 Sports -
Some weather related hoop news for you, plus
[VO NAT CON'T]
Folks thought Ernest Wilford would always be remembered for that dropped two point conversion against Miami last year.
Boy were they wrong.
When the snow comes - it's one thing to run out and grab a loaf of bread and a gallon of milk - but the Roanoke Dazzle is taking NO chance at all with the weather.
The team's game with Greenville Groove set for tomorrow night has already been postponed.
Virginia's men's basketball team swings back into action tonight.
The 22nd ranked Cavs are on the road in East Lansing, Michigan taking on 21st ranked Michigan State in the ACC-Big East Challenge.
The Cavs have had a week off after finishing second in the Maui Classic.
Remember these two never were able to finish their game last year due a slippery floor at the Richmond Coliseum.
Tonight's game at Michigan State tips-off at 9pm.
Also, the start time for the Tech-UVa men's game on Tuesday night January 21st has been changed. The tip-off will now
take place at 7:30 and not 7pm.[S-Ernest]
Virginia Tech is a huge 17 point underdog against number one ranked Miami this Saturday.
But the Hokies aren't concerned about the oddsmakers. They were underdogs last year, as well, and only lost to the Canes by two points.
A deuce that one Hokie will never forget.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=first audio]
[SUPER=03-Blacksburg/December 1, 2001; :00]
[SUPER=01-Ernest Wilford/40 Catches for 807 Yards; :27]
[SUPER=01-Frank Beamer/16th Season at Virginia Tech; :50]
[OUT Q=...WHAT WE GONNA DO IS WIN."]
(( The two point conversion pass from Grant Noel to Ernest Wilford that would have tied the game, but instead ended up on the turf in between Wilford's legs has had far reaching effects. The drop kept Miami unbeaten, and amazingly it inspired a big kid from Richmond to become a big-time receiver.
No disrespect to Antonio Freeman or Andre Davis, but Wilford is the first player in Frank Beamer's 16 season at Tech to catch 40 passes in a season.
He needs just 7 more catches to break the school's single season reception record.))