We're now closer than ever to the day when police may be authorized to pull you over for nothing more than NOT wearing a seat belt. How the issue was resurrected in Richmond today.
And it's not a done deal, but Roanoke city and county achieve some success in water- sharing talks.
In sports, highlights from the Twin 125's today as well as the complete field for the Daytona 500, we will here form the defending champ and other drivers on what winning Daytona means
and VMI is a big winner today as the football program signs triple A first team punter Adam Peters.
A full weekend of winter fun, or a nasty cold, freezing rain. Winter storm watches go into effect tomorrow afternoon.
News 7 is next.
It was a close but a bill to toughen the state's seatbelt law has passed through the General Assembly.
Virginians who don't buckle up are a step closer to being pulled over.
Good evening, I'm Shannon Young.
And I'm Keith Humphry.
It was its biggest hurdle yet but a bill to make failure to wear a seat belt a primary offense passed the House.
The next stop for the measure is the Governor's desk but will it ever get there?
[DOUBLE BOXES=Keith-Shannon & Meghan/State microwave]
Meghan Muldoon has been following the story in Richmond.
She joins us now from the State Capitol.
Keith and Shannon, it was an emotional debate.
It was the third time in recent years that lawmakers in the House
[LIVE=Meghan Full/State Microwave]
had voted on the measure. The first two time the bill's supporters were unsuccessful.
But the third time was the charm.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=IT PASSED BY A SINGLE VOTE]
[SUPER=01-Del. Jack Reid/(R) Henrico Co.; :24]
[SUPER=01-Del. Joe May/(R) Leesburg; :40]
[OUT Q=FAIR VOTE FROM STANDING.]
(( It passed by a single vote, but that was enough for supporters to overcome strong opposition in the House to make failure to wear a seat belt a primary offense.
That means police can pull people over for not buckling up.
The law now allows officers to ticket unbuckled
drivers only if they have been pulled over for
Opponents say it smacks of government intrusion.
[IN Q=I CAN TELL YOU I HAVE NEVER]
[OUT Q=PROTECT ME FROM MYSELF. NEVER.]
But advocates say its a law that will save lives and money.
[IN Q=WE DON'T LIVE IN A VACUUM]
[OUT Q=TRANSFERS TO OTHERS IS ENORMOUS.]
The measure had already passed the Senate so the House of Delegates was its last hurdle.
And still is.
Instead of sending the bill directly to the Governor, the Speaker of the House is holding it so that opponents can bring the measure back up for another vote.
Governor Warner says he is eager to sign the bill.
[IN Q=WE HAD THAT FAIR HEARING TODAY]
[OUT Q=FAIR VOTE FROM STANDING.]))
[LIVE=Meghan Full/State microwave]
I want to point out that the bill passed with bipartisan support.
But opponents of the measure need just one more vote to swing it the other way.
[DOUBLE BOXES=Keith-Shannon & Meghan/Srate microwave]
So it's clearly not over yet.
An officer's call for help brought dozens of police officers to a Lynchburg school this afternoon to help subdue a possible disturbance.
Just after three, a 14-year-old girl was asked to leave Dunbar Middle School, but she refused.
The school resource officer was called to escort her from the property and when she became disorderly, the officer called for backup as a group of more than a hundred students gathered around.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=He asked the]
((LT. WHIT CLARK/LYNCHBURG POLICE DEPT.: HE ASKED THE STUDENT TO PLACE HER HANDS BEHIND HER BACK, SHE WAS UNDER ARREST AT THAT POINT, AND AT THAT POINT THE CROWD BEGAN TO CONVERGE AND THAT'S WHEN HE CALLED FOR ASSISTANCE.))
[SUPER=01-Lt. Whit Clark/Lynchburg Police Department]
[OUT Q=called for assistance.]
Clark says no other students were involved in the altercation and no one was hurt.
The teenaged girl will likely face a charge of disorderly conduct.
They've been talking since last Summer. Now it appears officials from Roanoke City and Roanoke County are making progress toward a regional water and sewer authority.
[DOUBLE BOXES=Keith & JoeD / Newsroom;]
Joe Dashiell is in the newsroom tonight, with more on the status of their negotiations.
[LIVE= JoeD /FULL Newsroom]
Keith, city and county officials have been meeting quietly since last July to explore the possibilities and work on a draft agreement.
Elected officials have stayed away to let staff members work without interference... but the politicians may soon have a chance to weigh in on the water authority.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=Darlene Burcham and Elmer Hodge ]
[SUPER=03-Roanoke Co./July 12, 2002; :00]
[SUPER=10-Darlene Burcham/Roanoke City Manager/July 12, 2002; :12]
[SUPER=10-Elmer Hodge/Roanoke Co. Administrator/July 12, 2002; :29]
[OUT Q=for their consideration]
((Darlene Burcham and Elmer Hodge made a plea for patience when they began their water authority talks in mid-July, but they also expressed optimism that their discussions would ultimately pay off.
[IN Q=Elmer and I]
((DARLENE BURCHAM/ROANOKE CITY MANAGER: ELMER AND I HAVE TO LOOK AFTER THE BEST INTERESTS OF OR GOVERNING BODIES AND OUR COMMUNITIES WHILE AT THE SAME TIME TRYING TO PROMOTE THE BEST INTEREST OF THIS VALLEY AND I BELIEVE WE CAN FIND A SOLUTION IN A WATER AUTHORITY THAT WILL DO THAT, BUT IT WILL PROBABLY MEAN THAT EVERYBODY HAS TO GIVE A LITTLE BIT, HAS TO COMPROMISE.))
((ELMER HODGE/ROANOKE COUNTY ADMINISTRATOR: WE AT THE COUNTY SEE THIS AS A WELCOME OPPORTUNITY TO WORK TOGETHER AND MAKE THE WATER SYSTEM EVEN STRONGER THAN IT IS.))
[OUT Q=even stronger than it is.]
Though the details are still under wraps, the discussion could soon enter a new stage... in which a draft agreement is presented to elected officials for their consideration.))
[LIVE= JoeD /FULL NEwsroom Pod]
We are still a long way from a regional water and sewer authority... elected officials from each locality must be convinced that a specific proposal is in their constituents' best interests.
[DOUBLE BOXES=Keith & JoeD /Newsroom Pod;]
But Keith, the supervisors discussed the water authority in a recent closed session. City Council may have a similar discussion soon... and officials are now working to schedule a meeting of both groups in the near future.
The Commonwealth's Attorney in Pittsylvania County is trying to decide how to pursue what he calls an "awful" murder case now that the charges have been dropped.
[*****Take Generette Pinnacle FULL***]
James Antonio Generette *had been* charged with two counts of first degree murder for the beating deaths of Willie and Clara Bell Harston in November.
[SUPER=03-Pittsylvania Co./November 14]
Generette said he was visiting the Harstons' next door neighbor, Carlot (car lot) Brown, at the time of the crime.
But Brown, who was named as an accessory after the fact, invoked her Fifth Amendment right and refused to testify, prompting Judge George Jones to dismiss the case for lack of evidence.
Commonwealth's Attorney David Grimes says the "case is not over," and that his office will pursue it "every way" it can.
A former Associate Pastor charged with killing his wife was denied bond a second time today in Caswell County, North Carolina.
46-year-old Eugene Rick Pulley was extradited from Virginia yesterday to face charges in the murder of his wife, Patty Jo Pulley.
She disappeared near her Pittsylvania County home in May of 1999.. her remains were found under a North Carolina bridge in December.
District attorney Joe Brewer says he's still reviewing the case and has *not* decided whether to seek a capital murder conviction against Pulley.
Still ahead on News 7, see how homeland security and war preparations could bring more business to some local companies.
Plus Lexington rolls out the red carpet for Hollywood and the premiere of Gods and Generals.
After serving close to 30 years in the General Assembly, Roanoke Delegate Vic Thomas says it's time to retire.
Despite encouragement from other Democrats who would like to see him run again, Thomas confirmed he has decided not to seek another term.
Thomas has represented Roanoke in the House of Delegates since 1974.
After consulting with his wife and family, he says he is comfortable with his decision to retire.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=It's time for somebody new]
((IT'S TIME FOR SOMEBODY NEW TO COME IN AND OF COURSE I'VE ENJOYED IT AND IT'S QUITE AN HONOR. AND WE'VE TRIED TO DO THE BEST WE COULD DO.))
[OUT Q=tried to do the best we could.]
Leading Democrats including Governor Warner have tried to persuade Thomas to run again.
But today he said he's looking forward to having more time to fish and travel.
Two Roanoke businessmen believe homeland security could benefit from robot technology.
Cybermotion has been making robots called "Cyber Guards" for years.
It had production contracts with the army in the past but recent financial struggles stopped production all together.
Given current terrorist warnings, officials says the robots could be helpful in case of a biological threat.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=SO WE COULD]
((JOHN HOLLAND/CYBERMOTION PRESIDENT; SO WE COULD PATROL AN AREA AND STAY ON STATION IF WE HAD TO EVACUATE A GUARD, HE CAN'T STAY ON STATION IF HE'S GOT AN ALARM HE MAY HAVE ALREADY RECEIVED A VERY SERIOUS DOSE OF WHATEVER IT IS SO WE CAN LOOK FOR BACKGROUND RADIATION, FOR A DIRTY BOMB.))
[SUPER=01-John Holland/Cybermotion President;]
[OUT Q=A DIRTY BOMB]
Holland says they've met with the Homeland Security officials in Washington and that interest has increased in their products but that NO deals have been made.
Cybermotion is currently in the market for a buyer for the company or licensees for its technology.
I-T-T has won another contract with the United States Army to supply night vision equipment .
[SUPER=03-Roanoke Co./March 1999]
The 15-million dollar deal will provide helmet mount assemblies for night vision goggles to military men and women.
Congressman Bob Goodlatte made the announcement this morning, saying this will give the United States a technological and competitive edge.
I-T-T and the Army have struck similar deals in recent years, including one last May.
Wall Street clawed its way back from a sharp sell-off.
[TAKE DOW & NASDAQ PAGE]
The DOW closed eight points lower.
NASDAQ lost a point and a half.
Amateur historians are often critical of Hollywood's interpretation of the War Between the States.
While Gods and Generals won't open until a week from tomorrow, a special few are getting a first look at the Civil War epic.
[***Gods & Generals in Monitor***]
[DOUBLE BOXES=Keith -Shannon & Richard /Pulpit;]
Richard Lesko joins us now with a preview.
Keith and Shannon, V-M-I is hosting the premier of Gods and Generals tonight,
and scholars who worked on the project say the film will show some different sides of Civil War figures, but remains true to history.
(///// SOT /////)
[SUPER=04-Warner Bros.; :00]
[SUPER=01-Stephen Lang/"Stonewall Jackson"; :24]
[SUPER=03-Lexington/August 2001; :42]
[SUPER=01-Bud Robertson/Civil War Historian; 1:04]
[SUPER=01-Dennis Frye/Associate Producer; 1:17]
[OUT Q=Hollywood has ever made.]
(( Filmed throughout the Atlantic Coast states, the Civil War epic Gods and Generals is about to hit theaters nationwide.
At a press conference before a special screening of the film at VMI, actors and historians say we can expect to see different sides of Southern Generals like Robert E. Lee and Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson, played by Stephen Lang.
[SOT - 3:49:21]
[INQ=I think the Shenandoah Valley...]
((STEPHEN LANG/"STONEWALL JACKSON; I THINK THE SHENANDOAH VALLEY HAS PROTECTED JACKSON FOR THE LAST 150 YEARS THAT THEY WERENT READY TO LET HIM GO. AND NOW HIS TIME HAS COME.))
[OUTQ=time has come.]
Filming last summer included multiple scenes in and around Lexington, where parts of the city were transformed to more than 1hundred forty years ago.
Historians say this movie is one of the most accurate films ever made, and balances on the thin line between Civil War adventure and reality.
[INQ=I couldn't be more pleased...]
((BUD ROBERTSON/JACKSON HISTORIAN; I COULDN'T BE MORE PLEASED, THEY HAVE TURNED JACKSON FROM A PIOUS BLUE-EYED INTO A TENDER LOVING AFFECTIONATE GENERAL. AND STEPHEN LANG DESERVES AN ACADEMY AWARD FOR HIS PERFORMANCE.))
[OUTQ=for his performance.]
[SOT - 3:55:37]
((IT ALMOST BORDERS ON DOCUMENTARY, WE EVEN USED HUNDREDS OF WORDS IN THE DIALOGUE THAT WERE TAKEN FROM PAPERS ACTUALLY WRITTEN BY THOSE PEOPLE. THERE IS NOTHING TO COMPARE TO WHAT HOLLYWOOD HAS EVER MADE.))
[OUTQ=has ever made.]))
The film will be out in theaters on February 21st, and the Virginia Premiere opens up at VMI in just a few minutes.
[DOUBLE BOXES=Keith-Shannon & Richard /Pulpit;]
But Keith and Shannon, don't show up expecting to get in, the event has been booked solid for weeks.
Patrick Henry star punter Adam Peters signs his letter of intent to play college football, we will head back to Daytona for the twins 125's today
and Dale Jarrett along with defending Daytona 500 champ Ward Burton talk about what winning this race means.
After weeks of hype the field for the Daytona 500 is finally in place. Winston Cup drivers would jockey for position in today's Twin 125' races at Daytona International Speedway.
[SUPER=03-Daytona Beach, FL/FX; :00]
In the first race of the day, Robby Gordon would surprise fans by taking the checkered flag in the Singular Wireless number 31 Chevrolet.
Dale Earnhardt Jr., who already had secured the outside spot of the front row in time trials Monday, won the second Twin 125. Jr,'s teammate at DEI Michael Waltrip was right behind him in second and will start fourth in the 500. Now the complete field.
[WIPE TO MOTION]
[SUPER=0107-1. Jeff Green//2. Dale Earnhardt Jr.//3. Robby Gordon//4. Michael Waltrip//5. Ricky Rudd//;]
[SUPER=0107-6. Todd Bodine//7. Sterling Marlin//8. Rusty Wallace//9. Jeff Burton//10. Tony Stewart//;]
[SUPER=0107-11. Dale Jarrett//12. Jimmie Johnson//13. Jeff Gordon//14. John Andretti//15. Joe Nemechek//;]
[SUPER=0107-16. Bill Elliott//17. Ward Burton//18. Elliott Sadler//19. Jamie McMurray//20. Mike Wallace//;]
[SUPER=0107-21. Kenny Wallace//22. Jeremy Mayfield//23. Jimmy Spencer//24. Bobby Labonte//25. Ricky Craven//;]
[SUPER=0107-26. Jack Sprague//27. Greg Biffle//28. Mark Martin//29. Casey Mears//30. Ken Schrader//;]
[SUPER=0107-31. Kevin Harvick//32. Kyle Petty//33. Steve Park//34. Tony Raines//35. Christian Fittipaldi//;]
[SUPER=0107-36. Matt Kenseth//37. Kurt Busch/Prov/38. Ryan Newman/Prov/39. Dave Blaney/Prov/40. Johnny Benson/Prov/;]
[SUPER=0107-41. Terry Labonte/Prov/42. Jerry Nadeau/Prov/43. Mike Skinner/Prov/;]
[OUT Q=.....last driver."]
[TAPE#=SP-134 TC 5701]
Now that the Twins are in the books, the focus shifts to Sunday's 45th running of the Great American Race. Travis Wells has more on what a win in the 500 can do for a driver's reputation.
(///// SOT /////)
[SUPER=03-Daytona, FL; :00]
[SUPER=01-Ward Burton/Defending Daytona 500 Champ; :24]
[SUPER=01-Michael Waltrip/2001 Daytona 500 Winner; :45]
[SUPER=01-Dale Jarrett/Three-Time 500 Winner; :56]
[SUPER=01-Ricky Rudd/Winless in 25 Daytona 500 Starts; 1:27]
[OUT Q=News 7 Sports."]
((Dale Jarrett is a three time winner in the Daytona 500. Sterling Marlin is the last driver to win back to back 500's. Michael Waltrip won the very first race of his career here two seasons ago. And this week Ward Burton returns to the scene of his only Daytona win just last year. While he can stick his chest out a little further, satisfaction isn't in Ward's vocabulary.
The Cup cars have just two practices left before Sunday, including Saturday morning's happy hour. In Daytona, Travis Wells, News 7 sports.))
Patrick Henry first team all state punter and all region field goal kicker Adam Peters will play college football at VMI.
Peters signed his letter of intent late this afternoon. He will compete for the starting job immediately and receives a half scholarship.
(///// SOT /////)
[SUPER=01-Adam Peters/Signs Letter of Intent with VMI; :00]
[OUT Q=they had good food""]
The Radford University athletic department announced today that it has suspended six men's and women's basketball players from playing in upcoming games for violations of department policy. Serving a two game suspension are senior guard and former Liberty high school star Raymond Arrington along with Ray Noiles, Jason Bees and Chris Prince and women'
s player Cody Silker. Men's player Aaron Gill serves a one game suspension.