An economic development chief with a 6-figure salary is gone 18 months after he arrived.
And, help police catch a crook who may have returned to the scene of the crime and robbed it twice.
Tonight in sports, we'll check on the opening day of the Scott Robertson Memorial Golf Tournament, plus preview tomorrow night's Winston, and
Frank Beamer leaves for Florida and the biggest meetings in the history of the Big East Conference.
Two words for the weekend weather, chilly and wet. We will show you why in a moment.
News 7 at Six is next.
Good evening, I'm Shannon Young.
And I'm Keith Humphry
Tech's chances of joining the ACC appear smaller than ever.
WRAL-Television in Raleigh reports the ACC has gone ahead as expected and voted to offer invitations to Miami, Syracuse and Boston College.
Sources say the vote was 8-to-1 meaning Tech's only hope is that one of those schools turns the invitation down - or that the Big East stays together.
Travis Wells will have more in Sports.
Henry County's 200-thousand-dollar a year economic development chief is leaving town.
Wayne Sterling's accepted another job in Kentucky.
Sterling turned in his resignation today to accept a job as the President and CEO of the Greater Paducah Economic Development Council.
[SUPER=03-Henry Co./File Tape;]
He's been CEO of Henry County's Office of Commerce for the past year and a half.
His 200-thousand dollar annual salary caused a commotion when he was hired, but Henry County officials say he has proven he's worth it.
Sterling played a role in drawing six expansions and new companies to the Martinsville-Henry County area, including Knauss (now-ss) Foods, Cerxon, (CERCK-sonn) and Axiom Technologies.
So far about half of the 12-thousand jobs that were pledged in the past 18 months have materialized.
Sterling's new employer says his salary is still being finalized, but Sterling told Henry County he's getting a very attractive package.
A search for his successor is underway.
The overdose of a local teenager more than a year ago led Craig County to its largest drug bust in 30 years.
State police and sheriff's deputies from three counties started rounding up 25 people this morning.
The charges against them range from possessing and dealing drugs to child neglect.
Investigators say confidential informants and undercover agents bought heroin, crack cocaine, oxycontin, marijuana and prescription drugs from the defendants.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=We think about]
((SGT. BOB ROSS/STATE POLICE: WE THINK ABOUT THE DRUG CULTURE PERMEATING OUR SOCIETY, WE THINK ABOUT THE METROPOLITAN AREAS AND YET WE'VE GOT A RURAL COMMUNITY WHERE WE'VE GOT FARMERS AND HARD-WORKING COUNTRY FOLKS AND WE'VE GOT 25 INDIVIDUALS WE'RE ARRESTING FOR DRUG DISTRIBUTION CHARGES. ))
[SUPER=01-Sgt. Bob Ross/State Police;]
[OUT Q=drug distribution charges.]
Deputies and state police started their work a year ago, after a local 19-year-old died of a drug overdose.
They say the young man's death prompted people to start turning in drug dealers.
B-B McPherson says the bust is the biggest in his 32 years as sheriff and is helping him leave office on a high note.
Blacksburg police could use your help finding a crook caught on tape.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=WHERE THE REST OF]
((SUSPECT: WHERE THE REST OF THE MONEY AT? SHOULD I SHOOT YOU RIGHT NOW? I THINK I SHOULD SHOOT YOU RIGHT NOW?))
[OUT Q=RIGHT NOW]
Officers say a gunman robbed the Blacksburg Food Mart around ten last night.
Authorities believe the man is the same one who robbed the store about a week ago and told the owner he would be back.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=he did tell them]
((BRUCE BRADBERRY/BLACKSBURG POLICE: HE DID TELL THEM. ON THE SIXTH HE TOLD THE CLERK ON THE SIXTH THAT I'LL BE BACK. AND THEN LAST NIGHT RIGHT BEFORE HE LEFT HE SAID THANK YOU. 1154))
[SUPER=01-Bruce Bradberry/Blacksburg Police Department;]
[OUT Q=THANK YOU]
Police say the suspect emptied the cash drawer and drove off in a gold-colored Nissan Pathfinder.
He's described as a five foot ten black man, with a medium build.
[TAKE FS PINNACLE]
If you have any information about either robbery, you're asked to call the Blacksburg police tip line at 961-1819.
School resource officers teach drug abuse resistance classes, counsel students, and respond to emergencies on campus.
Recently they've also found themselves at the center of an emotional debate.
[***NEWS 7 @ 6***]
[DOUBLE BOXES=Shannon & JoeD /NEwsroom Pod;]
Tonight, Joe Dashiell takes a closer look at school safety.
[LIVE= Newsroom Pod /FULL]
Shannon, we were not able to interview the resource officers. The Police Department declined our request, but we have asked administrators, teachers, parents and students "Are Roanoke City schools safe?
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=NAT SOUND OF CHEMISTRY LAB]
[SUPER=01-Carol Brash/Central Council PTA President; :21]
[SUPER=01-Alice Hincker/Patrick Henry PTSA President; :33]
[SUPER=01-Steve Guardipee/Woodrow Wilson Parent; :57]
[SUPER=01-Anita Price/Roanoke Education Association; 1:08]
[SUPER=01-Roy White/Woodrow Wilson Parent; 1:22]
[OUT Q=that's the world.]
(([NAT SOUND OF CHEMISTRY STUDENTS SHAKING ICE]
In a Patrick Henry Chemistry Lab, and a cosmetology studio.
A French class at Woodrow Wilson, and a quiet computer lab, students are hard at work.
School officials and many teachers and parents say these images typify two Roanoke schools that have earned full accreditation.
[SOT SUPPORTING SCHOOLS]
[IN Q=Parents need]
((CAROL BRASH/CENTRAL COUNCIL PTA PRESIDENT: PARENTS NEED TO KEEP IN MIND ALL OF THE WONDERFUL THINGS WE DO HAVE IN ROANOKE CITY WITH OUR NEIGHBORHOOD SCHOOLS, ALL THE RENOVATIONS AND NEW CONSTRUCTION THAT WE'VE HAD GOING ON, ALL THE FINE TEACHERS THAT WE HAVE.))
((ALICE HINCKER/PATRICK HENRY PTSA PRESIDENT: THERE SEEMS TO ALL OF SUDDEN BE THIS CONNECTION BETWEEN WHETHER OR NOT WE THINK WE HAVE GOOD SKILLED TEACHERS THAT ARE DOING A WONDERFUL JOB IN THE CLASSROOM AND WHETHER WE HAVE SAFETY CONCERNS AND I DON'T SEE HOW THE TWO ARE RELATED.))
[OUT Q=don't see how the two are related.]
This week, Alice Hincker questioned the school system's statistics on school violence. And more than two dozen other parents waited four hours to implore the school board to keep all of resource officers on the job.
[SCHOOL BOARD MEETING CONCERNS]
[IN Q=We simply cannot afford]
((WE SIMPLY CANNOT AFFORD NOT TO HAVE THOSE GENTLEMEN KEEPING OUR KIDS SAFE.))
[OUT Q=keeping our kids safe.]
But it may not be so simple.
Teachers cite a decline in parental involvement, and student discipline.
[IN Q=This is a collaborative effort]
((THIS IS A COLLABORATIVE EFFORT THAT REQUIRES EVERYONE'S ATTENTION, BECAUSE TEACHERS CERTAINLY CAN'T DO THIS JOB ALONE.))
[OUT Q=certainly can't do this job alone.]
And until the larger community deals with divisions along ethnic and economic lines, some say there will always be issues of safety.
[SOT FROM WOODROW FORUM]
[IN Q=Every day my child]
((EVERY DAY MY CHILD GOES OUT THAT DOOR, THEY'RE AT RISK. YOUR CHILD, AND MINE NO MATTER WHAT PART OF THE CITY YOU LIVE IN. ALL THAT WE CAN DO IS THE BEST THAT WE CAN DO TO TRY TO PROVIDE AN ENVIRONMENT OF OPENNESS AND SAFETY AND REALIZE THAT OUR BEST EFFORTS NO MATTER HOW HARD WE TRY SOMETIMES AREN'T GOING TO BE ENOUGH. THAT'S THE WORLD.))
[OUT Q=that's the world.]))
[LIVE= JoeD /FULL Newsroom Pod]
Virtually every student, parent and teacher we talked with wanted the resource officers to stay, and Keith and Shannon it appears increasingly likely they will.
[DOUBLE BOXES=Shannon & JoeD /Newsroom Pod;]
Privately school board members, and others close to the issue say they believe the resource officers will remain.
An Air Force officer from Southside killed in the war in Iraq was honored by fellow airmen today.
Men and women of the Fourth Fighter Wing gathered at their homebase in North Carolina.
The service honored Lieutenant Colonel William Watkins of South
Boston and his pilot Captain Eric Das.
The two were aboard an F-15-E Strike Eagle that went down last
month during a combat flight north of Baghdad.
The fighter wing's commander said the men were looking down on the service with smiles on their faces.
New River Valley authorities search for information about a body found this morning.
More on that when News 7 returns.
And area deputies chase down two abduction suspects.
What started out as a fight in a grocery store parking lot ended up with two Bedford County men being charged with abduction and malicious wounding.
It happened around 11 a-m near the Food Lion on Route 460 in New London.
Police say 36-year-old Carson Elkins and his 34-year-old brother Buddy Lee confronted Carson's estranged wife and a man she was with.
The brothers reportedly hit the man in the head with a rifle, then forced Julia Elkins into a car and drove off.. leading police on a wild search for about an hour.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=It's an adrenaline]
((LT. KEVIN ADAMS/BEDFORD CO. SHERIFF'S OFFICE: IT'S AN ADRENALINE RUSH WHEN YOU GET INVOLVED IN SOMETHING LIKE THAT OF COURSE, BECAUSE IT'S A LOT OF UNCERTAINTY. YOU JUST DON'T KNOW WHAT TO EXPECT EITHER, THERE'S A POSSIBLE WEAPON INVOLVED AND YOU DON'T KNOW WHAT THE UNDERLYING MOTIVE WAS SO IT'S A LOT OF UNCERTAINTY THERE AND IT MAKES IT EXTREMELY DIFFICULT RESPONDING TO A SITUATION LIKE THAT.))
[SUPER=01-Lt. Kevin Adams/Bedford Co. Sheriff's Dept.]
[OUT Q=a situation like that.]
Carson Elkins was apprehended without incident on Timber Ridge Road.. his wife was not harmed.
A .50-caliber rifle was found in his car.
A body was discovered today in Pulaski.
Authorities say a hunter found a man's body around 10-45 this morning in a remote part of town, on the west side of Draper Mountain.
Officials say the body was badly decomposed and has been sent to the medical examiner's office for an autopsy.
Pulaski police are investigating.
His career has taken him all over the world in almost every aspect of law enforcement, but Bedford County native Mike Brown says he'd like to stay on as sheriff there for another four years.
Brown made the announcement surrounded by staff and supporters at the sheriff's office today.
The two-term incumbent says he's proud of what his department has accomplished since he took office in 1996 but there's more to be done.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=We want to]
((MIKE BROWN/BEDFORD CO. SHERIFF: WE WANT TO GO FORWARD IN THAT AREA, WE WANT TO EXPAND THE VOLUNTEERS, I WANT TO DO SOME MORE STUFF IN THE DRUG ENFORCEMENT ARENA AND WE WANT TO DO SOME STUFF IN THE HIGH-TECH CRIMES AGAINST CHILDREN AREA.))
[SUPER=01-Mike Brown/Bedford Co. Sheriff]
[OUT Q=crimes against children area.]
Brown is running as a Republican but says he has bipartisan support.
So far, he is the only candidate in the race.
There's a change at the top at Pulaski Furniture.
The company says President and C-E-O John Wampler has resigned "to pursue other interests in the furniture industry".
Wampler had been with Pulaski Furniture for 20 years.
The company immediately named a successor. He is Lawrence Webb, who has been a top official with the firm for three years.
Wall Street was down for the day, but up for the week.
[TAKE DOW & NASDAQ PAGE]
The DOW fell 34 points for the day.
NASDAQ lost 13.
Fire destroyed one Roanoke apartment this morning, and water damaged the one just below.
Firefighters were called out just after 8 to Hildebrand Road. That's a few blocks east of the Crossroads Mall.
They encountered heavy smoke and flames at first, but quickly gained control.
Damage is estimated at 30 thousand dollars. No injuries reported, and so far, no word on the cause.
A website designed to help people search for a nursing home has been a hit in Virginia.
State officials say an average of 25- hundred Virginians access the site each month.
Representatives of Avante at Roanoke say the website allows people to narrow their nursing home search and find the best fit for them.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=It provides access for]
((JON BYRON/AVANTE OF ROANOKE VICE PRESIDENT: IT PROVIDES ACCESS FOR PEOPLE IN THE COMMUNITY AND I THINK THAT'S WHAT'S IMPORTANT. UNFORTUNATELY NOT EVERYONE CAN COME SEE FACILITIES PRIOR TO PLACEMENT OF THEIR LOVED ONES SO THIS ALLOWS THEM THE OPPORTUNITY TO KIND OF GET A GLANCE.))
[SUPER=01-Jon Byron/Avante of Roanoke Vice President;]
[OUT Q=get a glance]
The website compares all Medicare and Medicaid certified nursing homes.
Byron says the practice can be misleading because not all facilities provide the same services.
But now that quality scores are posted on the Internet Byron says the nursing home industry has started providing more consistent care.
[WIPE TO WDBJ7 Web FS]
You can connect to the Nursing Home Compare website from ours at WDBJ7- dot- com.
Coming up, Frank Beamer and Jim Weaver prepare for a pivotal weekend for the Big East, Division Three softball from Salem, and
we'll tee it up on day one of the Scott Robertson Memorial.
[GRAPHIC=acc/big east OTS]
This afternoon the ACC presidents and chancellors dealt the Hokies another blow as they voted to offer invitations to join the conference to Miami, Syracuse and Boston College.
Sources say the vote was 8-to-1.
While reports have indicated Syracuse may not accept, it appears that Tech's best bet is to keep the Big East intact.
[VO NAT ENG#]
Frank Beamer and athletic director Jim Weaver set out to do just that this morning when they flew to Ponte Vedra, Florida where the Big East meetings begin this weekend near Jacksonville.
(///// SOT /////)
[SUPER=01-Frank Beamer/VT Head Football Coach; :04]
[SUPER=01-Jim Weaver/Va. Tech Athletic Director; :18]
[OUT Q=...EXISTS NOW."]
Tiger Woods and Annika Sorenstam are success stories dancing around in the heads of some of the hard core 196 golfers competing in the 20th annual Scott Robertson memorial golf tournament this week. Steve Mason says reaching golfs highest level is within some of these teenagers grasp.
(///// SOT /////)
[SUPER=01-John Francis/Phillip's Father; :17]
[SUPER=01-Phillip Francis/Shot First Round 1 Under 70; :41]
[SUPER=01-Paula Creamer/Shot First Round 5 Under 66; 1:12]
[SUPER=01-Cindy Phillips/Shot First Round 83; 1:33]
[OUT Q=....news 7 sports"]
((Phillip Frances is not your typical eighth grader. He began playing a full slate of golf tournaments at 4 years of age, has already played in 250 tournaments and 22 national championships on his way to becoming the nations number one 14 year old golfer.
The nations number one 18 and under female player, 16 year old Paula Creamer produced an average driving distance at last week's LPGA event was 269 yards, which, for an entire season, would rank her in the top ten on the pro tour. Paula attributes added strength and power in the weight room, a necessary component for juniors in this day and age.
John City Tennessee native Cindy Phillips is getting her edge on the links by being home schooled. The flexible schedule enables her to play half a dozen more tournaments than if she was still in high school and she is on the course by noon everyday.
Fans can catch these series junior golfers in the Scott Robertson second round which tees off at seven AM. Steve Mas
on News 7 sports.))[S-Softball]
[GRAPHIC=Division 3 Softball]
The Division Three Softball World Series got underway this morning in Salem with Western New England battling the top seed from Central College in Iowa.
[SUPER=03-Salem/West. New England vs. Central; :00]
The Dutch from the Hawkeye State jumped out front 7-nothing after just two innings.
They closed the door from there as Libby Hysell, Corrie Schmidt, and Amanda Wilson combined on a two
[SUPER=34-W. New England/0/Central/7/;]
hit shutout. Central went on to win it 7-nothing, and will play again in the winner's bracket Saturday at 4.
In the second game this afternoon, Salisbury got past Cortland State 1 to nothing.[S-Winston]
Nascar's version of the All-Star game takes over the Lowe's Motor Speedway tomorrow night. Qualifying for the Winston takes the green flag in just about a half hour. Track president Humpy Wheeler says the difference in a points event and the Winston is the difference between a well lit family pool room, and a down and dirty, be ready to duck pool hall. Whatever it is, it's always memorable.
(///// SOT /////)
[SUPER=01-Ricky Rudd/Motorcraft Ford Driver; :00]
[OUT Q=expect the unexpected there."]