A man accused in the death of Roanoke woman pleads guilty to murder.
Thousands of Serbs demonstrate in Sarajevo in favor of the peace treaty.
And bitterly cold weather is being blamed for accidents and deaths today.
Bitterly cold is no exageration, as lows this monring bottomed out in the
teens and a few single digits. How long will the cold snap last? Find out in
a few minutes right here on the Big 7.
Don't go away.
The news is next.
A man accused of capital murder in Roanoke plead guilty to the crime this
The agreement with prosecutors will spare Paul David Thompson from a
possible death sentence.
Thompson was expected to go on trial Wednesday for the robbery and murder
of Virgie Green,
the Roanoke woman whose body was found in the trunk of her car a year ago.
But this morning, Thompson plead guilty. Under the terms of the plea
agreement, he will be sentenced to TWO life terms in prison PLUS 25 years.
Last week, Thompson was sentenced to Life without Mercy in West Virginia
for another crime he committed there.
That means the 26-year- old murderer will have no chance of parole.
Bitter cold grips the nation and the region today, with some tragic
A van carrying two children slammed into the back of a tractor trailer when
the truck stalled in the cold.
It happened on Route 4-60 in Botetourt County this morning.
State police say two other vehicles swerved around the truck, but the van
IN Q=The fuel gelled in it and the driver
((TROOPER MALCOLM AUSTIN/STATE POLICE: THE FUEL GELLED IN IT AND THE DRIVER
STARTED TO SLOW AND STOP. BEFORE HE GOT OFF THE ROAD SEVERAL VEHICLES CAME UP
ON HIM. A WHITE VAN DIDN'T HAVE TIME TO REACT AND RAN INTO THE BACK OF THE
TRACTOR TRAILER. ))
SUPER=01-Trooper Malcolm Austin/State Police;
OUT Q=the tractor trailer.
Rescue crews had to cut seven- year- old Michael Sheffer (SHAY-fer) out of
Michael, along with his mother Deronda Sheffer (SHAY-fer) and his brother
nine- year- old Matthew were all rushed to the hospital.
They are still being evaluated in the emergency room.
The freezing cold has claimed the life of a homeless man in Greensboro.
He died outdoors in 19- degree weather.
In southwest Virginia the falling temperatures have forced many to take
refuge at area shelters.
Beds in the Rescue Mission are quickly filling up.
And as the temperatures dip below freezing, Joy Sylvester- Johnson says it
is important to remember that many of the homeless are children.
IN Q=we had 27
((WE HAD 27 CHILDREN UNDER THE AGE OF 12 IN THE SHELTER. WE HAD SOME NEWBORNS,
WHO WERE BORN IN THE LAST TWO WEEKS. A LOT OF TODDLERS. EVERY HIGH-CHAIR WAS
SUPER=01-Joy Sylvester-Johnson/Rescue Mission;
OUT Q=WAS FILLED
These record low temperatures can be dangerous.
It does not take long to develop frost- nip, or in more serious cases,
IN Q=if you start
((DR. MICHAEL DONATO/ROANOKE MEMORIAL EMERGENCY ROOM: IF YOU START GETTING
PALE LOOKING CHEEKS OR YOU START GETTING NUMB THAT'S A WARNING. FROST BITE WE
HOPE TO PREVENT. THAT'S WHEN YOU HAVE ICE CRYSTALS INSIDE THE TISSUE.))
SUPER=01-Dr. Michael Donato/RMH Emergency Room;
OUT Q=INSIDE THE TISSUE
The doctor recommends that you wear several layers of clothing if you have
to be outside.
Elsewhere in the nation the cold wave is being blamed for five deaths in
Michigan and one in Texas.
And in Rhode Island, three boys who fell into an icy pond yesterday remain
in critical condition.
Upstate New Yorkers are still digging out from two feet of snow and
expecting even more today.
Some 34 inches fell yesterday in Buffalo prompting authorities to ban
Three Roanoke families are out in the cold after a fire struck their
The blaze broke out at about nine yesterday morning on Rorer Avenue.
Heavy smoke was coming out of a window from the rear of the house.
Fire officials say the blaze apparently started in an upstairs bedroom.
IN Q=you had a bedroom
((CAPT. CARL ROBERTS/ROANOKE CITY FIRE DEPT.: YOU HAD A BEDROOM COMPLETELY
BURNED UP AND IT STARTED TO GO UP INTO THE CEILING AND WE CONTAINED IT, BUT
THERE'S RIGHT HEAVY FIRE DAMAGE ON THE UPSTAIRS PART.))
SUPER=01-Capt. Carl Roberts/Roanoke Fire Dept.;
OUT Q=on the upstairs part
The house is divided into three apartments.
The first floor apartments received smoke damage.
No one was injured in the blaze.
wipe wipe wipe
GRAPHIC=wipe wipe wipe
A wood stove is being blamed on a fire that gutted a home on Route 7-18 in
Chatham several hours later.
Two dogs were inside the house at the time and were killed in the blaze.
wipe wipe wipe
TAPE# edit of 95-111
GRAPHIC=wipe wipe wipe
And in Salem, fire destroyed a garage behind the Virginia Lift Truck Company
When crews arrived the structure was engulfed.
The garage was not owned by the Lift Company and was being rented out for
Several antique cars are believed to have been damaged in the fire.
HARD MUSIC UNDER
Still to come --
Residents of Sarajevo take to the streets to show their support for the
and striking workers in France continue to hold a demonstration of their own,
with no end in sight.
music up full
Some three-thousand Bosnian Serbs marched through the streets of Sarajevo
But unlike past demonstrations, these Serbs were marching in SUPPORT of the
Dayton peace treaty.
The March comes one day after the first U-S Marines hit the ground in
Dan Rather has more on the rough road ahead for NATO peacekeepers and the
SUPER=03-Tuzla, Bosnia; :06
SUPER=01-Dan Rather/Reporting; :49
OUT Q=CBS News, Tuzla.
The Bosnian Peace accord will be signed Thursday in Paris.
The city's public transit, postal and other services remain paralyzed in a
bitter 18-day worker's strike.
Talks today between union leaders and the French Prime minister produced no
Public sector unions object to the government's plan to overhaul the French
There is some optimism in the air this afternoon about a possible budget
President Clinton and G-O-P Congressional leaders will meet tomorrow to try
an negotiate a compromise and avoid a second government shutdown.
SUPER=03-Little Rock, AR/Yesterday;
From Arkansas yesterday, president Clinton promised to protect Medicare,
Medicaid, education and the environment in the current budget battle.
I WANT TO WORK WITH REPUBLICAN CONGRESS, BUT I WILL NOT, I WILL NOT
REPEALGUARANTEED HELP FOR THE ELDERLY, THE DISABLED, PEOPLE WITH AIDS...IT
WOULD VIOLATE VALUES AND UNDERMINE FAMILIES...WEAKEN OUR ECONOMY.
OUT Q=WEAKEN THE ECONOMY.
The temporary spending bill expires midnight Friday.
Meantime, President Clinton turns his attention to the Middle East today.
This morning he met with Israeli Prime Minister Shimon Peres at the White
((I WANT TO WELCOME THE PRIME MINISTER HERE...ANSWER YOUR QUESTIONS.
SHIMON PERES: THE PRESIDENT HAS CHANGED OUR HEARS AND LANGUAGE.. IT'S BECOME A
HOUSEHOLD EXPRESSION. ))
SUPER=01-Shimon Peres/Israel Prime Minister; :20
OUT Q=IT'S BECOME A HOUSEHOLD EXPRESSION.
SUPER=03-New York, NY/Yesterday;
Yesterday in New York thousands attended a memorial tribute to Peres' slain
predecessor, Yitzhak Rabin.
People prayed, dignintaries spoke and artists performed music honoring
Rabin, who was shot by a right-wing Israeli at a November 4th peace rally in
A Republican state senator may being leaving the party.
Fairfax Senator Jane Woods has been considering becoming an independent and
has been courted by the Democratic party.
Woods is scheduled to announce her plans in Richmond this afternoon.
Her decision has big implications.
The November elections left the Senate deadlocked with 20 Republicans and
Woods is a MODERATE Republican and has been at odds with the conservative
wing of her party-- on a number of issues.
SOFT MUSIC UNDER
Up next, an old bank cashes in on a new identity,
and has all this Christmas cheer got your wallet feeling blue?
A financial expert has some advice.
music up full
TAPE#edit of spending on 94-106
Careful planning is the only way to avoid getting into debt, but during the
Christmas shopping season, that's easier said than done.
Business experts say fewer people are using their credit cards this year,
because they're still paying bills from last year.
To keep from spending beyond your means this holiday season, a financial
advisor is here with some advice.
ANCHOR=Melanie 2 shot
He's Ed Garretson with the Consumer Credit Counseling Service of Roanoke
What's the best way to manage your holiday spending?
SUPER=01-Ed Garretson/Consumer Credit Counseling Service;
(With only two weeks 'til Christmas, is it too late to plan?)
(When should you start saving?)
(Is using from your savings to pay off Christmas credit cards bills also a
smart financial move?)
(Lot's of people open up new accounts just to buy presents. Is this a good
(Is there a formula you can use based on how much you make, to determine how
much you can spend?)
(If you don't have any money, what can you do?)
Southwest Virginia has a new bank in town.
Actually it's an old bank with a new name.
Charter Federal Savings is now part of the First American Corporation.
First American officially took over the Bristol bank last week.
First American is headquartered in Nashville, Tennessee.
This morning its top executives toured some of its newest branches.
IN Q=We believe
((DENNY BOTTORFF/FIRST AMERICAN CEO: WE BELIEVE THAT OUR PHILOSOPHY AND THE
NEEDS OF THE MARKETPLACE HERE IN SOUTHWEST VIRGINIA MATCH VERY MUCH SO. AT
FIRST AMERICAN WE STILL THINK THAT BANKING IS STILL A PEOPLE BUSINESS. ))
SUPER=01-Denny Bottorff/First American CEO;
OUT Q=people business.
First American now has 15 branches in Virginia.
The bank's Virginia subsidiary currently has its main office in Bristol.
That's where Charter Federal was based.
But next week First American will move its Virginia headquarters to Roanoke.
With no new economic reports this morning, investors appear to
be focusing on next week's Federal Reserve policy-making meeting.
They expect it will lower interest rates.
On Wall Street at noon the Dow was UP 26 points.
SPORTS MUSIC UNDER
Stick around for sports, including more kudos for Cal Ripkin,
and the Bath County football team charges to a state championship.
We'll have highlights.
MUSIC UP FULL
The Bath County Chargers beat Strasburg to claim the state Group A, Division
One football championship. Steve Mason has the details.
IN Q=first audio
SUPER=03-Low Moor/Rams vs. Chargers; :00
SUPER=01-Steve Isaacs/Bath Co. Head Coach; :48
SUPER=34-Bath Co./=30/Strasburg/=20; 1:28
SUPER=01-Ivan Franklin/Bath Co. Fullback; 1:37
SUPER=01-Jamie Carroll/Bath Co. Running Back; 1:47
OUT Q=....News 7 Sports"
((Bath County die hards were not about to miss out on their schools first
ever shot at a state title; despite the sub freezing temperatures.
The Charger warm reception received a jolt early when Strasburg scored on
it's second offensive play of the game. Quarterback Caleb Hart gives to Frankie
Shoemaker who scoots down the right sideline for a 67 yard touchdown gallop and
the Rams led 6-nothing.
That touchdown and the cold combined to give the Chargers a wake up call.
Late in the second quarter, Anthony Pusey takes the rock and goes in from 12
yards out. Bath took the lead back 8-6.
But with 5 ticks left in the first half, Strasburg continued it's big time
playmaking with Shoemaker. This time he uses the left sideline fora 74 yard
touchdown and the Rams went into the half up 12-8.
The breaks started going Bath's way in the third. A bad snap and an even
uglier pass set up the Chargers second touchdown. Former Friday Football Player
of the week Ivan Franklin bulls in froma yard out and the lead was bath;s again
The rams answer with just over a minute left in the third quarter.
Shoemaker does the honors again on a 12 yard run and the lead had a agin
changed hands; 20-16 Rams.
The Charges received their state championship spark from Brandon Woodward.
Thanks to a second...and third effort he muscles into the end zone and bath
goes on to win it's first football state championship in school history with a
30 to 20 win. Steve Mason, News 7 Sports.
Iron Man Cal Ripken is Sports Illustrated's sportsman of the year.
Ripken surpassed Lou Gehrig's consecutive games played mark.
Look for him on this week's issue of the magazine.
Finally this noontime it's a case of going, going, gone for a house near San
SUPER=03-San Francisco, CA;
A giant sink hole--60 feet deep and 200 feet wide--swallowed the
Tudor-style home in the exclusive Sea Cliff neighborhood early today.
Workers had been trying to keep the hole from growing but a powerful
Pacific storm caused flooding and hampered their efforts.
The final gulp was caught on videotape. No word yet on the status of the
(toss to patrick)
(patrick ad lib)
Coming up today on News 7's Health Check Report-- a new study is underway,
in hopes of diagnosing breast cancer WITHOUT surgery.
We'll tell you about the new "Breast Biophysical Exam" that uses
biofeedback to locate cancer cells.
That's coming up on News 7 at FIVE.
And that will do it for News 7 at NOON-- have a great afternoon.