Roanoke has its own organized crime family.
That's how federal authorities characterize the (AH-beds) Abeds... half a
dozen of them were arrested in a complex racketeering and arson case unveiled
Keith Humphry outlines the charges.
IN Q=Rather than the
SUPER=01-Bob Crouch/U.S. Attorney; :20
SUPER=04-January 13, 1995; :43
SUPER=01-Tom Bondurant/Prosecutor; :59
SUPER=04-February 1985; 1:20
SUPER=10-Joe Abed//January 19, 1985; 1:28
OUT Q=Humphry, NEWS 7.
Rather than the Italian Mafia, this case is about a Palestinian family
that's had a high-profile presence in the Roanoke area since the 1960's.
The government says it's a conspiracy controlled by Joseph Abed and his
brother and their four sons.
SOT 15:00:40 cover 1st :02 AND tighten it up by taking out the uhs and pauses
((THESE INDIVIDUALS EITHER SOLELY OR JOINTLY HAVE HAD OWNERSHIP IN
APPROXIMATELY 33 COMMERCIAL PROPERTIES PRIMARILY CONVENIENCE STORES,
RESTAURANTS, BARS, RESIDENTIAL PROPERTIES IN THE ROANOKE AREA.))
Their stock in trade, according to the new federal indictment, was arson.
...either to collect insurance, retaliate against a competitor or just send
There were several serious instances of arson, including one fire that
resulted in two deaths, because the Abeds thought these people MIGHT have seen
who set fire to their competitor's store across the street.
In 1993 one of the Abed brothers allegedly tried to run the Brown Derby
Restaurant out of business.
IN Q=There was also
((THERE WAS ALSO SOME PERSONAL ANIMOSITY.... ))
OUT Q=View Pancake house.
At one time, Joe Abed was not just a store owner and restaurateur. He was
a community benefactor in the mid 80's.
((HE JUST WENT A LITTLE BIT TOO FAST, TOO FAR AND TOO BIG.))
Though he could have been describing what happened to himself 12 years
later, in 1985 Joe Abed was talking about his plans to take over a soup kitchen
for the poor- -to run it with his own money, he said.
Now he faces 45 years to life in prison for his role in the family business,
including acts of arson, murder, extortion, fraud, racketeering... a dozen
crimes all told.
Keith Humphry, NEWS 7.))
The water is still rising in parts of the midwest this morning.
In the Louisville, Kentucky area the Ohio River is expected to crest this
morning at thirty-eight and a half feet.
Yesterday the river peaked in Cincinnati more than 12 feet above flood
Damage in Ohio alone is estimated at about 40 MILLION dollars.
A new fund-raising flap at the White House.
Administration officials say Taiwanese businessman Johny Chung handed a
50-thousand dollar check to Hillary Clinton's chief of staff Margaret Williams
during a 19-95 White House visit.
Williams passed the check along to the Democratic Party.
The White House denies any wrong doing even though soliciting or receiving
contributions in government offices is illegal.
The donation was eventually returned.
A Norfolk Southern spokesman says a 13- year- old boy with a high-powered
air-pistol is to blame for the shooting of a train conductor over the weekend
in Pittsylvania County.
40- year- old Robin (Say-FRITT) Safrit was injured Sunday afternoon when he
was struck near Chatham.
State Police report Safrit was riding in the front of the train when he was
hit in the back by what appeared to be a b-b pellet.
Meantime, Pittsylvania County residents now have a new way to fight crime.
Sheriff's deputies have placed what's called "Hot Spot" cards in various
stores around the county.
Residents are asked to fill in crime tips and then drop the forms in the
There's no need to include your name and postage is free.
Jennifer Smith read about the concept in a newsletter.
She's Chairman of "Neighbors in Partnership"-- a group of local
professionals who meet once a month.
((JENNIFER SMITH/"NEIGHBORS IN PARTNERSHIP" CHAIRMAN:WE'RE WORKING FOR
PREVENTING SUBSTANCE ABUSE IN DANVILLE AND PITTSYLVANIA COUNTY AND WE SAW THE
HOT SPOT CARDS AS BEING A VEHICLE THAT WOULD ALLOW CITIZENS TO IDENTIFY AREAS
WHERE THERE WAS SUBSTANCE ABUSE, ILLEGAL SUBSTANCE ABUSE, GOING ON. ))
SUPER=01-Jennifer Smith/"Neighbors in Partnership" Chairman; :00
OUT Q=going on.
The "Neighbors in Partnership" group paid to have two thousand of the cards
The county crime stoppers organization is paying for postage.
A Lynchburg nuclear plant faces more than 12-thousand dollars in fines for a
According to the U-S Nuclear Regulatory Commission... Framatome
(koh-JEE-muh) Cogema accidentally sent a uranium-based fuel assembly to
That resulted in five citations and the fine.
A company official says preventive measures began immediately after the
He also said that in no way did the mistake endanger public health or
The N- Double A-C-P's Roanoke chapter says it will stand behind a national
boycott of ten major hotel chains.
The civil rights group has questioned the hotels' commitment to minority
hiring and promotion.
The list includes several chains with locations in the Roanoke Valley.
Yesterday, leaders of the Roanoke chapter said they hope to open a dialogue
with local hotel operators.
IN Q=It doesn't make sense
((MARTIN JEFFREY/ROANOKE NAACP PRESIDENT: IT DOESN'T MAKE SENSE FOR ME TO BE
SPENDING MY DOLLARS OR FOR ANYONE TO BE SPENDING THEIR DOLLARS AT PLACES THAT
DON'T SUPPORT THEM. WE OUGHT TO SUPPORT PEOPLE THAT SUPPORT US.))
SUPER=01-Martin Jeffrey/Roanoke NAACP President;
OUT Q=things will change.
Local attention has been focused on the Hotel Roanoke, part of the
General Manager Gary Walton says the hotel is proud of its diversity. He
says minority employees make up 38 percent of the hotel's work force.
Meanwhile, the N- Double A-C-P says it won't stop with the nation's hotels.
A review of the automobile industry may be next.
Many college students spend their spring break tanning on the beaches, but a
group from Virginia Tech found a different way to enjoy their vacation.
They are learning about the culture and philosophies of the (matta-puh-NYE)
Ellen Qualls has their story.
IN Q=nat sound wind chime
SUPER=03-King and Queen Co.; :08
SUPER=01-Ruth Waterlily Pack/Mattaponi Indian; :25
SUPER=01-Donna Abel/Virginia Tech Volunteer; :35
SUPER=01-Aimee Livings/Virginia Tech Volunteer; :59
SUPER=01-Kristi Neptun/Virginia Tech Volunteer; 1:18
OUT Q=News 7, King and Queen County.
(( nat sound wind chime TAPE TWO
This is what's left of the Mattaponi Indians in Virginia.
This is what's left of spring break for Virginia Tech students and staffers
who volunteered through the YMCA.
But they're wringing as much out of the experience as they can.
((DONNA ABEL: JUST TRYING TO MAKE IT A BETTER LIVING CONDITIONS FOR GRANDMA.))
((RUTH WATERLILY PACK/MATTAPONI INDIAN: YEAH IT'S BEEN A LONG WINTER. MY
DAUGHTER COME AND FIXED THE THING UP BECAUSE LAST WINTER I DIDN'T HAVE ANY
WATER FOR THREE OR FOUR WEEKS.))
((DONNA ABEL/VA. TECH VOLUNTEER: AND I'M HOPING MY HUSBAND CAN MAYBE COME BACK
WITH ME AND WORK ON THIS. BECAUSE THIS IS JUST-- I MEAN, NOBODY SHOULD HAVE TO
LIVE IN CONDITIONS LIKE THESE.))
Conditions like a kitchen sink that's leaked so much water it's rotted the
Now it's falling through.
((DONNA ABEL: WE'RE GOING TO HAVE TO REPLACE ONE FLOOR JOIST BEFORE WE CAN
ACTUALLY PULL THE SINK OUT AND MAKE A PATCH WITH SOME PLYWOOD.))
((AIMEE LIVINGS: ONE OF THE BIG THINGS ABOUT SPRING BREAK I WANTED TO DO WAS
COME AND GET A RELEASE FROM SCHOOL AND THE STRESS AND RE-THINK KIND OF THE WAY
THINGS ARE GOING. AND I'VE GOTTEN A CHANCE TO DO THAT. I THINK A LOT OF THAT
HAS TO DO WITH THE CULTURE.))
((KRISTI NEPTUN/VA. TECH VOLUNTEER: WHEN WE HAD OUR DRUMMING. OR WE JUST SIT
AROUND AND LISTEN TO GENTLE WIND AND SUNEAGLE TELL STORIES, WE LEARN ABOUT
STORIES PASSED DOWN FROM THE CULTURE. AND THE STORIES ALWAYS HAVE A LESSON TO
TEACH YOU. WE HEARD STORIES ABOUT THE SPIRIT EAGLE LAST NIGHT AND ABOUT THE
RIVER AND THE IMPORTANCE OF THE RIVER.))
((THE MATTAPONI SAY THEIR RESERVATION ONCE SPANNED OVER THREE HUNDRED THOUSAND
ACRES ALONG THIS MATTAPONI RIVER. THEY NOW LIVE ON LESS THAN ONE HUNDRED
((RUTH WATERLILY PACK/MATTAPONI INDIAN: I, YOU KNOW, WAS GONNA TRY TO GET MY
BILLS PAID UP AND BUY A SECOND-HAND TRAILER THAT WAS IN GOOD CONDITION. BUT I
CAN'T GET MY BILLS PAID UP.))
The labor's NOT free.
The students say it's a two way street.
((AIMEE LIVINGS: EVERY MORNING WE WAKE UP WITH A HUG. AND EVERY NIGHT WE GO
TO BED WITH A HUG. AND THAT'S SOMETHING THAT I THINK WE ARE MISSING.))
Ellen Qualls, News 7, King and Queen County.))
The mighty Ohio River has crested in Cincinnati and should reach its high
water mark in Louisville, Kentucky later this morning.
The river peaked at more than 12 feet above the flood stage in Cincinnati.
Small towns and villages along the river are now in the river, forcing
thousands into shelters.
The death toll from the midwest flooding now stands at 54.
In Ohio alone damage is estimated at 40 MILLION dollars.
Russian's are scared of tomorrow. (----------------)
That was the message President Boris
Yeltsin presented this morning in his State of Union address to Parliament.
With Yeltsin battling ill health for the past year, his physical appearance
may have been more important than the substance of his speech.
While short on specific measures, Yeltsin's 66 page address focused
primarily on stopping widespread crime and bolstering economic reforms.
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission fined a Lynchburg nuclear fuel plant more
than 12- thousand- dollars.
According to the N-R-C, (FRAM- uh- tohm) Framatome (koh- JEE- muh) Cogema
accidentally shipped uranium fuel to Germany.
The mix up did not endanger public health or safety.
Still, Framatome was cited FIVE times.
A company official told News- 7 that corrective measures have been
implemented at the plant and he EXPECTS to prevent these types of mishaps in
The eight- year- old Pittsylvania County boy charged with murdering his
stepfather is undergoing a major psychiatric evaluation at a Virginia hospital.
But apparently it's happening on an out-patient basis.
A source tells News-7 the child is staying with his natural father's family
out of state.
SUPER=04-The Franklin News-Post;
The boy is accused of killing 55- year- old Bernard Rosser this past
SUPER=03-Pittsylvania Co./December 1996;
The former Franklin County probation officer was found in his Gretna home.
He had been beaten repeatedly in the head.
Pre-schoolers are getting a jump-start on the transition to kindergarten
with a literacy development program through Riner Elementary School.
Tracy Altizer has the story.
IN Q=Five year- old Kaitlin
SUPER=03-Montgomery Co./Monday; :00
SUPER=01-Kaitlin Clower/Riner Kindergartner; :11
SUPER=01-Joyce Clower/Kaitlin's Mother; :17
SUPER=01-Chris Kile/Parent; :29
SUPER=01-Melissa Kile/Jumpstart Director; :45
SUPER=01-Joshua Long/Jumpstart Student; :56 QUICK!!
SUPER=01-Brittany Epperly/Riner Kindergartner; 1:09 QUICK!!
OUT Q=Altizer, News 7.
(( Five year- old Kaitlin Clower loves Kindergarten.
And she couldn't wait to attend Jumpstart again this year.
Last year's program introduced her to school.
((DID JUMPSTART MAKE YOU EXCITED TO GO TO SCHOOL?
KAITLIN CLOWER/RINER KINDERGARTNER: YEAH IT DID, IT REALLY DID. AND I ALSO LIKE
THE JUMPSTART. ))
((JOYCE CLOWER/KAITLIN'S MOTHER: OUT OF THE CAR AND INTO SCHOOL. NO TEARS,
NOTHING. JUST KISS MOMMY GOODBYE AND INTO SCHOOL, THAT WAS IT.))
Teachers say Jumpstart has had that effect on many children, and it's
helped prepare their parents.
((CHRIS KILE/PARENT: WELL IT'S MADE ME REALIZE MORE WHAT GOES ON IN THE CLASS
AND THINGS THAT I CAN DO WITH MY DAUGHTER AT HOME. ))
((SWISH SAID THE FISH, NOT ME, NOT ME. I DON'T HAVE ANY FEET, AS YOU CAN SEE.))
Now in it's third year, Jumpstart's main goal is to get the kids excited
((MELISSA KILE/JUMPSTART DIRECTOR: THE MONEY THAT WE GET FOR JUMPSTART WE SPEND
ALMOST ALL OF IT ON GOOD BOOKS FOR CHILDREN, AND SO THAT THEY GET TO, THEY'LL
END UP WITH AT LEAST EIGHT OR NINE NEW BOOKS. ))
((JOSHUA LONG/JUMPSTART STUDENT: I LIKE TO GET DOLLARS AND BUY BOOKS.))
The kids are also learning the value of money. They earn Kidbucks for the
Jumpstart Store through reading, participation in the activities and parental
((BRITTANY EPPERLY/RINER KINDERGARTNER: I BOUGHT A BALLOON AND A NOTEPAD AND
Jumpstart was funded through a National Science Foundation grant its first
two years, now Riner's P-T-A is paying for it.
Officials say its a worthy two thousand dollar investment for starting kids
on the right track in school. Tracy Altizer, News 7.))
At the Lynchburg Health Department, officials are reporting two more cases
of dysentery among children--
these new cases ARE related to the outbreak at Stewartsville Elementary School
With more cases at the Vinton Childcare Center, there are now at least 16
cases in the area.
Dysentery.. also known as shigellosis bacteria.. is a fecal- oral infection
caused mostly by poor handwashing.
A few days will have to go by with no new cases reported, before the
outbreak will be considered finished.
A warning for parents in the region-- if your child is experiencing
diarrhea, have them checked out by a doctor.
They're the latest phyto-chemicals-- though you may just know them as
Researchers in this country and in Europe have found tomatoes may reduce the
risk of getting cancer.
The benefit-- at least in part-- seems to be due to a substance in the
tomatoes called lycopene (Lie-Co-Peen).
It's also the reason that tomatoes are red and now many researchers say it's
a powerful cancer-fighting antioxidant.
IN Q=Within the
((DR. STEVEN CLINTON/DANA FARBER CANCER INSTITUTE: WITHIN THE TOMATO PRODUCTS
THERE ARE PERHAPS MANY COMPOUNDS THAT MAY REDUCE THE RISK OF CANCER, AMONG
THOSE IS LYCOPENE WHICH IS IN A FAMILY OF CAROTINOIDS. THESE SUBSTANCES HAVE
MANY PROPERTIES WHICH MAY CONTRIBUTE TO A REDUCED RISK OF CANCER IN A VARIETY
OUT Q=variety of organs.
The work so far suggests that Lycopene (Lie-Co-Peen) is twice as potent as
the anti-oxidant in beta-carotene, it's better-known cousin.
However, this is not a reason yet to worry about buying Lycopene in
(TOSS TO BUMP)
Extortion and racketeering charges have been filed against a group of
Palestinians living in Roanoke.
The story involves control of the convenience store business in the
Valley... using heavy-handed scare tactics... including arson and murder.
As Keith Humphry reports-- these are serious charges: Solicitation to
Commit murder, Homicide and Arson, extortion, fraud and assault.
SUPER=03-Salem/April 2, 1994; :11
SUPER=01-Bob Crouch/U.S. Attorney; :34
OUT Q=Humprhy, NEWS-7.
Nine fires are listed in the indictment... some so serious they ended in
death. The government contends that was no accident.
The most spectacular blaze may have been the one at Mixers restaurant and
Lounge... three years ago.
The Grand Jury says the owners paid the Abed family to torch the place for
the insurance money.
About 75 people were inside when the fire broke out.
Arson for hire was just a side-line in this family business, officials say.
Most often it was used to intimidate legitimate competitors, to try to run them
out of business.
SOT 15:23:55 Crouch
((PART OF THEIR ALLEGED ACTIVITIES WAS ROBBING STEALING FROM SOME OTHER
BUSINESS AND THEN USING THE STOLEN GOODS TO STOCK THEIR OWN STORES.))
Investigators believe the couple that died in this fire on 13th Street
Southwest two years ago- -was MURDERED- -eliminated because they MIGHT have
seen who set the Corner Store on fire earlier the same day.
SOT 15:13:58 Tom B.
((THE ABED FAMILY AND THEIR ASSOCIATES OWNED THE SPEEDWAY MARKET ON 13TH STREET
HERE IN TOWN. THE CORNER STORE WAS TAKING AWAY BUSINESS FROM THE SPEEDWAY. SO
THE EASIEST WAY TO TAKE CARE OF THAT IS TO BURN OUT THE CORNER STORE.))
OUT Q=corner store.
Narcotics trafficking is also a part of the allegations.
Keith Humphry NEWS 7.))
Shots fired at a train conductor in Pittsylvania County last weekend could
have come from a 13- year- old boy.
A Norfolk Southern spokesman says the teenager is accused of using a
high-powered air pistol.
The incident happened Sunday afternoon near Chatham.
State police say 40- year- old Robin (Say-Fritt) Safrit was riding in the
front of the train when he was struck in the left side with what appeared to be
a b-b pellet.
Safrit is recovering from minor injuries-- the shot did not penetrate the
skin but caused a bruise and bleeding.
Eric Ball says he thought 17- year- old Ricky Lee Coleman was dead when he
and two others helped dump Coleman over a creek bank.
Ball took the witness stand to defend himself yesterday against abduction
and murder charges.
He said he never heard Coleman moaning, nor did he see any signs of life
from the drunken teenager.
SUPER=03-Wythe Co./January 22, 1996;
An autopsy concluded Coleman died from exposure, with alcohol as a
Ball admitted he helped transport Coleman from Jason Hibbs' house, where
Coleman had gotten drunk and destructive at a party earlier.
Hibbs has already pleaded guilty to murder. A third defendant, Eric Wimmer
is awaiting trial.
The salvation army was doing more than ringing bells to raise money last
They put cars and boats on the auction block.
As Andrew Freiden reports the money will help domestic abuse victims.
IN Q=1988 AUDI
SUPER=07-Bill Nichols; :10 (quick)
SUPER=01-Steve Long/Salvation Army; 42
OUT Q=News 7
IN Q=1988 AUDI
((AUCTIONEER: 1986 AUDI QUATTRO...nat sound out ))
OUT Q=nat sound.
The cars weren't all cream puffs-- but the crowd of more than one hundred
stuck out the rain anyway.
((COMING DOWN HERE TO SEE IF WE CAN FIND A REAL BARGAIN.))
OUT Q=REAL BARGAIN
It was a real bargain for the Salvation Army-- folks donated 20 cars and two
boats to the cause.
Before the auction, Captain Steve Long had modest hopes.
IN Q=if we
((IF WE BRING IN 10 THOUSAND, WE'LL BE HAPPY ))
He was ecstatic.
When the smoke cleared, the receipts totaled more than 22 thousand dollars.
and all the proceeds from the auction went to The Turning Point Shelter-- a
shelter for victims of domestic abuse.
IN Q=DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
((DOMESTIC VIOLENCE IS GROWING, AND WE WANT TO KEEP THAT PROGRAM RUNNING. AND
THIS IS A RESOURCE THAT WILL HELP DO THAT. ))
OUT Q=help do that
The funds raised from the auction will feed the shelter's residents for four
Captain Long brought the unique idea with him from Washington D.C.
IN Q=I USED TO
((STEVE LONG/SALVATION ARMY: I USED TO LIVE IN METRO WASHINGTON, SO WHEN WE
MOVED HERE IN JUNE WE FOUND OUT THAT IT REALLY HADN'T BEEN DONE, SO WE DECIDED
TO GIVE IT A SHOT.))
OUT Q=it a shot.
And The Salvation Army is already accepting vehicle donations for its next
IN Q=THE RAIN
((THE RAIN DIDN'T HAMPER THE AUCTIONEER'S EFFORTS, AND WHEN IT WAS ALL SAID AND
DONE, MORE THAN 20 PEOPLE SAILED AWAY IN THE VEHICLE OF THEIR CHOICE. BUT
EVERYONE AGREED THE REAL WINNER WAS THE SALVATION ARMY. ANDREW FREIDEN, NEWS7,
OUT Q=NEWS 7, ROANOKE.
In the N-B-A,
Hakeem Olajuwon scored 13 of his 31 points in the final quarter to secure
Houston's 90-to-85 victory at Golden State.
For last night's scores, let's check the boards.
GO TO SCORES