08:25-01

Thirty-Weather

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REGIONAL RADAR LOOP

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7E-Gilmore


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TAPE#97-93
GRAPHIC=Jim Gilmore


Governor- elect Jim Gilmore took a stand for diversity yesterday.
In his first round of cabinet and agency appointments, Gilmore appeared to both strengthen his staff AND weaken the power of the other party.
Ellen Qualls reports.
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SUPER=03-Richmond; :07
SUPER=01-Claude Allen/Health & Human Resources Designee; :17
SUPER=01-Shirley Ybarra/Transportation Secretary-Designee; :41
SUPER=01-Del. David Brickley/Conservation & Recreation Designee; 1:02
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((GILMORE: WE ARE SENDING...TABLE.))
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Jim Gilmore scored in several categories for those who count such things.
An African- American, deputy Attorney General Claude Allen follows his former boss to become Health and Human Resources Secretary.
sot 03:15:15

((CLAUDE ALLEN: WE HAVE QUITE A FEW CITIZENS IN THE COMMONWEALTH...LOOK FORWARD TO THE CHALLENGE.))
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Deputy Transportation Secretary Shirly Ybarra rises a notch and keeps a Hispanic at the head of the Transportation Secretariat.
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((SHIRLEY YBARRA: AND I WANT TO THANK...THE PORTS.))
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And DEMOCRATIC Delegate David Brickley of Prince William County agrees to head up the troubled Department of Conservation and Recreation... NOT a cabinet appointment, but one with larger meanings.
SOT 03:19:32

((DAVID BRICKLEY: IT'S WITH SOME GREAT HESITATION THAT I GIVE THAT UP...I'D LIKE TO LISTEN.))
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Democrats may be appalled that he listened.
Brickley moving into the Gilmore administration moves him OUT of the House of Delegates.
IF his seat goes Republican in a special election, and two others remain Republican... that makes Bedford Independent Lacey Putney the man of the hour to help the two parties finally share some power.
Ellen Qualls, News 7, Richmond.))

7E-Arson


ANCHOR=Melanie
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TAPE#97-86
GRAPHIC=arson


Officials say arson is to blame for a Lynchburg apartment fire that injured a small girl almost two weeks ago.
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Firefighter Robert Ore was honored last week for pulling 3-year old Tiana Hubbard from her burning home the night of December 13th.
Fire officials say the blaze started in the kitchen, but they've ruled out any accidental causes.
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IN Q=All last week

((JOHN JENNINGS/LYNCHBURG FIRE MARSHAL: ALL LAST WEEK WE WERE AT THE SCENE, INVESTIGATING THAT FIRE. THROUGH A PROCESS OF ELIMINATION WE FIND THERE WAS NO ACCIDENTAL IGNITION SOURCE TO ACCOUNT FOR THE FIRE. THEREFORE WE HAVE CONCLUDED THAT THIS FIRE WAS INCENDIARY IN NATURE.))
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Evidence has been sent to the state crime lab for analysis.
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7Wendell-Scott


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You can now drive down a street named for the first and only full-time black NASCAR driver.
Wendell Scott was from Danville.
And now green signs saying "NASCAR Racing Legend" and Number 34, the number of Scott's car, mark the local road.
The signs were added yesterday along what used to be Keens Mill Road where the Scott family lives.
Scott died seven years ago.

7weather


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Turning now to your Christmas Eve outlook--
Rain is expected throughout the region for much of the day, with highs in the lower 40s.
The showers will taper off to drizzle and fog overnight, with lows in the mid 30s.
But Christmas Day looks pleasant, with partly sunny skies and highs warming into the 50s.
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7BIRTHDAYS!12/28-29/97
Sunday:

SUPER=130-9/Tabatha Walters/Blue Ridge;



SUPER=130-2/Nicholas Houston/Martinsville;


Monday:

SUPER=130-20/Jeremiah Thorne/Narrows;



SUPER=130-31st/Mr. & Mrs. James Eanes/Roanoke;



SUPER=130-14th/Nosilla Uliins/Salem;



SUPER=130-/Mark Cockran/Willis;



SUPER=130-/Rita Hilton/Christiansburg;



SUPER=130-/Holly Stenski/Willis;


No Pictures:

SUPER=130-14/Willie Garrett/Madison Heights;



SUPER=130-/Kristi Walker/Buchanan;



SUPER=130-15/Antonio Darden/South Boston;

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55E-Brzonkala


ANCHOR=Melanie
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TAPE#97-81
GRAPHIC=brzonkala


A federal appeals court has ruled a former Virginia Tech student who claims two football players raped her CAN pursue a lawsuit filed under the federal Violence Against Women Act.
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VO-NAT
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Former Hokies James Crawford and Tony Morrison were never indicted on rape charges, but the allegations resulted in a civil suit that includes the University.
Yesterday, a panel of the Fourth U-S Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Christy Brzonkala's case ruled the 19-94 law is constitutional and sent it and sent it back to a Roanoke court.
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((EILEEN WAGNER/BRZONKALA'S ATTORNEY: WELL CHRISTY BRZONKALA'S CASE IS ALIVE AND WELL. IT WILL GO TO TRIAL EVENTUALLY. THAT HER CLAIM AGAINST VIRGINIA TECH, THE COURT FOUND THAT THAT WAS A GOOD CLAIM, THAT SHE PLED IT CORRECTLY, THAT IT WAS BASED IN LAW. AND THE COURT SAID THAT THE VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN ACT IS INDEED CONSTITUTIONAL.))
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The Violence against Women act allows victims of gender-based crimes to sue their attackers in FEDERAL court.
Brzonkala was the first alleged sexual assault victim to sue under the law.
The appeals court also revived Brzonkala's claim that the university violated a federal gender discrimination law by coddling the athletes -- and failed to help her.
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Blacksburg attorney Joe Painter, who represents James Crawford, says he will ask for the full appeals court to take up the case.
Virginia Tech officials did NOT return our calls.
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If you'd like to read the full text of the court's decision, you can find it in the Web Watch section of the WDBJ-7 homepage.
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55Snowshoe-Death


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There has been another death at the Snowshoe Mountain resort.
Police say Virginia Tech student Jia-Bin Chen, who is from Taiwan, reportedly drowned at an indoor swimming pool at Snowshoe Mountain Resort.
Last week a nine- year- old Florida boy died after he apparently hit a tree while skiing at the resort.

55E-Internet-Shopping


ANCHOR=Melanie
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TAPE#97-80
GRAPHIC=internet


It's the last shopping day before Christmas.
Instead of fighting the mobs at the malls some shoppers are clicking onto the Internet.
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VO-NAT


Record numbers of people went shopping ON-Line this holiday season.
Some praise virtual malls for their convenience.
Others say shopping online is too risky.
Virginia Tech professor Irene Leech says smart online shoppers don't really need to worry about online scams.
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((IRENE LEECH/VIRGINIA TECH PROFESSOR: THE WAY TO AVOID IT IS WITH THE SAME KIND OF THINGS YOU WOULD DO WITH OTHER KINDS OF COMPANIES. MAKE SURE YOU KNOW WHO YOU'RE DEALING WITH. MAKE SURE YOU KNOW THE COMPANY YOU'RE DEALING WITH IS A REPUTABLE COMPANY.))
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Leech says to check your browser-- it will tell you if the website you're at is safe for online commerce.
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55S-Covington-Turf


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TAPE#97-86
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In Covington, You could call it Field of Dreams or how about a dream field.
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VO-NAT
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The Sports Turf Managers Association says Covington has one of the best-manicured football fields in America.
Members cited Casey Field at Covington High School as the top high school field in the country.
The city's recreation director, Allen Dressler, will pick up the award next month in Orlando, Florida.
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55weather


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Time now to check the holiday forecast--
Rainy on this Christmas Eve, with highs in the lower 40s.
The rain will taper off to patchy drizzle and fog overnight, with lows cooling into the mid 30s.
But much milder for Christmas Day, with partly sunny skies and highs in the mid to upper 50s.
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8Brzonkala


ANCHOR=Melanie
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TAPE#net (edit of 97-81)
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The rape case of a former Virginia Tech student is NOT over yet--
A federal appeals court is putting Christy Brzonkala's allegations of rape against two former Hokie football players BACK into the legal spotlight.
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Yesterday, a three judge panel of the federal appeals court in Richmond sent her case back to Roanoke federal Judge Jackson Kiser.
Brzonkala went public with her allegations to raise awareness.
Her attorney says that effort has continued outside the court.
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((EILEEN WAGNER/BRZONKALA'S ATTORNEY: SHE HAS GONE TO CONGRESS AND HAS TESTIFIED TO CONGRESS. AND SHE HAS MADE MANY APPEARANCES TALKING ABOUT THE NECESSITY OF SCHOOLS TAKING CAMPUS CRIME MORE SERIOUSLY. SO SHE IS VERY ACTIVE.))
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ANCHOR=Melanie
SS=Brzonkala


In a 2-to-1 ruling, the appeals court panel stated, that Brzonkala does have the right to sue Virginia Tech under Title Nine, and the right to sue the players under the 19-94 Violence Against Women Act.
Former player Tony Morrison is now a student at Hampton University.
James Crawford is at Florida State.
The pair was never found guilty of any criminal violations in relation to Brzonkala's rape allegation.
Virginia Tech officials could NOT be reached for comment.
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Full screen Homepage
If you'd like to read the full text of the court's decision, you can find it in the Web Watch section of the WDBJ-7 Internet homepage.
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8E-Arson


ANCHOR=Melanie
NEWSCAST=Cut in
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TAPE#97-86
GRAPHIC=arson


Lynchburg fire officials say arson is to blame for the blaze that destroyed an apartment and injured a toddler.
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VO-NAT
SUPER=03-Lynchburg


Firefighter Robert Ore was honored last week for pulling three- year- old Tiana Hubbard from her burning home the night of December 13th.
Fire officials say the blaze started in the kitchen, but they've ruled out any accidental causes.
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SOT 00:24:25
IN Q=All last week

((JOHN JENNINGS/LYNCHBURG FIRE MARSHAL: ALL LAST WEEK WE WERE AT THE SCENE, INVESTIGATING THAT FIRE. THROUGH A PROCESS OF ELIMINATION WE FIND THERE WAS NO ACCIDENTAL IGNITION SOURCE TO ACCOUNT FOR THE FIRE. THEREFORE WE HAVE CONCLUDED THAT THIS FIRE WAS INCENDIARY IN NATURE.))
SUPER=01-John Jennings/Lynchburg Fire Marshal; :00
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VO-NAT


Evidence has been sent to the state crime lab for analysis.
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8Holiday-Pets


ANCHOR=Melanie
NEWSCAST=morn
WRITER=tfl
TAPE#net
GRAPHIC=NONE


Colorful lights and tinsel make for a pretty Christmas tree, but can be deadly to house pets.
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VO-NAT
SUPER=03-Blacksburg;


Animals like to chew cords and string-like substances--which can choke them.
Doctor Roberts says the best way to keep pets safe--is treat them like children.
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SOT 11:43:18
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((DR. KENT ROBERTS/VET:TRY AND KEEP PETS AWAY FROM THINGS THAT CAN BE DANGEROUS, SMALL TOYS, ORNAMENTS, PARTICULARLY PUPPIES,THEY'RE THE ONES THAT SEEM MOST LIKELY TO BE GETTING INTO TROUBLE, JUST LIKE SMALL CHILDREN TREAT THEM THE WAY YOU WOULD A SMALL CHILD KEEP THEM OUT OF TROUBLE IF AT ALL POSSIBLE))
SUPER=01-Dr. Kent Roberts/Veterinarian;
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VO-NAT


Doctor Roberts says the cold weather can also pose a threat to pets.
Automobile owners who want to change their own antifreeze should be careful...antifreeze smells and tastes sweet--but even small amounts can kill your pet if ingested.
And since a few minutes can often mean the difference between life and death in regards to poisonings--call the vet immediately if a pet does eat a poisonous substance.
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8Wendell-Scott


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Wendell Scott PAVED the way for future black Nascar drivers-- now a Danville road bears his name.
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VO-NAT

11/7, 97-76, Wendell-Scott
SUPER=03-Danville/1986;


Scott was from Danville.
And now green signs saying "NASCAR Racing Legend" and Number 34, the number of Scott's car, mark the local road.
The signs were added yesterday along what used to be Keens Mill Road where the Scott family lives.
Scott died seven years ago.
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8weather


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Checking the Christmas Eve travel forecast--
It'll be rainy today, with highs in the lower 40s.
Patchy drizzle tonight, with fog.
Lows in the lower 30s.
Your Christmas Day outlook is drier and very pleasant, with highs in the mid to upper 50s.
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