Up next on News 7, Virginia prepares to execute convicted murder Dennis Eaton.
and we'll have local and national reaction to the death of the tobacco bill.
In Health News, the state wants to try something new in dealing with violent sex offenders.
and we'll see a new discovery that could help doctors develop an effective AIDS vaccine.
[SUPER=#4063; Headline Banner]
Only Governor Jim Gilmore can stop the execution tonight of convicted murderer Dennis Eaton.
Dennis Wayne Eaton's eight hour crime spree in 1989 left four people dead, including a Virginia State Trooper.
Tonight, he's scheduled to die by lethal injection.
[Double Boxes=Jean and Ellen/StarLink]
Ellen Qualls is at Greensville Correctional Center.
Has the Governor made any decisions about clemency?
No, Jean, and he would be Dennis Eaton's last hope.
The Supreme Court rejected his last legal filing yesterday.
[SOT **Tape Rolled from StarLink**]
[IN Q=Eaton admits]
[SUPER=01-Maria Hines/Sister of Slain Trooper; :42]
[OUT Q=as well.]
Eaton admits to killing his roommate and his neighbor in Shenandoah County.
He admits to shooting his girlfriend in the burning wreckage at the end of the police chase in Salem.
But he still publicly denies shooting state trooper Jerry Hines on I-81 near Lexington.
[10:23:32 takes responsibility]
((I'M SORRY FOR ALL THOSE THINGS. BUT I DID NOT PULL THE TRIGGER. JUDY MCDONALD IS THE ONE THAT KILLED TROOPER HINES.))
But a hospital chaplain came forward in 1992 to file an affadavit with the court.
It said Eaton had confessed to Hines' murder just after the incident-- when the killer thought he was dying from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head.
In a stranger twist, Trooper Hines' own sister is fighting to stop Eaton's execution.
[SOT TAPE ONE 02:22:27]
((DENNIS DID HAVE THE THREE LIFE SENTENCES WITHOUT ANY POSSIBILITY OF PAROLE. AND THIS INFORMATION WAS WITHHELD FROM THE JURY. AND SO THEY WOULD ONLY HAVE TO ASSUME THAT IF WE DON'T GIVE HIM THE DEATH PENALTY HE MAY BE FREE. AND THAT'S LIKE MAKING A PERSON HAVE TO MAKE A DECISION WITH A BLINDFOLD ON.))
At least one juror has said publicly he would NOT have chosen death if he'd known Eaton would NOT go free.
((GOV. JIM GILMORE: RECOGNIZE OF COURSE THAT THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM HAS WORKED. WE WANT TO SEE HOW IT WORKED. AND ALSO TO MAKE SURE THAT FAIRNESS AND JUSTICE IS GIVEN NOT ONLY TO THE APPLICANT, BUT ALSO TO THE FAMILIES OF THE VICTIMS AS WELL.))
Trooper Hines' widow Carol and son Justin say they will witness Eaton's execution tonight... while the trooper's sister Maria protests it outside.
Justin Hines says he can't honestly say whether the execution will make him "feel better or worse."
[Double Boxes=Jean and Ellen/StarLink]
Barring Governor Gilmore's intervention, the execution begins at nine o'clock.
The Tobacco bill may be dead- but the smoke has not cleared-
In fact the bill's defeat is just lighting the fire for those committed to getting tobacco legislation through.
((YOU KNOW I'VE BEEN WORKING ON THIS FOR YEARS WHEN WE STARTED MOST PEOPLE DIDN'T THINK WE'D GET AS FAR AS WE HAVE. AND I DON'T THINK WE INTEND TO STOP UNTIL WE PREVAIL AND SOONER OR LATER WE WILL, BECAUSE IT'S THE RIGHT THING TO DO.))
[OUT Q=THING TO DO.]
[TAPE# 98-32 1:13:27]
[GRAPHIC=Tobacco Under Fire]
As you can imagine, many people in Virginia have been following the tobacco debate.
And today they reacted to the bill's death.
[Double Boxes=Jean and Scott/Newsroom]
Scott Goldberg has been covering that part of the story.
Scott, I suppose Virginia lawmakers are happy with the Senate vote.
Jean, this IS a tobacco state.
And the people who grow, distribute and sell tobacco make up a big part of Virginia's economy.
Today Governor Gilmore said he supports legislation to stop kids from smoking -- but not if it's going to cost some Virginians their livelihood.
[SUPER=01-Briggs Andrews/American Cancer Society; :42]
[SOT Gilmore tape at 1:21 (tc)]
[IN Q=i'm gonna]
((GOV. JIM GILMORE: I'M GONNA STAND FOR THE WORKING MEN AND WOMEN AND THE FARMERS AND THE MANUFACTURING MEN AND WOMEN OF THIS STATE. AND I'M CERTAINLY NOT GOING TO GO ALONG WITH THE CONGRESS TRYING TO DESTROY THEIR JOBS.))
[OUT Q=THEIR JOBS]
Attitudes like that,
[tobacco commercial -- screen says "new taxes" or something]which were broadcast across the country in commercials paid for by cigarette makers, had a lot to do with killing the tobacco bill.
But so did the bill's own weight.
[kids smoking from 5-96-31]
Its original purpose was fighting youth smoking, but the bill grew into a treasure chest for funding Republican-sponsored tax breaks.
[SOT Robb tapes\ at 11:43:15]
[IN Q=thsoe programs]
((SEN. CHUCK ROBB: THOSE PROGRAMS MAY OR MAY NOT HAVE BEEN GOOD POLICY, BUT THEY SHOULD NOT HAVE DISTRACTED FROM THE ORIGINAL OBJECTIVE, WHICH WAS TO REDUCE TEEN SMOKING.))
[OUT Q=TEEN SMOKING]
But this issue won't go away.
Health advocates hope a new bill with a better focus will make its way through Congress.
[SOT Tobacco-cancer soc. tape at 13 24 29]
[IN Q=if you get]
((BRIGGS ANDREWS/AMERICAN CANCER SOCIETY: IF YOU GET A MORE SINGLE-FOCUSED BILL THAT RELATES TO THE TEEN SMOKING ASPECTS OF TOBACCO USAGE, YOU SEE STRONG SUPPORT FOR THAT IN VIRGINIA AND THROUGHOUT THE TOBACCO STATES. ))
[OUT Q=TOBACCO STATES]
Of course, tobacco farmers had plenty to say about this.
Even though there were provisions in the bill to protect them from going bankrupt, farmers still didn't like the legislation because of it so severly punished the tobacco industry.
[Double Boxes=Jean and Scott/Newsroom]
We'll hear more from a local tobacco farmer tonight at six.
Jean.[(toss to R)]
(toss to Robin)
[HARD MUSIC UNDER]
Still to come on News 7 at 5, hundreds of police officers from across the region turn out to remember policewoman Carol Paxton. We'll have that story next.
and a Botetourt County man pleads guilty to burning down one of the area's landmarks.
In Health Check, we'll see how the state would like to use mental hospitals to deal with violent sex offenders.
and Patrick will be along with this week's edition of Growin' It.
[NEWSCAST=5p Thursday 6/18]
Roanoke County's police department said its final goodbyes today to one of its own.
Officer Carol Paxton was laid to rest. She died Monday after a three month battle with stomach cancer.
Her goal in life was to be a police officer.
The 39-year old woman achieved that in 1984 after six years as a dispatcher for the Sheriff's Department.
Five years later Paxton was recognized as Officer of the Year for helping save lives in the Shenandoah Homes fire.
[IN Q=SHE WENT INTO]
((CHIEF RAY LAVINDER/ROANOKE CO. POLICE; SHE WENT INTO THE BUILDING NUMEROUS TIMES HELPING THESE ELDERLY PEOPLE GET OUT OF THE BUILDING. SHE HAD NO BREATHING EQUIPMENT. SHE WAS OVERCOME BY SMOKE LATER IN THE INCIDENT AND HAD TO BE HOSPITALIZED AT THAT TIME.))
[SUPER=01-Chief Ray Lavinder/Roanoke Co. Police;]
[OUT Q=AT THAT TIME.]
Friends remembered Paxton as a "consummate" professional and called her death a great loss to the community.
In her honor, flags in the area have flown at half staff this week.
A Botetourt County man says he heard voices the night he set the historic Hotel Botetourt on fire.
31-year-old Dwayne Bowman says he heard his stepfather calling him no good.
[SUPER=04-August 23, 1997;]
But he says he did not know that lighting his bedroom curtains on fire would set the entire building ablaze.
[IN Q=I tried to put]
((DWAYNE BOWMAN/DEFENDANT: I TRIED TO PUT THE FIRE OUT BUT EVERYTIME I WOULD HIT WITH MY JEANS IT JUST WOULDN'T WORK. IT WENT UP BETWEEN THE WALLS WHERE THE DOOR WAS -- IT WAS A DOOR WINDOW -- AND I SAID OH GOD. THIS IS GONE. I CAN'T GET IT. I CAN'T STOP THIS.))
[OUT Q=CAN'T STOP THIS]
The nineteenth century hotel was a home for handicapped adults at the time.
Almost 30 residents were safely evacuated.
Bowman will undergo a psychiatric evaluation before he is sentenced September 10th.
Two men went to jail today for selling cough medicine, disguised as illegal drugs.
Prosecutors say 22-year-old Richard Gluth thought he was selling the drug ecstasy when he was trapped by an undercover informant last February.
Tests later showed he was only selling cough medicine.
Gluth later helped police arrest 23-year-old (Kay) Kai Safran.
Both were part of a group that apparently brought cough medicine, disguised as ecstasy, from James Madison University into Botetourt County.
They were selling the pills for about 30 dollars each.
Seth Dyers, another member of the group, also pled guilty to drug charges today.
Coming up after this break, Patrick will take a look at some interesting varieties of annual plants in this week's Growin It.
Jean, the annual bed is a frequent ground for experimentation, and the Horticulture gradens at Virginia Tech take pride in showing off some brand new plant products each year.
[Double Boxes=Patrick/Bob Lyons Microwave]
And with me today is Bob Lyons, who says despite the cool and rainy spring, there are some interesting new annual varieties to talk about.
Bob, how far behind are you do to the inclement weather?
[Live= Bob Full]
[SUPER=01-Bob Lyons/Horticulture Gardens Director;]
[SUPER=#570; Claytor Lake]
[SUPER=330-Increasing/Clouds/64-68/Variably Cloudy/Scattered Showers/85-88;]
[SUPER=332-Partly Cloudy/Showers Late/60-64/Showers & Storms/Likely/80-84;]
[SUPER=333-Becoming/Partly Cloudy/60-64/Variably Cloudy/Showers/83-86;]
[SUPER=334-Partly Cloudy/Showers Late/60-64/Showers & Storms/Likely/80-84;]
[health music under]
In sports, the U-S-G-A will not take new and improved clubs out of golfers hands. Mike Stevens will explain.
Tonight on health check --
Virginia lawmakers are considering a bill that would allow violent sex criminals to be placed in mental hospitals after they serve prison time.
Critics of the legislation say it will cause a stigma from the community about all patients.
[SOT 11 10 57]
[IN Q=If we place]
((HELEN HARRAH/ADULT MENTAL HEALTH DIRECTOR:IF WE PLACE SEX OFFENDERS IN THE MENTAL HEALTH SYSTEM, PEOPLE WILL ASSUME THAT ALL PEOPLE WHO HAVE MENTAL ILLNESS ARE POTENTIAL AND PROBABLE SEX OFFENDERS, WHICH IS NOT TRUE.))
[OUT Q=not true.]
The Virginia General Assembly is proposing a sexual predator law that would allow involuntary commitments of violent sex criminals to state psychiatric hospitals after they serve their prison terms.
Some local mental health officials are opposed to putting convicted sex offenders in the mental health system.
[SOT 11 09 52]
[IN Q=One of our]
[SUPER=01-Helen Harrah/Blue Ridge Community Services; ]
[SUPER=01-Dr. James Reinhard/Catawba Medical Director; ]
[SUPER=03-Roanoke Co.; ]
[OUT Q=that might be]
[SOT ub 11 09 52]
[IN Q=One of our concerns]
((HELEN HARRAH/BLUE RIDGE COMMUNITY SERVICES:ONE OF OUR CONCERNS HAS TO DO WITH STIGMATIZING PEOPLE WHO HAVE A MENTAL ILLNESS WHO ARE NOT VIOLENT, WHICH IS THE LARGE MAJORITY OF PEOPLE, PLACING THEM IN THE SAME FACILITY WITH PEOPLE WHO MAY BE EASILY VICTIMIZED.))
[OUT Q=easily victimized]
Critics say it's just a way of extending incarceration for sex criminals.
The National Mental Health Association's Policy Position states
it is an abuse of the involuntary civil commitment statute and a misuse of the mental health system for punishment rather than treatment.
[SOT 11 12 22]
[IN Q=Treatment for sex]
((HELEN HARRAH/ADULT MENTAL HEALTH DIRECTOR:TREATMENT FOR SEX OFFENDERS HAS A VERY LOW RATE OF SUCCESS. I DON'T KNOW THAT TREATING THEM IS GOING TO PRODUCE ANY MAJOR CHANGE IN INDIVIDUAL LIVES.))
[OUT Q=individual lives.]
[SOT ub 14 19 07]
[IN Q=I think it's]
((DR. JAMES REINHARD/CATAWBA MEDICAL DIRECTOR:I THINK IT'S POSSIBLE THAT THERE IS A SEGMENT OF THESE SEX OFFENDERS THAT MAY IN FACT HAVE A MENTAL ILLNESS THAT CAN BE TREATED AND MAY BE EFFECTIVELY TREATED WITH CERTAIN KINDS OF MEDICATIONS.))
Nine states already have statues that authorize the confinement and treatment of highly dangerous sex offenders.
Virginia law requires them to register with the state police when they get out of prison, but more than half never do so.
Scientists have made a discovery that could help them defeat the AIDS virus.
They've figured out the Three-D shape of the chemical key the virus uses to get inside cells.
The new view will help them learn about the virus' defenses and how to overcome them.
That could lead to the develpment of an effective AIDS vaccine.
Americans need to watch their waistlines and the National Institutes of Health wants to help.
[Prepro Line #1:]
Now it's offering some practical advice.
People should engage in moderate physical activity progessing to 30 minutes or more on most or preferably all days.
[Prepro Line #2]
Reducing fat intake alone without reducing calories will not produce weight loss.
Foods marked as low fat can have as many calories as their full fat counterparts.
[Prepro Line #3]
You should allow a reasonable amount of time to lose weight. To reduce your body weight by 10 percent, you should allow six months with a weight loss of one to two pounds per week.
[Prepro Line #4]
Patients should try lifestyle therapy of improving eating habits and physical activity for six months before embarking on a drug thearpy.
[**TAKE Pinnacle Page]
The full report is available on the N-I-H website which you can access through our web page at WDBJ7.com
There's good news for golfers across the nation.
Here's Mike Stevens with the details.[S5-USGA]
Welcome everybody to the Thursday ticker that begins with some golf news.
Last night the United States Golf Association decided against banning some of the new and innovative equipment that is hitting the market each and every day.
[SUPER=03-Roanoke Co.; :00]
Golf's governing body looked long and hard at the ever expanding drivers that are the rage these days.
The Callaway Biggest Big Bertha all the way to the Mega 350 Confidence, the biggest club on the market these days, have raised concerns that science and technology are ruining the integrity of golf.
Doug Kenney, who owns Dr. Golf in Roanoke County says leaving the market place alone benefits everyone.
[SUPER=01-Doug Kenney/Dr. Golf Owner; :00]
[super=01-Wes Swope/Hanging Rock Teaching Pro; :18]
Both Swope and Kenney say the biggest thing the big clubs offer golfers is confidence they can hit the ball.
But Kenney says the only real way to help every golfer is make the hold bigger.
The Florida Marlins win the afternoon game in Atlanta beating the Braves 3 to 2.
[SUPER=03-Atlanta, GA/FOX SPORTS; :]
Marlins manager Jim Leyland watching from the dugout.
In the top of the third, Edgar Renteria hits a line drive to right field scoring Mike Redmond and the Marlins took the early 1 to nothing lead.
The Braves would come right back and tie the score when Keith Lockhart hits the looper to right field scoring Andrew Jones to make it a 1 to 1 game.
It was tied at 2 to 2 then Todd Zeile strokes this
single to left field a run scores and the Marlins go on to win it 3 to 2.
Coming up at six, we'll have a story about an unusual golf camp plus all the latest sports.
Most people wouldn't think of buying hair at an auction -- but that was the most popular item recently in California.
According to Gregory Shaw of the Butterrfield Auction House, the lock of hair belonged to Abraham Lincoln. He says that it was taken by the attending physician while the President was on his death bed.
[IN Q=IT WAS TAKEN]
((GREGORY SHAW IT WAS TAKEN BY THE DOCTOR. IT HAD SOME RESIDUE ON IT AND IT WAS SLAPPED INSIDE A TELEGRAM WITH THE DATE APRIL 14TH, MIDNIGHT 1865 ON IT. IT CAPTURED PEOPLE'S ATTENTION.))
[SUPER=01-Gregory Shaw/Butterfield Auction]
[OUT Q=CAPTURED PEOPLE'S ATTENTION]
The lock of hair brought in even more money than auctioneers had predicted-- it sold for over 26 THOUSAND dollars.