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Pedestrian killed in accident in Alum Creek area

KANAWHA COUNTY, W.Va. — An investigation was underway on Wednesday morning into a deadly accident involving a pedestrian in Kanawha County.

Deputies with the Kanawha County Sheriff’s Department said a man was killed when a vehicle hit him on Childress Road in the area on Alum Creek.

The accident was reported around 6:40 a.m. Wednesday.

Early indications were the victim may have been in the road when he was struck.

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Kanawha library director to leave in December

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The director of the Kanawha County Public Library system will leave in December.

Riti Grover submitted her resignation on Sept. 11, citing “personal reasons and to pursue other opportunities.”

The library system’s board appointed Grover in September 2018; she replaced Alan Engelbert, who retired after 11 years.

According to the Charleston Gazette-Mail, Grover’s final day will be Dec. 13.

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Dunbar hosts public forum on homelessness

DUNBAR, W.Va. — Around 150 people took part in a public forum Tuesday in Dunbar regarding the problems associated with homelessness.

Residents voiced concerns about issues such as stolen property, public nuisance and disrespect for private property rights.

The event took place at the Dunbar Recreation Center.

“People can no longer leave their belongings outside the way they did 20 years ago,” Dunbar Mayor Bill Cunningham said. “People are starting to see their freedom of life starting to erode. You have to secure yourself inside your home, and you can’t just enjoy your property.”

Residents voiced concerns to the Dunbar City Council at its Sept. 3 meeting, adding they would reach out to state lawmakers about a possible solution. The city instead invited their state representatives to the forum to hear concerns.

“Why start to barrage them with calls? Why not invite them to our community and sit down as a community and talk to them instead of just a bunch of random phone calls?” Cunningham said.

State Sens. Glenn Jeffries, D-Putnam, and Richard Lindsay, D-Kanawha; and Delegates Eric Nelson, R-Kanawha; Doug Skaff, D-Kanawha; Andrew Byrd, D-Kanawha; and Moore Capito, R-Kanawha, attended the forum.

Cunningham said he wants legislators to make it a crime to break into an abandoned structure as well as dedicate additional financial resources for treatment services; the mayor noted the settlements from opioid lawsuits should be dedicated to treatment.

“Make it a mandatory, court-order, two-year sentence for people who demonstrate that they are drug-addicted through multiple arrests or Narcan treatment or something of that nature,” he said.

The city will continue to arrest people in criminal situations, yet Cunningham said that is not enough

“Until we get some relief to get these people treatment, they’re going to go to jail, come back out and be right in that same cycle that they’re in,” he said.

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Investigation underway after deadly accident at Kanawha County coal mine

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — An electrical shock was being blamed early on in the investigation into the death of a coal miner in Kanawha County.

Steven Vernon Keeney, 40, of Sylvester in Boone County, was killed early Tuesday morning, according the state Office of Miners’ Health, Safety and Training.

At the time, he was working at Panther Creek Mining’s American Eagle Mine located in Cabin Creek.

Investigators said Keeney was a certified electrician.

The accident was reported before 12:30 a.m. Tuesday.

“Our brave mine electricians are right there underground with our coal miners every day, doing courageous and important work that allows us to keep the lights on across the entire country,” Governor Jim Justice said in a statement.

“Today, we are heartbroken for the loss of one of these heroes: Steven Keeney. Cathy and I ask everyone to join us in praying for his family, friends, and the entire West Virginia mining community.”

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Boone County toddler safe after abduction

BOONE COUNTY, W.Va. — A Boone County toddler is OK after an abduction was reported earlier in the day on Monday.

According to authorities, the 2-year-old was missing for around an hour. The child was later found in Logan County after an alert was issued.

Investigators said the person who took the child is not a family member.

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St. Albans woman pleads guilty for Nov. 2018 fatal shooting

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — A St. Albans woman will spend up to 15 years in prison after admitting to killing the father of one of her children.

Ashley Nicole Kyle, 24, pleaded guilty to second-degree murder.

She admitted to shooting Mikey Ward in November 2018, telling the court he was trying to run her over.

A criminal complaint notes Kyle shot Ward twice over two months; she shot Ward in the foot in October.

In the second incident, Kyle shot Ward while he was a passenger in a van. Kyle admitted to killing Ward after being made fun of for shooting him in the foot and missing his head.

Ward died six days after being shot in the head.

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Charleston hosting PARK(ing) Day this Friday

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — For the second year, Charleston will host an art event to encourage people to think about how the city uses public spaces.

PARK(ing) Day will consist of eight displays on Hale Street between Virginia and Quarrier streets, allowing the space holders to set up interactive activities, art pieces and activities.

Jeff Pierson, the city’s Office of Public Art director, said they were inspired by similar events in other cities.

“Organizations, kind of guerrilla-style, would take a parking space, pay the parking meter all day and create a space in that meter space,” he said.

“We saw what happened in other cities, and we decided in Charleston to do it a different way. We approached organizations and asked them to create a space in those spaces.”

Pierson and the Office of the Public Art will be doing a display he described as “Mr. Potato Head meets Picasso;” it will be an interactive sculpture allowing people to add to the sculpture and pose behind the piece, serving as its head.

A preview event will be held Thursday between 5 p.m. and 8 p.m., with the event itself taking place Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

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Dreams of becoming U.S. citizen realized during naturalization ceremony

CHARLESTON, W.Va. –More than 60 individuals from southern West Virginia have realized their dreams of becoming a United States citizen.

As part of U.S. Constitution Week, hundreds of naturalization ceremonies are taking place this week like the one at the Robert C. Byrd United States Courthouse in downtown Charleston on Monday.

“I can’t explain this. I am so excited,” Ruben Lopez Medellin, a new U.S. citizen originally from Mexico City, Mexico told MetroNews.

“This country has given to me many opportunities. This is a special day for me.”

Medellin, who currently lives in Greenbrier County, said one of the opportunities was meeting his wife. He said they now have two children and are living happily.

Following the Oath of Allegiance by Applicants in front of U.S. District Court Chief Judge Thomas E. Johnston and the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag, new U.S. citizen Diana Lucia Clay gave a speech to the 61 new citizens.

Clay, originally from Colombia, told the crowd that America is where dreams are made.

“There is a great opportunity for us because we can reach our goal if we work hard,” she said. “I am not lying, I think everybody knows that America opens the door for people who fight and work.”

“Here in America, if you work hard it pays off. Don’t give up and keep dreaming because we can do it.”

Clay said her husband and son have helped her through the long and sometimes tough process of becoming a citizen. For Medellin, he said it took him years following his marriage to an American.

A naturalization test must be passed after certain requirements are met including being a permanent resident for at least five years.

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services announced Monday that it will celebrate Constitution Day and Citizenship Day by welcoming nearly 34,300 new U.S. citizens during 316 naturalization ceremonies across the nation between September 13 and 23.

In 2004, the late Senator Byrd helped establish the Constitution Day Holiday.

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West Side shooting victim identified as Charleston man

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — A Charleston man was the victim of a deadly shooting reported Saturday night in the Capital City.

On Monday, Charleston Police identified the victim as Daniel Lymon, 26, also known as “PJ” Lymon.

Lymon was shot in the head while driving a car on Charleston’s West Side Saturday night, wrecked the car near the intersection of Glenwood Avenue and 7th Street after he was shot and later died.

Another man in the car took off running.

Lt. Autumn Davis, spokesperson for the Charleston Police Department, said on Monday’s “580-LIVE with Danny Jones” investigators were seeking help finding the shooter.

“Anybody who has any information, they can always remain anonymous. We just need the information,” Lt. Davis said.

The Charleston Police Department can be reached at 304-348-8111.

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Damage report is in after short landing earlier this month at Charleston’s Yeager Airport

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — A total of 57 blocks of emergency stopping material will have to be replaced at Charleston’s Yeager Airport after a small plane landed short of the runway on the night of September 4th, a damage report has shown.

Terry Sayre, the director of Yeager Airport, said the EMAS system — made up of foam blocks — worked properly during the emergency situation.

EMAS stands for engineered materials arrestor system.

“The first part of the damage occurred at the end of the EMAS bed where the plane impacted the bed and skidded about 100 feet into the EMAS bed and came to rest at about a 30 degree angle,” Sayre said.

“We credit this with saving another life, definitely.”

Inspectors with Safran, the EMAS manufacturer, visited the airport on Friday, September 6th to survey the damage.

The damage report from the company was returned last week but did not include a projected cost for repairs, according to Miller.

Sayre said he was hoping to have that before this Wednesday’s meeting of the Yeager Airport Board.

In addition to the EMAS repair costs, “We incurred lots of other costs for the emergency response, the recovery of the aircraft. We had probably at least 20 employees here that night working along with the Air Guard, fire department, wrecker service.”

No commercial flights were affected and the stopping system itself is still usable.

“There’s 200-some feet towards the runway and all around where this plane just marred the tops the blocks, but they’re still intact and functional,” Sayre said.

The pilot walked away from the problem landing without any injuries.

It happened less than a month after a rebuilding of the EMAS system was completed at Yeager Airport following a 2015 hillside collapse.

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