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Posts from April 2013
by Bob Martin -The Free Lance-Star posted Apr 30 2013 6:42AM
 
VDOT safety patrol workers (left) walk past a driver's cab and a horse trailer that crashed into a VDOT camera pole at the Massaponax exit (126 mile marker) on Tuesday morning, April 30, 2013. The accident was in the southbound lanes. The driver and a passenger were transported to a hospital. A single horse in the trailer was picked up and taken to another location. (ROBERT A. MARTIN / THE FREE LANCE-STAR)
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People : ROBERT A. MARTIN
by Deirdre Blake posted Apr 29 2013 6:56PM
If you bought a new Subaru this year, there could be some bad news. It is recalling just over 10,000, 2014 Forester wagons because the floor mats can get in the way of the clutch, brake or gas pedals. 
Chris Heck with the Service Department of Ultimate Buick GMC Subaru in Fredericksburg says you will be notified by mail.
The fixes for a recalled issue are almost always covered under your manufacturer's warranty. If it takes a few days to fix the problem, the manufacturer will often provide a loaner or rental car.
Heck says never ignore a recall notice. They are almost always issued for a safety concern and it has to affect more than 13% of people that own a model with that issue. Not fixing the problem could lead to you or your family getting injured, down the road. 
 
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People : Chris Heck
by Deirdre Blake posted Apr 29 2013 6:53PM
Stonewall Jackson's famous flank attack 150 years ago will be a part of the Battle of Chancellorsville re-enactment this Saturday.
Terry Dougherty, Director of the Spotsylvania County Museum says they will also have events on Sunday. More than 4,000 troops will be on hand Saturday and living history interpreters will be speaking at encampments both days. There will also be a craft fair, pony rides, living history interpreters and more.
Dougherty says free shuttles will run from Chancellor and Spotsylvania High schools and several other locations.
 
Filed Under :
Topics : War_Conflict
Location : Chancellorsville
by Deirdre Blake posted Apr 29 2013 6:51PM
The almost month-long manhunt for the homicide suspect in the shooting of a securiy guard outside the Q-ball Cafe in Spotsylvania County ends Monday. 
Authorities arrest Chauncey Cartier "Fresh" Lampkin in New York on unrelated charges. He apparently gave New York authorities a false name, but was positively id'd through fingerprints. 
He and two other men are considered suspects in the March 30th shooting of 45-year-old Marcellus "Bull" Greene of Culpeper.
 
by Deirdre Blake posted Apr 29 2013 6:49PM
Before you as a parent hand over the keys to a newly licensed teen, make sure you both know the rules. 
Deborah Bouldin, Manager of Triple-A's retail store in Fredericksburg says their new teen driving safety website offers a fun way to learn the rules of the road in Virginia. Keys to Drive is part of the program at teendriving.aaa.com. The site offers a way for teens and parents to partner together and covers everything from distracted and night driving to driving contracts.
She says if you don't help you kid learn, their friends will. Car crashes are the leading cause of death among teens, outpacing alcohol and drugs. 
 
Filed Under :
Location : Virginia
People : Deborah Bouldin
by Frank Hammon posted Apr 29 2013 9:56AM
Explosive disposal specialists and hazardous material experts were called into examine a white powdery substance found this morning at the Post office at Marine Corps Base Quantico.
Testing is reported to indicate the substance was negative.
In addition to the FBI National Training Academy being located on the base, It's also home to the FBI's Crime Lab.
According to a posting on the base Facebook page, the closing came as a suspicious letter was found this morning.
Four people, 2 Marine Corps postal specialists, a civilian postal clerk and a patron, were in the building at the time of the discovery. 
The Postal facility will reopen later today.

by Frank Hammon posted Apr 25 2013 1:54PM
Fredericksburg police want you to be on the alert for someone trying to pass large counterfeit bills. Spokeswoman Natatia Bledsoe says the suspect uses a large bill for a small purchase and getting back a considerable amount of change. She says the bills got past the initial test conducted by the cashier.
The incidents have not only happened in Fredericksburg, according to Bledsoe. She says Spotsyalvania and Stafford are also investigating.
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People : Natatia Bledsoe
by Frank Hammon posted Apr 25 2013 9:55AM
38,000 pounds of frozen food blocked US 301 in Port Royal most of this morning after a tractor trailer overturned.
State police report the accident happened just after 5 am. when the driver of the rig went off the right side of the southbound lanes. The truck ran into a ditch and turned onto the driver's side.
52-year-old Lynn D. Porter of Portsmouth suffered minor injuries and was taken to Spotsylvania Regional Medical Center for treatment.
Porter is charged reckless driving - failure to maintain proper control.
The crash remains under investigation.
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Location : Portsmouth
People : Lynn D. Porter
by - posted Apr 25 2013 9:11AM
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by Deirdre Blake posted Apr 17 2013 9:23PM
The substance believed to be contained in a letter sent to President Obama is likely ricin. 
While usually lumped in with bioterror agents, Virginia Department of Health State Epidemiologist Dr. David Trump says anthrax poses the same threat. Both of them are dangerous to the person or people that are immediately exposed through inhaling a powder or consuming the substance. Neither are spread from person to person. Ricin is often more easily to come by. trump says it is derived from the bean of the castor plant, used to make castor oil.
Post 9-11, many mail centers away from lawmaker's offices are helping keep more people safe.
 
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Location : Virginia
People : David TrumpObama
by Deirdre Blake posted Apr 17 2013 9:19PM
It's workzone awareness week in Virginia, but safety in them is important all year. Especially with more on I-95 and local roads popping up in the Spring and Summer. 
Lou Hatter with VDOT says driver's need to know they are the first step in stopping injuries and fatalities. Distracted driving already leads to many crashes on area and state roads and workzones increase the danger. Always look for the orange and black signs that will warn that one of them is approaching. There could also be concrete barriers, orange barrels, equipment and even workers. Never try to change lanes in one of them and always slow down, pay attention to the road ahead and other drivers around you.
 
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Location : Virginia
People : Lou Hatter
by Deirdre Blake posted Apr 17 2013 9:13PM
A boating safety class being taught by the Coast Guard Auxillary this weekend in Fredericksburg is designed to keep you safe and make you legal on the water in Virginia and Maryland.
Fredericksburg resident and Auxillary member Charles Hurley says the requirement of a boating license for motorboats with 10 horse power motor is being phased in through 2016. Right now, anyone over 14 on Virginia waters driving a jet ski needs a license now.
The next class is at Gander Mountain on Route 3 from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. this Saturday. There is no pre-registration requirement, but there is a cost. If you miss it, more are coming. The next one locally is at Fredericksburg Motor Sports near Ferry Farm on May 11th. They will also host a courtesy boat safety check that day. 
You can get more on other classes through the Coast Guard Auxillary website under index and boating classes.
 
by Deirdre Blake posted Apr 15 2013 5:42PM
Questions abound following the twin bombing at the finish line of the famed Boston marathon Monday and the local running community in Fredericksburg is shocked.
Nate Brooks with VA Runner in Central Park says they are saddened and in dismay with what has happened. He says these events are meant to be fun and most of the runners, families and spectators come to them to relax, be stress free and enjoy. He says it is not an event where people feel like they need to watch their back and worry that something dangerous will happen. He is hopeful that this will not deter people from taking up running or competing in running events in the future. The Marine Corps Historic Half is coming up in Fredericksburg next month. The Marine Corps Marathon comes to northern Virginia in October.
Former FBI Profiler from Spotsylvania, Clint VanZandt says this is a terrible tragedy. He says there are many unanswered questions and this looks like a terrorrism event. The investigators will have to find a motive and who is responsible. VanZandt says they will have to figure out if this was a lone wolf, like in some past events or an organized group.
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People : Clint VanZandt
by Deirdre Blake posted Apr 12 2013 11:25AM
In this week's Financial Friday's series, Paul Scott with Scott Insurance in Fredericksburg says if you want to save for retirement, a Roth IRA is a good option. It requires a mere $50 a month and you have to get the money from a paying job. For 2013, the limit to put in is $5500. 
The interest earned on the investment is not taxable if you wait until you are 59 and 1/2 to withdraw it and have had it for five years or more. If you need money sooner, there are also exceptions like; the down payment on a first-time home, college expenses of immediate family members, some major emergency medical issues and others. The amount you can withdraw is usually limited to what you have contributed, since it was already taxed before it hit your paycheck. 
Eight in ten people surveyed by Financial Advisor online say financial advice helps and saving for retirement is on their goal list. 
Next in our series, on April 19th, learn more on why considering a 401K might be the right option for you. For more financial advice, visit http://paulscottinsurance.com.
 
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Topics : Business_Finance
People : Paul Scott
by Deirdre Blake posted Apr 12 2013 11:17AM
If you are in the market to buy a new home, do your homework, be patient and ask the right questions.
Kevin Breen Jr. with Caldwell Banker Elite in the Fredericksburg area suggests securing a financial pre-approval before you even look. He says it can be a let down and waste of time to get you heart set on something you can't afford. At the same time, he says many people might get approved to buy a home that has more space than they need or higher energy and mortgage costs that they can afford.
Do some on-line research, consider taking a class and always ask about getting a buyer's agent. Breen says you wouldn't go to court without a lawyer, so don't make the biggest transaction of your life alone. Many of them are free and can help you navigate through what can be a long and complex process. They will also help you ask the tough questions like; how energy efficient are the windows and how much life is left on the hot water heater or major appliances. If you do fly solo, a home inspection is a must to make sure you know all the important details.
Keeping an open mind is also smart. If you find a house you like with a poor design, that could be a good thing. Breen says if you love the space, yard and price, but hate the bright green carpet and red walls, you get an edge. If you are willing to see beyond the minimal cost to change it and someone else is grossed out enough to turn away, your odds of landing the deal are better.
Also, never fall in love with one house. Sometimes your offer may get rejected by the seller and right now in this area, there are more buyers than houses. 
 
Filed Under :
Topics : Human Interest
People : Kevin Breen Jr.
by Deirdre Blake posted Apr 12 2013 11:05AM
Gun control debate will fire up next week after supporters win the first Senate showdown over restricting firearms on Thursday.
The 68 to 31 vote means lengthy debate is ahead over expanded commercial background checks on-line and at gun shows, stronger enforcement of illicit gun sales and more school safety aid.
Some area residents have a mixed reaction, saying they want to make sure the Right to Bear Arms is protected. Others support the background check concept, as long as it is actually enforced. The majority agree that the actual gun is not the issue, but the people with the mental capacity to commit a heinous crime, using a gun. They also remind us that the majority of the mass shootings in recent history were done by people that got the weapon legally themselves or stole it from someone else that did. As for the school issue, some say the U.S. already made middle and elementary schools softer targets after mandating armed officers in high schools alone, after the Columbine tragedy.
The Senate compromise measure means that chamber is open to the concept. Its' Majority Leader Harry Reid has called it a likely uphill battle and thinks there will be tougher opposition in the Republican controlled House.
 
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Topics : Politics
People : Harry Reid
by Associated Press posted Apr 12 2013 7:24AM
   ROCHESTER, N.Y. (AP) - Wegmans Food Markets says it's recalling two fruit juice products because they may contain unacceptable levels of a byproduct of mold.
 
     The grocery chain says some 64 oz. containers of Wegmans Food You Feel Good About Organic Apple Juice and Wegmans Food You Feel Good About Organic Cranberry Juice Blend may contain patulin. It says the substance is unlikely to cause illness, but shouldn't be consumed.
 
     The apple juice has expiration dates of Jan. 28, 2014 through March 19, 2014. The blend has an expiration date of Nov. 5, 2013.
 
     Wegmans announced the recall Thursday after supplier Clement Pappas & Co. notified it the substance was found in apple juice concentrate.
 
     It says consumers should dump the juice and return the containers to stores for refunds.
 
     Wegmans has 81 stores in New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Virginia, Maryland and Massachusetts.
 
by Associated Press posted Apr 12 2013 6:44AM
  CULPEPER, Va. (AP) - The Culpeper County Sheriff's Office says a suspect is dead after being shot by a deputy.
 
     Lt. Jason Romero says in a written statement that the incident occurred Thursday evening at a home in Rapidan. He says neither of the deputies involved was injured.
 
     No further details about the incident were immediately released. Romero says Sheriff Scott Jenkins has turned the investigation over to the Virginia State Police.
 
 
Filed Under :
Topics : Law_Crime
Location : CulpeperVirginia
by Deirdre Blake posted Apr 11 2013 10:23AM
Lots of construction work is coming to downtown Fredericksburg starting April 22nd.
Work from Amelia and Caroline to Princess Anne and George Streets will be part of Columbia Gas of Virginia's upgrade project. It will spend more than $2 million to modernize natural gas lines here and across the state.
Company representatives will offer a public information session on the project next Monday afternoon in the Central Rappahannock Regional Library, starting at 4:30. 
Filed Under :
Topics : Environment
Location : Virginia
by Deirdre Blake posted Apr 10 2013 4:24PM
A former Culpeper cop convicted of shooting and killing an unarmed local woman gets a reprieve from sentencing Wednesday.
A judge makes the decision after a defense attorney for Daniel Harmon-Wright agrues that his conviction on two of three criminal malicious shooting counts are too similar. The Commonwealth's Attorney will now decide if that adds up to double jeopardy, which could end the case in a mistrial. Harmon-Wright will now be sentenced on May 2nd.
 
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Topics : Law_Crime
by Deirdre Blake posted Apr 10 2013 4:16PM
If you get tired of looking for places to get lab work done that are nearby with convenient hour, a new option is on the way.
Any Lab Test Now is moving in next to Salad Creations off Route one in Eagle Village in Fredericksburg. Customers can be tested for everything from diabetes and paternity and allergies. Any Lab Test Now will be open within three to four months.  
 
by Deirdre Blake posted Apr 10 2013 2:48PM
The Spotsylvania Sheriff's Office is still looking for a local homicide suspect and warns area residents that Chauncey Cartier Lampkin is considered armed and dangerous. 
They hope newly released photos will help residents identify him.
He is the suspect in the death of a local security guard outside the Q Ball Cafe on Bragg Road. Anyone with information on Lampkin's whereabouts should call Spotsylvania County Crime Solvers. 

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by Deirdre Blake posted Apr 9 2013 4:04PM
A new survey shows only half of all Metro riders know the Silver Line is coming later this year.
It will extend rail service from Reston through Tysons Corner, but what will it mean for local residents that drive part of the way to DC and make the rest of the commute on Metro? Unfortunately, the average wait between trains on the Blue Line out of Virginia will be 12 minutes. That's because the new Silver Line will take up space in the Rosslyn tunnel, which carries both Blue and Orange and line trains.
Hundreds of thousands of others will see shorter waits and 64 percent of riders say they will use the new trains. 
 
by Associated Press posted Apr 8 2013 4:37PM
   LOUISA, Va. (AP) - One of the nuclear reactors at Dominion Virginia Power's North Anna power station has been shut down for refueling. 
 
     The Richmond Times-Dispatch says the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission released figures showing the utility shut down Unit 2 over the weekend. 
 
     Refueling is typically conducted at 18-month intervals, and generally takes about one month. 
 
     In a memo to employees, the Richmond-based utility said a portion of the unit's reactor fuel will be replaced and a number of maintenance activities will be performed. Maintenance includes repairs to a reactor coolant system valve on one of the unit's three steam generators and seal maintenance on two of the unit's three reactor coolant pumps.
 
     The NRC figures show Unit 1 at North Anna is operating at 100 percent capacity. 
 
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Location : Virginia
People : Virginia Power
by Deirdre Blake posted Apr 8 2013 3:40PM
It could cost more to attend the University of Mary Washington starting this fall. Students could face a hike in tuition of up to 5 percent to help make up a more than million dollar budget shortfall.
The school's board of visitors is considering a 3, 4 or 5 percent increase to both in-state and out-of-state tuition prices. Officials say it is in direct response to cuts in state funding to higher education. The board had already agreed to increase housing costs and board costs, which cover meal plans.
 
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Topics : Education
by Deirdre Blake posted Apr 8 2013 3:33PM
The once popular livestock shows are returning to the State fair of Virginia in Caroline this year. Virginia Cooperative Extension officials say the educational events provide youth an opportunity to learn important life skills and leadership. The 4-H and FFA shows will be held October 3rd through the 6th.
The market and breeding shows will be open to all Virginia 4-H and FFA members and the winners will receive premiums and scholarships.
 
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Location : Virginia
by Associated Press posted Apr 5 2013 6:15PM
     QUANTICO, Va. (AP) - A sergeant at Marine Corps Base Quantico is facing military charges for allegedly making death threats against fellow Marines and co-workers.
 
     WJLA-TV in Washington reported Friday (http://wj.la/17hxxcy ) that 31-year-old Edward Charles Cunningham was taken into custody Thursday and is being held at Rappahannock Regional Jail in Stafford.
 
     Base spokesman Lt. Agustin Solivan said Cunningham was sent for a behavioral health screening last week and cleared for duty. But Solivan said Cunningham continued to make verbal threats, prompting authorities to launch court martial proceedings.
 
     The charges come two weeks after a Marine at Quantico killed two colleagues and then himself at a barracks for staffers at the Officer Candidates School.
 
     Base spokesmen did not return calls and emails Friday from The Associated Press Friday seeking comment.
 
 
Filed Under :
Location : VirginiaWashington
by Deirdre Blake posted Apr 4 2013 7:23PM
Last year the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Fredericksburg brought thousands to the area, a month from now the lives lost at the Battle of Chancellorsville will be honored. 
Events start on May 3rd and run through the 5th. Fredericksburg Tourism Director karen Hedelt says it will be a financial boon for the entire region.
More than 5,000 re-enactors and as many as 15,000 visitors per day are expected.
The formal reenactment will be held at the Spotsylvania Courthouse Village, just of Route 208. Get more on the weekend at www.battleofchancellorsville.com.
by Deirdre Blake posted Apr 4 2013 7:19PM
Whether you are running the historic half or just want to get motivated and healthy, a training guide and local fun runs are there to help.
They are sponsored by Va. Runner in Fredericksburg and Marketing Director Nate Brooks says have a community of people doing the same thing is powerful.
The next six mile fun run is at 6 p.m. Wednesday, April 10th and the run to train on Hospital Hill is May 1st. All remaining runs are free. Get more at www.varunner.com.
 
Filed Under :
Location : Virginia
People : Nate Brooks
by Deirdre Blake posted Apr 4 2013 7:18PM
If you are in a wedding this spring, summer of fall or are getting married, plan ahead now. 
Most bridal gowns are custom made, so allow six months. For bridesmaid dresses, expect them to take eight weeks to arrive at you dress shop. And the mother of the bride has even more options. So we ask Craig Strickland with Formal Envy in Fredericksburg what you might pay? Anywhere from $150 to $1500, depending on whether it is a bridesmaid gown or a wedding gown.
Price doesn't include alterations. But Strickland says they can even alter a dress you bought somewhere else.
Bridesmaid and mother of the bride gowns take about eight weeks to get into a dress shop. A custom wedding gown could take up to six months. Once you narrow down your dress options, then bring in friends and family to find "the one."
 
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People : Craig Strickland
by Deirdre Blake posted Apr 4 2013 5:31PM
 Chauncey Cartier "Fresh" Lampkin
A visitation is set for the security guard that was shot and killed outside the Qball Cafe in Fredericksburg last Saturday.
Family and friends of 45 year old Marcellus "Bull" Greene of Culpeper, will gather at Culpeper Baptist Church from 5 until 8 p.m. on Monday. A second visitation is set for the following morning, before he is laid to rest.
Meanwhile, the U.S. Marshall's Fugitive Taskforce is leading a nationwide manhunt for his suspected shooter, Chauncey Cartier "Fresh" Lampkin of Spotsylvania. He is described as black, about 5 feet 11 inches tall and 190 pounds, with tattoos on his arms and shoulders. A second suspect in the case surrendered to police earlier this week.
 
by Deirdre Blake posted Apr 2 2013 1:31PM
Spotsylvania authorities need your help to find two suspects in the death of a security guard outside the Q-ball cafe on Bragg Road early Saturday morning.
One man has been arrested, but Chauncey Carter Lampkin of Spotsylvania and David Davion Burroughs of Stafford are still at large. Marcellus Greene was found dead of a gunshot wound in front of the club shortly after a group of people were kicked out and started a fight in the parking lot. Witnesses say a car came back through the lot and one of the bullets fired hit Greene.
You may text any information on the case to SEE911. 
 
by Deirdre Blake posted Apr 1 2013 3:43PM
Parents in the region are reminded to make sure their kids are safe while they get to and from the bus stop.
It comes after a 14 year old boy is attacked and robbed while getting to the bus in the Aquia Harbor subdivision in Stafford. The teen says the suspect was on a cell phone in a drive way and seemed harmless.
After demanding the boy's wallet, he started punching, throwing and kicking him before getting the wallet and running away. The man is described as black aged 18 to 25 about six feet tall with blue jeans, a hoodie and black and red basketball shoes.
 
by Deirdre Blake posted Apr 1 2013 2:18PM
If you are traveling on 95 south between 9 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. Tuesday be cautious and allow a little extra time.
Near exit 147, at the Quantico Marine Corps base, the right lane will be closed during those hours so a work zone barrier can be removed. It was out there to protect crews while they stabilized an embankment that had eroded. VDOT and its contractors replaced unsuitable soil in the area with stone, and built a 24-foot retaining wall to keep drivers safe in the future.  
 
Filed Under :
Topics : Environment
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