State News

WV MetroNews

The Voice of West Virginia

Wayne County man charged with arson for allegedly setting barn on fire

FORT GAY, W.Va. — A Wayne County man faces arson charges after State Police say he allegedly set a barn on fire.

Eric Taylor

Eric Taylor, 37, of Fort Gay, was arrested Thursday night on arson and for being a fugitive from justice. Taylor was wanted on a parole violation in North Dakota.

The fire was reported at around 7 p.m. Thursday.

Taylor now in the Western Regional Jail.

The post Wayne County man charged with arson for allegedly setting barn on fire appeared first on WV MetroNews.

Source: WV MetroNews

Two charged in meth-related death of child in Monongalia County

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Two people have been charged after an autopsy revealed methamphetamine intoxication contributed to the death of a two-year-old.

Reports indicate the child died in Monongalia County in December of 2020 and Brandy Eddy, 42, of Sutton, and the child’s father, Jonathan Eddy were in the home prior to the death of their daughter.

Both suspects have been processed at the Central Regional Jail and are each charged with child neglect.

Police have been unable to determine how the child came into contact with the drug.

The post Two charged in meth-related death of child in Monongalia County appeared first on WV MetroNews.

Source: WV MetroNews

Fairmont police say fatal shooting was a targeted attack; two arrested

FAIRMONT, W.Va. — Police in Fairmont are calling the shooting at the Fairmont Hills Apartment Complex early Thursday morning a targeted attack, and there is no further danger to the public.

Fairmont police chief Steve Shine said Leo Charles Ginty, 18, and Clayton Vanlier Peck, 22, both of Frostburg, Md., traveled to the apartment complex in Fairmont to sell a large quantity of marijuana.

During the transaction, Peck was fatally shot, and his body was found over an embankment at the apartment complex.

As police arrived around 2:50 a.m. they encountered the vehicle occupied by the two subjects from Frostburg. Police stopped the vehicle, recovered the marijuana and took Ginty into custody.

Detectives isolated evidence in the car and at the scene that led them to Zeighshawn Jarelle Meade, 18, who was apprehended in a Fairmont home.

Ginty has been charged with possession with intent to deliver.

Meade has been charged with first-degree murder.

Detectives continue to review surveillance video and would like to talk to anyone who may have seen something. Information can be left confidentially by calling 304-366-2217.

The post Fairmont police say fatal shooting was a targeted attack; two arrested appeared first on WV MetroNews.

Source: WV MetroNews

MetroNews This Morning 3-24-23

Today on MetroNews This Morning:

–West Virginia is under a State of Preparedness with severe weather in the forecast for the next 24 hours

–Interim State Police Superintendent Jack Chambers says he’ll do what it takes to fix problems identified within the agenc

–PEIA Finance Board has three plans for PEIA and will take those to stakeholder with meetings next week

–In Sports: West Liberty advances to the D-II National Championship game

Listen to “MetroNews This Morning 3-24-23” on Spreaker.

The post MetroNews This Morning 3-24-23 appeared first on WV MetroNews.

Source: WV MetroNews

Hyperloop Stalls


Two-and-a-half years ago, Governor Jim Justice announced with much fanfare that a futuristic company was making an enormous investment here. Virgin Hyperloop would locate a testing and certification facility on nearly 800 acres in Tucker and Grant counties.

It was an inspiring moment. West Virginia had beaten out every other state for hyperloop, a transportation technology that would move people in sealed vacuum tubes at speeds up to 600 miles an hour or more.

But it is not going to happen, at least not anytime soon.

Sarah Biller, executive director of Vantage Ventures at WVU and point person on the hyperloop project, confirmed that to me this week. She explained that the Virgin Hyperloop/Hyperloop One went through a significant restructuring.

“The company shifted its strategy to using its technology for logistics and cargo movement, as opposed to developing a global mass transportation system,” Biller said. “The movement of goods and packages is a first priority at this point,” she said.

So, there is no need for the $500-million people-moving hyperloop testing facility planned for here. Understandably, Biller is disappointed. “You want to see it with every ounce of your being,” she said.

However, Biller sees a silver lining since West Virginia beat out every other state. “We were seen as the best place in the country,” Biller said. “It proved that we can compete.”

That is a fair point. Jay Walder, who at the time of the announcement was the CEO of Virgin Hyperloop, said, “The engineering and scientific talent, combined with the skilled workforce and collaborative spirit we know is critical to this project, is all right here.”

Well, those qualities are still here. Hyperloop’s decision to change direction is not a reflection on West Virginia’s ability to meet the demands of new technology innovators. “West Virginia is the right place for these technologies to find a home,” Biller said. “That’s the story of West Virginia’s future.”

Fortunately, West Virginia did not invest beyond the work Biller and others put into trying to secure the project, but even that has value. “We learned about competing with the best states in the country,” she said.

“Not everything is going to be a success, but that doesn’t mean that you give up,” she said. “You figure out a new pathway, and that is what innovation is all about.”

Yes, Hyperloop was over hyped. We are not going to be zipping around in vacuum tubes anytime soon, or maybe ever. The collapse of the project is disappointing, but the experience alone contributes to the growth of West Virginia’s entrepreneurial spirit.



The post Hyperloop Stalls appeared first on WV MetroNews.

Source: WV MetroNews

Class AAAA All-State Boys Basketball List

The Class AAAA All-State Boys Basketball Team as Selected by the West Virginia Sports Writers Association:

First Team

Sharron Young, Morgantown, Jr. (Captain), 6-0, 19.4 

Ben Nicol, GW, Sr. 6-6, 16.3 

Nate Plotner, Parkersburg South, Sr. 6-8 14.0 

Anthony Spatafore, Bridgeport, Sr. 6-3 17.1

Mikey Johnson, Huntington, Jr. 6-3, 17.3 

Brody Davis, Morgantown, Sr. 6-5. 14.6 

Cyrus Traugh, Parkersburg South, Sr. 6-2 15.5 

Jamari Jenkins, Jefferson, Soph. 5-8, 15.7 

Second Team 

Elijah Redfern, Beckley, Jr. 6-2, 18.1 

Brendan Hoffman, GW, Sr. (Captain) 6-2, 18.2 

Duane Harris, Huntington, Jr. 17.5 

Goose Gabbert, Greenbrier East, Sr. 17.4 

Dominic Schmidt, Cabell Midland, Sr. 22.2 

Aiden Davis, Wheeling Park, Soph. 20.3 

Caleb Thomas, Spring Mills, Soph. 

Cam Danser, Morgantown, Sr. 6-6. 10.5 

Honorable mention 

Zach Ayoob, Bridgeport; Rafael Barcinas, University; Avion Blackwood, Martinsburg; Aiden Blake, Parkersburg South; Jackson Clark, Hurricane; Ashton Curry, Bridgeport; Coby Dillon, Woodrow Wilson; Izzy Everett, Morgantown; Austin Fleming, Parkersburg; James Fortney-Garbart, University; Jaiden Gladney, Jefferson; Roman Gray, John Marshall; Chase Hancock, Princeton; Kris Joyce, Princeton; Trevor Kelley, Oak Hill; Malachi Lewis, Oak Hill; Matt Mahood, Musselman; Brett Phillips, Wheeling Park; Austin Reeves, Parkersburg South; Clay Robertson, Spring Valley; Khayleb Robinson, Spring Mills; Nate Rodriguez, Parkersburg; Adam Seams, Greenbrier East; Will Shively, Jefferson; Bryson Smith, South Charleston; Jackson Smith, Parkersburg South; Brennan Sobutka, John Marshall Leyton Toepfer, Brooke; Cam Wilkes, Hedgesville. 

The post Class AAAA All-State Boys Basketball List appeared first on WV MetroNews.

Source: WV MetroNews

Class AAAA All-State Girls Basketball List

The Class AAAA All-State Girls Basketball Team as Selected by the West Virginia Sports Writers Association:

First Team

Alexis Bordas, Wheeling Park, Soph. (Captain)

Lala Woods, Wheeling Park, Soph.

Gabby Reep, Bridgeport, Sr.

Lily Jordan, Morgantown, Jr.

Jayda Allie, Cabell Midland, Sr.

Kilah Dandridge, Spring Mills, Soph.

Hallie Bailey, Spring Valley, Sr.

Ella Simpson, University, Jr.


Second Team 

Finley Lohan, George Washington, Jr.

Cadence Stewart, Greenbrier East, Sr. (Captain)

JayCee Elzy, St. Albans, Soph.

Sofia Wassick, Morgantown, Jr.

Trinity Balog, Parkersburg, Jr.

Keanti Thompson, Woodrow Wilson, Sr.

Zaniah Zellous, GW, Soph.

Abby Dillon, Woodrow Wilson, Soph.


Honorable Mention

Sophia Abraham, Wheeling Park; Lexi Adams, Washington; Sophi Aldridge, Cabell Midland; Autumn Bane, Princeton; Lindsay Bechtel, Morgantown; Kaitlyn Blake, John Marshall; Olivia Bolduc, Spring Mills; Ava Bolen, Brooke; Kaydance Bradley, Martinsburg; Mackenzie Brezovec, Jefferson; Lucie Cline, Parkersburg South; Kylie Conner, Princeton; Lataja Creasey, Woodrow Wilson; Josie Cross, Woodrow Wilson; Kendal Currence, Buckhannon-Upshur; Allie Daniels, Spring Valley; Natalie Daugherty, Wheeling Park; Jaylin Dodd, Bridgeport; Reagan Edsell, Spring Mills; Kaila Fitzpatrick, Martinsburg; Mia Henkins, Morgantown; Amara Jackson, Huntington; Alanna Mackenzie, Riverside; Kenna Maxwell, Buckhannon-Upshur; Maggie Oduor, Hurricane; Dria Parker, Spring Valley; Mary Rivera, Washington; Gracie Shamblin, Parkersburg South; Emily Sharkey, University; Natalie Smith, South Charleston; Hannah Stemple, University; Kennedy Stewart, Greenbrier East; Maddie Stull, Princeton; Jazmyn Wheeler, Cabell Midland; Ella White, Preston; Maddy Young, Hurricane

The post Class AAAA All-State Girls Basketball List appeared first on WV MetroNews.

Source: WV MetroNews

Sheriff’s department testing out second body cam

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — For the past 10 months, deputies with the Kanawha County Sheriff’s Department have been testing out body cameras. Chief Deputy for the department sasy they will test out a new brand of cameras in April.

Chief Crawford gave out an update to the Kanawha County Commission Thursday afternoon. Chief Crawford said they’ve been going through trials with a Motorola brand of body cameras. The Motorola camera also attaches to the in-car camera in a deputies patrol car.

The commission has already approved the funding required for these cameras for the sheriff’s department.

“We want the latest, greatest technology,” said Crawford. “We want a policy at the Kanawha County Sherriff’s office that best fits us.

These body cams will have the latest technology, helping protect not only the public, but also the deputies who are using them.

The chief deputy said they will next test out a slightly different camera from Axon. Crawford said he doesn’t know of any department in the southern part of the state that’s using these kinds of cameras with the abilities they come with.

“When we roll this out on our platform, we want input from everybody,” Crawford said Thursday, making sure all deputies in the department approve of the cameras used.

The price has gone up however, but the commission and President Kent Carper said they’re still on board. Crawford explained that over time the price has risen from an original estimate of $900 thousand dollars, to now somewhere between $1 million and $1.2 million.

The Kanawha County Commission plans to help fund the purchase by seeking grants from other agencies.

“You (the commission) came to us and said ‘were on board, let’s get this done.'”

Chief Crawford said the Sheriff’s Office would be ready to purchase body cams no later than early next year.

The post Sheriff’s department testing out second body cam appeared first on WV MetroNews.

Source: WV MetroNews

West Liberty heads to the national title game after holding off Black Hills State, 87-82

(Story by Taylor Kennedy)

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — The West Liberty Hilltoppers’ physicality and tenaciousness have pushed them through tough battles throughout the 2022-23 season.

That identity did not change in West Liberty’s national semifinal game against No. 3 Black Hills State.

The Hilltoppers’ relentless defense stepped up in the first 20 minutes, boosting them to an 87-82 victory over the Yellow Jackets.

The victory sends West Liberty to its second NCAA Division II national title game in program history and its first since 2014.

“We screwed up in the second half,” said Howlett on the CityNet Statewide Sportsline Thursday evening. “We got a good start and played hard in the first half. We then started to do some uncharacteristic things in the second half then Bryce Butler got hit in the nose late in the half. We had some young guys that maybe the moment was too big for them, but we won.”

The Hilltoppers (33-3) will play a familiar face on Saturday as Jim Crutchfield, the current head coach at Nova Southeastern, will face his former team and protégé Ben Howlett on Saturday at 3 p.m. EST on CBS.

West Liberty and Nova Southeastern are the top two scoring offenses in the nation. The Sharks lead the country, averaging 105 points per game. WLU will also go toe-to-toe against former Hilltopper Will Yoakum.

“I think it will be fun,” Howlett mentioned. “Both of us are ultra-competitive. As far as scouting, we are looking in the mirror. We run a lot of the same stuff. Our pressures are almost identical. We are playing for our schools. It is not about Coach Crutchfield or me. It is about West Liberty and Nova Southeastern.”

Butler got drilled in the nose by fellow Hilltopper Ben Sarson with less than six minutes remaining in the game. Butler went back and forth from the WLU locker room onto the floor to play, but the blood continued to drip. Fortunately, his nose is not broken, according to Howlett.

Butler and Malik McKinney each scored a team-high 16 points.

“Having him on the floor makes our team better, not only from an offensive standpoint but from a defensive and leadership standpoint,” Howlett noted. “He tried to go back out, but it kept leaking. We had to take him back out. We got the game stopped then he finished the game.”

The Hilltoppers stretched their lead out to 18 points four times in the second half, including a 65-47 lead with 12:46 remaining.

However, West Liberty did not shoot well from long distance in the second half, only shooting 25 percent after 42 percent in the first half.

“I thought we got too comfortable in the second half,” Howlett stated. “Leading into this game, I thought we were playing our best basketball. When you get this late in the season, everyone is good. Black Hills State has [Joel Scott], and he flexed his muscles in the second half. Luckily, the clock ran out, and we were winning by five.”

Yet, Black Hills State fought back, including a 6-0 run late in the game that reduced its deficit to six, 80-74. However, McKinney stepped up in the final 1:40 by scoring six of WLU’s final seven points.

The Hilltoppers’ bench outscored the Yellow Jackets 30-14, including a 14-point performance by Chaz Hinds.

Mercyhurst transfer Steve Cannady added 13 points for Howlett.

Black Hills State had four players finish in double-figures, including Scott leading all scorers with 30 points, one shy of tying his season high.

The post West Liberty heads to the national title game after holding off Black Hills State, 87-82 appeared first on WV MetroNews.

Source: WV MetroNews

Marshall veterans showcase skills at annual Pro Day

By Bill Cornwell

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. — Fourteen Marshall football seniors who wrapped up their college careers last fall tried to impress possible future employers Wednesday when they took part in MU’s annual Pro Day inside the Chris Cline Athletic Center.

Ahead of his third year at Marshall, head coach Charles Huff says the event was a big moment for his program and the future prospects for former MU players.

“It’s an exciting day for our seniors,” Huff said. “This is something you dream about for a long time when you play this game at a high level and today, to have many NFL scouts and personnel people here was really good.”

Scouts from 10 National Football League teams had representatives in attendance in Huntington Wednesday.

Players took part in strength, speed and agility drills that translate to the next level.

Among players taking part in Pro Day were two All-Sun Belt Conference picks from the 2022 Herd team in running back Khalan Laborn and cornerback Steven Gilmore.

Gilmore’s brother, NFL veteran Stephon Gilmore, was on hand to encourage his brother and take in the drills. Stephon Gilmore was recently traded by the Indianapolis Colts to the Dallas Cowboys.

“It’s definitely a great feeling, just having everyone out there with you,” Steven Gilmore said. “We all sweated together being here, so coming out here and putting on a show and doing it all together, you want to go hard for your brother.”

Gilmore impressed those in attendance with a 4.44 finish time in the 40-yard dash. Laborn and safety Isaiah Norman were close with 40-yard run times of approximately 4.5 seconds.

Laborn and Gilmore were also standouts in the vertical jump and broad jump, while Laborn was tops in the three-cone shuttle run at 6.92 seconds. Norman led the 20-yard shuttle run at 4.16 seconds.

The top strength exhibition of the day came from offensive lineman Kendrick Sartor, who completed the 225-pound bench press 27 times.

“This is just a piece of the puzzle,” Huff said. “You aren’t going to make it or not make it in the NFL based on what you did today. The consistency of your film and what you do between now and the time that you get that opportunity is going to matter.”

Football activities will continue at Marshall as the Thundering Herd holds the first of 15 spring football practices next Monday. Spring drills wrap up with the annual Spring Football Game on April 22 at Joan C. Edwards Stadium.

The post Marshall veterans showcase skills at annual Pro Day appeared first on WV MetroNews.

Source: WV MetroNews