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Today's News

  • Bedford man pleads guilty to soliciting sex from minor

    A Bedford man entered no contest pleas Friday in Bedford County Circuit Court to charges that he solicited sex from a minor he believed to be a 13-year-old girl.

    Ryan A Overstreet, 28, entered his pleas which carry the same effect as a guilty plea. At the request of his lawyer, adjudication of the pleas and sentencing were delayed until a pre-sentence report is completed.

  • Defective chimney cause of fire

    A fire that destroyed four townhouses in the Waterways development near Saunders Point, was caused by a defective chimney.

    The fire started Jan. 27 in the townhouse owned by Larry and Barbara Renner. All the townhouses are vacation homes and the Renners, who live in Winchester, were spending the weekend at the lake. John Jennings, the county's primary fire marshal for investigation, said that investigators' attention was drawn to the townhouse's chimney when they noticed it had holes in it. The holes were not consistent with building collapse.

  • More than statistics

    Sarah Panzau doesn't quote statistics when she makes a presentation on the dangers of drunk driving before high school students.

    "Statistics are something they are not going to remember," she said. "They'll remember me."

    Panzau was 21 when, on Aug. 23, 2003, she chose to get in her car and attempt to drive home drunk. She had a blood-alcohol level four times the legal limit.

    That drive ended in an accident, a bad accident. Her car rolled four times and, while she didn't hurt anybody else, her own injuries were devastating.

  • School officials keep close watch on budget cuts

    With the announcement last week of an anticipated $1.4 billion revenue shortfall into Virginia coffers over the next two years, cuts are on the way and Bedford County Schools officials are watching closely.

    The Bedford County School Board is set to vote on its proposed budget at its Feb. 28 meeting, but the shortfall could lead to a need for changes in the proposal even before the board is able to forward its budget on to the Bedford County Board of Supervisors for consideration.

  • Hotel, conference center may be built

    A hotel/conference center is in the works for Bedford.

    Norris Blanks, a developer with homes in Washington, D. C. and Lynchburg, wants to build the facility off Burks Hill Road across from the Welcome Center. It will be on a three acre parcel behind the Citgo station and will overlook U. S. 460. Its entrance will be from Burks Hill Road.

    Blanks said the hotel will probably be a Hampton Inn.

    "It's more of an upscale, midline accommodation," said Blanks. "It's the most popular mid-range hotel."

  • Teen receives juvenile sentence for sex crimes

    A Bedford teen, who pleaded no contest to four counts of aggravated sexual battery will face juvenile penalties for his crime.

    The charges against Joshua Lovell, now 15, stem from incidents that occurred with two young girls, ages 2 and 3, who were under the care of his mother. Direct indictments landed Lovell in Bedford County Circuit Court, rather than Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court, where he was tried as an adult.

    Assistant Commonwealth's Attorney Wes Nance called the victims' parents to the stand.

  • Bringing out the best

    Bringing some of her own old family photos back to life gave the impetus for a Lake-area woman's new business.

    Cheryl Smith-Clifton opened Smith Mountain Lake Photo Restoration last summer, working out of her home in the Radford Church area. Last month, she opened an office on North Bridge Street, in Bedford. She now divides her work time between her home office and the Bedford office.

  • Commentary--the warriors among us

    I recently became aware of a fascinating Web site, "Baseball in Wartime" (baseballinwartime.com). It's run by a fellow named Gary Bedingfield, an Englishman who lives in Scotland.

    The site contains scads of information related to the wartime experiences of baseball players and the baseball experiences of those that helped to win the war. As the focus is on World War II, there is a good amount on some of the men from Bedford that marched off to a destiny rife with valor and sacrifice.

  • Protecting our boarders

    It?s not easy to be a skateboarder in Bedford. With no dedicated place for them to ply their trade, the area?s boarders are relegated to the sidewalks and parking lots that dot the town and county.

    When they do skate at those spots, they often risk incurring the wrath of the owning merchants or, worse, being chased off by officers from the Bedford Police Department.

    Well, the boarders lives look to become significantly better. Plans are in full swing to build a skate park at the county?s Falling Creek Park.

  • Lady Eagles take county title; Minettes suddenly strong

    The Liberty girls? basketball team did its best to try and ruin Senior Night for the Lady Cavs. Forest prevailed 35-28, in a nail-biter that was nowhere near reminiscent of the earlier year matchup. In that game, Forest pounded the Minettes 49-31.

    ?(The Minettes) weren?t coming here to bear gifts, have cake and carry balloons,? said Forest Head Coach Tom Brown of the Liberty plan to rain on his seniors? parade. ?We were fortunate to get out of this one with a win.?