Tropical Storm Fay weakens after New Jersey landfall
NEW YORK (AP) — Tropical Storm Fay is weakening after making landfall in New Jersey on Friday amid heavy, lashing rain that closed beaches and flooded shore town streets. The storm system was expected to bring 2 to 4 inches of rain, with the possibility of flash flooding in parts of the mid-Atlantic and southern New England. That’s down from earlier forecasts of about 3 to 5 inches of rain. The storm made landfall along the coast of New Jersey about 10 miles northeast of Atlantic City, weakening as it moved over New Jersey. The storm also brought heavy rain to New York City on Friday afternoon.
ARTHUR ASHE STATUE
Statue to tennis star Arthur Ashe to stay put in Richmond
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — On Richmond’s Monument Avenue, a monument to Black tennis legend and civil rights activist Arthur Ashe interrupted the collection of towering statues honoring Confederate veterans. The Ashe statue seemed safe from defacement during recent protests over racism and police brutality, when protesters have covered Confederate statues with graffiti and pulled down a statue of Jefferson Davis. But after someone painted “White Lives Matter” on Ashe’s statue, city officials considered a request from Ashe’s family to temporarily remove the statue to protect it. Ashe’s nephew said Friday that the request was a “contingency plan” and the statue isn’t going anywhere.
Virginia’s Loudoun County to remove Confederate monument
LEESBURG, Va. (AP) — Another Confederate monument has been targeted for removal in Virginia. WTOP reports that officials in northern Virginia’s Loudoun County voted this week to return the statue of a Confederate soldier to the United Daughters of the Confederacy. The statue is slated for removal on Sept. 7. from county property in Leesburg. A new law in Virginia allows local governments to decide the fate of war monuments on their property. Loudoun County Board of Supervisors Chair Phyllis Randall, a Democrat, had long argued that the statue was a symbol of systemic racism. Confederate monuments are coming down throughout the American South in the wake of protests against racism and police brutality.
Video game pals admit to plot to firebomb Nebraska pharmacy
ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) — Two men who plotted to firebomb a Nebraska pharmacy to benefit their own online black market drug dealing have pleaded guilty to federal criminal charges. Prosecutors in Virginia federal court say 32-year-old William Burgamy of Hanover, Maryland, ran a website called NeverPressedRX that sold oxycodone and other drugs over the darknet. His supplier was 41-year-old pharmacist Hyrum Wilson of Auburn, Nebraska. The two admitted to conspiring to blow up a competing pharmacy in Wilson’s town so Wilson’s pharmacy could pick up more business and funnel even more drugs to the darknet operation. The men met online in 2018 while playing the video game War Dragons.
Man faces 2nd-degree murder charge after infant found dead
GLOUCESTER, Va. (AP) — A Virginia man has been charged with second-degree murder and malicious wounding after police say he struck his wife with a hammer and smothered her infant daughter. The little girl died. WAVY-TV reported Thursday that Dennis Chambers is facing charges in Gloucester County. Citing a probable cause statement, the station reported that Chambers allegedly admitted to striking his 24-year-old wife in the head “between two and three times” and used a cotton “burping cloth” to smother her 5-month-old daughter. Chambers was on the run from the police until he was caught Wednesday night in New Kent County.
Deck collapse at rental beach house in Virginia injures 5
VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (AP) — Five people have been injured during a collapse of a deck at a rental beach house in Virginia. Virginia Beach EMS said on Twitter emergency crews were dispatched to the house along Virginia Beach’s Sandbridge Beach when the collapse happened on Thursday evening. WAVY-TV reports some people were trapped beneath parts of the deck after the fall. Authorities say all five injuries were non life-threatening. The news outlet reports the property was built in 2008 and is owned by a family in Maryland.
RACIAL INJUSTICE CONFEDERATE STATUES
Judge blocks removal of more Confederate statues in Richmond
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — A judge has issued a 60-day injunction preventing the city of Richmond from removing any more Confederate monuments from its land. Local media outlets report Richmond Circuit Court Judge Bradley Cavedo made the decision after a hearing in a lawsuit filed Tuesday against Mayor Levar Stoney by an unnamed plaintiff. The removal of statues began last week after Stoney ordered them cleared away amid weeks of protests over police brutality and racism. He said he was concerned about public safety and fears that protesters could get hurt if they tried to bring down the enormous statues themselves. Richmond is the former capital of the Confederacy.
Virus’ impact to Virginia budget not as bad as feared
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — The coronavirus pandemic’s impact on Virginia’s state budget hasn’t been as bad as previously feared. Gov. Ralph Northam announced Thursday that Virginia ended fiscal 2020 with a $236.5 million budget shortfall, far less than anticipated. Overall, state revenues were up 2% from the previous fiscal year. Secretary of Finance Aubrey Layne said Virginia’s high concentration of federal employees and contractors as well as workers who can telecommute, have helped soften the financial impact. Layne said it’s still too early to tell whether the state will be able afford teacher raises and college tuition freezes lawmakers approved earlier this year but then suspended because of the pandemic.