Ian Price

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The Salem Mayhem — which just started its inaugural season here in the Roanoke Valley almost exactly a month ago — will have no more games this season. In a social media post, the entire Professional Box Lacrosse Association will have all games postponed for the rest of the season. Season ticket holders will be contacted and will receive a full refund for the duration of the season.

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) — A school shooting that Virginia police said was committed by a 6-year-old student represents an extremely rare occurrence of a young child bringing a gun into school and wounding a teacher, according to experts who study gun violence.

The boy shot and wounded the teacher in a first-grade classroom on Friday at Richneck Elementary School in Newport News, according to authorities. The police chief said the shooting was not accidental and was part of an altercation but didn’t elaborate further. No students were injured.

A school shooting involving a 6-year-old is extremely rare, although not unheard of, with at least one other high-profile example of a 6-year-old in Michigan shooting a fellow student in 2000, experts said. Meanwhile, Virginia law limits the ways in which a child that age can be punished for such a crime.

“There are students who killed teachers, more typically high school students,” said James Alan Fox, a criminologist at Boston’s Northeastern University. “I don’t know of other cases where a 6-year-old shot a teacher.”

Fox said he was aware of only one other school shooting involving a student that age. In 2000, a 6-year-old boy fired a bullet from a .32-caliber gun inside Buell Elementary near Flint, Michigan, 60 miles (96 kilometers) from Detroit, striking a 6-year-old girl who later died from her wound.

Fox analyzed school shooting data going back to 1970 from the Center for Homeland Defense and Security, which is located at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California. He said the data listed school shootings involving children ages 7, 8, 9 and older, but not 6-year-olds.

From 2010 through 2021, there were more than 800 school-related shootings in K-12 schools that involved 1,149 victims. Thirty percent of those occurred in the school building, Fox said.

Daniel W. Webster, a professor at Johns Hopkins University who studies gun violence, agreed that a 6-year-old shooting a teacher in a school is extremely unusual. But he said his research shows that instances of young children accessing loaded guns and shooting themselves or others unintentionally in homes or other settings are rising.

“A 6 year old gaining access to a loaded gun and shooting him/herself or someone else, sadly, is not so rare,” he said in an email.

In the Newport News case, Police Chief Steve Drew said Friday that the teacher suffered life-threatening injuries but that her condition had improved somewhat by late Friday afternoon. He said the shooting didn’t appear to be an accident and that it was isolated to the single victim. He said the student and teacher had known each other in a classroom setting.

“We did not have a situation where someone was going around the school shooting,” Drew told reporters.

He said the boy had a handgun in the classroom, and investigators were trying to figure out where he obtained it.

Parents and students were reunited at a gymnasium door, Newport News Public Schools said via Facebook.

The police chief did not specifically address questions about whether authorities were in touch with the boy’s parents, but said members of the police department were handling that investigation.

“We have been in contact with our commonwealth’s attorney (local prosecutor) and some other entities to help us best get services to this young man,” Drew said.

Newport News is a city of about 185,000 people in southeastern Virginia known for its shipyard, which builds the nation’s aircraft carriers and other U.S. Navy vessels.

Richneck has about 550 students who are in kindergarten through fifth grade, according to the Virginia Department of Education’s website. School officials have already said that there will be no classes at the school on Monday.

“Today our students got a lesson in gun violence,” said George Parker III, Newport News schools superintendent, “and what guns can do to disrupt, not only an educational environment, but also a family, a community.”

Virginia law does not allow 6-year-olds to be tried as adults.

In addition, a 6-year-old is too young to be committed to the custody of the Department of Juvenile Justice if found guilty.

A juvenile judge would have authority, though, to revoke a parent’s custody and place a child under the purview of the Department of Social Services.

___ Associated Press Writer Matthew Barakat in Falls Church contributed to this report.

UPDATE – Roanoke Police have determined that there is no evidence to support the initial claims of a shooting or shots fired regarding this offense.

Further investigation into this incident revealed that no evidence of a shooting was located at the scene. After a thorough medical examination, it was discovered that there was also a lack of physical evidence to support the claims of a gunshot wound. Additionally, the victim’s statements to Detectives and Officers revealed a lack of any evidence that the injury he sustained was the result of a gunshot or any type of assault.

As previously stated, the man was extremely uncooperative and initially refused to provide any identifying information to first responders. Detectives were eventually able to accurately identify the man and found that he was wanted on felony charges from Virginia Beach, VA.  Upon release from the hospital, the man was arrested and he was taken to jail.

This incident is no longer active and has been closed.

Click HERE to see outages and warming shelters

See the latest update from AEP Below. This is the final update regarding this storm

 

Appalachian Power Storm Response Update

Monday, December 26, 2022 – 11:45 a.m.

Situation

More than 1,100 workers remain committed to restoring electric service for nearly 50,000 Appalachian Power customers who lost power December 23 from damaging winds and bitterly cold temperatures.

Power has been restored to 90 percent of customers affected by the severe weather, and crews are making great progress to complete service restoration today.

Remaining outages are mostly in areas of Virginia in and around Roanoke and Lynchburg.

Outages

During extreme cold temperatures workers have had to stay in areas after repairs were complete, and bring customers back in small groups to avoid overloading electric lines.

This extra step will not be needed as much with today’s more moderate temperatures, which will help restoration progress faster.

Areas with the most remaining outages include: Bedford County, 408; Botetourt County, 405; Campbell County, 470; Franklin County, 1,639; Henry County, 145; Lynchburg, 1,234; Pulaski County, 158; Roanoke County, 1,018; and Roanoke, 580.

Restoration Estimates

Most customers still without service from the storm should have service restored by late tonight.

In isolated cases or areas where extensive repairs are needed, restoration may extend into tomorrow.

We are working to update restoration estimates for each specific outage as information becomes available.

Note of Thanks

Through this time of outages in extreme cold and through the Christmas holiday, we wish to express our appreciation to our customers for their patience and understanding; to state and local officials for their assistance; and to our employees, contractors and those who came from many states away to help restore power in this difficult time.

Safety Message

  • All downed lines are dangerous — they carry an electric current that can cause serious or even fatal injuries. Stay away to stay alive. If you encounter a fallen wire, keep yourself and others away from it and anything it may be touching, and call 911 and Appalachian Power at 1-800-956-4237 immediately.
  • If you plan to use an alternate heat source, ensure it is in good working order and follow all safety precautions. Never operate lanterns, heaters, fuel-fired stoves or burn charcoal without proper ventilation to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning and fires.
  • If you use a portable or RV generator, do not plug the generator into your circuit box.
  • Additional safety tips are posted at https://www.appalachianpower.com/outages/faq/OutageSafetyTips.aspx.

For More Information

Customers can get specific information about the outages affecting their accounts via text message and/or email by subscribing to Appalachian Power outage alerts. To sign up, please visit www.appalachianpower.com/alerts.

A snapshot view of current outages is available anytime at www.appalachianpower.com. Go to the Outages and Problems section of the homepage and click “View Outage Map.” We are also including known warming shelter locations on our outage map.

Next Update: This is the final update for this storm.

 

 

 

Appalachian Power Storm Response Update

Sunday, December 25, 2022 – 2:00 p.m.

Situation

Power has been restored to roughly 75 percent of Appalachian Power customers impacted by Friday’s damaging winds and bitterly cold temperatures. Most West Virginia customers are back in service, and the company remains focused on securing resources for Virginia.

An additional 150 workers arrived in Virginia today from other AEP operating companies. They join the more than 1,250 workers committed to Appalachian Power’s storm restoration effort. An additional 120 workers from other parts of the company’s service area are expected to arrive in Virginia tomorrow.

Thank you to the employees, friends and family, as well as members of the community, for providing warm meals for the restoration workers over the holiday.

 

Outages

  • Nearly 50,000 Appalachian Power customers were impacted by the storm.
  • Extreme cold temperatures continue to create line overload problems when trying to restore large numbers of customers. This has impacted restoration times. After repairs are complete, workers must restore power to small groups of customers, letting electric load settle before restoring additional customers.
  • Customers with outages can help speed restoration by turning off large electric using appliances, such as heaters and water heaters, until 15 or more minutes after power has been restored.

Restoration Estimates

Most customers should have service restored as follows:

Tonight

  • Northern Panhandle customers in West Virginia
  • Bland, Carroll, Grayson, Montgomery, Pulaski and Wythe County customers in Virginia

Monday Night

  • Albemarle, Amherst, Floyd and Nelson counties in Virginia

Tuesday Night

  • Bedford, Botetourt, Campbell, Franklin, Henry, Patrick, Pittsylvania and Roanoke counties, along with the cities of Lynchburg and Roanoke in Virginia

Safety Message

  • All downed lines are dangerous — they carry an electric current that can cause serious or even fatal injuries. Stay away to stay alive. If you encounter a fallen wire, keep yourself and others away from it and anything it may be touching, and call 911 and Appalachian Power at 1-800-956-4237 immediately.
  • If you plan to use an alternate heat source, ensure it is in good working order and follow all safety precautions. Never operate lanterns, heaters, fuel-fired stoves or burn charcoal without proper ventilation to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning and fires.
  • If you use a portable or RV generator, do not plug the generator into your circuit box.
  • Additional safety tips are posted at https://www.appalachianpower.com/outages/faq/OutageSafetyTips.aspx.

For More Information

Customers can get specific information about the outages affecting their accounts via text message and/or email by subscribing to Appalachian Power outage alerts. To sign up, please visit www.appalachianpower.com/alerts.

A snapshot view of current outages is available anytime at www.appalachianpower.com. Go to the Outages and Problems section of the homepage and click “View Outage Map.” We are also including known warming shelter locations on our outage map.

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