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According to the latest numbers released this morning by The Virginia Department of Health there are 46 new confirmed or probable coronavirus cases ,2 new deaths and 2 new hospitalizations being attributed to the Roanoke Valley. State health officials report 28 new cases and one new hospitalization in Roanoke City, 11 new cases, 2 new deaths and one new hospitalization in Roanoke County, 3 new cases in Botetourt County and 4 new cases in Salem.

From Wason Center for Public  Policy :– A majority of Virginia voters say the country is loosening restrictions related to Covid-19 too quickly (54%), and more voters say Democratic nominee Joe Biden (48%) would be better at responding to the pandemic than President Donald Trump (36%), according to a survey of likely voters released today by the Wason Center for Public Policy at Christopher Newport University. “To the extent that the presidential election is about Covid-19, voters in Virginia are standing with Biden,” Wason Center Research Director Rebecca Bromley-Trujillo said. Compared with the nation, a plurality of Virginia voters say the state’s reopening pace is about right (47%), with the remainder divided over wanting more restrictions (24%) or fewer restrictions (29%). A similar pattern shows about K-12 school opening, as voters prefer a hybrid model (46%) to all-virtual (28%) or fully in-person (23%).

The survey also asked about police misconduct and use of force, including reforms now before the Virginia General Assembly. Strong majorities support requiring training on de-escalation (96%), requiring body cameras (95%), requiring officers to intervene when a colleague uses unlawful force (94%), requiring public reports when force is used (76%), establishing a public database on misconduct ((76%) and creating civilian oversight boards (70%). By slimmer majorities, voters support criminalizing chokeholds (56%-42%) and allowing civilians to sue for misconduct (52%-44%). Voters narrowly oppose banning police use of military-gradeweapons (50%-47%). Voters view police positively on protecting people from crime (64%) but negatively on treatment of racial groups (65%), use of force (54%) and holding officers accountable for misconduct (61%).

“Majorities across all demographic groups – white, Black, men, women, young, old, college or not — give police poor marks on race,” Wason Center Academic Director Quentin Kidd said. “But there’s a partisan divide. Solid majorities of Democrats and Independents rate police poorly on race, but nearly two out of three Republicans say police treat racial and ethnic groups equally.”The Wason Center interviewed 796 registered Virginia voters on cell phone and landline, September 9-21. The margin of error for the whole survey is +/-3.9%. The full report is attached.

MGN

NEWS RELEASE: Virginia State Police M.S. Zola is investigating a two vehicle crash which resulted in a fatality.  The crash occurred on Saturday (Sept 26) at 11:55 a.m. on Route 58 at the intersection with Preston Road in Henry County.

A 2019 Ford Edge failed to yield the right of way while making a left turn onto Route 58 and was struck by a 2010 Harley Davidson motorcycle which was traveling east on Route 58.

The Ford was driven by Robert E. Handy, 73, of Danville, Va.  Mr. Handy was wearing his seatbelt and was not injured in the crash.  The passengers in the vehicle, Margaret Handy, 73 and David Handy, 46, were injured and transported to the hospital.

The Harley Davidson was driven by David Wayne McMillan, 59, of Spencer, Va.  Mr. McMillan was wearing his helmet and died at the scene.

Robert E. Handy was charged with failing to yield the right of way in the crash.

The crash remains under investigation.

According to the latest numbers released this morning by The Virginia Department of Health there are 4 new confirmed or probable coronavirus cases being attributed to the Roanoke Valley. State health officials report 3 new cases in Roanoke City, and 1 new case in Roanoke County. Numbers in Botetourt County and Salem remain the same.

Photo: Roanoke City Jail

UPDATED NEWS RELEASE: Roanoke Police have arrested Brent Dinkins, 21 of Roanoke, in connection with this incident. He is charged with malicious wounding.

PREVIOUS: On September 22, 2020 at around 6:30pm, Roanoke Police were notified that an adult male with a gunshot wound had arrived at Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital via personal vehicle. Officers responded to the hospital to speak with the victim. There is no immediate information about the victim’s condition. Preliminary investigation indicates the incident occurred on I-581 southbound between the Orange Avenue and Elm Avenue exits. The victim was driving a vehicle when the shooting occurred. No arrests have been made regarding this incident. This remains an ongoing investigation. Anyone with information about this incident is asked to call (540)344-8500 and share what you know. You can also text us at 274637; please begin the text with “RoanokePD” to ensure it’s properly sent. Both calls and texts can remain anonymous.

NEWS RELEASE: On September 24, 2020 at around 11:30pm, Roanoke Police responded to calls about a person with a gunshot wound in the area of Kellogg Avenue and Rockland Avenue NW. Officers located an adult male with what appeared to be a serious gunshot wound outside of a residence in the 900 block of Rockland Avenue NW. Roanoke Fire-EMS transported the man to Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital for treatment of his injuries. Officers were able to determine that the incident occurred in the 800 block of Hunt Avenue NW. At that address, they located property damage and other evidence consistent with a shooting. Further details on this investigation are limited. No arrests have been made at this time and the investigation remains ongoing. Anyone with information about this incident is asked to call  (540)344-8500 and share what you know. You can also text us at 274637; please begin the text with “RoanokePD” to ensure it’s properly sent. Both calls and texts can remain anonymous.

Gov. Ralph Northam

NEWS RELEASE: RICHMOND—On Wednesday evening, Governor Ralph Northam and First Lady Pamela Northam were notified that a member of the Governor’s official residence staff, who works closely within the couple’s living quarters, had developed symptoms and subsequently tested positive for COVID-19. Both the Governor and First Lady received PCR nasal swab tests yesterday afternoon, and both tested positive. Governor Northam is experiencing no symptoms. First Lady Pamela Northam is currently experiencing mild symptoms. Both remain in good spirits.

     Consistent with guidelines from the Virginia Department of Health (VDH), the Governor and First Lady will isolate for the next 10 days and evaluate their symptoms. The Governor is in constant contact with his cabinet and staff and will fulfill his duties from the Executive Mansion.
     “As I’ve been reminding Virginians throughout this crisis, COVID-19 is very real and very contagious,” said Governor Northam. “The safety and health of our staff and close contacts is of utmost importance to Pam and me, and we are working closely with the Department of Health to ensure that everyone is well taken care of. We are grateful for your thoughts and support, but the best thing you can do for us—and most importantly, for your fellow Virginians—is to take this seriously.”
     The Governor and First Lady are working closely with VDH and the Richmond Heath Department to trace their close contacts. The Executive Mansion and Patrick Henry office building will be closed for deep cleaning this morning. The work of the Governor’s office continues remotely and uninterrupted.

According to the latest numbers released this morning by The Virginia Department of Health there are 38 new confirmed or probable coronavirus cases and one new hospitalization being attributed to the Roanoke Valley. State health officials report 16 new cases in Roanoke City, 18 new cases in Roanoke County, 4 new cases in Botetourt County, and one new hospitalization in Salem.

NEWS RELEASE: ROANOKE – U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos today recognized 367 schools as National Blue Ribbon Schools for 2020 including Hidden Valley High School – one of eight schools and the only high school receiving the award in Virginia. The recognition is based on a school’s overall academic performance or progress in closing achievement gaps among student subgroups.

“I’m extremely proud of the staff and students at Hidden Valley High School.  Their commitment to engaging and purposeful learning is shown by this recognition,” said Dr. Ken Nicely, superintendent of Roanoke County Public Schools.  “Hidden Valley is just one more example of how we are working in Roanoke County to encourage deeper learning so that our students become opportunity ready,” Dr. Nicely said.

“Congratulations to this year’s National Blue Ribbon School awardees,” said Secretary DeVos. “It’s a privilege to recognize the extraordinary work you do to meet students’ needs and prepare them for successful careers and meaningful lives.”

The coveted National Blue Ribbon Schools award affirms the hard work of educators, families, and communities in creating safe and welcoming schools where students master challenging and engaging content. Now in its 38th year, the National Blue Ribbon Schools Program has bestowed almost 10,000 awards to more than 9,000 schools, with some schools winning multiple awards. Schools are eligible for nomination after five years.

The Education Department recognizes all schools in one of two performance categories, based on all student scores, student subgroup scores and graduation rates:

  • Exemplary High Performing Schools – These are among their state’s highest performing schools as measured by state assessments or nationally normed tests.
  • Exemplary Achievement Gap Closing Schools – These are among their state’s highest performing in closing achievement gaps between a school’s student groups and all students.

Up to 420 schools may be nominated each year. The U.S. Education Department invites National Blue Ribbon School nominations from the top education official in all states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, the Department of Defense Education Activity, and the Bureau of Indian Education. Private schools are nominated by the Council for American Private Education (CAPE).

The 2020 National Blue Ribbon Schools Awards Ceremony will be held virtually Nov. 12 and 13.  Schools will each receive their plaques and flags via mail.

MGN

UPDATED NEWS RELEASE: The City Registrar’s Office wants citizens to know that even though it has temporarily lost partial electrical power in its early voting building today, enough power is available for early voting to now resume. AEP is working to restore full power as soon as possible.

PREVIOUS: The City Registrar’s Office wants citizens to know that it has temporarily lost electrical power in its early voting building today, Sept. 24, 2020.  As a result, citizens will not be able to do early voting at the Registrar’s Office today. AEP has been made aware of the situation and will work to restore power as soon as possible.

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