News Briefs From Across The State
By Monica Land
Carpenter often did work for his neighbors
The trial of a Fulton man charged with killing his next door neighbors has been scheduled for Oct. 8 in Itawamba County Circuit Court.
The Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal reported that Jake Carpenter is charged
with two counts of capital murder and one count of robbery related to the March 24, 2011, stabbing deaths of Mildred Joy House and her husband Fred Doyle House.
Prosecutors say Carpenter is the son of their neighbor. He has pleaded not guilty to the charges. He is being held without bond in the county jail.
Skeletal remains found in East Miss. home
Newton County authorities are investigating the discovery of skeletal remains in a home in the Chunky community in east Mississippi.
Sheriff Jackie Knight says the body was found was sitting in a recliner, partially covered up as if the individual had gone to sleep.
An autopsy has been ordered. Knight says the skeleton is that of a male.
Choctaws get $2M for transportation projects
The Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians has received two federal grants to fund construction of a new transit maintenance facility.
The tribe was awarded grant funds totaling $2.1 million. The tribe will use $192,000 to build a new Regional Vehicle Maintenance Center. Construction is scheduled to be completed by September 2013.
The tribe also will use $120,000 for a new wrecker, $169,000 for a new trolley, $102,284 for two new 17-passenger ADA buses and $185,000 for shop equipment.
The tribe also receives a $200,000 U.S. Department of Transportation for the purchase of three public transit buses.
Chief Phyliss J. Anderson says the buses will be used on new routes to help tribe members get to nearby colleges.
Fire destroys closed paper mill
A fire has destroyed the former Georgia Pacific paper mill in Gloster.
The Natchez Democrat reports that fire units from several counties and Louisiana responded to Wednesday night’s fire.
Amite County Fire Coordinator Sam Walsh says authorities were notified of the fire about 7:45 p.m. The plant was engulfed in flames when firefighters arrive. There were no injuries because workers had already left.
The mill closed in 2002, leaving 300 people without jobs. It reopened in 2005 and closed again in 2009, this time for good.
Workers have been cutting up and removing scrap metal and cleaning up the property.
Walsh says it appeared the fire started in the main administrative building and main plant building.
He says the fire is under investigation.
City sees encouraging rise in sales tax revenues
An encouraging sign for the city of Jackson’s economy is the $256,000 rise in sales taxes in the last quarter over the same period in 2010.
The numbers primarily reflect a strong holiday season for retailers, but business leaders said they’re cautiously optimistic that gains could continue into this year.
Sales tax revenue not only outpaced that of last year, it also bested the city’s own expectations. The Clarion-Ledger reported Saturday that the city ended the quarter collecting $322,000, or 4.38 percent, above what it budgeted. The fourth quarter of calendar 2011 is the beginning of the city’s fiscal year.
K-9 trials to be held in Laurel
Teams from Mississippi, Arkansas and Louisiana will take part in the United States Police Canine Association Regional K-9 trials to be held in Laurel from Feb. 16 through Feb. 19.
Several dog and handler teams will host a free public demonstration of police dog work and training at 6 p.m. Feb. 16.
The American reports that four teams from the Laurel Police Department and six teams from the Jones County Sheriff’s Department will enter, including last year’s state champions – Sgt. Rob Norman and his Belgian Malinois, Recon, of the Laurel Police Department.