The Daily Press Daily Times Leader | AP iAtom feed Copyright The Daily Press 2014-04-23T11:09:20-04:00 suffers from copper theft; AG meets with surrounding states2014-04-23T11:09:20-04:002014-04-23T11:09:20-04:00Copyright 2010 Daily Times Leadernews@dailytimesleader.comMississippi Attorney General Jim Hood met with attorneys general from Arkansas, Tennessee and Louisiana April 14 to discuss the growing concern of copper theft — a familiar concern to West Point and Clay County. Hood said in a press release that copper thieves are costing farmers and business owners tens of thousands of dollars.“Due to high metal prices, metal of any kind, from cars on the side of the road to implements in the field, is being stolen at an alarming rate,” Hood said. West Point Police Chief Tim Brinkley said copper and scrap metal theft has been a problem in the city for years, but has gotten progressively worse in the past year.“Certain residents who are running low on resources will get anything they can find and take it to the scrap metal place,” Brinkley said. “Copper is valuable and market value is up so that’s something they can turn in to a quick buck.”Copper prices change from day to day but, according to, the price has been around $3 per pound for about the past year.“If it’s pure copper they get more money for it,” Brinkley said. “That’s why you see people raiding construction sites and abandoned houses.”West Point, MSNo author availableRegion suffers from copper theft; AG meets with surrounding statesDaily Times man indicted for sexual battery2014-04-23T11:07:14-04:002014-04-23T11:07:14-04:00Copyright 2010 Daily Times Leadernews@dailytimesleader.comThe Clay County Circuit Court went through its second round of arraignments for the April circuit court term on Tuesday.Clay County Circuit Clerk Bob Harrell said that the grand jury saw 261 cases, and that 183 of those cases were “true billed,” where the jury makes issues a written decision stating it believes there is enough evidence from the prosecution to suggest the accused did commit a crime. “There were more true bills during this term than I’ve seen here in a long time,” Harrell said. “102 cases were true billed during the October 2013 term.”Clay County Sheriff Eddie Scott said the grand jury handed down 94 indictments; multiple counts on certain felonies account for the 183 true bills. “We doubled our caseload,” Scott said. “Normally we have 120-130 cases.”Nathaniel Collins, of West Point, was indicted and arraigned for fondling, sexual battery and possession of a weapon by a felon. According to court documents, Collins was previously convicted in 1998 in Cook County, Ill., for predatory criminal sexual assault of a child. He was sentenced to 25 years in the Illinois Department of Corrections for that crime but received an early release. Collins’ trial was set for July 14 and as of Tuesday there was no bond, pending a hearing.Robert Bean, of West Point, was indicted for seven counts of filming without permission. According to court documents Bean allegedly filmed a female in a state of undress with “lewd, licentious or indecent intent.”Bean’s bond was set at $50,000, and his trial was set for Oct. 8.West Point, MSNo author availableLocal man indicted for sexual batteryDaily Times Day, every day2014-04-23T11:05:32-04:002014-04-23T11:05:32-04:00Copyright 2010 Daily Times Leadereditor@dailytimesleader.comWest Point residents are doing their part to commemorate Earth Day, every day. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency website (, Earth Day found its origins in 1970, introduced by Sen. Gaylord Nelson (D-Wis.) to bring environmental protection issues into the collective consciousness and, more importantly, into the national political agenda. Nelson employed a staff of experienced activists to initiate a grassroots movement in small towns and communities throughout the U.S. The approach worked, according to the site, with some 20 million participants in its first year. Since then, the country has seen the inception of the EPA as well as several significant legislative motions geared toward environmental protection, including the Clean Air Act and Clean Water Act. Earth Day itself has taken on a life of its own, with residents throughout the country observing April 22 in a number of ways. West Point residents and community leaders are no exception. Ivey and Ken Ivy of West Point try to make it a general practice to live harmoniously with their environment. The couple has worked to recycle whenever possible for more than 10 years, according to Ivey, and also maintain their own compost and burn additional household trash. In honor of Earth Day, Ivey said she’d discussed taking her two small daughters, 5-year-old Day and 2-year-old Wren, out to one of the city’s parks to pick up trash, weather and time permitting. “I’m hoping that they’re picking up on things (we do to better the environment) as they grow,” Ivey said of her children. “But it’s hard to fight consumerism. The ‘I want a new this or a new that’ mentality is everywhere.”Ivey said she tries to stress the importance of producing as little waste as possible. The family avoids using plastic materials — opting instead to find the goods they need in recyclables whenever possible or reusable containers. Ivey said she tries to find containers of stainless steel or glass so that she may reuse them continuously. West Point, MSNo author availableEarth Day, every dayDaily Times looks for information on missing Clay County man2014-04-22T10:25:34-04:002014-04-22T10:25:34-04:00Copyright 2010 Daily Times LeaderThe Clay County Sheriff’s Department is seeking assistance in locating a missing West Point man.Don Hodnett, 51, of 3819 Dan Walker Road in West Point was last seen Friday, April 18 at Clayton Village in Starkville.CCSD is requesting anyone with information regarding Hodnett’s whereabouts call 494-2896.West Point, MSNo author availableCCSD looks for information on missing Clay County manDaily Times helps local food pantry2014-04-22T10:24:30-04:002014-04-22T10:24:30-04:00Copyright 2010 Daily Times Leadernews@dailytimesleader.comA local fraternity collected over 800 individual food items to help the needy in West Point and Clay County.The Eta Xi Chapter of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity Inc. accepted canned food donations for the Project Homestead of Clay County food pantry Saturday at the Kroger parking lot in West Point. West Point resident and Eta Xi brother Rod Bobo said that members of the fraternity gathered in the Kroger lot from 9 a.m. to about 1:30 p.m. and collected 843 items for the food pantry.“Our fraternity is service-oriented,” Bobo said. “We try to do things to uplift the community and help people out any way we can.”Bobo said that the fraternity also held a successful drive for the food pantry last year.“Last year we collected about 600 items and this year was even bigger,” he said. Bob said that food pantry drives are just one of the community service projects in which Omega Psi Phi participates in. The fraternity takes part in Adopt-A-Family, offer scholarships and host voter registration drives.Bill East of Project Homestead said the results of the canned-food drive were “stupendous.”“Over 800 cans is the equivalent of some of the larger drives we’ve done at schools in the community,” East said. East said the pantry provides food to about 325 families in Clay County.West Point, MSNo author availableFraternity helps local food pantryDaily Times jury issues indictments2014-04-22T10:23:04-04:002014-04-22T10:23:04-04:00Copyright 2010 Daily Times Leadernews@dailytimesleader.comThe April term for Clay County Circuit Court was also one of the county’s bi-annual grand jury terms.Grand juries determine whether criminal charges are to be brought up against those charged. Clay County Circuit Clerk Bob Harrell said that during the April term the grand jury was in session for five days. “Normally all the grand jury terms are busier because their cases are being added to the docket in addition to the other cases and a lot more jurors are coming in,” Harrell said.Harrell said the grand jury saw 261 cases and 261 witnesses during this term, and that 183 of those cases were “true billed.” A true bill is a written decision from the grand jury that it has heard enough evidence from the prosecution to believe the person being accused likely did commit a crime and should be indicted.Harrell said the time taken for the murder trials of Shunbrica Roby and Charles Smith during the April term pushed the trials for those indicted back until the July and October circuit court terms.The grand jury began handing out indictments Thursday, with more expected today.Devonte Kelly, of West Point, was indicted for the Oct. 31 murder of his father, Randy Kelly, also of West Point. His trial was set for June 14 and his bond was set at $125,000.According to a WPPD press release from the day of the incident, officers arrived at the scene to find Randy Kelly lying in bed with a “gunshot wound to the head.” Emergency Medical Personnel pronounced the victim dead at the scene. The victim’s son, Devonte Kelly, who was 14-years-old at the time of the incident, was missing from the scene but later found suffering from an apparent self-inflicted knife-wound, according to the press release. He was taken to North Mississippi Medical Center to be “stabilized” before being sent to University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson for treatment. He was then released to the WPPD. Kelly will be charged as an adult, according to Harrell.West Point, MSNo author availableGrand jury issues indictmentsDaily Times addresses women’s health risks, prevention2014-04-18T11:01:30-04:002014-04-18T11:01:30-04:00Copyright 2010 Daily Times Leaderlife@dailytimesleader.comThe Horseshoe Robertson Chapter of the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution met Wednesday afternoon at the Bryan Public Library. The DAR welcomed guest speaker Susan McComic, an RN at North Mississippi Medical Center in West Point and the West Point School District, to impart information on women’s health issues dealing with heart disease. “Heart disease now kills more women every year than all types of cancer combined,” McComic said. “Being overweight, smoking, unhealthy diet, family history and a sedentary lifestyle are all factors. To simply walk or engage in some sort of cardiovascular exercise will greatly reduce a women’s risk of heart attack and stroke.”McComic pointed out the differences in heart attack in women from men. She said women often experience pain in the jaw, sweating, clamminess, being cold, body aches and trouble breathing. Many symptoms, she said, were similar to flu symptoms. Men however, experience tightness in the chest, a sharp intense pain running down the left arm and shortness of breath at the onset of an heart attack. McComic explained the warning signs of stroke in women; sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm or leg. especially on one side, difficulty speaking, understanding speech and confusion, vision problems, dizziness, loss of balance and coordination and severe headache. West Point, MSNo author availableDAR addresses women’s health risks, preventionDaily Times sentenced for murder2014-04-18T10:59:42-04:002014-04-18T10:59:42-04:00Copyright 2010 Daily Times Leadernews@dailytimesleader.comCharles Smith, of West Point, was found guilty of murder on Wednesday and sentenced to life in prison Thursday.Smith was charged with the September 2011 stabbing death of Clay County resident Benny Oaks. Clay County Circuit Clerk Bob Harrell said the jury deliberated late into Wednesday evening.“They jury deliberated for about three and a half hours and came back with a verdict at 8:45 p.m.,” Harrell said.Judge Jim Kitchens postponed sentencing until Thursday morning to have a hearing on whether Smith could be considered a habitual offender under Mississippi Code 99-19-83. The statute says that a person convicted twice on a previous felony - one of which is a violent crime - and served more than one year in prison receive a sentence of life in prison without the possibility of parole. Kitchens found that Smith was in fact a habitual offender based on two separate convictions prior to the murder of Oaks.“In 1989 Smith was convicted of burglary and received a sentence of five years,” Kitchens said. “Initially that sentence was suspended and he was placed on supervised probation.”Kitchens said that while Smith was on probation he was convicted of aggravated assault. “Smith attacked a man with a brick with such apparent ferocity that it knocked his eye out of his head and ripped his ear off,” Kitchens said. “He then poured gasoline on the man with the intent of setting him on fire but his lighter was lost in the fight.”Smith received a 16-year sentence for the aggravated assault plus five years from his revoked probation for the burglary charge.Clay County Assistant District Attorney Lindsey Clemons said that Smith’s time in his previous incarceration could have been reduced for good behavior; however Smith served the full 21-year sentence. West Point, MSNo author availableMan sentenced for murderDaily Times Hermon preps for Seven Sayings service2014-04-17T10:45:43-04:002014-04-17T10:45:43-04:00Copyright 2010 Daily Times Leadereditor@dailytimesleader.comMt. Hermon M.B. Church on Mayhew Street in West Point is preparing for one of its most well-received services of the year: the Seven Last Sayings of Christ service. Services will begin at noon Good Friday and will feature seven brief sermons by pastors from seven West Point churches. The idea, according to Mt. Hermon Pastor Tim Brinkley, is for each pastor to deliver a seven-minute interpretation on one of the last phrases of Jesus as he hung on the cross: “Father, forgive them, for they don’t know what they are doing” (Luke 23:34), “I assure you, today you will be with me in paradise” (Luke 23:43), “Dear woman, here is your son” (John 19:26), “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” (Mark 15:34), “I am thirsty” (John 19:28), “It is finished” (John 19:30) and “Father, I entrust my spirit into your hands” (Luke 23:46).The event has been a long standing tradition, according to church member Robert Smith. In a statement issued to the media, the church is credited for hosting the service for almost 30 years, and serves as the culmination of Clay County Clergy Fellowship’s (CCCF) Holy Week of services. This year’s speakers will include Robert Shamblin-Traylor, Kirby Lloyd, Quincy Patterson, James Towery, Charles Davidson, Dale Funderburg and Al Lathon. “It’s such a spirited worship service,” Brinkley said. “I’m a preacher, so I like the way the different pastors who deliver the messages interpret the last sayings. There’s a general interpretation, but it goes way beyond that. The way the Bible is, it reaches everyone differently.”Brinkley said the service typically lasts a little more than two hours, and offers more than just an opportunity to hear the word of God. The event provides an opportunity to invite those who have not already committed their lives to the Christian faith, Brinkley said, as following sermons the church will welcome those previously unsure to step forward and be saved. To subscribe to the E-edition, please <a href="/eedition">click here</a>.</strong></p>West Point, MSNo author availableMt. Hermon preps for Seven Sayings serviceDaily Times woman convicted on murder charge2014-04-17T10:43:51-04:002014-04-17T10:43:51-04:00Copyright 2010 Daily Times Leadernews@dailytimesleader.comShunbrica Roby, of Columbus, was found guilty of murder on April 9 for the 2012 stabbing death of Marcus L. Payne of West Point. Clay County District Attorney Lindsey Clemons said that Roby was sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole. “The jury deliberated for three hours Wednesday before coming back with a verdict,” Clemons said. “They had the choice between murder or manslaughter and they came back with murder.”Clemons said after the verdict was read, Judge Lee Howard took about 10 minute recess after the verdict and then delivered the sentence. According to court documents, Roby’s sister and cousin, Latwanna Roby and Natisha Roby, both of Macon, allegedly assisted in Payne’s murder.“When you engage in a criminal act with other people the act of one becomes the act of all,” Clemons said. “Legally speaking, even if she didn’t have the knife in her hand she was just as liable.”Clemons said Latwanna and Natisha Roby are still on the docket for the present term, but the court will only try one of them at a time.“Cases where you try multiple defendants together often get reversed,” Clemons said. “So when there are multiple defendants we always try separate cases for each of them.” Clemons said that trials for Latwanna and Natisha Roby will be set for trial July; their cases are also assigned to Howard. West Point, MSNo author availableLocal woman convicted on murder chargeDaily Times