The Daily Press Daily Times Leader | AP iAtom feed Copyright The Daily Press 2014-08-29T11:12:58-04:00 Builders, Pizza Hut work together for good cause2014-08-29T11:12:58-04:002014-08-29T11:12:58-04:00Copyright 2010 Daily Times Leaderlife@dailytimesleader.comProgress Street Church of God’s men’s Life Builders group and Life Builders all over the U.S. are joining forces Saturday, Aug. 30 to promote positive action in communities. Life Builders will be handing out vouchers to take to Pizza Hut restaurants, give the cashier the code 1022 and part of the purchase price will go to Life Builders in West Point. For online orders, the code is: Life. This is the first time Pizza Hut and Life Builders have partnered together for a fundraiser. “We are very excited to be teaming up with Pizza Hut all across the nation for this fundraiser,” Lawrence Roberson, leader of Progress St. Church of God Life Builders, said. “We are hoping people will spread the word with social media. If someone has family and friends in Chicago, and they buy pizza at Pizza Hut and use our code, we get a small percentage of that sale. It’s really very easy to do and will help us a lot.”Roberson said Life Builders all across the country are participating in the fundraiser. The men’s group focuses on community outreach and working with at – risk youth, according to Roberson. The Progress St. Life Builders hope to make this an annual event, he said. “Life Builders is all about teaching young men to take the right path,” Roberson said. “A lot of our youth grow up without a positive male role model, we want to work with them and lead them in the way they should go. With this fundraiser, the whole community can be part of what we’re doing.”West Point, MSNo author availableLife Builders, Pizza Hut work together for good causeDaily Times approve road project bid2014-08-29T11:08:14-04:002014-08-29T11:08:14-04:00Copyright 2010 Daily Times Leadernews@dailytimesleader.comThe Clay County Board of Supervisors accepted a $167,277 bid from Falcon Contracting Company of Columbus to widen a piece of Airport Road at its meeting Thursday.The project will entail extending, widening and overlaying .244 miles of Airport Road next to Walmart in West Point, according to Mississippi Office of State Aid Road Construction Engineer Jack Jackson.Jackson said the project would be largely funded by an Appalachian Regional Commission grant, with the local funds covering the remaining costs.“ARC will cover $122,000, and the bid from Falcon was 7.2 percent over that amount, but it falls within the 10 percent overage limit,” Jackson said. “The city has agreed to pay half, and that will come out to $36,850 each.”Also at the meeting, Clay County Chancery Clerk Amy Berry updated the board on the status of a Rural Fire Protection Assistance Program grant. She said if the county was approved for the grant, it would receive $70,000 from the state to purchase a fire truck for the Clay County Volunteer Fire Department.“The money is there and we’re within the top 50 in line to receive funding,” Berry said. “All they need now are the specifications for the truck we want.”West Point, MSNo author availableSupervisors approve road project bidDaily Times to host fellowship service2014-08-29T11:05:30-04:002014-08-29T11:05:30-04:00Copyright 2010 Daily Times Leadereditor@dailytimesleader.comWest Point community leaders are looking to give residents an opportunity to come together in a positive light after a weekend brawl turned near deadly.Beginning 10 a.m. Monday at First Baptist Church on 134 E. Broad St. in West Point, residents may gather for a brief community fellowship service to pray for the well-being of the community and the recovery of West Point resident Ralph Weems IV.Weems was hospitalized Saturday at North Mississippi Medical Center in Tupelo after a fight in the Huddle House parking lot on Highway 45 in West Point left him with a brain injury. According to family members, Weems underwent emergency brain surgery and was subsequently sedated. He was listed in "fair" condition as of Thursday.Since then, national attention has turned to the incident, which may have been incited from events unfolding in Ferguson, Mo., where 18-year-old Michael Brown was shot and killed by a white police officer earlier this month. David Knighten, Weems' friend who was also injured in the brawl, told Associated Press reporters prior to the fight, he'd been warned not to enter the Waffle House — where arguing allegedly began — because patrons were upset by the circumstances surrounding Brown's killing and "it was not safe for whites."It's a negative fog that's befallen the city via social media outlets in the days since, according to Mayor Robbie Robinson, who said misinformation and rumors had poisoned the social sphere. Hosting a community fellowship to allow residents to offer each other support only made sense, he said."There have been so many negative vibrations, both from media innuendos and rumors about how West Point is not a safe community," Robinson said. "We want to show not only the outside world but ourselves that we are a united community. We appreciate and understand each other."To subscribe to the E-edition, please <a href="/eedition">click here</a>.</strong></p>West Point, MSNo author availableCommunity to host fellowship serviceDaily Times arrest made in assault2014-08-29T11:02:48-04:002014-08-29T11:02:48-04:00Copyright 2010 Daily Times LeaderWest Point police department officers have made a second arrest in connection with a weekend assault that left a local main hospitalized with a brain injury. Marquavious McMillian, 20, of Aberdeen, was arrested Thursday and housed in the Clay County Detention Center awaiting arraignment on suspicion of aggravated assault. It was the second arrest in an investigation which now involves the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Mississippi Bureau of Investigation, Clay County Sheriff’s Department and the Aberdeen Police Department. “As this investigation continues we will utilize every available agency and resource to bring the perpetrators of this crime to justice,” West Point Police Chief Tim Brinkley said in a statement issued to media Thursday.On Monday, police arrested Courtez McMillian, 22, of Okolona. He was charged with aggravated assault and housed in CCDC. Bond was also set at $250,000. Police have declined to comment as to whether Marquavious and Courtez McMillian are related.Charges stem the alleged Saturday assault of Ralph Weems IV, 32, of West Point. Weems and a friend, identified by the Associated Press as David Knighten of West Point, reportedly enterted into a verbal altercation with a group of black men about 1 a.m. Saturday at the Waffle House on Highway 45 in West Point. Police responded to the incident after employees called 911, according to police.To subscribe to the E-edition, please <a href="/eedition">click here</a>.</strong></p>West Point, MSNo author availableSecond arrest made in assaultDaily Times Second arrest made in assault2014-08-28T16:53:16-04:002014-08-28T16:53:16-04:00Copyright 2010 Daily Times LeaderWest Point Police officers have made a second arrest in connection with a weekend assault that left a local man with a brain injury. On Thursday, police arrested Marquavious McMillian, 20, of Aberdeen on suspicion of aggravated assault.He is being housed in the Clay County Detention Center until arraignment. West Point, MSNo author availableBREAKING: Second arrest made in assaultDaily Times continue 10 years of book donations2014-08-28T10:57:45-04:002014-08-28T10:57:45-04:00Copyright 2010 Daily Times Leaderlife@dailytimesleader.comThe Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc. donated four books to the Bryan Public Library in West Point Monday. The sorority Arts and Letters Committee, made up of Naomi Kilgore, Ella Seay and Reita Humphries, represent the sorority in making a donation each year to the Bryan Public Library or the Churchill/Southside Elementary libraries, for 10 years, rotating between the two each year. “This year we are donating adult and young adult books,” said Kilgore, a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority. “We donate children’s books, usually winners of the Dewberry and Caldecourt awards to the elementary schools.”Willie Davis of the Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, said the sorority likes to donate books the library doesn’t already have to give patrons a better variety of books. She said eBooks for Nook and Kindle are very popular today, but nothing beats a physical book to curl up with.Ella Seay of the sorority, said the books being donated are: “Black and White; The Way I See It” by Richard Williams with Bart Davis, “Slavery’s Exiles” by Sylviane H. Diouf, “Rumor Central” by Roshonda Tate Billingsly, “Box Office Smash” by D.M. Paige and “Blind Curve” by Elizabeth Karre.To subscribe to the E-edition, please <a href="/eedition">click here</a>.</strong></p>West Point, MSNo author availableDeltas continue 10 years of book donationsDaily Times Captain D's breaks record2014-08-28T10:53:03-04:002014-08-28T10:53:03-04:00Copyright 2010 Daily Times Leadernews@dailytimesleader.comAnyone who braved the lines at Captain D’s during the restaurant’s first week could attest to the success of the new brand in West Point. The restaurant, which opened Aug. 18, had the highest first week sales of any Captain D’s nationwide since the chain opened in 1969, according to Captain D’s Manager of Marketing Communications Rebecca Day.Day said it was company policy not to release actual numbers, but that the West Point restaurant set a brand record.“We’re opening a lot of new restaurants and they’re kind of competing with each other,” she said. “The Captain D’s in Anderson, Ind., opened seven months ago and had our highest first week sales, and now West Point opens and does the same thing.”West Point Mayor Robbie Robinson, who said he’s eaten at Captain D’s three times since it opened, believed the restaurant’s success could lead to more businesses coming to the community.“I think the McBrayer Family has disproved the theory that a major chain can’t make it in West Point,” Robinson said. “Hopefully this will be an eye-opener for future development in our town.”Robinson said there is sufficient traffic on Highway 45 and throughout West Point to support a chain restaurant.“We were very blessed to have the folks in our community respond the way they did,” Captain D’s Co-manager Chris McBrayer said. “It’s company policy not to release the numbers, but this Captain D’s had the highest opening week sales since the company opened in 1965.”To subscribe to the E-edition, please <a href="/eedition">click here</a>.</strong></p>West Point, MSNo author availableLocal Captain D's breaks recordDaily Times set millage rate2014-08-28T10:50:22-04:002014-08-28T10:50:22-04:00Copyright 2010 Daily Times Leadernews@dailytimesleader.comThe West Point Board of Selectmen set the millage rate for the city and the West Point School District during a specially called meeting Wednesday at City hall.The millage rate is based on the assessed value of property in the city and is used to calculate the amount for property taxes. The board voted to set the millage rate for the 2014-15 fiscal year at 94.81, which Ward 4 Selectman Keith McBrayer said was the same as it was for the 2013-14 year.“A lot of work went into preparing the budget and keeping the millage rate the same as last year,” McBrayer said. “We had to wait for the Clay County Board of Supervisors to officially adopt the property tax rolls, which they did on Aug. 14.”West Point Mayor Robbie Robinson said the total assessed value for the city was $82,104,725, with a $7,014,272 special homestead exemption for residents over the age of 65. He said the 94.81 millage rate was broken down into 31.76 general purpose mills, four mills for debt service, 1.25 mills for the Bryan Public Library, 54.9 mills for WPSD general maintenance and 2.9 mills for WPSD debt service. “The school district adopted its budget back on July 21, and we’re required to set the millage rate to support them,” Robinson said. Clay County Chancery Clerk Amy Berry said the board of supervisors were required to wait until the recessed meeting Aug. 14 to take any taxpayer objections into account. She said the taxpayers had until the first board meeting in August to submit any objections, which the county then corrected before it certified the property rolls.“This year we received four objections,” Berry said. “The tax assessor was able to take care of each one of them before the board certified the rolls.”To subscribe to the E-edition, please <a href="/eedition">click here</a>.</strong></p>West Point, MSNo author availableCity set millage rateDaily Times cause widespread power outage in West Point2014-08-27T11:44:49-04:002014-08-27T11:44:49-04:00Copyright 2010 Daily Times Leadernews@dailytimesleader.comHigh winds led to power outages Monday evening in certain areas of downtown West Point. Water and Light crews worked until after midnight to restore power to the affected areas.West Point Water and Light Superintendent Dwight Prisock said there were four total power outages around the downtown area, with the most significant being the block of Grove Street between Tournament and Travis streets. “During the storm a pecan tree at the corner of Cromwell Street and Travis broke off and took down a power pole,” Prisock said. “We had to replace the pole, a three-phase line and two single-phase lines.”West Point Chief Administrative Officer Randy Jones said the tree was a single trunk with three forks low to the ground. He said each fork separated from the trunk and fell independently.“There was a house within 20 feet of the tree and a boat within 10 feet, and neither of them were hit by the falling forks, which was amazing,” Jones said. “The Water and Light Department and Public Works responded both to restore power and clear the fallen tree.”West Point, MSNo author availableWinds cause widespread power outage in West PointDaily Times case could get second look2014-08-27T11:41:18-04:002014-08-27T11:41:18-04:00Copyright 2010 Daily Times Leadernews@dailytimesleader.comA 16-year-old capital murder case could potentially be re-opened as the man convicted filed a motion for post-conviction relief with the Clay County Circuit Court Tuesday.Jeffrey Randle, of West Point, was convicted of capital murder and sentenced to life in prison in 1998. Randle was convicted for the Jan. 4, 1997 murder of West Point resident Willie Mae Sewell. He was charged with capital murder because Sewell’s murder occurred during the commission of a robbery. Randle’s case caught the attention of the Mississippi Innocence Project in 2013. The Mississippi Innocence Project is a program with the University of Mississippi School of Law aimed at serving prisoners who have perceived legitimate claims of wrongful conviction. Innocence Project Resource Counsel Will McIntosh said Randle heard about the project and sent them a letter claiming his innocence and applying for the group’s assistance. “We read all the publicly available materials and visited the Clay County Circuit Clerk’s office, and we thought Mr. Randle was a good case for post-conviction DNA testing,” McIntosh said. McIntosh said DNA testing wasn’t widely used during the time period of Randle’s trial, and didn’t become commonplace until nearly 2000. He said there was blood found under Sewell’s fingernails from where she’d scratched her assailant, but it wasn’t DNA tested.“During the investigation they sent the blood off and in the meantime Randle confessed,” McIntosh said. “Once law enforcement had a confession they figured that was all they needed and that the case against Randle was strong enough.”He said Randle claims he was coerced into confessing because he was afraid and did not have an attorney present. To subscribe to the E-edition, please <a href="/eedition">click here</a>.</strong></p>West Point, MSNo author availableMurder case could get second lookDaily Times