The Associated Press

1MORGANTOWN — The parents of a West Virginia University student who died of alcohol poisoning after being found unconscious at a fraternity house have attended a documentary about the dangers of hazing.

News outlets report Kim and TJ Burch were at the screening of ``Breathe, Nolan, Breathe’’ at WVU’s Gluck Theatre. It was produced by WVU alumnus Daniel Catullo.

The documentary shows graphic footage from a security camera inside the Kappa Sigma house in Morgantown, including a fraternity member attempting to perform CPR on 18-year-old Nolan Burch in November 2014.

Burch was found unconscious and not breathing. He was from Williamsville, New York, a Buffalo suburb. Police determined it was an alcohol-related death.

Last year the West Virginia University Board of Governors settled the family’s lawsuit for $250,000.


Officers exposed to suspected fentanyl during drug bust

2HUNTINGTON (AP) — Authorities in West Virginia say several police officers were exposed to a substance believed to be the powerful opioid fentanyl during a drug bust.

Huntington police Chief Hank Dial says in a news release that members of the Huntington Violent Crime and Drug Task Force entered a home on Wednesday and saw a suspect trying to destroy drug evidence.

Dial says several officers were exposed, and they were treated by paramedics at the scene. The statement didn’t specify how many officers were exposed.

Four people were charged in the bust and more than 24 grams of suspected fentanyl were seized along with two sets of digital scales and cash.



launches 2020

secretary of state bid

3CHARLESTON — Former West Virginia secretary of state Natalie Tennant has launched a bid to take back the position in 2020.

The Democrat announced her candidacy in a video released Thursday.

Tennant served as secretary of state from 2009 to 2017. Her campaign website highlights accomplishments made when she held the job, such as removing business filing fees for military veterans.

She lost her last election to current Secretary of State Mac Warner by less than 2 percentage points. She also lost a 2014 Senate race to U.S. Sen. Shelley Moore Capito.

Tennant is a graduate for West Virginia University and served as the school’s first female Mountaineer mascot.

Man charged in

heroin-laced vape sicknesses

4MORGANTOWN — Police in West Virginia say they have identified another source of suspected heroin-laced vaping solutions that sickened two high school students.

Morgantown Police Chief Ed Preston said an ongoing investigation of the overdoses has led to charges against 23-year-old Tristan Clay Anderson.

Authorities say officers pulled Anderson over last week and found more than two pounds of marijuana in his car. Officers then served a search warrant at his home and found 25 more pounds of marijuana, over 70 bottles of concentrated THC oils and more than 300 vaping cartridges.

Anderson has been charged with possession with the intent to sell. A court clerk says he has not yet hired a lawyer.

Police last week said they also identified an underage high school student as a suspect.

Polish soldiers train with National Guard

5ELKINS — Members of the Polish Territorial Defense Forces have been training with the West Virginia National Guard and Special Forces near Elkins.

The Inter-Mountain reports the Polish troops were participating in the Guard’s Ridge Runner program, which focuses on irregular warfare.

Olga Krawcyzk-Majeran is the public affairs officer for the exercise. She tells the paper a group of over 100 Polish troops arrived for training on November 1. She says it is the third trip to West Virginia for Territorial Defense Forces troops.

The TDF was established in 2017 and includes more than 22,000 soldiers. Its role is similar to that of the National Guard, supporting local communities and serving as the reserve base for other Polish forces.

WVU raises $11

million in Day of Giving

6MORGANTOWN — West Virginia University raised more than $11 million on its third annual Day of Giving. That’s about $5 million more than last year, according to news sources.

Mary Esposito is director of Annual Giving for the West Virginia University Foundation. She said the school also exceeded last year’s efforts in total number of donations by more than 1,000.

Some of the larger gifts included $1.3 million from the Hayhurst family to WVU Extension Service. United Bank gave $1 million to support the construction of the new WVU Medicine Children’s hospital.

There were also a number of matching gifts, including a dollar-for-dollar match on the first $50,000 raised.

Last week’s Day of Giving also included WVU Health Sciences and regional campuses in Beckley and in Keyser.

Trial for mother in false abduction case pushed to 2020

7HUNTINGTON — A trial has been delayed for a West Virginia woman charged with making up a story about an Egyptian man brazenly trying to kidnap her daughter in a shopping mall.

A Cabell County court clerk says 24-year-old Santana Renee Adams’ trial on a charge of falsely reporting an emergency incident has been moved to January. It had been set to start this week.

Adams was initially hailed as a hero after claiming she used a gun to thwart the attempted kidnapping of her 5-year-old in April. She told authorities that the man tried to drag the girl away by her hair, but her story unraveled when no witnesses were found and surveillance video didn’t support her claims.

The man was then released from jail and Adams herself was charged.


Police referring

disabled woman’s forceful arrest to FBI

8CHARLESTON — A West Virginia mayor says federal authorities are being asked to look into the use of force by Charleston police during the arrest of a woman with special needs.

Charleston Mayor Amy Shuler Goodwin said in a statement Thursday that following a series of meetings with community groups, Police Chief Opie Smith has referred the incident to the FBI.

Cellphone video shows 27-year-old Freda Gilmore lying on the ground and being repeatedly punched in the head Oct. 14 by Charleston police Officer Joshua Mena during her arrest. Gilmore’s family has said she has special needs.

Smith has said the use of force complied with department policy. Goodwin has said she supports Smith’s decision to keep Mena and another officer on the job but the policy needs to be updated.

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