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The Woodville Republican
Woodville, Mississippi
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February 8, 2018     The Woodville Republican
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February 8, 2018
 

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l: F, ]~ N IS. '21/ ~1 [;I"IL;:~ S l t lh'lhllql'N lhI"Pl lhl11': lh'dhlqhhl'lllu'llh' 1./, E. [.I ),~, : $, :~, $ ;~, :~,~, $ $ * :~ :~. ~", $ $ M "" i: ~ (4 D C 13 8 0 ~" ", r ? :,! I 19;I 1 5 ~, i!"J )1 ' u J. " ;- OLDEST NEWSPAPER - Established 1824 Volume 193 USPS 462-260 50 per copy Woodville, Mississippi 39669 Thursday, February 8, 2018 Number 41 ht Da rrlcane VANDALS HIT SCHOOL AGAIN, TWO CAUGHT -- A motorist passing the Wilkinson County School Complex at midnight on Wednesday, January 31, noticed someone inside one of the school buildings and reported the matter to the Wilkinson County Sheriff's Department. Wilkinson County School Dis- tdct Security Officer L. C. Clark said the WCSO apprehended two individuals inside the building. "The sheriff's department caught an adult and a 10-year-old juvenile inside the vandalized facility," Clark reported. -- Woodville Republican Photo by Andy J. Lewis TWO INDIVIDUALS CAUGHT VANDALIZING PUBLIC SCHOOL The Wilkinson Co,:- School Facility on the Ponu- Pinckneyville Road near Woodville has been vandal- ized six times in the past two weeks including one time on Wednesday night, January 28. Two suspects have been apprehended. According to Wilkinson County School District Se- curity Chief L. C. Clark, a passing motorist noticed someone in the Wilkinson County Elementary Build- ing at about midnight and called the Wilkinson County Sheriffs Department to re- port their finding. "The WCSO went to the building and caught two peo- ple," said Clark. "One was an adult and the other was a 10-year-old child. Clark identified the man caught in the building as Co- rey Anderson of Woodville. Because of the the age, he did not identify the juvenile. Clark stated, "Anderson was out on bond at the time of this latest vandalism at the school. He was previous- ly arrested on a vandalism charge for another vandal- ism incident at the school. He had a hearing in Wilkin- son County Justice Court where enough evidence was presented to send his case to the Grand Jury. He was later released on bond." Clark said that Ander- son was a former student at Wilkinson County High School. Wilkinson County Super- intendent of Education Kim- berly Jackson gave the fol- lowing statement about the latest incident: "On behalf of the Board of Trustees, faculty, staff and student body of Wilkin- son County Schools, we are extending our sincerest ap- preciation and gratitude to the Wilkinson County Sher- iffs Department for their unwavering effort to serve and protect, the promotion of stability and assistance in providing a safe environ- ment that is conducive to Corey Anderson learning in Wilkinson Coun- ty Schools. The WCSO has demonstrated the highest degree of integrity to protect the future of our students. Again thanks for stabiliz- ing the educational process which will ultimately con- tribute to the district being successful." The Wilkinson County Cor- rectional Facility is investi- gating the recent deaths of two inmates at the facility lo- cated on U. S. Highway 61just north of Woodville. At approximately 1:00 a.m. on Wednesday, January 31, WCCF correctional officers discovered Thomas Burks, In- mate #4418, unresponsive in his cell, according to a written news release from Issa Arni- ta, Director, Corporate Com- mtmications of Management and Training Corporation, the private company operat- ing the local prison facility. WCCF medical staffimme- diately began CPR and called for paramedics, but were un- successful in their attempts to revive Burks. The initial investigation into this death has revealed that the victim had a dispute with his cefl mate. The cause and manner of death are pending an autopsy and full investigation, the re- port states. Burks was in MDOC cus- tody on burglary and armed robbery charges from Pearl River County, and he was serving a term of 38 years at the time of his' death. The Wilkinson County Cor- rectional Fac4 lity and Missis- sippi Department of Correc- tions are also investigating the death of a second inmate, Brad Fitch, #131762, who died Sunday at the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson. He was injured in an altercation atthe prison on January 31. Wilkinson County Coroner Nolan Thompson reported that Fitch died apparently after being stabbed multiple times. Fitzl% 28, was convicted of two counts of aggravated assault in Hancock County. He was sentenced on Aug. 1, 2016, to serve 10 years. The cause and manner of death are pending an au- topsy and full investigation, a written release from MTC stated. At the Monday, February 5, meeting of the Wilkin- son County Board of Su- pervisors, Chancery Clerk Thomas C. Tolliver, Jr an- nounced that he was going to file documents request- ing reimbursement for cleanup expenses incurred after Hurricane Gustav, which hit this area in 2009. "The county is due their final reimbursement pay- ment of $19,357.87," said Tolliver. "This is the Federal share of the money owed the county." County Administrator Bruce Lewis announced that the interlocal agree- ment between the county and the Town of Woodville for the housing of town prisoners in the Wilkinson County Jail has been final- ized. %Ve used a state statute that does not require the agreement to be submitted to the Mississippi Attorney General's Office for their approval," said Lewis. "I have spoken with the town attorney, and he will pres- ent the document to the town for their approval and signature. Once they sign the agree/nent, the town can begin putting their pris- oners in the county's jail on Hwy. 61 south of Woodville." Lewis also presented oth- er matters to the board as follows: Reported that an eleva- tor repair service had come to the courthouse to work on the elevator on Thurs- day, February 1. "They came and worked on the elevator doors including cleaning and lubrication. They left, and the doors quit work- ing again>I have called for them to come back to work on it again." Reported that the Wilkinson County Soil and Water Conservation Dis- trict has again requested funding in the amount of $2,500 to be used to pay for internet, phone and com- puter service. "They need the money this month to help pay bills," said Lewis. "I suggest that the board approve amending the bud- get to include this amount for the soil conservation district." On motion by Su- pervisor Jenn Nettles and second by Supervisor Rich- ard Hollins, the board voted 5-0 to approve this matter. Announced that he had received a hand-delivered note concerning a county- owned tractor which is broken down and has been sitting on private property on Old Hwy. 33 south of Centreville for a number of months. "I have received an offer of $100 to purchase the tractor which is assigned to the Countywide Depart- ment," Lewis said. "We have offered this tractor for sale before, but received no of- fers." The board rejected the purchase offer and agreed to move the unit from its current location. Brought the board up to date on the county's request for federal funding assis- tance to alleviate the ever- increasing flooding prob- lems in the Percy Creek and Buffalo River basins in Wilkinson County. "The first thing we need to do is to get a study completed on what needs to be done to cut down on flooding in these areas." The county has received an offer from Neel & Shaffer Engineers of Hattiesburg to do the required study for a cost of $95,000. Lewis said, "The U.S. Corps of Engineers have agreed to pay up to $100,000 to complete the study of these two streams. We need to move on this and get the study started." Reported that the coun- ty is looking to replace the bridge on the Millbrook Road with a steel struc- ture. "We have the bridge specs and need to get facts together to publish a bid re- quest to replace the timber structure." Board President Ken- yon Jackson reported that he received a phone call from Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann's office requesting census informa- tion on Wilkinson County so the county can receive $1.6 million in funds. "Mr. Lewis and I met and got this information together, thanks to the efforts of the Town of Centreville, Town of Woodville and Wilkinson County Sheriff's Depart- ment. I want to thank them for their cooperation in put- ting together the requested information," said Board Pres. Jackson. Supervisor Bubba McNabb gave a status report on bridge closures on the Coon's Mill, Henley,-L Leake, Low- er Gloster and Whetstone Roads in his district. "All of these bridges have been closed and properly marked as required by the state," said McNabb. "And, I will be closing the Macedo- nia Road bridge in the near future." Supervisor Jackson said, "The Smith Road will be closed today (Monday) and the Beaver Creek and Cold Spring Roads will be closed shortly." Supervisor Hollins said that all of the bridges in his district have been closed ex- cept for the Millbrook Road. Administrator Lewis said that the Lover's Lane Road will be closed later today (Monday) or tomorrow at the latest. Supervisor Nettles said, "I want the residents of Wilkinson County to know that none of the supervisors in this county want to close these roads to all traffic. It is something we must do or lose all federal road fund- ing until the bridges are replaced or repaired. This is a mandate to this county and all other counties in the state. Close bridges or lose road and bridge re- pair funding until they are closed. Supervisor Nettles add- ed, "The Turkey Creek Road bridge replacement proj- ect is 95% complete. All we need is about a week of dry weather, and we can get the project completed and the road opened to traffic.', Supervisor Wil Seal said that he had signed off on paying Sanders Repair Ser- vice for work they did on a wheel loader. "I don't know why they have not been paid, but I am making a motion that their invoice in the amount of $3,315.68 be approved for payment," he stated. The motion was seconded by Nettles and passed with a 5-0 vote. Wilkinson County resi- dent Bucky Darden ap- peared before the board to ask if the county or the school board owned 100 acres in Sections 16 & 17, T2N-R1E. "I have a hunt- ing lease with the county on 100 acres," said Darden. "And the Wilkinson County Board of Education is now advertising for a hunt- ing lease on this same 100 acres. I don't want to pay twice for a lease on this land ." Administrator Lewis said, "I have done a title search and the county, not the school, owns that 100 acres. You need to talk to them about this?' Darden replied, "I was just there, and they said that they owned that 100 acres. I want you (Adminis- trator Lewis) to talk to the school district and tell them that the county owns the land in question." Lewis replied, "I already have. I have given them the documentation necessary to prove to them that they don't own this land. Your dispute is with the school district and not the county." Darden was told that the school district had a new board attorney, and that he should take this matter up with them. Two bids were opened at 10 a.m. at the meeting for a total of seven repair/reno- vation projects planned on county roads. The county is working in conjunction with the Natural Resource Con- servation Service for fund- ing to pay for the projects. The county will have to put up matching funds on the projects on the following roads: (Continued on Page 6) by Woodville Republican Publisher /kr dy J. Lex ris On Groundhog Day on Friday, February 2, the best known weather prognosti- cator -- Punxsutawney Phil -- awoke in his burrow and stuck his nose outside. Legend has it that if he doesn't see his shadow he will stay outside because he believes that winter weath- er is over. But if he sees his shadow from the sun, he will scurry back into his warm burrow for six more weeks of cold weather. Phil's forecast for 2018 is six more weeks of winter as the sun was out and he went back into his burrow to stay warm for six more weeks of cold weather. The Pennsylvania ground- hog isn't the only weather- predicting rodent in this quirky American tradition, but he is the most famous. And according to the Punx- sutawney Groundhog Club, his opinion is the only one that matters. He's not al- ways right, but he's always popular. At 7:25 a.m. eastern time on a hill outside Punx- sutawney, Pc.; known as Gobbler's Knob, the seem- ingly immortal Phil -- the same rodent who launched the tradition in 1887, if you believe his handlers -- looked for his shadow. They reported that Phil communicated in "ground- hogese" that he had cast a shadow. According to this legend that means the weather will be wintery for the next six weeks. That's his typical predic- tion. It has happened more than 100 other times in the 131-year history of the tra- dition. Even so, there's some good news: Phil is usually wrong. Meanwhile across state lines in New Jersey, Mill- town Mel predicted an early spring. In Milltown, N. J Groundhog Day festivities have been a tradition for 10 years. The original Mill- town Mel died in July, 2015, but his friend took over his name and has carried on the tradition. A little closer to home in New Iberia, La a furry nutria rat named Pierre C. Shadeaux did not see his shadow this year. This means that he believes that we are in for a longer spring and a slow return of the summer heat. Just who do we believe between these battling fur- ry weather predictors? BODY FOUND IN BURNED TRUCK -- A body, believed to be a male, was found in a pickup truck which burned at about 7 p.m. on Friday, February 2. The vehicle was in the parking lot of Illusions Gentleman's Club located on U.S. Highway 61 South of Woodville. The club was not open at the time of the incident. A passing motorist noticed a fire at the truck and stopped at the Wilkin- son County Sheriff's Department to report the blaze. The Wilkinson County Fire Department arrived on the scene and extinguished the blaze. Wilkinson County Coroner Nolan Thompson would not release the name of the individual. "We must positively identify the body before releasing their identity," said Coroner Thompson. "The body was sent to the Mississippi Crime Lab in Jackson for an autopsy to determine the cause of death. The lab is attempting to determine the identity using dental charts." -- Woodville Republican Photo by An- dy J. Lewis