4BETTER OR WORSE- The week in review
Most notorious black widow: Authorities discover the body of Mary Chavers' husband, Clent Chavers, in the couple's Amelia backyard, where she admits she buried him 15 years ago, and since 1994, continued to collect his Social Security checks. Chavers is already facing charges for allegedly dumping the body of her boyfriend, Reginal Cody Bowles, in a well in Mineral, where it may have been hidden the past two years while she collected his SS checks.
Most wannabe successors to Supervisor Sally Thomas: Three candidates are vying for Thomas' Samuel Miller seat on the Albemarle Board of Supervisors, according to Charlottesville Tomorrow. Former Albemarle School Board member Madison Cummings and UVA architecture professor Lucia Phinney seek the Democratic nomination to face off against independent John Lowry in November. County Dems will pick their supes' candidates at a May 11 caucus.
Worst alleged hate crime: A UVA student and his friend are attacked early April 4 by five gay-slur-yelling white males in the Scott Stadium parking lot, where they smash the student's cell phone when he tries to call 911 and hit him when he tries to flee, according to Brian McNeill in the Daily Progress.
Worst Waffle House ruckus: An early morning drive-by shooting injures an employee at the breakfast eatery on Fifth Street April 12 when a window is damaged. The suspect is described as a 5'10", 170-pound black male.
Best national dust-up about Virginia's gun laws: New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg airs an ad on the anniversary of the Virginia Tech massacre criticizing a loophole that allows gun purchases at gun shows without background checks, and specifically calls out Republican gubernatorial candidate and former attorney general Bob McDonnell for backing the loophole. McDonnell's camp fires back that he supports background checks for all sales made by licensed gun dealers at Virginia gun shows.
Best way to report belly-up fish: The water pollution hotline– 434-975-0224– courtesy of the Rivanna Regional Stormwater Education Partnership.
Best free ride: Charlottesville and Albemarle kids between 6 and 18 can ride Charlottesville Transit System at no cost from June 9 to August 24 with a photo ID and parental permission. More info on getting those IDs at 434-970-3649.
Biggest bus fire: A flame-shooting charter bus carrying Averett University women softball players burns to a crisp on U.S. 29 near Red Hill Road around 3:20pm April 9, the Progress reports. No one was injured on the bus that witnesses say was trailing 20-feet long flames, but some of the team's equipment was damaged, and the highway was shut down in both directions for 45 minutes.
Biggest class-action suit: Local lawyers win a $256 million settlement against faux nonprofit Cambridge Credit Counseling Corporation, which preyed on people trying to get out of debt. The attorneys who pursued the case since 2003 are Greg Dudley and Garrett Smith (the latter of whom represents the Hook in a defamation defense). Tasha Kates has the story in the DP.
Best spin on inflation in a deflationary economy: UVA Board of Visitors raises in-state tuition five percent– $375– bringing the annual total to $7,873 and hailing it as a lower-than-expected increase. Meanwhile, out-of-state students get hit with a 7.5 percent, $2,075, increase that brings the non-Virginian cost of attending Mr. Jefferson's U to $29,873.
Best way to celebrate Jefferson's 266th birthday: Innocence Project founders Peter J. Neufeld and Barry Scheck receive UVA's highest external award for law April 13 from the Thomas Jefferson Foundation. Former secretary of state Warren Christopher and artist Robert Irwin also receive medals. City and county employees settle for local government's traditional way of commemorating Jefferson birthday and get the day off.