4BETTER OR WORSE- The week in review

Biggest changes contemplated by UVA: Kicking up tuition to be more in line with top-ranked private schools and going back to early admission, which the university dropped in 2008, this time nonbinding. The Daily Progress' Brian McNeill has the story from the Board of Visitors' Virginia Beach retreat over the weekend.

Biggest burying the hatchet: The Albemarle Board of Supervisors and School Board plan joint meetings to mend fences after the BOS blew off the School Board's demands for a higher tax rate during budget time earlier this year, Brandon Shulleeta reports in the Progress.

Biggest Hindu contretemps: Two Hindu advocacy groups complain about depictions of Hindu gods in statues made by a Crozet company called Sacred Source. The statue that drew complaints, Shiva with a nude woman in his lap, is found in tantric iconography. Brian McNeill has the story in the Daily Progress. And the Newsplex reports the company has received death threats.

Touchiest: Former city bus driver Jerome Alphonso Pleasants, 36, is sentenced to 90 days in jail for fondling the buttocks and breasts of a woman with whom he used to have a relationship, according to the DP's Tasha Kates.

Worst alleged child-torture case: Louisa grandparents Ronald Jewell, 48, and his wife, Laura Jewell, 49, are accused of torturing their eight-year-old granddaughter, the Times-Dispatch reports. The child showed up at a neighbor's house around 3am July 8 bruised, bloodied, with a partially torn ear.

Worst news for Jens Soering: The convicted double-murderer and former UVA Echols scholar will not be able to transfer to prison in his native Germany, thanks to opposition by Governor Bob McDonnell, whom U.S Attorney General Eric Holder won't overrule. In 1990, Soering, now 43, was convicted in the slaying of Derek and Nancy Haysom, the parents of his then girlfriend, Elizabeth, who is serving 90 years. 

Worst squandering of a possible revenue source during times of slashed budgets: Augusta County Police destroy 1,800 pounds of high quality marijuana valued at over $2 million that was delivered to American Safety Razor in Verona in March and, not surprisingly, never claimed, NBC29 reports.

Worst driving while stoned? An allegedly iPhone video-watching, pot-smoking 17-year-old rolls an Isuzu on I-64 near the Scottsville exit around 11:23am July 10. The unharmed teen is charged with driving under the influence and possession of pot.

Most jobs: The new Walmart Supercenter in Ruckersville takes applications to fill 320 positions when the store opens in August.

Most successful fundraising: Tom Perriello exceeds his all-time record and pulls in $660K in the second quarter, leaving his campaign with $1.7 million cash on hand for his upcoming 5th District reelection battle against Republican challenger Robert Hurt.

Most controversial camp: People Can Change, an organization that helps men overcome homosexual tendencies by attending weekend camps throughout the country. Its leader, Rich Wyler, lives in Greene County, Shulleeta reports.  

Oddest application of the Hobbs Act: Twenty-one-year-old Stacy Lamont Berry is convicted on two counts of interfering with interstate commerce for robbing low-level pot dealers at gunpoint. He's sentenced July 8 to 350 months and about $31,000 in restitution for the robberies that left one victim shot and paralyzed. 

Better than a year ago but still not great: House sales are up 19 percent for the first half of the year, the area median is up $1,000 to $248,000 but the inventory is larger than last year with 3,646 houses on the block, according to the Charlottesville Albemarle Association of Realtors. 

Biggest rebranding: The YMCA loses the "MCA" from its name and logo, the News Leader reports, figuring the "Y" is more appealing to members who are neither young, Christian, nor male.


1 comment

Stacy Lamont Berry....good riddance. When will our justice system learn?