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Local News

Suspect Returned to Somerset; Awaiting Preliminary Hearing


Twenty-three year old Meyersdale resident Jonathan William Beal has been returned to Somerset County, to face murder charges in the death of Justine Marie Jackson. Biel was arraigned over the weekend on charges of homicide, abuse of a corpse, and aggravated assault charges. He is being held without bond, which is not set in homicide cases. A preliminary hearing is set for 1 p.m. on Monday, November 26th in Meyersdale.



Dairy Strike Over


Members of Teamsters Local 453 have ratified a new contract with Potomac Farms Dairy and the strike, which began on September 12th, has ended. The union represents 55 workers at the Cumberland location, and others in Oakland, Moorefield, West Virginia, along with Culpepper and Broadway, Virginia. A previous contract had expired in February of 2011, but both sides verbally agreed to continue negotiations. In May, the company made its final offer.



Couple Loses Home In Fire


A fire destroyed the home of Dale and Amanda Clayton Sunday, while the two were at work. The blaze began in the carport of their residence on Cecil Avenue in Cresaptown. There were no injuries, but the Claytons lost their two dogs and a pet guinea pig in the 2:42 p.m. incident. Losses were set at $150,000 to the  structure and $50,000 to its contents.



Police Investigating Theft


Cumberland City Police are investigating the theft of a briefcase, containing several electronic devices from a car parked at a business on South George Street. There are no suspects in the case, but Cumberland City Police are asking anyone who may have information in the matter, to contact them at (301)-777-1600.



Hampshire County Looking for Water Leak


Central Hampshire County is losing about 100,000 gallons of water a day, and they can’t find the leak. The general manager of the Central Hampshire Public Service District, James Hoffman, is asking residents to report any running water or standing water in the area. At the present rate, they are losing 50 t0 70 gallons of water per minute. Anyone who comes across running or standing water that is normally not in a specific area, should call (304)-496-8882.


O’Malley, Ehrlich Joining Together to Reduce Debt


Former Governor Robert Ehrlich and Governor Martin O’Malley are joining forces to try to reduce the federal debt. Two other staff members will comprise the Maryland Campaign to Fix the Debt. Others on the steering committee will be former Representative Wayne Gilchrest and former Representative Tom McMillen, who ran against each other in 1992. Chip Depaula, a former Ehrlich Chief of Staff notes that now that the elections are over, it’s time for Washington to work together to create solutions.



Nobel Winners Say Pvt. Manning Deserves Gratitude


Three Nobel Prize winners say U.S. Army Private Bradley Manning deserves gratitude, and not a court-martial for revealing covert crimes in Iraq and Afghanistan. A letter, signed by Desmond Tutu, Mairead Maguire and Adolfo Perez Esquivel appears in an upcoming issues of The Nation magazine. The letter comes a week after Manning’s lawyers revealed his offer to plead guilty to reduced charges.


Business Leaders Discuss “Fiscal Cliff”


The head of the Maryland Retailers Association told a panel of state officials recently that the “fiscal cliff” in Washington could have significant impact on consumer behavior over the holidays in a state like Maryland, which relies on the federal government for so many jobs. Pat Donoho says the fiscal cliff will directly impact consumer spending. It is hoped Congress will act to lessen the impact of sequestration and that some of the tax cuts that are set to expire, will be extended.



PSC Alerting Customers to Potential Changes


The West Virginia Public Service Commission is warning utility customers that they may receive estimated, rather than actual amounts of electric, water and gas used. Employees from various utility companies were taken off their regular duties, such as reading meters, to assist restoration crews in the field, affected by Hurricane Sandy. The action was taken in order to get power restored as quickly as possible throughout the area.


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