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August 8th, 2013

DEEMED UNSAFE: Vacant home upsets Laud residents

August 8, 2013

COLUMBIA CITY — Swarming bees, broken windows and a vermin infestation are reasons for a vacant home becoming the concern of Whitley County’s Chief Building Inspector Craig Wagner.

At the County Commissioners meeting Monday, Wagner requested county leaders to approve his moving forward in declaring the building unsafe.

The property is located at 8075 S. 200 E. and sits on the corner of Smith Street and 200 E. According to Wagner, the property is owned by William L. Hinen.

THIS TOWN IS BIG ENOUGH: WCSD adds two deputies

August 8, 2013

COLUMBIA CITY — For the first time in “many years,” Whitley County’s Sheriff’s Department is adding two deputies at the same time, said Sergeant Todd Cook.

Kory Bailey, 23, and Terrance McKinney, 27, are the latest additions to the department of 15 deputies.

Bailey and McKinney are replacing two deputies who resigned this year, Scott Geist and Chuck Vogely.

Another law enforcement officer will join the squad in December, when long-time deputy Dennis Ruch is expected to retire.

Bailey grew up in Whitley County and is a 2009 Columbia City High School graduate.

DOWNGRADED: WCCS removes weighted grades

August 8, 2013

COLUMBIA CITY — High schools in Columbia City will no longer offer weighted grades to students taking Advanced Placement (AP) courses.

Whitley County Consolidated Schools Board of Trustees removed the program by a unanimous vote at Monday night’s board meeting, affecting students at both Columbia City High School and Eagle Tech Academy.

The change will be phased in over the next two years.

August 7th

Winning whiskers

August 7, 2013

Jessica Wietfeldt and Amelia Roman (right) returned from the Indiana State Fair with several awards.

Wietfeldt's cat, Molly, earned a Blue Merit and earned Reserve Champion in the Intermediate Level Cage Decorating.

Roman’s cat, Cinnamon, earned a Blue Merit. Roman also brought home the Senior Champion Showmanship award and Grand Champion Showmanship overall. This is the second year that she has won the two showmanship awards.

Both she and Wietfeldt are members of the Whitley Whiskers 4-H Cat Club.

"SHOVEL READY": Developer begins work in industrial park

August 7, 2013

COLUMBIA CITY — Developer Whitley RC Investments, LLC announced the construction of a 75,000-square foot, expandable shell building at “shovel ready” certified Rail Connect Business Park in Whitley County.

“Based on our analysis, this is both the right time and the right location to develop a shell building,” said Whitley RC Investments partner Simon Dragan. “Our team greatly appreciates the welcome we have received in Whitley County and looks forward to seeing this project become successful.”

PACESETTERS: Relay wraps up after ‘fantastic’ event

August 7, 2013

COLUMBIA CITY — A banner year for cancer research was cause for celebration for Whitley County’s Relay for Life participants and chair persons.

After its annual event, held in June, the fundraiser exceeded its goal by $7,000 — raising a total $31,132.

Team leaders, volunteers and participants gathered last night to applaud the county’s efforts and to brainstorm on the 2014 relay.

“I can’t imagine doing this without you,” said Cathy Cronin, the event’s chairman. “Words fail me. I can’t thank you all enough. This was a fantastic year, and I am looking forward to next year.”

IN COURT: Attempted jail escapee pleads guilty, gets 8 years

August 7, 2013

COLUMBIA CITY — A man who attempted to escape from the Whitley County Jail last year pleaded guilty Monday.

Charles E. Norris, 29, of Cromwell, was booked at the jail last November on a probation violation and other charges.

On Dec. 7, 2012, he attempted to escape from the jail. He used a shank — a make-shift knife made from the sharpened end of a toothbrush — and held it to the throat of another inmate.

Norris demanded the keys and said he would harm the other inmate. Jail officials refused to relent, and Norris was eventually subdued.

WCCS REVIEWS CANDIDATES: Final decision to fill board vacancy will be made Aug. 18

August 7, 2013

COLUMBIA CITY — Whitley County Consolidated Schools board members had the opportunity to meet the candidates aspiring to fill a vacant seat at their meeting Monday.

The board position opened up after former member, Chris Bechtold, resigned due to his new position as a teacher within the district. The newly-appointed board member will be voted in at the next WCCS board meeting, and will finish out Bechtold’s term — through Dec. 31, 2014.

SDI ACCIDENT: Coroner determines cause of death

August 7, 2013

COLUMBIA CITY — A cause of death has been determined for an Albion man who died at Steel Dynamics Inc. Monday night.

First responders were called to the factory, located south of U.S. 30 between County Roads 700 and 800 East, for an injured man, Jeffery A. Flory, 44, at approximately 10:30 p.m. Monday.

Whitley County Coroner Randy Dellinger determined after an autopsy Tuesday that he died from blunt force trauma, with multiple internal injuries.

Though details of Flory’s death aren’t availble, Dellinger said the death was determined to be accidental.

August 6th

Creative campers

August 6, 2013

Twenty children attended Summer Art Camp at the Peabody Public Library last week.

The children spent half of the class outdoors exploring and observing the wetland area behind the library. The other half was spent inside drawing plants and animals that can be found in and around ponds.

During the week, the children learned to draw moths, treefrogs, woodchucks, Northern water snakes and thistles. The class was instructed by Joni Walker.

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