Local News

Elected leaders, merchants oppose park fee hike

FRONT ROYAL – Warren County leaders oppose a proposal to hike entrance fees at the Shenandoah National Park. The Board of Supervisors voted Wednesday to adopt a resolution in opposition to a National Park Service proposal to increase the daily entrance fee from $25 to $70 per vehicle during ...

Basketball coach arrested on child sex solicitation charges

WINCHESTER -- The Frederick County Sheriff’s Office on Tuesday arrested the owner and assistant coach of the Virginia Storm semi-professional basketball team on multiple child sex charges. Norman Lee Blowe Jr., 47, is accused of having a sexual relationship with a 17-year-old girl between ...

Baltimore woman charged in Shenandoah County fraud case

WOODSTOCK -- A Baltimore woman is facing a long list of fraud-related charges after she allegedly forged three checks to herself from the Front Royal Volunteer Fire and Rescue Department in November 2010. Therese Denise Epps, 35, was charged on Nov. 1 with 12 charges stemming from Nov. 11 ...

Investigators search for armed robbery suspect

Investigators with the Shenandoah County Sheriff’s Office are searching for a suspect in a Wednesday morning armed robbery of a convenience store near Edinburg. Capt. Wes Dellinger of the Sheriff's Office said between 5:30 a.m. and 6 a.m. Wednesday, a white male wearing a gray jacket, gray ...

Roulston, Morris, Neese win supervisor seats

WOODSTOCK – Voters in Shenandoah County ousted two opponents of tax increases from the Board of Supervisors in Tuesday’s election, according to unofficial results. Woodstock-area business owner Karl V. Roulston defeated Supervisor Cindy M. Bailey for the District 4 board seat. Dennis ...

Voters like Kline for Shenandoah County School Board

Shelby Kline won election Tuesday to the Shenandoah County School Board with 1,281 votes, according to unofficial election results. “Wow. I am pleasantly surprised,” Kline said when informed of the results. She had been out canvassing all day. Kline said she plans to address what ...

GOP holds ground in region

In a night that saw Democratic candidates defeat their Republican counterparts throughout much of Virginia, Republican members of the House of Delegates managed to mostly hold onto their seats in the Northern Shenandoah Valley. In the northern parts of Frederick County, incumbent Republicans ...

Middletown looking to expand Zoning Department

Middletown is signaling that it plans to expand its zoning department as it begins its search for a part time employee in the department. Middletown council members at a work session Monday night were in unanimous agreement that an additional employee needed to be added to the department to ...

Judge rejects plea agreement in DUI maiming case

WOODSTOCK -- Circuit Judge Dennis L. Hupp rejected a plea agreement on Monday in a DUI maiming case involving a Strasburg man accused of hitting a bicyclist with his SUV in November 2016. Ernest Linwood Tharpe III, 35, planned to plead guilty on Monday to a reckless driving charge that was ...

Area voters to fill board positions

While national attention has focused on the Virginia governor's race,  there are a number of local elections to keep an eye on as well today. There are contested board of supervisors elections in Shenandoah and Frederick counties. In Shenandoah County, incumbent independent John "Dick" Neese ...

Prosecution drops burglary charges against West Virginia man

WOODSTOCK -- The prosecution on Monday dropped the charges against a Martinsburg, West Virginia, man accused in multiple Shenandoah County burglaries. Terry Wayne Siford, 41, was facing 27 burglary-related charges stemming from a string of home invasions from 2013 and 2014. He was arrested ...

VDOT joins first responders to clear interstate crashes

When a tanker truck carrying 8,000 gallons of gasoline overturned on Interstate 66 in the Front Royal area in 2013, the line of cars soon stretched back three miles. “You’ve got all of that traffic sitting back there within a couple hundred yards of an 8,000-gallon bomb,” said Ed Carter, ...

Man sentenced on officer assault charges from I-81 chase

WOODSTOCK -- A Washington, D.C., man was sentenced on Friday to serve over six years imprisonment after he led state and local police on a multi-county chase in April 2016. Brandon Deshawn McClaney, 32, pleaded guilty in August to several charges stemming from the 45-minute high-speed chase ...

Panel loses member after Afton Inn vote

FRONT ROYAL – A Board of Architectural Review member doesn’t want to stay on for another term after the Town Council overturned the panel’s decision to protect the Afton Inn from demolition. The council plans to discuss appointments to two upcoming vacancies on the Board of Architectural ...

Smoke-free lodge cheered as family friendly, heathier

WOODSTOCK -- Generations remember social and charitable clubs like the Moose lodge on Moose Road in Woodstock as dimly illuminated bars where members could talk over drinks while lighting up. At Lodge 1329 a smoking ban put in place in the main hall on Nov. 1, 2016 by vote of lodge members ...

Front Royal finally climbs out of the Great Recession

FRONT ROYAL -- From his second-story office on Main Street, Robert MacDougall has mere inches between his window and the scaffolding next door. After months of construction workers peering in at him and intermittent jackhammering, MacDougall hasn’t experienced a peaceful, ...

Kaine, Warner rip proposed national park fee hikes

U.S. senators Tim Kaine and Mark Warner are both criticizing a proposal by the National Park Service to substantially increase fees at Shenandoah and 16 other national parks. In a letter written Tuesday to Ryan Zinke, Secretary of the Department of the Interior, the two Virginia senators, both ...

Superintendent: Boundary changes helped

Shenandoah County Public Schools Superintendent Mark Johnston is taking issue with a story that appeared in an area weekly newspaper. The story titled “Boundary changes didn't fix problems ” reported on school boundary issues and overcrowding problems in some of the schools. The story ...

Bond counsel: Jail, counties miss out on savings

The counties operating the regional jail near Front Royal have missed out on saving a total of roughly $176,618 a year because Shenandoah County opted out of refinancing the loan on the facility, the jail's bond counsel says. The Rappahannock-Shenandoah-Warren Regional Jail Authority Board ...