Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Shades of Greenes

LITERACY CRISIS Estimates of the rate of functional illiteracy in the United States--people who can't read a street sign or a medicine label--range between 16 to 20 percent. In [this State], however, the average is 25 percent. And in Greene County the illiteracy rate is 51 per cent. More than half of the inhabitants cannot read. --Tuscaloosa (AL) News.

NO MORE CO-EDUCATION? Starting next September, all public schools in Greene County will be single-sex institutions. This bold measure was adopted by school authorities in response to persistently poor test scores by students, along with high drop-out rates and high rates of teen pregnancy. --Fort Mills (GA) Times. [National Association for Single Sex Public Education (http://singlesexschools.org) will hold its fourth international conference in Memphis TN on Oct. 11-12. Not mentioned in that organization’s case for single-sex schooling is the observation that separation shields boys from the truth about their inferior performance. Ed.] DIRTY DEPUTY Greene County Sheriff’s Lieutenant Leftery N. “Terry” Tsouroutis has been sentenced to serve 27 months in Federal prison for violating the Mann Act and lying to Federal agents. Lieutenant Tsouroutis transported a 19-year-old State prisoner here from Baltimore. Although she had been brought back to face charges of burglary, robbery, credit card theft, and failure to appear when required, Tsouroutis got a local magistrate to release her on an unsecured bond, with the proviso that she must have daily contact with him. For the next three months, he engaged in numerous sexual acts with the victim at various locations in Greene County. In exchange for the sex, he paid her money and kept her out of jail even when she missed court and faced new charges. His conviction, said United States Attorney John Brownlee, “affirms the important principle that no one is above the law.”

--Rockbridge (VA) News Leader.


Ten suspected street-level drug dealers operating in Greene County have been charged as part of a task force sweep. Attorney General Tom Corbett said the sweep, conducted by the Greene County Drug Task Force, concluded a six-month investigation into the sale, distribution and possession of heroin, cocaine, marijuana or prescription narcotics such as Vicodin.

--Ch 4 (Pittsburgh PA) News.


Chosen as 2009 Greene County Junior Miss, from among 12 young candidates at Saturday’s annual “fun in the sun” event, was Karen Lott, daughter of Joy and Truitt Lott. Karen also received the Self Expression and Scholastic awards. The “Be Your Best Self”’ essay award went to Schahwetta Polk. Sponsoring the event was the Ladies Variety Club of Greene County.

--Biloxi (MS) Bulletin.


Greene County property and business owners are being asked to report damage from this week’s severe flooding. The county is seeking reports of damage to residential, commercial and agricultural property, including structural damage and damaged items within flood-affcted structures. The office of Emergency Management has activated a flood damage hotline at (417)829-6200.

-- Springfield (MO) Business Journal.


Greene Memorial Hospital will join IHS Pharmacy & Wellness Center in sponsoring, on April 9th, in the county fairgrounds, the third annual Greene County Health Fair.

--Xenia (OH) Gazette


April Finch, 31, has been sentenced to incarceration in a State psychiatric institution after being found guilty of child endangerment charges. Greene County sheriff’s deputies testified at the trial that Ms Finch reported that her baby, aged 3 and a half months, had been stolen. After an intensive investigation the deputies found the baby in the locked trunk of Ms Finch’s car. Deputy Terrence McSeeley testified that the baby, when found, she was "drenched in sweat despite the fact that the outside temperature was in the 50s, her diaper was very wet and full of fecal matter, she appeared to have vomited while in the trunk and was foaming at the mouth." According to her adoptive mother, Ms Finch was raised in some 25 foster homes, and is afflicted with dissociative identity disorder. The child’s father concurs.

--Greene County (IN) Daily World


Greene County fails to meet the Environmental Protection Agency’s new smog standards. Its air contains 79 parts of ozone per billion, as recently tested. That level of pollution was acceptable before March 12th, when the EPA-prescribed safety limit was 80ppb. Greene is one of 13 sub-standard counties in the State.

--Terre Haute (IN) Herald


National Weather Service teams determined that a Force 1 tornado crossed Greene County on Wednesday night (3/5), destroying one home and causing serious damage to four others.

--Tuscaloosa Times


Rose’s Courthouse Café will open Monday in the Greene County Courthouse. Owner Rose Habermehl will offer a variety of made-to-order breakfast and lunch items.

--from ‘Ozark Updates’ in Springfield (MO) News-Leader.

LEAKY DAM A dam holding back 27 acres of water in Greene County has sprung a leak. It's under 24-hour surveillance to make sure it does not breech and flood nearby homes. Property manager Thomas Darnell says emergency crews are draining the lake…. Until the water levels drop several more feet, neighbors in Greene Acres are under high alert. Darnell says some good will come of the problem. He plans to dredge the lake while its empty, clean up junk from the bottom, and build new piers for swimmers… Pockets of water [containinhg small-mouth bass] could be left behind even after the lake is drained, but Darnell points out those pockets will quickly heat up in the summer. He jokes and says if it comes to the worst, he might organize a fish fry for the county.

--Joanna Shrewsbury, NBC29 (VA).


George E. Young III was in custody in the Greene County Jail recently in lieu of posting $100,000 bond. He was charged with felony assault on a law enforcement officer plus auto theft, resisting arrest and first-degree burglary. The charges result from a chase that began about 1:30 a.m. Friday, when a Greene County Deputy spotted a speeding car that matched the description of a stolen vehicle, said Capt. Randy Gibson. The deputy followed the vehicle south…and was able to determine that the maroon Oldsmobile Intrigue was stolen. When he attempted to pull the vehicle over, the suspect sped off. The suspect eventually turned north…where deputies had laid a spike strip. The strip punctured at least one of the stolen vehicle’s tires, and the suspect ditched the car a half-block later, fleeing into one of the apartments, …a male resident grabbed a rifle and began to beat the suspect with it. “At that point,” said Capt. Randy Gibson, Young “fled out of the apartment, basically into the arms of the many deputies and police officers on scene.”

--Tuscaloosa Times


Charges of criminal homicide, aggravated assault, rape, and abuse of a corpse have been filed by Greene County’s district attorney against Jeffrey Martin, 50. The charges arise from the strangulation death of 14-year-old Gabrielle M. Becker.

--Xenia Gazette

For strangling his grandmother after she stopped giving him money, according to Greene County’s district attorney, Troy Ford, 37, faces a prison term of between 10 and 30 years.

--Springfield News-Leader


Angela Guernsey, 34, entered a plea of guilty to a charge of grand larceny. She admitted that she stole $29,000 from the treasury of Greene County’s annual Popcorn Festival.

--CH4 ( PA) News


A man suspected of committing as many as nine convenience store robberies in January now faces increased charges, after a Greene County judge dropped a case against him Thursday.

Kristy L. Ash, 41, dubbed the "salt-and-pepper bandit" because of his graying facial hair, had faced a single first-degree robbery charge. But prosecutors ran into problems securing a witness for that case, prompting Greene County Associate Circuit Court Judge Dan Imhof to dismiss it. The prosecutor's office responded by filing five new felony charges against Ash -- three for first-degree robbery, two for attempted robbery.

Assistant Prosecutor Matt Russell explained that his office had always planned on filing the additional charges if Ash wouldn't agree to a plea deal on the first. So when the case got tossed, Russell immediately filed the new charges.

--Dirk VanderHart, News-Leader

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