Virginia State Police Investigates
7:33 am
Fri March 20, 2015

State Police Launch Probes of UVA Student's Arrest

Martese Johnson came to the Downtown Mall Thursday with his brother, mother, and lawyer
Credit Hawes Spencer

Two separate investigations have now been launched into the arrest and injury of a popular UVA student leader. 

After requests from the governor and Charlottesville's top prosecutor, Virginia State Police have launched both an administrative review and a criminal investigation of the Alcoholic Beverage Control Board's March 18 encounter with Martese Johnson, who was cuffed, arrested, and injured on the sidewalk outside a Charlottesville bar. 
 

"We owe it both Mr. Johnson and the Virginia ABC to be painstakingly thorough in determining the facts of the situation."

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Arts & Culture
5:29 pm
Thu March 19, 2015

VA Architect Creates Costa Rican Coloring Book

Coloring books are usually for kids, and they’re rarely considered art, but a Charlottesville man has published a coloring book for all ages, with black and white drawings that took at least forty hours to create. 

Bob Anderson is an architect who likes to build green.  He’s always considered himself a conservationist, and when his son decided to host a bachelor party in the Costa Rican rainforest, Anderson was delighted. 

The Corcovado National Park was remote, lush and teeming with beautiful birds and animals.

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Declining Population
4:41 pm
Thu March 19, 2015

"Kill the Bees, Kill the Economy"

Credit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Annually for about 13 years, Virginia—like many other states—has been losing about 30% of its honey bee population to a host of problems.  

Some might think that there’s no need to worry.  But aside from the delicious honey they produce, bees are a major contributor to the production of Virginia agriculture, the state's top commodity.

Kill the bees, kill the economy—not to mention furthering the slow breakdown of the ecosystem. So what's leading to the decline? Virginia Tech entomologist Dr. Troy Anderson says a lot of factors are responsible.

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Arts & Culture
4:33 pm
Thu March 19, 2015

Islamic Worlds Festival: "Wearing My Religion"

Sana Rauf

Whatever your thoughts on fashion, it seems clear that what a woman wears can speak volumes about her, before she ever utters a word. 

In part three of our series on the upcoming Islamic Worlds Festival at Virginia Tech’s Center for the Arts, we explore the message of the hijab: the headscarf worn by Muslim women here and all over the world.

“From what I see as someone that wears a headscarf is, I walk with my religion on my head. So it is a little bit harder.”

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Virginia State Police Investigates
10:44 am
Thu March 19, 2015

Student Leader's Bloody Arrest Sparks Outrage at UVA

This photograph went viral the morning after St. Patrick's Day.
Credit Black Dot

A Virginia State Police investigation is underway regarding the March 18th arrest of an honored UVA student in Charlottesville by state ABC officers.  During the incident, the student was injured and a picture of him on the ground and bleeding from the head spread quickly on social media.

Governor Terry McAullife has ordered an administrative review, and at the request of the City of Charlottesville Commonwealth's Attorney, a criminal investigation is also underway.

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Conforming to Federal Mandates
5:02 pm
Wed March 18, 2015

Concerns Over Campus Sexual Assault Legislation

Credit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Legislation that addresses campus sexual assaults is already on Governor McAuliffe's desk—but before he signs off, amends, or vetoes anything, he has the input from members of his Task Force on Combating Campus Sexual Violence to consider.

The legislation requires campus employees to report sexual violence allegations to the Title IX  coordinator, who must report the allegation to a review team that meets within 72 hours.  One subcommittee believes that while the legislation is a good first step, there's more work ahead.

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Sunshine Week
12:04 pm
Wed March 18, 2015

Shining a Light on VA's Death Row

This week civic groups and nonprofits are taking a closer look at the importance of open government and freedom of information for Sunshine week.  

Sunshine is absent in the death chambers of Virginia, where the public has no access to basic information about how inmates are killed. Policies and procedures outlining the process are concealed from view. Training manuals are closely guarded. Even specific details about how executions are carried out are kept secret. 

"I'm not clear what there is to hide here."

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Virginia Festival of the Book.
9:40 am
Wed March 18, 2015

Congressional Gridlock-Busting Plan Outlined by Author

Jason Grumet heads the non-profit Bipartisan Policy Center.
Credit BPC

Washington's partisan political gridlock can be unlocked, according to one of the speakers at the upcoming Virginia Festival of the Book.

"The good news is that it doesn't involve a Constitutional convention or a Mars invasion."

That's Jason Grumet, whose new book, City of Rivals, proposes some intuitive solutions, such as more time for Congress to hang out together. And some not-so-intuitive solutions, such as bringing back earmarks, which Congress banned five years ago.

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Domenico Montanaro is NPR's lead editor for politics and digital audience. Based in Washington, D.C., he directs political coverage across the network's broadcast and digital platforms.

Before joining NPR in 2015, Montanaro served as political director and senior producer for politics and law at PBS NewsHour. There, he led domestic political and legal coverage, which included the 2014 midterm elections, the Supreme Court and the unrest in Ferguson, Mo.

Prior to PBS NewsHour, Montanaro was deputy political editor at NBC News, where he covered two presidential elections and reported and edited for the network's political blog, "First Read." He has also worked at CBS News, ABC News, The Asbury Park Press in New Jersey, and has taught high-school English.

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