DOVER, Del. (AP) - House lawmakers have approved two bills aimed at improving security within Delaware prisons.

One measure, approved unanimously Tuesday, makes it felony for an inmate to recklessly injure a correctional officer or other prison worker or recklessly hit a prison worker with urine, feces or other bodily fluid.

Under current state law, such acts must be intentional, not simply reckless, for an inmate to be convicted of a felony carrying mandatory prison time.

DOVER, Del. (AP) - A Democratic lawmaker who opposes the death penalty has introduced legislation stripping Delaware's Department of Correction of its authority to carry out executions and to obtain and use drugs in lethal injections.

Rep. Sean Lynn of Dover said Tuesday that he doubts his bill will pass, but that he wants people to better understand the drugs that are used in executing condemned criminals.

Elisa Vassas / Delaware State Police

DOVER, Del. (AP) - Gov. John Carney is joining other state officials in honoring Delaware law enforcement officers who have died in the line of duty.

Attorney General Matt Denn, state police superintendent Col. Nathaniel McQueen and Safety and Homeland Security Robert Coupe also were scheduled to attend Wednesday's annual wreath-laying ceremony at the Trooper's Memorial at state police headquarters in Dover.

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It’s been less than a week since State Trooper Stephen Ballard was shot and killed in the line of duty.

And last night many gathered in Georgetown with a candle light vigil to remember him.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that his widow Louise spoke for the first time at the vigil telling those gathered at the Circle that this was where she became engaged to her husband.

Stephanie Williams, his godmother, told the crowd that she appreciated the outpouring of support for Ballard.

Donations for the family have reached $188-thousand.


Dogfish Head Brewer Sam Calagione has finally won the James Beard Award for Outstanding Wine, Spirits or Beer Professional.

The brewer has been entered a number of times for this award but has always come up short.

Calagione said he was surprised as he was presented the award by actress Valarie Bertinelli.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that the Milton brewer said the award was more a recognition of the 250 people who worked for him.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - A synthetic opioid was the deadliest drug in Virginia last year.

The Richmond Times-Dispatch this week reports fentanyl-related fatalities surpassed those related to heroin and prescription painkillers last year.

Of the 1,133 people who died due to opioid overdoses in 2016, fentanyl contributed to 618 deaths. Heroin contributed to 448, and prescription opioids contributed to 469 deaths.

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It’s been three months since the inmate uprising at the James T. Vaughn Correctional Center in which one officer was killed.

And there have still been no charges filed in connection with the death of Officer Stephen Floyd.

During the 18 hour standoff Floyd and two other officers were taken hostage.

Geoff Klopp, president the Correctional Officers Association of Delaware, told WBOC that he was disappointed that no charges have been filed in the Floyd case.

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VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (AP) - More than 10,000 people have signed a petition trying to cancel a Virginia Beach festival set for next year. But city officials say they have no control over it.

The Virginian-Pilot reported Monday that College Beach Weekend brought large crowds and traffic backups. A shooting also left four people with non-life threatening injuries.

Councilman Jim Wood said the mostly social-media-driven event is not officially organized. He added, "how do you tell people they can't visit the beach?"

Don Rush

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Dominion Virginia Power says despite the current uncertainty over Obama-era environmental regulations, it is committed to increasing the amount of electricity it generates from solar power in the coming decades.

Virginia's largest utility laid out its long-range forecast of electricity demand and production Monday in a regulatory filing called an integrated resource plan.

The company says it plans to add at least 5,200 megawatts of new solar generation in the next 25 years.


RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Republican state Sen. Frank Wagner says voters are flocking to his campaign in the final six weeks of the GOP primary for Virginia governor.

Wagner held a Richmond news conference Monday to tout his experience as a businessman, military veteran and long-time lawmaker, saying his record is winning over Republican voters.

Wagner repeatedly lambasted Ed Gillespie, a Washington insider early frontrunner in the GOP gubernatorial contest. Wagner accused Gillespie of trying to mislead voters with unrealistic promises to cut taxes as governor.

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A candle light vigil will be held for Delaware State Trooper Stephen Ballard on the circle in Georgetown at 8 p.m. tonight.

People will be gathering to remember him and honor his life.

Ballard was shot and killed last week outside a convenience store in the town of Bear.

The suspect, who police believe shot him, then fled the scene only to hold up in his family home in Middletown where a 20 hour standoff with police ended his life.

The funeral for Ballard will take place this Friday in Wilmington at The Chase Center on the riverfront.

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Senators Tom Carper and Chris Coons calling on the Trump administration to protect the coastline from offshore oil drilling.

The Delaware Democrats joined 25 of their colleagues to urge Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke not to revise the five year plan that protects the East Coast as well as other areas around the country.

Senator Carper warned that expanded drilling would put the coastal communities which depend on tourism at risk noting that oil spills do not respect state boundaries.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia health officials are encouraging residents to help combat the spread of the Zika virus as mosquito season begins.

The Virginia Health Department's Zika website provides information about how residents can take precautions against the mosquito-borne illness. Zika can cause serious birth defects in pregnant women.

There have been 115 reported cases of Zika in Virginia since December 2015. Those have all been cases in which someone traveled to a Zika-affected area. There were no locally transmitted cases.

Christiana Care says it is reaching out to the community after the NAACP demanded a meeting with hospital officials over alleged abuse by security at the facility.

Richard Smith, president of the Bear Chapter, said there has been a history of abuse charging security at the facility is “out of control”.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that a number of citizens have told the paper about unpleasant encounters with aggressive constables.

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Students at the University of Maryland Eastern Shore held a training session this weekend on how to administer Narcan to reverse a drug overdose.

The training was carried out by the university’s School of Pharmacy and Health Professions.

It was the first of these sessions by the school to deal with the rising opioid addiction rate in the country.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that there were 69 participants -- a high turnout that surprised many at the session.

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - A Maryland court has rejected an appeal from a Salisbury man serving life in prison for the drug-related slaying of a Delaware man.

The Court of Special Appeals on Thursday ruled against Deshaune Darling, who  challenged the admission of certain evidence at his trial in the death of 40-year-old Radames Guzman of Magnolia, Delaware.

According to court records, Guzman was an informant for Delaware State Police who helped with several cases related to Darling.

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FAIRFAX, Va. (AP) - Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam highlighted his ability to attract Republicans while former congressman Tom Perriello touted his appeal to disillusioned voters as the two met in their first Democratic gubernatorial debate.

Northam had been expecting an easy path to the nomination, but Perriello launched a late campaign that has attracted support of the party's insurgent wing.

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NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (AP) - Authorities in Virginia say a Newport News police officer shot and killed an armed man at a restaurant.

News outlets report Newport News police spokesman Brandon Maynard says officers received a call Saturday about a violent person at the Pondo Cafe. Arriving officers heard a gunshot from inside the restaurant, but couldn't immediately enter because it was locked.

Once inside, the tactical team engaged the suspect and an officer fatally shot him. He died on scene and remains unidentified.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - Stephen M. Schenning has been named Maryland's acting U.S. Attorney.

Media outlets report Schenning will be succeeding Rod J. Rosenstein on an interim basis. Rosenstein left the position after the Senate confirmed him to be deputy U.S. attorney general on Tuesday.

Schenning is a Baltimore native and received a bachelor's degree from Loyola College in 1969. After serving in the U.S. Army for two years, he earned a juris doctorate from the University of Maryland.

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The Ocean City firefighters and paramedics are set to get their arbitration referendum on the ballot in the next election.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that the Board of Elections told the town council that the measure had received enough signatures to qualify.

With the council’s unanimous acceptance of the result Ryan Whittingon, president of Local 4269, told the paper that it will be helpful to have someone look into disputed issues.

Last March the union and the town of Ocean City hammered out an agreement that included the contentious issue of work shifts.

Angela Byrd

The April edition of Delmarva Today focuses on politics and literature. To begin the discussion of politics and literature, Harold Wilson’s guests are Don Rush, news director for Delmarva Public Radio; and Dr. Adam Wood, Department Chair and Associate Professor of English at Salisbury University.  Politics is currently in the air with the first 100 days of Trump’s presidency ending Saturday and the second and final round of the French election between Emmanuel Macron and Marine Le Pen on May 7.

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MIDDLETOWN, Del. (AP) - Police haven't released the motive behind the fatal shooting of a Delaware state trooper that led to an all-night standoff which ended in the suspect's death.

State police Superintendent Col. Nathaniel McQueen says 26-year-old Burgon Sealy Jr. was killed Thursday when he emerged from his home armed and "engaged police."

McQueen says Sealy shot Cpl. Stephen Ballard multiple times Wednesday afternoon after the trooper fell to the ground from Sealy's initial gunshot. The trooper died at a hospital.

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Tomorrow is “Drug Take Back Day” in Delaware for those who want to discard unused or expired prescriptions.

People will be able to drop off the drugs as 21 designated locations ranging from drug stores and law enforcement offices to medical centers.

They may be dropped off between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.

The program is offered twice a year and is sponsored by the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Delaware Department of Health and Social Services.

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WASHINGTON (AP) - President Donald Trump plans to sign an executive order that could lead to the expansion of drilling in the Arctic and Atlantic oceans.

Trump will order his interior secretary to review an Obama-era plan that dictates which locations are open to offshore drilling, with the goal of the new administration to expand operations.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - Former Maryland governor Martin O'Malley has been deposed in a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the state's 2011 redistricting process.
Michael Kimberly, an attorney representing a plaintiff in the case, said O'Malley was deposed Wednesday. Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller Jr. and House Speaker Michael Busch also were deposed recently. All are Democrats.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - A Republican candidate for lieutenant governor in Virginia wants a rival deposed in a bitter fight over an anonymous email alleging an adulterous relationship.

The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports an attorney for state Sen. Bryce Reeves is asking a judge to allow state Sen. Jill Vogel and her husband be deposed by May 24. Reeves has previously said there is strong evidence the Vogels, or someone at their direction, sent an email to state Republicans alleging Reeves was having an affair with a campaign staffer.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe says he's restored voting rights to more felons who have completed their sentences than any other governor.

McAuliffe announced Thursday he's restored voting and other civil rights to 156,000 felons, surpassing a total set by former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist's administration.

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FALLS CHURCH, Va. (AP) - Police in northern Virginia say someone set of fireworks in an elevator and left sheets of paper with the word "bomb" at a building that includes an abortion clinic.

Falls Church police say they were called to the building on two separate occasions on Thursday. In the morning, people reported smoke and an explosion, and investigators found exploded fireworks in an elevator. No one was injured and people were allowed back in the building.

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PORTLAND, Maine (AP) - Government scientists are launching an investigation into an unusually large number of humpback whale deaths from North Carolina to Maine.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Marine Fisheries says 41 whales have been stranded in the region in 2016 and so far in 2017.

Officials say 10 of the 20 whales that have been examined so far were killed by collisions with boats. That's far above the average of fewer than two per year, and officials say there's been no spike in boat traffic to explain it.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - Sen. Ben Cardin will be taking part in a discussion on foreign policy.

It's scheduled for Friday morning at Morgan State University in Baltimore.

The Maryland Democrat will be including a special focus on new ways to increase diversity of the national security workforce.

This week, Cardin introduced legislation designed to promote diversity and inclusion in the departments of state and defense, as well as other agencies focused on shaping and implementing U.S. foreign policy.