Local News

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WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) - Delaware Gov. John Carney has joined 11 other governors in writing a letter to President Donald Trump urging him to keep the U.S. in the Paris Climate Agreement to reduce carbon pollution and combat climate change.

Carney says the effects of climate change are already taking a toll on Delawareans, and that as a low-lying coastal state, Delaware is vulnerable to damage from sea level rise, stronger storm surges, and routine flooding.

Carney says the threats will only increase without a concerted effort to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases.

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BOSTON (AP) - Major League Baseball is reviewing its security protocols in all 30 stadiums after Orioles outfielder Adam Jones complained of fans shouting racial slurs in Boston this week and other black players reacted by saying it's a common reality when playing in several cities.

It's not yet clear what changes might be made, but league officials are starting by figuring out how individual clubs handle fan issues and complaints.

MLB spokesman Pat Courtney says the league has reached out to all 30 clubs to assess their practices for regulating fan behavior.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Republican lawmakers are rejecting pro-labor and pro-Medicaid expansion tweaks Democratic Gov. Terry McAuliffe tried to make in the state budget through vetoes.

House Speaker William J. Howell said Wednesday that he'd directed the House clerk not to include the attempted vetoes in the final enrolled version of the budget, saying they were invalid.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Attorney General Mark Herring is meeting with law enforcement officials, mental health advocates and others to discuss ways to improve re-entry services for people preparing to leave local and regional jails.

The attorney general's office is hosting five training sessions on re-entry programs this month for local law enforcement agencies, service providers and others stakeholders. The attorney general's office says the sessions are designed to help localities implement more effective services that help offenders succeed when they go back into the community.

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NORFOLK, Va. (AP) - Cities in Virginia's Hampton Roads region say they risk being labeled "sanctuary cities" for undocumented immigrants. But local officials say they're doing nothing wrong and are following the Constitution. 

That's according to an investigation by WAVY-TV.

Federal agents are asking jails to hold inmates of questionable immigration status for 48 hours beyond their release date. But sheriffs say such detention requests require a judge's signature. Otherwise, they say a person's rights to due process are being violated. 

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OCEAN CITY, Md. (AP) - Ocean City has officially opened a new playground on its boardwalk.

News outlets report the city's first boardwalk playground opened Monday. The structure of the playground features multiple play pieces such as slides and play panels. The project was funded by the Maryland Department of Natural Resources.

Ocean City Recreation and Parks Director Susan Petito says the town is pleased to offer a kid-friendly recreational amenity in Ocean City for residents and visitors.

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DOVER, Del. (AP) - Police say a man was found shot to death inside his Dover apartment.

Delaware State Police said in a statement that 911 callers reported that a man had been shot at the Alder Park Apartments early Wednesday.

When troopers, Dover police and paramedics responded, police say they found the unresponsive 44-year-old man inside his apartment with multiple gunshot wounds. The man died at the scene. His name is being withheld pending notification of next of kin.

Police say no suspects have been identified.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - Police in Maryland say two people have been sickened after opening a package that they received in the mail.

Frederick Police Lt. Clark Pennington says the two went to a hospital for treatment and brought the package with them, and the hospital was considered a hazmat scene.

Pennington says when the people opened the package about noon Tuesday, they began to feel burning and had difficulty breathing.

Pennington says they took the package to Frederick Memorial Hospital. Decontamination tents were set up outside the emergency room.

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The Delaware City Refinery is balking at paying a $150-thousand fine with its parent company PBF Energy calling it arbitrary and unreasonable.

The fines originated with an incident in 2013 in which state officials determined that the refinery concealed 17 shipments of crude oil and violated the limits on such shipments.

Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control Secretary David Small handed down the fine in early March based on the determination of his predecessor.          

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The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is resuming their dredging operations in the Ocean City Inlet this month.

The vessel is expected to be in the resort city for a month after beginning its dredging operations in late April.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that the dredger is expected to scoop out up to 40-thousand cubic yards of sand which accumulates as it moves south towards Assateague Island.

The dredging is usually done twice a year and clears out the sediment in the inlet area.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - A $1.1 trillion budget bill that would keep the federal government running through September fully funds the program that has coordinated Chesapeake Bay cleanup efforts for decades.

The bill contains $73 million for the Environmental Protection Agency's Chesapeake Bay Program, which President Donald Trump has called for defunding.

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DOVER, Del. (AP) - A Delaware lawmaker has reintroduced legislation allowing doctor-assisted suicide.

Democratic Rep. Paul Baumbach of Newark admitted Tuesday that he does not expect to win passage of the legislation, which was tabled in committee two years ago, but wants to continue to shine light on the issue.

The legislation allows an adult diagnosed with a terminal illness and expected to die within six months to request prescription medicine to end his or her life. A consulting physician would have to confirm the attending doctor's diagnosis.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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?"

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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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