TODAY'S NEWS

The Warren Sentinel

THIS WEEKEND: Appaloosa Festival

FRONT ROYAL — A new festival is set to launch Warren County this Labor Day weekend at Skyline Ranch Resort and some of the proceeds will help the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 1860 to rebuild after losing its home in a July 11 fire. The Appaloosa Festival will feature two days of music on two stages with more than 20 bands performing over the weekend. Most of the bands are nationally touring and the music will range in styles from bluegrass, Americana, and Celtic to country.

Trooper in manhunt credits plate reader

MIDDLETOWN — A serious car accident at age 18 set the trooper who initiated the traffic stop that ended the hunt for the man who gunned down two Roanoke journalists last week on her career path with the Virginia State Police. Pam Neff, who is based in the State Police's Winchester division, talked shortly after the incident about how her cruiser's license-plate reader was able to track down Vester Lee Flanagan II as he traveled on Interstate 66 through Warren County and into Fauquier County about 4 hours after fatally shooting WDBJ-TV reporter Alison Parker and cameraman Adam Ward during a live broadcast along Smith Mountain Lake. A third person was injured. Flanagan was fired in 2013 from the station, where he reported under the name Bryce Williams.

Jury: No wrongdoing in death of Smedley

WINCHESTER — A jury decided Thursday night that there was no wrongdoing on the part of a supervising nurse on duty when John H. Smedley — Warren County's longtime commissioner of the revenue — died three years ago at Winchester Medical Center. The jury found that nurse Melanie Spiva — who acted as a fact witness for the defense during the third day of the civil suit on Wednesday — did not violate any standards of care and thus did not contribute to the cause of Smedley's death. Smedley served as commissioner of the revenue for 24 years. He died on Aug. 25, 2012, at WMC after quadruple-bypass surgery. He was 64.

Shooting on I-66 involves Roanoke gunman who killed two news reporters live on TV

LINDEN — The man found shot at mile marker 16 on Interstate 66 Wednesday morning is believed to be the gunman who killed a reporter and cameraman and wounded an interviewee on live television a few hours earlier, State Police said Wednesday afternoon. The gunman shot three people at Bridgewater Plaza near Smith Mountain Lake in Moneta, the Franklin County Sheriffís Office said in a release. The shootings happened about 6:45 a.m. during a live broadcast on Roanoke television station WDBJ. The television station identified the deceased as reporter Alison Parker, 24, and cameraman Adam Ward, 27. They were interviewing Vicki Gardner of the Smith Mountain Lake Regional Chamber of Commerce, who also was shot. She had surgery and is recovering, the station said. State Police did not identify the shooter, but WDBJ identified him as Vester Lee Flanigan, a former station employee.

Parents, students stunned as Riverfront Christian School closes its doors

FRONT ROYAL — A week ago, a handful of local students were preparing to start the new school year this week at Riverfront Christian School. They may have been in class this week, but it wasnít at Riverfront. The school, which operated at Riverton United Methodist Church, unexpectedly closed its doors just a week before school started because of low enrollment. It had been open for 20 years. Parents and students were notified via email or Facebook according to one parent, Wendy Boice.

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