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Local

  • PURPLE HEART: Messer family wants truth

    Shelby Messer still wears a U.S. Army “Army of One” t-shirt. She wears it for her son Charlie Messer, a soldier wounded in war, who was killed in a car crash Dec. 22, 2007.

    Charlie volunteered, joined the army, and went to war in Iraq. He was wounded June 15, 2007.

    Shelby needs closure. The truth will give it to her. But the truth of what happened that day isn’t currently available.

    Charlie’s family believes he was injured in combat that day and should get the Purple Heart.

  • Cell phone policy seeks to eliminate disruptions

    A revised cell phone policy is one of several changes to take note of as the new year begins in the Lancaster County School District.

    If students are caught using a cell phone during school hours, it will be confiscated and sent to the district's office of safety and transportation.

    In the past, if a phone was taken, the student would often get it back at the end of the school day, said Bryan Vaughn, who oversees that office. Starting this year, the student's parent will have to schedule a meeting with Vaughn, who will review the phone policy and then return the phone.

  • Riverchase opening this weekend

    If you want to get your first look at the first phase of Riverchase Estates, this weekend will be your chance.

    LGI Land is celebrating the grand opening of Riverchase Estates along the Catawba River on Saturday and Sunday. The grand opening is by invitation only, and those interested must call the developer's local office at (704) 497-2429 to reserve a spot.

    Catering for the event will be done by Leroy Springs Catering.

    Riverchase Estates, a gated community in western Lancaster County, will contain 1,250 to 1,939 homes on about 2,000 acres along the Catawba River.

  • Tropical Storm Fay probably not headed to Lancaster Co.

    Local officials are keeping their eyes on a tropical storm in Florida with mixed emotions.

    Tropical Storm Fay hit the Florida Keys on Monday afternoon. The storm could bring needed rain to the parched Carolinas, but it could also further damage the burned Lancaster County Courthouse.

    "We really hope this tropical storm can drop some rain on us," said Mike Bailes, director of the Catawba River Water Treatment Plant. "Our groundwater is worse than it was this time last year."

    Lancaster County is still about 17 inches behind on rain since the drought began last year.

  • ACT scores drop slightly in school district in 2008

    Local scores on the ACT college-entrance exam dipped slightly compared to the numbers a year ago.

    The American College Testing Program released scores last week.

    Lancaster County School District's 2008 high school graduates had an average composite score of 17.4 on the test's 36-point scale. The district's score in 2007 was 17. 7.

    "We remained pretty much constant," said Lydia Quinn, the district's director of planning and accountability.

  • BREAKING NEWS Early morning fire damages business

    Six fire departments fought a blaze at Dave Lyle's Wholesale's storage building at 2881 Landsford Road.

    Lumber was among the damaged materials.

    The departments that responded were Riverside Road, Charlotte Road/Van Wyck, Indian Land, Shiloh Unity, Elgin and Antioch.

    The Elgin and Antioch departments brought foam and other equipment.

    The call came out at about 8 a.m.

    Details are sketchy now, and the cause is unknown, but there was a storm shortly before the blaze.

  • York County may pay back tax revenue

    INDIAN LAND – Lancaster County officials are pleased to hear that York County intends to pay back tax revenue that inadvertently went to York County instead of here.

    York County Council is expected to vote Monday night to return the misrouted tax revenue.

    "That is extremely gracious of York County to do that," Lancaster County Administrator Steve Willis said. "They felt it was the right thing to do."

  • USCL students get Early Start

    Kamaron White is optimistic about starting classes Thursday at the University of South Carolina at Lancaster.

    The 2008 Lancaster High School graduate said the idea of extensive reading, in-depth reports and tight deadlines became a little easier to absorb over the last three weeks. That's because she was a part of USCL's Early Start program, which helps recent high school graduates transition to college.

  • Woman targeted in money scam

    Samantha Small had a good feeling that a $450,000 prize sounded too good to be true.

    In May, the Lancaster native responded to about 20 sweepstakes offers she had received in the mail. A few weeks later, she got a letter from what was supposed to be a nonprofit organization called the Dream Foundation. It said she won a second-place prize of $450,000.

    There was one catch – the foundation said she first had to pay 1 percent, or $4,500, to receive the prize.

  • Man with rape convictions held for evaluation as sexual predator

    FORT LAWN – A Fort Lawn man twice convicted of rape is in the Chester County Detention Center awaiting a mental evaluation that might lead to his classification as a sexual predator.

    Kenneth Jerome White, 40, of 5773 Willowbrook Road, Fort Lawn, turned himself in Aug. 6 and will be held there until the evaluation is done by the state Department of Mental Health.