113 Church Street | P.O. Box 459
Philippi, WV 26416
Phone: (304) 457-2222
Fax: (304) 457-2235
Lady Colts Three-Peat As State Volleyball Champions

  The Philip Barbour High School girls’ volleyball team is pictured above with its hardware from the state championships held this past weekend at the Charleston Civic Center. The Lady Colts took their third-straight state title defeating Winfield 3-1 (18-25, 25-19, 28-26, 25-22). For more on the tournament and the Lady Colts, including individual honors, check out The Sports Page on Page 9 of this week's edition of The Barbour Democrat.
Barbour County Circuit Court Cases Heard

  The following 13 cases were presented by Thomas B. Hoxie, Prosecuting Attorney, before Judge John Lewis Marks, Jr., on November 8, 2017:
  Clarissa F. Wilcox appeared for a sentencing hearing. She was represented by her attorney, Phillip Davis.  Ms. Wilcox had previously entered a guilty plea to one felony count of grand larceny and one felony count of conspiracy. Prosecutor Hoxie argued that Ms. Wilcox should serve her sentence in prison because the crime was violent involving a firearm and placed the victim’s life in jeopardy, and she has attempted to minimize her involvement in the crime. Attorney Davis argued for Ms. Wilcox to be placed on the Community Corrections program because she is trying to live a life free of crime and has shown remorse for her actions. Judge Marks sentenced Ms. Wilcox to a term of one to 10 years in prison for the grand larceny and one to five years in prison for the conspiracy, to run consecutively. Judge Marks stated that the violent crime required a prison sentence because of its severity and then ordered Ms. Wilcox to serve her sentence in prison;
  Calvin H. Reid appeared for a plea hearing. He was represented by his attorney, Phillip Davis. Mr. Reid entered a guilty plea to one felony count of grand larceny. Judge Marks accepted the guilty plea and ordered a pre-sentence investigation report. A sentencing hearing will occur after that report is completed by the probation office. Mr. Reid will remain incarcerated pending sentencing;
  Kevin D. Pressley appeared for a plea hearing. He was represented by his attorney, Jamella Lockwood. Mr. Pressley entered a guilty plea to one felony count of conspiracy to deliver a controlled substance and one misdemeanor count of unlawful possession of a vehicle. Judge Marks accepted the guilty plea and ordered a pre-sentence investigation report. A sentencing hearing will occur after that report is completed by the probation office. Mr. Pressley will remain incarcerated pending sentencing;
  Jeremy L. Campbell appeared for a sentencing hearing. He was represented by his attorney, Jeremy Cooper. Mr. Campbell had previously entered a guilty plea to one felony count of grand larceny. Pursuant to the plea agreement, the State would make no sentencing recommendation.  Attorney Cooper requested that Mr. Campbell be given a chance on Community Corrections since he has been incarcerated for almost year. Judge Marks agreed to give Mr. Campbell a chance and sentenced Mr. Campbell to a term of one to 10 years in prison, which was held in abeyance, and he was placed on the Community Corrections program.
  Danielle C. Watson appeared for a hearing to address home confinement issues. She was represented by her attorney, Timothy Prentice. Ms. Watson had previously pleaded guilty to driving while license revoked for DIU – third offense, which was held in abeyance, and Ms. Shahan was placed on home confinement for three years. Home Confinement Officer Gennifer Lipscomb-Friend stated that Ms. Watson has complied while on home confinement other than failing to pay her home confinement fees. Upon motion by Attorney Prentice, Judge Marks paroled Ms. Watson and removed her from home confinement. Ms. Watson will be on parole for one year, and the State will have a judgment against her for unpaid fees;
  Katherine M. Wyatt appeared for a hearing to revoke her from Community Corrections. She was represented by her attorney, Gregory Michael. Ms. Wyatt had previously pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit a burglary and was placed on the Community Corrections program. A report was filed by Community Corrections concerning Ms. Wyatt testing positive for methamphetamine and failing to report to classes. Prosecutor Hoxie and Attorney Michael agreed that Ms. Wyatt had violated the terms of alternative sentence and should be sent to jail for a duration of time for her first violation. Judge Marks agreed and ordered Ms. Wyatt to serve 30 days in jail for this first violation;
  Nathanial W. Norris appeared for a hearing to modify his sentence. He was represented by his attorney, Jamella Lockwood. Mr. Norris had previously entered a guilty plea to one felony count of burglary and one felony count of conspiracy, and Judge Marks had sentenced Mr. Norris to two to 20 years in prison. Judge Marks had previously allowed him to attend an inpatient drug rehabilitation facility, which Mr. Norris successfully completed. Attorney Lockwood moved to allow him to be placed on the Community Corrections program based upon completing drug rehab. Prosecutor Hoxie opposed the motion because the underlying crimes were violent and could have resulted in a death. Judge Marks commended Mr. Norris in completing rehab but agreed with the State and stated that given that all three other co-defendants have been sentenced to prison, Mr. Norris should also serve his sentence in prison;
  Brandi N. Edwards appeared for a plea and sentencing hearing.  She was represented by her attorney, Greg Michael. Ms. Edwards had previously entered a guilty plea to one felony count of possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver and was placed on the community corrections program. A report was filed by Community Corrections stating Ms. Edwards has failed to appear at Community Corrections as ordered. Judge Marks stated that he would give Ms. Edwards one more chance to prove herself and ordered Ms. Edwards to serve 30 days in jail for this first violation and then be open to all drug treatment advised by Community Corrections;
  Lloyd T. Bennett appeared for a hearing to revoke him from Community Corrections. He was represented by his attorney, Jamella Lockwood. Mr. Bennett had previously pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit a burglary and was placed on the Community Corrections program. A report was filed by community corrections concerning Mr. Bennett testing positive for methamphetamine and failing to report to classes. Prosecutor Hoxie and Attorney Lockwood agreed that Mr. Bennett had violated the terms of alternative sentence and should be sent to jail for a duration of time to be determined by the Court. Judge Marks agreed and ordered Mr. Bennett to serve 30 days in jail for this first violation;
  Gordon L. Barlow appeared for a revocation hearing. He was represented by his attorney, Thomas Dyer. Mr. Barlow had previously entered a guilty plea before Judge Moats to one felony count of wanton endangerment involving a firearm, and Mr. Barlow was placed on home confinement for five years. Home Confinement Officer Gennifer Lipscomb-Friend filed a request to revoke Mr. Barlow from Home Confinement because Mr. Barlow was outside his home when not permitted, cut his monitoring bracelet, and had arson charges filed against him. Judge Marks continued the case pending appointment of a special prosecutor because of a conflict;
  Richard W. Andrews appeared for hearing to address Mr. Andrew’s motion to attend a drug rehabilitation facility. Mr. Andrews was represented by his attorney, Aaron Yoho. Mr. Andrews had previously entered a guilty plea to four felony counts of breaking and entering and one felony count of conspiracy to commit breaking and entering. Attorney Yoho stated that Mr. Andrews had been accepted into a drug treatment facility and requested that Mr. Andrews attend. Prosecutor Hoxie objected to the motion and requested that Mr. Andrews seek drug treatment through the resources available in prison. Judge Marks stated that he would review matter further and would not make a ruling at this time;
  John J. Kemper and Justin D. White failed to appear for an arraignment and a revocation hearing, respectfully. Judge Marks issued a capias for both defendants because of their failure to appear. The hearings will be rescheduled upon arrest.
Christmas Committee Finalizes Plans For The Holiday Season
by MARIJA ILIC
Staff Writer


  Over two dozen members from the community attended the last official Christmas Committee meeting of the year, finalizing the plans for the upcoming holiday season. The Committee has secured almost all of the trees that will be placed in downtown area. The majority of the trees will be placed on the Barbour County Courthouse Square, with several being put at the Blue and Gray Park, Vietnam Veterans Park, the Museum, and the Philippi City Library, because of concerns over the availability of power for the lights at the Courthouse Square. Additionally, all the trees will either have metal fence posts or re-rods to prevent them from blowing over. Sam Haught informed the Committee that 40 trees have already been claimed by various individuals, organizations, and business who will be decorating them.
  There will be an official Tree Lighting Ceremony following the parade on December 1, with local school bands participating. Philippi Mayor Phil Bowers gave an update regarding the Christmas Village that the students at Philip Barbour High School Vocational Center are currently building. He said that the students have received all of the wood and the paint, and are in the process of working on several different pieces depicting the City of Philippi. The plan is to add a few more pieces each year until the miniature version of the city is complete.
  The representatives from Alderson Broaddus University, Joan Propst and Dionne Allen, have presented the Committee with final version of the calendar of the events, which will be published on social media, in local newspapers, and will also be made into flyers to be put around the county, as well as different places in neighboring counties. The calendar features events at Adaland, various musical performances, including community caroling, a parade, Tree Lighting Ceremony, Christmas play, and several other events.
  Mayor Bowers has expressed his heartfelt thanks to the members of the Committee who have come together in a very short time. He also said that he hopes that this was just a beginning of the idea of creating Philippi, and eventually Barbour County, as a destination for visitors during Christmas season.
Local Bands To Hold “The Gathering” Fundraiser
by MARIJA ILIC
Staff Writer


  For a second year in a row, several local bands are putting together an event which would raise money for medical expenses for two people in our community. This year, the event, titled “The Gathering,” will be held on Saturday, November 18, at Taj Moe Hal, starting at 7 p.m. Four bands will participate this year—B S#arpe, Full Cirkle, Groove Machine, and Driven—and all proceeds will go to Sue Cutright and Stacey Roy.
  Over a dozen additional local businesses and individuals have contributed to this event by donating gift certificates and products, which will be raffled off throughout the night. The members of the bands have mentioned that they plan on continuing this event every year as a way of giving back to the community.
Philippi City Council Holds First Reading Of Proposed ATV Ordinance
by MARIJA ILIC
Staff Writer


  Philippi City Council discussed several proposed ordinances during its meeting on Tuesday, November 7. The new version of the school bus ordinance, which will now match WV Code, was passed unanimously. Council also held the first reading of the ATV ordinance, which would now allow ATVs on the road within Philippi City limits. This ordinance also puts Philippi Police Department in charge of issuing permits. The second reading and the subsequent vote will be held at the next meeting. Bob Wilkins, Municipal Judge, also informed the Council that four ordinances regarding domestic violence, littering, assault and battery, and motorcycles also need updates to match the WV Code.
  Bill Annon, the City’s Code Enforcer, presented the Council with updated rules and regulations according to the International Property Management Code. The City currently follows this code, but must vote in favor of an update, which is conducted every three years. The vote to accept the latest version passed unanimously. Additionally, Mayor Phil Bowers, following up on the request from the Governor’s Office, proclaimed the week of Thanksgiving as Christian Heritage Week. This proclamation has been held every year for several decades now across many cities in the state of West Virginia.
  Several citizens addressed the Council at the end of the meeting. Reg Trefethen, representing the Airport Authority, gave an update on the construction of the building at the airport for which the City received the grant several years ago. Joyce Wilson, President of the Barbour County Federation of Democratic Women, asked the Council to consider passing a non-discrimination ordinance which has already been passed in 11 cities in the state. The Council members said that they needed more information on this before making any decisions.
  Jan Payne inquired about the follow up questions many citizens had about the recently enacted fire service fee. City Manager Karen Weaver said that the City is working on possibly instituting an Fire Fee Appeals Board. In addition, Mayor Bowers acknowledged that there have been instances of incorrect billing and has encouraged anyone who thinks there are errors on their bill to contact the City Office to schedule an appointment to go over the details of their particular bills. Bowers also said that in the past two weeks, he has traveled across the county, visiting the citizens who have voiced their concerns, and that he is confident that any issues can be resolved in a positive manner. He also reminded the citizens that they could apply for a hardship waiver if they fit certain financial guidelines.
  Lastly, Susan Jones approached the Council about the code and ordinance regarding the condition of buildings within the City limits. She presented the Council with copies of the current ordinance that City has on the books, including the International Property Management Code, which was unanimously approved during the same meeting, and pointed out the sections of the code which could be used to force owners to conduct better upkeep of their properties.
Barbour County Ministerial Association Announces Community Wide Thanksgiving Service

  The Barbour County Ministerial Association wishes to announce a community wide Thanksgiving Service being offered at Crim United Methodist Church on Wednesday, November 22, of Thanksgiving week at 6:30 p.m. in Philippi, WV! BCMA is encouraging folks to bring a box of stuffing for the Heart and Hand Food Pantry Christmas Basket Outreach.
  All Barbour County pastors are invited to share in the service in helping lead a Call to Thanksgiving in the Service. The praise team of Haven of Hope will be leading us in worship, Pastor Jon Villers from Philippi Baptist Church will be sharing a message of Thanksgiving, and Father Patsy Iaquinta will lead our Call to Thanksgiving from our community pastors.
  The Association encourages the residents of Barbour County to come celebrate the original purpose of the day—to thank God. BCMA wants to renew a tradition of combining Thanksgiving services with other local churches. Please do plan to gather with fellow Christians under the theme of this year's celebration—Cultivating Gratitude in Our Lives.
  "Our brothers and sisters from St. Elizabeth Catholic Church want to remind us that the gathering with fellow Christians is especially significant since the promotion of ecumenism was one of the momentous outcomes of the Second Vatican Council. If you're old enough, you remember how members of different Christian churches were highly discouraged from mingling with people outside their tradition. Now we recognize the Spirit of God moving in all the churches and that we have something to learn from one another about our relationship with God. Now that is something to give thanks about!"
Barbour County Health Department On The Frontlines Of Opioid Crisis
by MARIJA ILIC
Staff Writer

  In May 2017, US News and World Report published an article about the 10 states with the biggest drug problems in the country. According to the statistics, West Virginia does not rank among top 10, which could somewhat be a relief, knowing that our state has been designated as “a ground zero for nation’s opioid crisis” (The Fiscal Times, December 19, 2016). However, West Virginia does outpace the nation in the number of opioid related deaths – something that is starting to impact every aspect of our everyday lives, from a lack of an available workforce, to an increase in the number of children placed in the foster care system, to the amounts of taxpayers’ money needed to be spent on an increased prison population, police presence, state-sponsored funerals, and overdose prevention.
  In addition to all these, the latest plague that has hit our communities as a direct result of opioid usage have been the rampant spreads of Hepatitis C and Hepatitis B, with West Virginia ranking first in the nation with highest number of new cases. Furthermore, there are many more diseases that are having outbreaks, including various STDs, HIV, endocarditis, and abscesses resulting in amputations. Less than a month ago, the Washington Post ran an extensive article about the impact of these diseases in our state, and how many of the consequences would not be seen for decades to come, as West Virginia health officials estimate thousands of people who are not even aware they are carriers are unknowingly spreading them in their own communities. The same week that this article was published, President Donald Trump declared the opioid crisis a public health emergency. This declaration now allows states more flexibility as to how they utilize federal funds in combating this issue in their own communities. Many states were hoping that the crisis would be declared a national state of emergency instead, which would provide even more funding to the states, and health officials across the nation are hoping that this will occur sooner rather than later, as many states are struggling financially when it comes to this crisis.
  In our own county, the Health Department is trying to stay ahead of the opioid crisis issue in several ways, the latest being the implementation of a Harm Reduction and Needle Exchange Program, which is slated to start sometime within next couple of months. Annette Santilli, the Administrator at the Health Department, said that the BCHD has applied for the grant with the state, and she also wanted to extend her appreciation to the 14 agencies and organizations across the county that submitted letters of support to accompany the grant proposal. She is hopeful that the department will hear from the State soon, as the Health Department is set and ready to start the program. Santilli said that needle exchange program is crucial to the prevention of communicable diseases, such as Hepatitis C, not only among addicts, but also among other citizens, especially children, who can unknowingly contract it through contact with dirty needles. Many of these needles are disposed of in public across the county, and she urges anyone who sees them to contact local law enforcement. Currently, there are 10 such programs across the state, with closest being in Harrison County which sometimes collects up to 60 syringes a week. The program is free and confidential, but, above all, it is essential to protecting the health of all the citizens in the community.
  In addition to the Harm Reduction Program, the Barbour County Health Department also provides access to Naloxone (Narcan) training and implementation. Naloxone has proven to be essential in prevention of opioid related deaths. Lastly, the Health Department also has eight behavior health professionals on staff, including Tami Heesh, who is a certified drug and alcohol abuse counselor. Counseling services are available to addicts and to families of addicts, who often have to deal with the consequences of it, as well.
  The Barbour County Health Department is located on 109 Wabash Avenue in Philippi. Call 304-457-1670 for more information.
Veterans Day Observed In Barbour County
by MARIJA ILIC
Staff Writer


  As it is customary every year, Veterans Day was once again observed in Barbour County with a parade in Philippi and service at Philippi City Gym. The ceremonies were put together by The American Legion Post 44. The parade included the bands from Philip Barbour High School, Alderson Broaddus University, Philippi Middle School, and Belington Middle School, as well as the 4-H Equestrian Team, local fire departments, twirlette groups, and numerous local organizations.
  During the service at the City Gym, the West Virginians from Alderson Broaddus University, sang the National Anthem and several other musical arrangements, while Post Chaplain Marvin Brown gave the invocation and benediction. Boy Scout Troop 644 was on site to lead the crowd in the Pledge to the Flag.
Four Medal of Honor speakers, each from different branch of the military, addressed those in attendance. The speakers were Sherman Wilkinson (Navy), Ron Clevenger (Marines), Michael Rexroad (Army), and Roy Dadisman (Air Force). Michael Rexroad, finance and service officer for Post 44, expressed his deepest gratitude to everyone who participated, as well as to all citizens who attended the parade and the service, and he extended his appreciation to local law enforcement, the Barbour County Sheriff’s Department and Philippi City Police, as well to the City of Philippi, for making these two events possible. He also noted that Post 44 is planning on doing the same thing again in 2018, and that The American Legion is also hoping that in this upcoming year it will be able to update the Korean War Memorial at the Courthouse Gazebo.
Belington Library Plans Programs For Family Reading Week

  West Virginia Family Reading Week is being celebrated at public libraries across West Virginia this week to highlight the importance of reading with children. Belington Public Library will celebrate this week with reading programs including story hour on Thursday, November 16, at 4 p.m. The library will also be welcoming a dog therapy reading group at 5 p.m. on that same day. Both of these programs encourage family participation.
  The West Virginia Library Commission website says family reading is not only an excellent way to improve scholastic ability, but also leads to family bonding. WVLC Executive Secretary Karen Goff says, “Reading to your children not only improves academic development, but it also brings families closer together. Families that read together, grow together.” Some activities you can do as a family are reading and/or telling stories; teaching letters, words, or numbers; or visiting a library.        
  Tammy Smith, director of Belington Public Library, invites area families to bring their children to the library to participate in one of this week's programs or to spend some time reading to their child from the library's collection. Mrs. Smith and library staff members, Debbie Hutchison and Anna Harlan, are available to help you find the perfect stories for your own story time. Also, children who visit the library this week will receive a free book, as supplies last.
  The dog therapy reading group, Tail Waggn' Readers, will be at the library at 5 p.m. You may make an appointment for this special activity by calling the library. More information can be obtained at 304-823-1026.
Saratoga Farms Food Storage
food storage