WBEZ | Virginia http://www.wbez.org/tags/virginia Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en 2 journalists killed during live broadcast in Virginia; suspect has died http://www.wbez.org/sections/media/2-journalists-killed-during-live-broadcast-virginia-suspect-has-died-112728 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/vavictims.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>(THIS POST WAS LAST UPDATED AT 3:43 P.M. ET.)</p><p>Two journalists for Virginia TV news station WDBJ were killed by a gunman Wednesday morning while they were broadcasting live at a waterfront shopping center about an hour southeast of Roanoke, Va.</p><p>Reporter Alison Parker and photojournalist Adam Ward were doing a live report from Bridgewater Plaza in Moneta when a gunman opened fire, killing Parker and Ward and injuring Vicki Gardner, the head of a local Chamber of Commerce who was being interviewed. Gardner is now in stable condition, hospital officials say.</p><p>A suspect in the shooting was quickly identified &mdash; in part because of video taken at the scene &mdash; as Vester Lee Flanagan, 41, a former reporter for the station who was also known as Bryce Williams.</p><p>Franklin County Sheriff Bill Overton says Flanagan has died. He had suffered a gunshot wound when he was taken into custody by Virginia State Police after a car chase that came hours after the shooting; authorities earlier said Flanagan was in critical condition.</p><p>At a 2:15 p.m. news conference, Overton said that less than an hour earlier, Flanagan had &quot;died at Fairfax Inova Hospital in Northern Virginia, as a result of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.&quot;</p><p><a href="https://www.facebook.com/VirginiaStatePolice/posts/10153843969460101">In an earlier statement</a>, Virginia State Police described how the shooting suspect had fled and eventually reached Interstate 66, with police in pursuit.</p><p>The suspect refused to stop, ran off the road and crashed. When police approached the vehicle, they found he had suffered a &quot;gunshot wound.&quot; The man, police said, was taken to a hospital with &quot;life-threatening injuries.&quot;</p><p>In an interview with CNN, Jeffrey A. Marks, WDBJ-TV&#39;s general manager, said Flanagan was hired as a reporter, but about two years ago he was fired. During a separate broadcast on his network, Marks said Flanagan had filed a complaint with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission after he was fired.</p><p><a href="http://www.wdbj7.com/news/local/law-enforcement-investigating-incident-at-bridgewater-plaza/34923086">The station reports</a>:</p><blockquote><div><p>&quot;This happened during a live broadcast around 6:45 a.m. ...</p><p>&quot;Adam was 27-years-old. Alison just turned 24.</p><p>&quot;Both were from the WDBJ7 viewing area.&quot;</p></div></blockquote><p>Video shows the camera panning to Parker in the middle of an interview as the gunman opens fire. Parker can be heard screaming.</p><p>The final image in the video shows the camera falling down and the feet of the presumed gunman walking out of the frame.</p><p>Hours after the shooting, a video from the gunman&#39;s perspective was posted to Twitter and Facebook under the name Bryce Williams. It shows a gunman quietly walking up on the live broadcast, looking toward the photographer (whose back was turned) and then pointing his gun at Parker before opening fire.</p><p>A man claiming to be Flanagan also&nbsp;<a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2015/08/26/434967497/alleged-gunman-in-virginia-shooting-called-himself-a-human-powder-keg">sent a 23-page fax to ABC News</a>, in which he said he had &quot;been a human powder keg for a while&quot; and took action after the Charleston, S.C., church shootings in June.</p><p>In addition to the Franklin County Sheriff&#39;s Office, the FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives have sent personnel from Roanoke.</p><p>Update at 2:25 p.m. ET: Updates From News Conference</p><p>Former WDBJ employee Vester Lee Flanagan was taken into police custody after his car crashed into the median on I-66 in Virginia.</p><p>Franklin County Sheriff Bill Overton says Flanagan had switched cars, leaving his Ford Mustang at a Roanoke airport and driving away in a Chevrolet Sonic that he had rented before the attack. But the authorities tracked him as he drove up Interstate 81 and then onto I-66, and a police officer trailed him before activating her cruiser&#39;s emergency lights upon the arrival of backup.</p><p>Overton says Flanagan died at 1:30 p.m. ET, after being taken to the hospital with a self-inflicted gunshot wound.</p><p>Update at 1:34 p.m. ET. A &#39;Senseless Tragedy&#39;:</p><p>In a written statement, Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe said that he was &quot;heartbroken over this morning&#39;s senseless tragedy.&quot;</p><p>He said that as the state reflects on the shootings, residents should also begin thinking about how to prevent these kinds of things from happening.</p><p>&quot;Keeping guns out of the hands of people who would use them to harm our family, friends and loved ones is not a political issue; it is a matter of ensuring that more people can come home safely at the end of the day,&quot; McAuliffe said. &quot;We cannot rest until we have done whatever it takes to rid our society of preventable gun violence that results in tragedies like the one we are enduring today.&quot;</p><p>During his regular press briefing at the White House, Press Secretary Josh Earnest said this was yet another example of gun violence that has become prevalent.</p><p>There are things that Congress can do, he said, to have a &quot;tangible impact.&quot;</p><p>Update at 12:12 p.m. ET. Suspect Injured?:</p><p>Earlier today, WDBJ-TV, citing law enforcement officials, said the suspect had killed himself on Interstate 66 in Fauquier County. The station later retracted that report, saying Flanagan was injured but still alive and in critical condition.</p><p>Update at 12:07 p.m. ET. Suspect Filed EEOC Complaint:</p><p>On the same Twitter account that posted video of the shooting, Flanagan also made it clear that he was angry at the reporter and the photographer.</p><p>He said he had filed a report with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.</p><p>Jeffrey A. Marks, WDBJ-TV&#39;s general manager, confirmed that Flanagan had filed that EEOC complaint.</p><p>Citing confidentiality provisions, the EEOC said it could not comment.</p><p>Update at 11:20 a.m. ET. Presumed Suspect Posts Video:</p><p>The presumed suspect in the shooting of the two WDBJ journalists posted a video of the attack filmed from his vantage point to Twitter and Facebook.</p><p>The video, which has since been taken down, shows the gunman walk up behind cameraman Adam Ward. Ward does not appear to be aware the gunman is there. As the cameraman pans to the left and the camera is pointed at reporter Alison Parker, the gunman raises a handgun and aims it at Parker,who also did not seem aware of the shooter&#39;s presence.</p><p>The gunman fires at least six rounds.</p><p>Parker runs out of the frame before the video goes black.</p><p>The Twitter account has also been suspended.</p><p>Update at 10:39 a.m. ET. Authorities Identify Suspect:</p><p><a href="http://www.cnn.com/2015/08/26/us/virginia-shooting-wdbj/index.html">CNN is reporting law</a>&nbsp;enforcement authorities know the identity of the presumed gunman. And the network is reporting that the woman being interviewed in the video survived.</p><blockquote><div><p>&quot;The woman being interviewed, Vicki Gardner, executive director of the Smith Mountain Lake Regional Chamber of Commerce, was shot in the back and is in surgery, said Barb Nocera, the chamber&#39;s special projects manager.&quot;</p></div></blockquote><p>The Stauton, Va., area&nbsp;<a href="http://www.newsleader.com/story/news/local/2015/08/26/reports-shots-disrupt-wdbj-live-shot/32389087/">News Leader</a>&nbsp;is reporting:</p><blockquote><div><p>&quot;Police think the shooting suspect headed north on I-81 and is in Staunton or Waynesboro near I-64.&quot;</p></div></blockquote><p><object allowfullscreen="true" allownetworking="all" allowscriptaccess="always" data="http://www.kaltura.com/index.php/kwidget/wid/1_mtffbw4l/uiconf_id/16680472" height="345" id="kaltura_player_1440597733" name="kaltura_player_1440597733" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="560"><param name="allowScriptAccess" value="always" /><param name="allowNetworking" value="all" /><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true" /><param name="bgcolor" value="#000000" /><param name="movie" value="http://www.kaltura.com/index.php/kwidget/wid/1_mtffbw4l/uiconf_id/16680472" /><param name="flashVars" value="" /><a href="http://corp.kaltura.com">video platform</a><a href="http://corp.kaltura.com/video_platform/video_management">video management</a><a href="http://corp.kaltura.com/solutions/video_solution">video solutions</a><a href="http://corp.kaltura.com/video_platform/video_publishing">video player</a></object></p><p>&mdash; <a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2015/08/26/434868666/two-journalists-killed-in-shooting-during-a-live-broadcast-in-virginia?ft=nprml&amp;f=434868666" target="_blank">The Two-Way: Breaking News from NPR</a></p></p> Wed, 26 Aug 2015 08:54:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/sections/media/2-journalists-killed-during-live-broadcast-virginia-suspect-has-died-112728 What was it like raising three biracial children? http://www.wbez.org/series/storycorps/what-was-it-raising-three-biracial-children-111666 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/StoryCorps 150306 Judy and Rosa Ramirez bh.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Rosa Ramirez was in basic training in the Army, when she came across a girl in her barracks with red hair and blue eyes. &ldquo;What kind of blood do you have?&rdquo; Ramirez asked her. &ldquo;Do you see the world blue?&rdquo;<br /><br />Ramirez had gone to high school in Texas and spent time picking fruit in the fields of California. But when it came to race, she was clueless.<br /><br />Ramirez tells her daughter, Judy, in this week&rsquo;s StoryCorps, &ldquo;In my hometown, it was Mexicans and whites. We didn&rsquo;t have any idea about blacks or Germans or Italians.&rdquo;<br /><br />Rosa Ramirez served four years in the military before moving to Virginia, where she met her future husband. Her daughter asked what it was like when Rosa told her parents she wanted to marry a black man?<br /><br />Rosa says her father was going to disown her. But then Rosa&rsquo;s mom stepped in and changed his mind. By the time the wedding day arrived, he agreed to walk Rosa down the aisle.<br /><br />Rosa and her husband lived with their kids in Richmond, Virginia, in a mostly black neighborhood.</p><p>&ldquo;I didn&rsquo;t realize how prejudiced it was towards biracial children until I started hearing it from you guys in middle school&rdquo; Rosa recalled, &ldquo;It was either you&rsquo;re going to be black or you&rsquo;re going to be white. If you were hanging with your white girlfriends they wanted your hair straight. If you were hanging with your black sisters, they wanted you to have curly hair.&rdquo;<br /><br />Rosa says she never stopped to think about the repercussions of marrying outside of her race. But she was able to teach her kids about both sides of their family&rsquo;s cultural heritage.</p><p>The message she wants Judy to pass down to her own son now is: &ldquo;You can have degrees and money, but without love and familia, you&rsquo;re nothing.&rdquo;</p><p><em>Alicia Williams helped produce this story.</em></p></p> Fri, 06 Mar 2015 14:09:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/series/storycorps/what-was-it-raising-three-biracial-children-111666 The voters strike back: GOP shellacked http://www.wbez.org/blog/achy-obejas/2011-11-09/voters-strike-back-gop-shellacked-93910 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//blog/photo/2011-November/2011-11-09/AP111108148896.jpg" alt="" /><p><p><img alt="" class="caption" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/insert-image/2011-November/2011-11-09/AP111108148896.jpg" style="width: 400px; height: 318px; margin: 5px; float: left;" title="(AP/Matt York)">Looking over the <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/10/us/politics/voters-defeat-many-gop-sponsored-measures.html?_r=1&amp;hp">election results</a> from last night, all I can think is: It’s a good day in America.<br> <br> Yes, yes, so much excitement about the defeat of the anti-union measure in Ohio, the weird “personhood” proposal in Mississippi, the fact that the Democratic governor was easily re-elected in Kentucky (land of Rand Paul), and a black woman is new mayor of Gary, Indiana.<br> <br> But the craziest encouraging sign that perhaps there is some sense in the world? <a href="http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/post/arizona-recall-why-russell-pearce-lost/2011/11/09/gIQALj6a5M_blog.html">Arizona’s state senate president Russell Pearce</a>, the man who wrote Arizona’s draconian immigration law, was sent packing in an historic recall election -- a thorough trouncing, in fact -- by his constituents.<br> <br> Sure, he was replaced by a Republican, Jerry Lewis, but a <em>moderate</em> Republican, for Pete’s sake, and that’s an endangered species any sensible human being should want to save. And, sure, the Mormon Church had much to do with Pearce’s derailment but -- <em>God!</em> -- isn’t it great when religious institutions actually assist the meek? Plus, it makes up a little bit -- <em>just a little itty bit</em> -- for the Mormons’ ugly involvement in California’s<a href="http://articles.sfgate.com/2008-10-27/bay-area/17137948_1_mormons-salt-lake-city-based-church-ballot-measure"> Prop 8</a> debacle.<br> <br> The cherry on top of all this would be if the Democrats actually kept the Republicans from <a href="http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/dc-politics/gop-hopes-national-discontent-sways-voters-in-virginia/2011/11/06/gIQAv5wR3M_story.html?hpid=z3">controlling all of Virginia’s state government</a>. Right now, it looks like the GOP has majorities in both houses, plus the governorship. A total of 86 votes may be the difference between absolute GOP control or some semblance of democracy.<br> <br> But even better would be if the Democrats saw this for what it is: a warning shot that the GOP understands it’s not a majority party and won’t be playing that game much longer. Instead, the Republican party will be staking out particular territories for concentrated efforts, creating power bases to leverage national issues and policies that they can’t otherwise win. It’s a strategy born of the Tea Party, but now absolutely mainstreamed by the GOP.</p></p> Wed, 09 Nov 2011 20:39:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/blog/achy-obejas/2011-11-09/voters-strike-back-gop-shellacked-93910 Sen. Jim Webb, Virginia Democrat, Won't Seek Re-election http://www.wbez.org/story/2012/2011-02-09/sen-jim-webb-virginia-democrat-wont-seek-re-election-82039 <p><p>For those who hoped to see a rematch in Virginia of the 2006 Senate race that pitted Democrat Sen. Jim Webb against former Gov. George Allen, disappointment abouts Wednesday with Webb's announcement that he won't run again.</p><p>Some observers had guessed that the feisty Webb might run, seeing re-election as a personal challenge after Allen's recent announcement that he was seeking re-election.</p><p>But Webb, a former Reagan Administration Navy Secretary had raised very little money for a 2012 re-election bid which suggested to some that he was leaning against a run.</p><p></p><p>Webb's decision to be a one-and-done senator leaves raises the likelihood of a clash of Virginia titans between Allen and another former popular governor, Tim Kaine.</p><p>Kaine, who heads the Democratic National Committee, hasn't said publicly that he's in. But it means he will have a lot more pressure placed on him to enter the race in order to give Democrats a better chance of holding onto the seat and maintaining their slim hold on the Senate.</p><p>In a statement. Webb said:</p><p><blockquote></p><p>Five years ago this week, on February 8, 2006, I announced my intention to run for the United States Senate. We had neither campaign funds nor a staff. We were challenged in a primary, and trailed the incumbent in the general election by more than 30 points in the polls.</p><p>Over the next nine months we focused relentlessly on the need to reorient our national security policy, to restore economic fairness and social justice, and to bring greater accountability in our government. I will always be grateful for the spirit and energy that was brought into this campaign by thousands of loyal and committed volunteers. Their enthusiasm and sheer numbers were truly the difference in that election.</p><p>It has been a great and continuing privilege to serve in the United States Senate. I am very proud of my talented and dedicated staff, which has worked tirelessly to resolve the issues on which I based my candidacy, and to protect the interests of all Virginians in this national forum. Among other contributions we have given our Post- 9/11 veterans the best GI Bill since World War Two; we have taken the lead in reforming our criminal justice system; we have led the way toward stronger relations in East and Southeast Asia; and we have been a strong voice in calling on China to act more responsibly in the world community. We will continue to work on these and other issues throughout the rest of my term.</p><p>However, after much thought and consideration I have decided to return to the private sector, where I have spent most of my professional life, and will not seek re-election in 2012.</p><p>Notwithstanding this decision, I have every intention of remaining involved in the issues that affect the well-being and the future of our country.</p><p></blockquote> Copyright 2011 National Public Radio. To see more, visit <a href="http://www.npr.org/">http://www.npr.org/</a>.<img src="http://metrics.npr.org/b/ss/nprapidev/5/1297270363?&gn=Sen.+Jim+Webb%2C+Virginia+Democrat%2C+Won%27t+Seek+Re-election&ev=event2&ch=129828651&h1=Tim+Kaine,2012,State+races,Congress,Democrats,Republicans,It%27s+All+Politics,Virginia,Sen.+Jim+Webb,George+Allen,Politics,U.S.,Home+Page+Top+Stories,News&c3=D%3Dgn&v3=D%3Dgn&c4=133622560&c7=1014&v7=D%3Dc7&c18=1014&v18=D%3Dc18&c19=20110209&v19=D%3Dc19&c20=1&v20=D%3Dc20&c31=133623108,131551086,130218547,130215202,129919600,129865776,129828651,128728491,128728483,126393372,127088640,127088640,133370727,131960177,103943429&v31=D%3Dc31&c45=MDA0OTc2MjAwMDEyNjk0NDE4OTI2NmUwNQ001"/></p></p> Wed, 09 Feb 2011 10:49:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/story/2012/2011-02-09/sen-jim-webb-virginia-democrat-wont-seek-re-election-82039 The Daybook: Brady, tax breaks, and breathing http://www.wbez.org/blog/city-room-blog/daybook-brady-tax-breaks-and-breathing <p><p style="text-align: center;"><img height="336" width="512" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/insert-image/2010-December/2010-12-13/AP101212054130.jpg" alt="" title="" />&nbsp;</p><p><strong>Healthcare Bill Illegal? </strong></p><p class="MsoNormal">This just in over the AP wire.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>More to come.</p> <blockquote><p style="" class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial;">RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - A federal judge in Virginia has declared</span><span style="font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial;"> the Obama administration's health care reform law unconstitutional.</span> <span style="font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial;">U.S. District Judge Henry Hudson is the first judge to rule</span> <span style="font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial;">against the law, which has been upheld by two others in Virginia</span> <span style="font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial;">and Michigan.</span></p><p style="" class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial;"><span style="">V</span>irginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli filed the lawsuit </span><span style="font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial;">challenging the law's requirement that citizens buy health</span> <span style="font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial;">insurance or pay a penalty starting in 2014.</span></p><p style="" class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial;">He argues the federal government doesn't have the constitutional</span> <span style="font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial;">authority to impose the requirement.</span></p><p style="" class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial;">Other lawsuits are pending, including one filed by 20 states in</span> <span style="font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial;">a Florida court. Virginia is not part of that lawsuit.</span></p><p style="" class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial;">The U.S. Justice Department and opponents of the health care law</span> <span style="font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial;">agree that the U.S. Supreme Court will have the final word.</span></p></blockquote> <p class="MsoNormal"><strong>&nbsp;</strong><strong>More from the Senate</strong></p><p class="MsoNormal">I love Congress.<span style="">&nbsp; </span></p> <p class="MsoNormal">The Republicans say they won&rsquo;t do anything at all until the top two percent of the country gets an extension of the Bush-era tax cuts. The Democrats have decided to draw a line in the sand on this issue, outraged that rich people would actually want to <em>keep </em>their money.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Meanwhile, a bill to help 9/11 first responders deal with health issues from inhaling ash and toxins is spiked by GOP Senators, who need their tax cuts NOW, first responders be damned.&nbsp; Mark Kirk joined the Republican fillibuster, after supporting the bill as a member of the House.</p><p class="MsoNormal">Debate on the tax issue is expected in the Senate today. <span style="">&nbsp;</span>C&rsquo;mon guys. Get it together.</p> <p class="MsoNormal"><strong>Rahm Residency </strong></p> <p class="MsoNormal">Hearings begin today in the residency challenge to Chicago mayoral candidate Rahm Emanuel. His opponents say he gave up his Chicago residency when he moved to D.C.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Sam Hudzik will have details on the case later this afternoon.</p><p class="MsoNormal"><strong>Tom Brady is a maestro.</strong></p><p class="MsoNormal">Full disclosure: I&rsquo;m not a Bears fan.</p> <p class="MsoNormal">That said, I&rsquo;m probably one of the few people in town who thoroughly enjoyed yesterday&rsquo;s game.</p> <p class="MsoNormal">Brady grew up in the suburbs of San Francisco, watching the likes of Joe Montana and Steve Young.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Yesterday, the California kid looked like a bigger, stronger version of Steve Young who grew up in Alaska.</p> <p class="MsoNormal">The NFL is a not only a quarterback&rsquo;s league, it&rsquo;s a <i style="">smart</i> quarterback&rsquo;s league.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Brady&rsquo;s mental command of the game is why he&rsquo;s won multiple super bowl rings and MVP trophies.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Would anyone be surprised if he added more to those tallies this year? Despite the heartbreak for Bears fans, that was truly one of the most impressive performances I&rsquo;ve seen by an NFL player in years.</p> <p class="MsoNormal">Can you think of any better efforts?</p><p class="MsoNormal"><strong>The Weather</strong></p> <p class="MsoNormal">It looks like Tom Brady was pretty much the only one not bothered by the weather.</p><p class="MsoNormal">Flights are still cancelled at O&rsquo;Hare, and there&rsquo;s a massive lake-effect snow causing cloud that&rsquo;s basically hanging out over Northwest Indiana.<span style="">&nbsp; Things are brutal there.&nbsp; Multi-car pileup bad.&nbsp; </span>We&rsquo;ve got two of our more unfortunate reporters keeping their eyes out on things this afternoon, and we&rsquo;ll keep you posted on-air and online.</p> <p class="MsoNormal">Oh, and if you haven&rsquo;t seen it, this is why the NFL game in Minnesota got moved to Detroit. This video is a must watch. Hey, at least we don't live in Minnesota, eh??</p> <p class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: center;"><object height="385" width="480"><param value="http://www.youtube.com/v/IxuxNLf87_Y?fs=1&amp;hl=en_US" name="movie" /><param value="true" name="allowFullScreen" /><param value="always" name="allowscriptaccess" /><embed height="385" width="480" allowfullscreen="true" allowscriptaccess="always" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" src="http://www.youtube.com/v/IxuxNLf87_Y?fs=1&amp;hl=en_US"></embed></object></p></p> Mon, 13 Dec 2010 17:31:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/blog/city-room-blog/daybook-brady-tax-breaks-and-breathing