Sheriff Cuts Down on Weekend Jail Time Chesterfield Gains Another NFL Pro Injury Won't Stop Christmas Show T-D Gets Wrist Slapped For Hardball Tactics Paper Moon Plans Scott's Addition Site Sheriff Cuts Down on Weekend Jail Time
F ed up with the increasing number of nonviolent offenders flocking to the jail to serve time only on weekends, Henrico County Sheriff Michael Wade has decided to put a halt to what he calls a lenient sentencing alternative. But the sheriff's efforts, which he says will ease processing and increase order in the county jail, have alarmed some who say the sheriff has gone too far. Henrico's Wade says his already-stretched staff and resources were finding it difficult to oversee the weekender program. "There were some people serving 60 days on weekends," says Wade, whose office administers the programs at the courts' request. "On weekends, 70 to 80 [people] were showing up to come into the jail." People allowed to serve their sentences on weekends, Wade says, don't take their jail time seriously. Some, he adds, show up drunk: "For people who have a substance-abuse problem, we're not helping them by locking them up only on weekends." By comparison, about 50 people a week take part in the Chesterfield County weekend program. Numbers for a similar program at the Richmond City Jail weren't available, but an officer there says Richmond has a much higher number of weekenders than Henrico. But the bottom line, says Wade, is that "if the judge sentences you to jail, you should really go to jail." And for Wade, that means doing your time all at one time. Defense attorney David Baugh strongly disagrees. "It's not enough that they've been convicted and sentenced to jail," Baugh says. "Now they want to destroy their livelihoods." Baugh says offenders could lose their jobs if they were forced to serve their jail sentences consecutively. "It's a narrow perspective," Baugh adds. "It's not what I'd expect from an office that's supposed to serve the public." — Brandon Walters Chesterfield Gains Another NFL Pro
Another NFL pro has decided to move to Chesdin Landing, the opulent resort community in Chesterfield County. William Henderson, a fullback for the Green Bay Packers, plans to build a house in the young, exclusive subdivision on the north side of Lake Chesdin. "He's coming in here," says a proud Scott Camp, the owner and developer of Chesdin Landing. After a search for subdivisions that took them from Baltimore, Md., to Raleigh, N.C., Camp says, Henderson's agents touched down in Chesdin Landing in part because of "the quality of the homes, the quality of the neighborhood, the clientele." Of course, Henderson's hometown ties didn't hurt either. Henderson grew up in Chester, played football for Thomas Dale High School and still has family here. And his former high school coach happens to play golf on the Chesdin Landing course. Or Henderson may want to hit the links with Chesdin's first pro-football resident, former Buffalo Bills quarterback Jim Kelly. Construction on Kelly's huge house, which sits on a 6-acre lot, is scheduled to be finished in the summer. The Chesdin neighborhood may someday teem with other sports standouts, too. Agents for a few professional basketball players have scouted the area, Camp says. Terry Bradshaw was spotted visiting the area, too. And it seems that Kelly is recruiting. He talked up the area to Warren Moon, a quarterback for the Kansas City Chiefs who is retiring. But a spokesman for the Chiefs says that Moon has instead decided to move to the Seattle area, where he played football in college and began his professional career with the Seattle Seahawks. Injury Won't Stop Christmas Show
"King Islanders are tough," sing the villagers of a remote island in Theatre IV's "King Island Christmas," currently playing at the Empire Theatre. Actor Mark Scott is certainly proof of that. Scott, who plays "Walrus Storyteller" in the show, got nine stitches last week after a set piece fell on him in the middle of a performance. Scott was moving a stair unit that is part of the set when it bumped into a stage light, knocking the unit's locking mechanism open, explains artistic director and cast member Bruce Miller. It promptly fell over and hit Scott on the head. "I was standing right next to him," says Miller. "I heard the crash and I turned to look, and Mark said 'I'm OK, I'm OK.' I thought he had not been hit. He continued to move scenery." Only when the set change was finished did Miller see blood. f course when it happens to you, you really don't hear it, but everyone else did. I'm like, 'I'm OK, I'm OK.'" Then he felt his head. "My fingers could feel, but my head couldn't. It felt like there was a big dent." When he looked at his hand, he saw blood. "I went up to someone [backstage] and said, 'The step unit fell on my head and I can feel a dent, and there's blood.' I was kind of calm about it, but they sort of went 'Ohhhhh my God.'" But the show must go on. Scott was ushered to the lobby, and Miller called 911 without missing his next stage entrance. Actors passed the news discreetly onstage, and quick thinking ensued. "Spontaneously, everyone picked up [Scott's] lines. They cut his song and went straight to the next one," says Miller. "Everybody just pulled through." Paramedics arrived, put Scott in a neck brace and loaded him into an ambulance. By this point, Scott was getting nervous. "When they put you in the neck brace, all you can see is up," he says. "I freaked a little bit." So he started talking. "I ran my mouth a mile a minute from the lobby to the time I left the hospital. … I was trying to disarm everyone from thinking there was anything too wrong," he says. "I wish I had gotten it on tape, it would have made a great monologue." Even with Scott's neck brace, the paramedic recognized him from his appearance in a Saxon Shoes TV spot. "When we got to the hospital, the guy was yelling 'Hey, this is the Great Shoedini!'" Scott recalls. Scott's head needed stitches, but the injury didn't turn out to be serious. "The doctor said that he was very surprised with the type of gash it was that there wasn't a skull fracture," Scott says. "But I'm in good shape." — Holly Timberline T-D Gets Wrist Slapped For Hardball Tactics
The National Labor Relations Board has chastised the Richmond Times-Dispatch for refusing to pay union members for time spent in contract negotiations. The board was responding to a grievance filed by the Richmond Newspapers Professional Association, a collective-bargaining unit currently representing nearly 190 non-management newsroom employees. The RNPA's five-member executive committee mediates contract issues with management. For 40 years, Richmond Newspapers Inc. has paid executive-committee members for time spent working on negotiations. But this year, negotiators for newspaper management have refused to pay union members for time spent on negotiations. In addition, Media General has discouraged the union from using company e-mail for union-related correspondence, the union says. "We're pleased with the board's decision," says Jon Pope, president of the association. "The NLRB took three months to say 'You're wrong; you're breaking the law.'" Frank McDonald, the T-D's director of human relations, declined to comment on the ruling or the negotiations. The union and Times-Dispatch management have been in contract disputes since July. Union members had asked for an across-the-board salary increase of 6.75 percent before scaling that back to 6.5 percent. Management had countered with an offer of only a 0.25 percent raise until recently when that amount was increased to 0.5 percent. Media General has appealed the NLRB's ruling. The Richmond Times-Dispatch now must choose whether to voluntarily work out an agreement with the RNPA or to present its case March 29 at a hearing before an appeals committee in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit in Richmond. - B.W. Paper Moon Plans Scott's Addition Site
A proposed "gentleman's club" in Scott's Addition has consternated businesses and developers aiming to gentrify the neighborhood. But the club's owner — and city officials — say the club has every right to move into the area. Paper Moon owner Frazier Boyd has purchased the 13,000-square-foot building at 3300 Norfolk Ave., says Ed Philips, Boyd's business partner. Philips declined to say how much Boyd paid, but the building's asking price was $425,000. Philips says the vacant building that once was home to Southern Autotronics will be "developed as a night club," and "will look nothing like this when it's finished." The property includes 50 spaces for on-site parking. Boyd's planned club is not the kind of gentrification some area businesses were hoping for. The neighborhood is a stone's throw from the Boulevard, where - at the request of the Museums on the Boulevard Association — the American Society of Landscape Architects has proposed a multimillion-dollar makeover. Representatives from businesses in Scott's Addition have met with city officials to see if they could stall the club by appealing to zoning regulations. But the targeted site for the new club complies with all current zoning, say city officials. "The case law is very clear," says Mark Strickler, community development director for the city. "You have to allow them." Adult-entertainment use is prohibited in all but four city zoning districts. But it is permitted in Scott's Addition, which is zoned for industrial business. Under current restrictions, any porn shops or strip clubs must be at least 500 feet away from other adult entertainment businesses. They also must be at least 500 feet away from such structures as churches, schools, day-care centers and private residences. Now that Boyd has made an inroad in Scott's Addition, there is talk of a second adult-entertainment club moving into the neighborhood. And that has prompted the formation of a Scott's Addition business association that hopes to lobby city officials to prevent it. Style's calls requesting comment from those businesses were not returned. Already the Scott's Addition group has voiced opposition to the city, and Strickler says there still may be an amenable solution. "The city is looking at making zoning changes to tighten restrictions," Strickler says. — B.W.