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 Monday, April 20, 2015
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The Franklin News-Post
P. O. Box 250
310 Main Street, SW
Rocky Mount, Virginia 24151
Fax: 540-483-8013

Rocky Mount couple faces gun, drug charges
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By K.A. WAGONER - Staff Writer

A Rocky Mount couple faces several drug and gun charges after deputies executed a search warrant at their residence on Rakes Road last month.

George William Hall Jr., 41, and Michelle Dawn Gregory, 37, are both charged with distribution of heroin, distribution of marijuana, possession of suboxone (drug used to treat narcotic addiction), and possession of a firearm while in possession of a Schedule I drug.

Hall is also charged with possession of a firearm after having been convicted of a felony, according to Sgt. Lyle with the Franklin County Sheriff's Office Narcotics Unit.

On March 24, investigators seized four bundles of heroin with an estimated street value of $500 at the residence, Lyle said. They also seized about $200 worth of marijuana, two shotguns, a black powder pistol, a .38 caliber revolver, a .45 semiautomatic and an undisclosed amount of cash.

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Meals tax collections up for March

The Town of Rocky Mount collected $96,859 in meals taxes last month, according to Finance Director Linda Woody.

That total is up from the $90,391 collected in March 2014.

So far in 2015, the town has collected $322,470 in meals taxes.

During 2014, the town collected $1,265,995, up from $1,226,515 in 2013. The largest collection total last year was in November with $118,725, the highest amount ever recorded.

The meals tax continues to be the largest revenue producer for the town.

Sales tax collections for the town totaled $11,180 last month, down from the $13,976 collected in March 2014.

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Sheriff’s office warns residents of tax return scams

The Franklin County Sheriff's Office wants to make residents aware of scams involving IRS tax returns.

The sheriff's office has received numerous reports that when individuals attempted to file their tax returns, they were informed by the IRS that a tax return utilizing their social security number had already been filed, according to Capt. Mark Torbert.

"This type of identity theft has become a national problem," Torbert said. "Tax-related identity theft occurs when someone uses a stolen Social Security number to file a tax return to claim a fraudulent refund."

A taxpayer's Social Security number can be stolen through a data breach, a computer hack or a lost wallet.

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‘Healthy Parks, Healthy People’ off to good start
Initiative includes hikes at BTW National Park
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"Walk and Talk with Carilion" is off to a great start in its second season with its kickoff event last Saturday at Booker T. Washington National Monument.

The kickoff event featured Senior Communications Consultant Karen McNew McGuire. After a short program with McGuire, participants hiked the Jack O' Lantern Branch Trail, led by McGuire and Gail Nordhaus, Carilion Clinic community outreach coordinator.

"I have been to Booker T. Washington National Park before, but this was my first time on the Jack O' Lantern Trail," said McGuire. "I had no idea how beautiful it is. It features all the best nature has to offer."

The Walk and Talk program is a part of the Healthy Parks, Healthy People (HPHP) initiative of the National Park Service in partnership with the Carilion Clinic.

The new initiative's goal is to get more people to visit the parks to enjoy nature and reap the health benefits of communing with nature and exercising. The theme is "Take a Hike and Call Me in the Morning."

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Black publishes book on horseback riding
Book dispels the myth that ‘a horse is a horse’
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Author and horseback riding instructor Aspen Black is discussing the unique needs of recreational riders in her new book, "Empowered Riding: The Guide for Recreational Horseback Riders."

The book dispels the myth that "a horse is a horse" and teaches riders to recognize the specific traits of safe, experienced, well-trained recreational mounts, Black said.

Riders are guided through a series of 12 self-study exercises at a walk, jog and lope, including additional interaction with obstacles and bareback riding, to build a strong foundation of skills that can be applied to any equine activity or discipline, Black said. The book also offers insight into physical and emotional issues along with a self-quiz to pinpoint each person's specific needs and goals as a rider.

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