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NEWS
Tim Saunders and Reporter/Lynchburg Bureau Chief | February 17, 2012
A Bedford County woman learned her punishment Friday for the beating death of her elderly boyfriend. Kristina Pongracz was sentenced to 15 years in prison.  She was found guilty last year of second degree murder for the death of William Herchenrider in May of 2010.  He was 77 when the crime happened, she was 28. "It haunts me what happened that night," said Pongracz, during a hearing Friday in which she testified on her own behalf. "I never intended for this to happen," Pongracz said.  "I loved Bill very much.  We were a family.
NEWS
WDBJ7 Web Staff | February 25, 2013
Lynchburg College is mourning the loss of one of its students. Nick Johnson was found dead in his dorm room around 8:30 p.m. Sunday evening, according to the college. Johnson was a sophomore from Edison, New Jersey. Foul play or suicide is not suspected, according Lynchburg College. Officials are waiting on autopsy results to determine how Johnson died. The chaplain's office and counseling center at Lynchburg College are open for drop-ins Monday for any students who might need support.
NEWS
Orlando Salinas and WDBJ7 Reporter | February 4, 2013
It's an alarming problem across the country and it is killing people every day. The Centers for Disease Control reports that in 2010, more than 12 million people, adults and children, used prescription pain pills without a prescription. Here's the truth, hardcore prescription pain pills are easy to get all over Southwest Virginia. Police are trying to slow it down but it's not a fight to be won anytime soon. Let's talk about a town just two hours from Montgomery County. Lebanon, Virginia, is near the Tennessee-Virginia border.
NEWS
Chris Hurst and Anchor/Reporter | October 4, 2012
How can two murders only a year and a half old be a cold case? When no one speaks up and tells police who did it. That's what happened for two families still mourning; no answers for their questions. There are dozens of cold cases in the City of Roanoke. This is the story of one of those cases and one couple shot and stabbed. *********** Patty Smith remembers her son, Mike, very much in love, a rekindled romance from childhood. April, 2011 was a time for joy, the couple had just found out his girlfriend, Joyce Payne, was pregnant.
NEWS
WDBJ7 Web Staff/Joe Dashiell | May 24, 2013
Developers say a new project in the city of Roanoke will transform a 22-acre site between Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital and downtown. Friday morning, they came together with community leaders to break ground on "The Bridges. " The first phase includes new housing and offices near the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine and Research Institute, a restaurant in the old stable that's still standing on the property and a river walk along the Roanoke River. Jason Vickers-Smith is a Richmond-based developer.
NEWS
WDBJ7 Web Staff | April 23, 2012
We're learning more details about a hiker found murdered along the Appalachian Trial in Amherst County last June. At a news conference in Amherst Monday, FBI Investigators revealed that Scott Lilly was suffocated.  They're not saying whether Lilly was choked or strangled, but they did reveal that Lilly's body was partially buried after he was killed. The FBI, U.S. Attorney's Office, National Park Service, and U.S. Department of Forestry were all at the news conference Monday at the Amherst County Sheriff's Office.
NEWS
Hollani Davis and Anchor/Reporter | October 2, 2012
Is that steak you bought from the door-to-door salesman as good as he claims?  More than a dozen customers of a meat company in Salem claim what they paid for isn't what was promised.     By opening the door, Dorothy O'Dell opened herself up to a whole lot of regret. "Would I ever do it again?  I shouldn't have the fist time," says O'Dell. In August, she says two sales representatives were going door to door selling what they advertised as quality meat.   She spent $225.
NEWS
News 7 Web Staff/Keith Humphry | February 28, 2011
Convicted killer Jens Soering has another reason he feels he should get out of prison.  Having rolled the dice and lost, Soering tells a lot about truth. He touches on comedy, television and heaven.  It seems his last hope lies in DNA testing from a year and a half ago. Soering is doing time for killing a wealthy couple on the Bedford County side of Lynchburg. "I've spent 24 yrs. 9 mos , + 25 days in prison," said Soering. While he's counting the days, he's lost track of the number of institutions.
HEALTH
Jean Jadhon and WDBJ-TV Anchor/Reporter | March 5, 2013
When you think of allergies you probably think of sneezing and wheezing, but there's another type of allergy that's relatively new. It can make it painful to swallow. This allergy can affect your esophagus which is the tube that transports food to the stomach. The allergic reaction is called eosinophilic esophagitis, a type of white blood cell (eosinophil) builds up in the tube that connects your mouth to your stomach (esophagus) as a reaction to foods, allergens or acid reflux, according to the Mayo Clinic website.
NEWS
WDBJ7 Web Staff | March 15, 2013
A Mexican company will open a large greenhouse in Pulaski County, creating 205 jobs in the New River Valley. Red Sun Farms will open an operation at the New River Valley Commerce Park in Pulaski County. Governor McDonnell is expected to make the announcement Friday afternoon in Dublin. Red Sun Farms is investing $30 million to establish its first U.S. high-techonology greenhouse production operation. Red Sun Farms will be the first tenant of the New River Valley Commerce Park.
NEWS
News 7 Web Staff | April 13, 2011
We've known for awhile Roanoke City schools will start next year before Labor Day. Now we know the exact date. The Roanoke City School board voted tonight to begin the school year August 29th. The General Assembly recently passed a law allowing Roanoke City Schools to start before Labor Day. Virgnia's Department of Education must now give the final ok. The school board also voted tonight to give educators a one-time bonus. The city is using nearly two and half million dollars in federal stimulus money to pay for it. Teachers and principals will receive a bonus of 1500 dollars.
NEWS
WDBJ7 Web Staff | January 29, 2013
The Hooters restaurant in Roanoke has closed its doors. The Williamson Road restaurant, which is owned by a Richmond businessman, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in November. A notice posted on the restaurant door indicates that the tenant defaulted on its loans. The notice reads that the “premises are now under the control of the Landlord, Spirit Master Funding, LLC. Because of lease defaults, the Tenant has no right to possession of these premises or any furniture, fixtures, or equipment located at the premises, but remains liable for outstanding amounts payable, future charges, and damages under the Lease with the Landlord.
NEWS
Meteorologist Brent Watts | January 31, 2012
On the back of seed packets you'll find a map of "hardiness zones," or zones where plants are best suited to grow. The zone map is created by the United States Department of Agriculture and  has been used for decades by amateur and professional gardeners as a guide to yearly planting. So why all the changes? The USDA has found through research from the past few decades, that a general warming trend has taken place across the U.S. from 1990 to 2005. This means the new map should be more precise than the previous map published in 1990.
NEWS
WDBJ7 Web Staff | March 25, 2013
Updated: All lanes of I-77 are open after the boulders created headaches for drivers for the better part of a week. Traffic started flowing around 7 p.m. Wednesday. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------   Beckley, Bluefield BLUEFIELD, W.Va. (AP) -- The West Virginia Department of Transportation says the northbound lanes of Interstate 77 near the West Virginia-Virginia border might not reopen until Wednesday.
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