Headlines – 6/20/2003

Published 12:00 am Friday, June 20, 2003

Panolian Headlines: June 20, 2003

For complete stories, pick up the 6/20/03  issue of The Panolian

Oliver Twist
Panola Playhouse and the Fable Factory present "Oliver Twist" beginning tonight at 7:30 p.m. The show will also be performed Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday afternoon at 2:30 p.m. In the starring role as Oliver is Blake Sullivant (front, center) of Pope.

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Other cast members include David Webb, Jesse Daniels, Pam Hawks, Ellen Lee Boone, Amanda Legge, Kristin Sissell, Myra Morris, Tori Sowell, Harper McDowell, Jason Umberger, Haley Hubbard and Sarah Ashton Baker.

Admission is $10 for adults and $5 for students. The Playhouse is located on Main Street in Sardis.

City Serious About Clean-Up
New ‘Junk’ Law Goes Into Effect Next Month

If you’re keeping junk on your property it’s a good idea to clean it up before the first week of July.

That’s when the city’s new clean-up regulations go into effect.

Until then, according to Code Enforcement Administrator Pam Comer, the office will continue to handling cases according to state statute.

"We have been dealing with cases by state statute and handling them on a complaint basis," Comer said.

That, she said, "has just been a long drawn-out process.

"The new ordinances will not help us in getting grass cut on property, but they will help us keep the junk at a minimum," she said.

Comer said once the new ordinances become effective, code enforcement will handle problems on a complaint basis at first.

"If the city decides they want us to handle it one street at a time, that’s what we will do," she said. "But in the beginning, it will be on a complaint basis."

Armed Gunman Robs Clerk
Police today are still searching for the armed robber who held up a female clerk at gunpoint at Mr. Jiffy BP No. 4 on Highway 6 West.

The clerk was alone in the store about about 9:40 Tuesday night when a black man, wearing a blue poncho, entered and pointed a gun at her, said Batesville Police Department Major Tony Jones.

The robber, who is described as about 5′ 10" tall and wearing a black baseball cap, told the clerk, "Give me your money," Jones said.
The clerk complied and the hold-up man left the store.

"One customer had just walked out when [the robber] came in," Jones said. "He walked right by him but didn’t know anything was about to go on … we’d like to talk with him."

Jones said the customer is a truck driver who stops by the store about once a week.

He said police are hoping the driver will remember something about the man that will help lead to the robber’s capture.

Anyone with any information about the crime is asked to call BPD at 563-5653.


Judicial Relief …
Since his retirement, former Chancery Court Judge Dennis Baker has plenty of time to keep up his lovely flower garden in his back yard in Batesville. Judge Baker says over the years he has settled many verdicts in his mind while relaxing there.

Besides day lilies of many colors, the judge has hydrangeas (inset at right) in three colors – blue, purple and pink.

Construction Yields Muddy Mess

Rain and mud. Lot’s of both.

It’s a big problem in the Wal-Mart Superstore area where storm drains are filling with mud that’s then forced out by heavy rain.

That’s what Thomas Burnett, city code enforcement officer, told the Mayor and Board of Aldermen this week.

"The storm drains are stopped up and everybody is pointing fingers at one another," Burnett said of various contractors who are working in the area.

The problem is sending mud onto the Wal-Mart parking lot which Burnett says also has "sunken" spots that may be the result of the lot’s base not having been built properly.

Meanwhile, hay that some have used to mitigate soil erosion has ended up in the storm drains, he said.

Burnett said much of the mud is coming from the Tri-Lakes Shopping Center construction site.

"I put all of the blame on the strip mall," Burnett said in reference to the new shopping center. "There was no hay or screening there for a while."

Now that hay has been put down, "it’s gotten everything stopped up," he said.

"It doesn’t seem possible for mud to be coming up through the storm drain openings but that’s what’s happening," Burnett said.

And, according to Alderman James Yelton, that’s not the only erosion problem in the area.

"Over on the other side of the hospital, it’s just as bad," Yelton said. "We should make the landowners do something about it."