Jennings Mask Up! campaign workers Ashley Fullmer, left, and Ariel Galliher post a campaign sign in front of the newspaper office at 528 East O&M Avenue. The signs are available for the general public and businesses to post to help flatten the COVID curve in JC. The yard signs are free and can be picked up at the newspaper office or at to be announced times at the city parking lot's "Safe Exchange Zone."-Staff Photo by Barbara King
Joshua Lewis Hartwell, 35, has been charged with possession of meth between 5 to 10 grams, a Level 4 Felony (F4); and possession of a firearm by a serious violent felon, and false or altered handgun license, F6s. 9.9 grams of meth were allegedly found in the car he was in.
Terry Day, 20, is charged with possession of meth between 5-10 grams, F5; resisting law enforcement and use of false or altered handgun license, F6s; and possession of marijuana, a B misdemanor. Wednesday, January 20, 2021
On December 19, 2020, thirty-six probationary troopers graduated from the 80th Indiana State Police Academy. Last week, two of those troopers reported for duty at the ISP-Versailles District.
Probationary troopers now begin their next phase of instruction, a three-month field training period, working alongside veteran troopers. Field training aims to give troopers a practical application to the training they received throughout the formal academy.
Upon completing field training, the troopers will be assigned a state police patrol vehicle and begin solo patrol. These troopers have already completed over 1,200 hours of structured training in law enforcement techniques and hands-on, scenario-based training at the Indiana State Police Recruit Academy. Their curriculum included criminal law instruction, emergency vehicle operations, psychology, traffic law, crash investigation, self-defense, first responder, and other general enforcement related training.
Alex Zimmerman is the new county attorney for Jennings. While he is a newcomer to the county itself, his wife, the former Kayla Ellis, is the daughter of Bob and Tina Ellis and grew up here. The couple has purchased a home in Vernon Township, are currently fixing it up and plan to relocate here from Greenwood "in a month or two."
His wife is also an attorney and is currently practicing at Eichhorn & Eichhorn specializing in medical malpractice.
The two met as undergraduates at Franklin College and married at the Ellis' country home in June 2018.
Leadership for county government has been set for 2021.
Matt Sporleder was re-elected president of the commissioners last week, even though at an earlier and contentious meeting this fall he had said he would not accept this leadership position again. Apparently the adage "time heals all wounds" applies in this instance. Wednesday, January 20, 2021
There is always a silver lining during dark times. The influx of compassion and generosity that has arisen in Jennings County amidst physical, economic and social unrest is that bright and shiny metallic lining.
Even before the pandemic, Jennings County had many charitable organizations working to help those in need. Pavilion Ministries, a collaboration between Christ's Way Christian Church, Trinity Full Gospel Church, North Vernon Wesleyan Church, Zenas Baptist Church, North Vernon Church of the Nazarene, and The Well ministries, is one of those organizations.
They are the foundation of The Potter's House, a non-profit housing ministry for wayward souls, and serve as coordinators for donation drives to help students in need at local schools, something they have done for years. With the onset of the pandemic, need has definitely increased. Wednesday, January 20, 2021
The Jennings County Sheriff's Office wins the award for starting their New Year's resolutions strong with several major crime busts in the past few weeks, the biggest of which happened within four days of each other. The first occurred not long after midnight on Monday, Jan. 11. A Jennings deputy conducted a traffic stop on a 2014 Mazda SUV on U.S. Hwy 50 near 4th Street.
During the traffic stop, the deputy detected the odor of raw marijuana coming from the vehicle. While speaking with the occupants, the deputy suspected they were trafficking marijuana and/or other illegal drugs. A search of the vehicle uncovered marijuana, evidence of large-scale drug trafficking and over $30,000 in cash. The currency was packaged in a way that would indicate a large scale drug trafficking operation. Wednesday, January 20, 2021
The General Election in Nov. 2020 brought no new faces to the Jennings County School Board with uncontested incumbents Earl Taggart and Pat Sullivan elected for another term. Chelsea Morrison, who was contested, is also returning to the school board, this time for a full term after being selected to fulfill Warren Lucas' term. All three were sworn in last week.
At the first board meeting of 2021 on Jan. 7, members approved nominations for board officials. Pat Sullivan was re-elected president and Amy Pettit as vice president. Chelsea Morrison was voted secretary, the position previously held by Travis Shepherd.
After a two-week winter break, Jennings County Schools are back in session and so is the School Board of Trustees who met for the first time in 2021 on Thursday, Jan. 7 during a virtual live stream on YouTube.
The gathered school administration had much to discuss after board nominations were completed.
The Area Plan Commission held a regular meeting Dec. 7 Present were: president Chad Ebinger, Brian Hatfield, Travis SHepherd, Brenda Habenicht, Mike Gerth, John Post, Eli Brown, Tyler Stock, attorney Brad Kage and executive director Marie Shepherd. Wednesday, January 13, 2021
The Natural Resources Commission (NRC) recently removed the bald eagle from Indiana's list of state endangered and special concern species due to evidence of successful recovery. Wednesday, January 13, 2021
Detectives from the Indiana State Police-Versailles Post began a homicide investigation Monday, Jan. 11 after an adult female was located deceased in a residence in rural Ripley County, Indiana.
The investigation began shortly after 12:00 a.m. Monday morning when deputies from the Ripley County Sheriff's Office and troopers from the ISP-Versailles Post responded to a residence on County Road 700 West, just north of Holton, after receiving reports of an unresponsive female located inside a home. Wednesday, January 13, 2021
To vaccinate, or not to vaccinate, that is the question.
If William Shakespeare could have predicted the global pandemic of 2020, it's likely he would have written a masterpiece about it. Perhaps it would have been akin to Romeo & Juliet, but instead of the Capulets vs. the Montagues, the plot would be centered around the question whether to vaccinate or not.
With two COVID-19 vaccines currently being distributed nationwide, there is a debate between members of the public on whether or not they will, or should, get the injection even when it becomes regularly available to the public.
The City of North Vernon got $1.3 million richer last month, after its City Council voted unanimously to refinance its 2015 bond. That bond was taken out to clean up the Fifth Street area destroyed by the devastating downtown Nov. 2014 fire as well as to fund work needed to transform the quarry into a reservoir of fresh water for its utility customers.
Financial advisors had told the city fathers the refinancing was worth the time and effort if a savings of 3 percent could be realized. To their delight, the refinancing savings turned out to be in the 15 to 16 percent range, with gross savings calculated to be $1,397,476 over the next 20 years.
This is Circuit Court Judge Ellie Webster Bright's first week on the bench. The daughter of retired Judge Jon and Julie Webster, the 36-year old mother of four and wife of Johnny Bright took the time to reflect on what could very well be the start of a judicial career as long as her dad's 24 years on the bench.
This is a special time for you and your family with your dad retiring and you stepping into his job. Wednesday, January 13, 2021