Lisa Provence

Todd Howard awaits a decision from the ABC about whether he’ll face more penalties for selling too many drinks.


ABC eyes Escafé—again

Earlier this year, the Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control suspended popular watering hole Escafé’s license to sell mixed drinks for the seemingly oxymoronic problem of selling too much booze. In Virginia, where bars are prohibited by Prohibition-era regulations, licensees have to have 45 percent of their sales in food, and if customers prefer drinking […]

NGIC employee Mike Sienda has gotten the okay to display a smaller Trump sign on his vehicle at work, but  the Rutherford Institute still wants clarification on what the spy center means when it calls this one a campaign vehicle. Photo by Eze Amos

Bad sign? Trump placards booted from NGIC parking lot

Mike Sienda is a retired Army guy who now works as a federal employee at the National Ground Intelligence Center’s Rivanna Station, aka the “spy center.” Sienda is also a Donald Trump supporter, and at a recent rally he purchased two Trump/Pence signs and riveted them to the side of his box truck. His efforts […]

Albemarle police officer Andrew Holmes, photographed in 2011, received qualified immunity on two of the claims against him, but the racial profiling part of the lawsuit will move forward.
Photo Hawes Spencer

Racial profiling: Case against Albemarle cop moves forward

A federal judge issued an opinion last week that allows a lawsuit against Albemarle County and police officer Andrew Holmes to proceed on its racial profiling claim, while giving Holmes qualified immunity on claims he violated the plaintiffs’ Fourth Amendment rights when he showed up at their home around midnight to look for a DMV license […]

Mayor Mike Signer and Keith Woodard anoint West2nd, future $50 million home of City Market.
Staff photo

Market Plaza gets new name

To forestall the inevitable confusion of people looking for Market Plaza on Market Street, the future Water Street home of City Market has been renamed West2nd. Under a broiling sun September 8, developer Keith Woodard announced the $50 million mixed-use project’s new moniker. “We’ll still have a market, we’ll still have a plaza at West2nd,” […]

Charlottesville wants to put a new sign up at he Albemarle County Circuit Court in Court Square. File photo

Sign of the times: Supes don’t take kindly to city plaque

An item on the Albemarle Board of Supervisors consent agenda August 3 was to allow the city to put up a historic plaque in Court Square in front of the county’s courthouses. Only instead of rubberstamping the request, one supervisor took issue with the content, and others complained it was yet another missed opportunity for […]

Elizabeth Haysom, photographed at Jens Soering’s trial in 1990, warned Soering in a letter: “...promise me you will not let me ruin you life...” Courtesy Filmperspektive

Femme fatale: Literary allusions in the Haysom homicides

The tale of UVA students Elizabeth Haysom and Jens Soering, who were convicted in the 1985 double murders of Haysom’s parents, has long riveted central Virginia, and a new documentary reveals how the two saw themselves as tragic characters out of Shakespeare and Dickens. Initially Soering confessed to the murders, he says, to protect his […]

Pam Rivera photographed the pig July 3 when it was found wandering around her neighborhood near Proffit Road.

Courtesy Pam Rivera

#justiceforprofit: Pig larceny, maiming case moves to grand jury

The couple who took a wandering pig that police delivered to the Charlottesville Albemarle SPCA and who had plans to turn it into a Fourth of July barbecue, according to a Newsplex interview, had their charges certified to the grand jury in an August 25 preliminary hearing in Albemarle General District Court. More than a […]

Two young lovers and two heinous murders: A documentary of the Elizabeth Haysom and Jens Soering story heads to the U.S. as Soering seeks an absolute pardon.
Courtesy Filmperspektive

Absolute pardon: Soering petitions another governor

During the 30 years he’s spent in prison, Jens Soering has maintained he had nothing to do with the brutal 1985 murders of Derek and Nancy Haysom, and that he only confessed to protect his girlfriend, Elizabeth Haysom, from the death penalty. Now Tim Kaine, the governor who agreed to send Soering back to Germany […]

Ousted chair George Benford watches the drama play out that results in his new job as co-chair on the DBAC with the woman who wanted him gone. 
Staff photo

Parliamentary push-back: Benford reinstated, Fenton nearly ousted

  Chaps owner Tony LaBua spoke for those not in the thick of last week’s Downtown Business Association of Charlottesville coup: “I’m confused. Is George not president?” George Benford wasn’t chair at that point early in an August 17 DBAC board meeting, but within 45 minutes, he was elected co-chair, and Joan Fenton, who had […]

Phil Wendel and Tom Garrett don't break a sweat at today's ACAC tour.
Staff photo

Tom Garrett on job creators tour

Congressional candidate Tom Garrett is back in Charlottesville today a week after he debated Dem Jane Dittmar at the Senior Center. The two are vying for the 5th District seat currently held by Robert Hurt, who decided not seek a third term. C-VILLE caught up with Garrett, a state senator, at ACAC, where owner Phil […]

Jane Dittmar and Tom Garrett answered questions moderator Bob Gibson chose from the audience.
Photo Eze Amos

Let the 5th District debates begin

Congressional candidates Jane Dittmar and Tom Garrett met August 10 for the first of four forums, and the two agreed on several issues—and disagreed on many more. Around 200 people crammed into the Senior Center for the event sponsored by the Senior Statesmen of Virginia (no relation to the center). Democrat Dittmar, a mediator, is […]

Capital defender Jennifer Stanton wants to check out the makeup of the grand jury that indicted Gene Washington.
Staff photo

Gene Washington’s lawyers want grand jury records

Attorneys for the man charged with the capital murders of a beloved teacher and her daughter in 2014 asked a judge for the grand jury records for the past four years in Charlottesville Circuit Court today. The slayings of Robin Aldridge, 58, a special education teacher with Albemarle County, and 17-year-old Mani, a junior at […]

Courtesy Rolling Stone

Eramo’s status: Public figurehood will determine how lawsuit plays out

A phalanx of lawyers assembled to argue motions in former UVA associate dean Nicole Eramo’s lawsuit against Rolling Stone, along with plaintiff Eramo herself, August 12 in U.S. District Court in Charlottesville. Eramo’s $7.85 million defamation lawsuit against the magazine, writer Sabrina Rubin Erdley and Wenner Media is scheduled for a jury trial in October, and […]

Joan Fenton ousted George Benford as chair of the Downtown Business Association of Charlottesville.
Photo Eze Amos

DBAC meltdown: Downtown business org in disarray; chair resigns

Simmering undercurrents from the parking war between the city and Charlottesville Parking Center over the Water Street Garage have splintered the Downtown Business Association of Charlottesville, whose chairman abruptly resigned August 8 after being told he was illegally elected. The move leaves some members confused about who’s in charge and one who is working to […]

DeShon Langston got out of prison in 2005 and could vote in Michigan, but not in Virginia. 

Rescinded: Felons who registered to vote do not pass go

For DeShon Langston, having his right to vote restored—and then unrestored—was like having a really nice dream and waking up to reality. That’s his reaction to a 4-3 Supreme Court of Virginia decision July 22 that the state constitution did not give Governor Terry McAuliffe the authority to restore voting rights en masse, as he […]

Former mayor Dave Norris urges the city to stop kicking the can forward and resolve the Water Street Parking Garage morass once and for all.
Staff photo

CPC floats four parking scenarios

The parking wars have quieted since a judge rejected the Charlottesville Parking Center’s petition for an emergency receiver June 27 and CPC owner Mark Brown decamped to Greece. But here in the dog days of August, CPC general manager Dave Norris, whose June 24 proposal was rebuffed by the city, offers four scenarios for settling […]

More than 100 people told the Commission on Race, Memorials and Public Spaces what they thought about the Robert E. Lee statue, and more.
Photo Eze Amos

Not black and white: Lee statue evokes deep feelings on racial history

In its first listening session July 28, the City Council-appointed Commission on Race, Memorials and Public Spaces heard from well over 100 citizens, who packed the African American Heritage Center at the Jefferson School to talk about Charlottesville’s painful history. Their responses weren’t always clear-cut as far as the statue of Robert E. Lee was […]

Amy Laufer takes a selfie in front of the Virginia delegation.
Photo Amy Laufer

Laufer live from the Democratic National Convention

Ever wonder how delegates at the conventions all seem to spontaneously raise their “Make America First Again” or “Change Maker” signs at the same time? Well, Charlottesville School Board Chair Amy Laufer is attending the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia and she clues us in: They get texts telling them what to chant and when […]

The Dem VP candidate okayed Jens Soering's return to Germany in 2010—to no avail.
Photo Clements Mayes

VP candidate and convicted murderer in spotlight again

Former UVA student Jens Soering has spent more than 30 years in prison while protesting his innocence. And Tim Kaine, shortly before he left the Governor’s Mansion in 2010, agreed to repatriate Soering to Germany, a move that was immediately overturned by his successor, Bob McDonnell. Now Kaine has been tapped to be the Democratic […]

In between interviews, the Center for Politics’ Tim Robinson, Larry Sabato and Geoffrey Skelley snap a photo from the convention floor in Cleveland.
Courtesy Geoffrey Skelley

Political season: Locals head to conventions

  While most of us followed last week’s Republican shindig in Cleveland on TV, several locals were there on the ground. And Charlottesville sent four people to Philadelphia as delegates for the Democratic convention this week. UVA had a major presence in Cleveland with political pundit Larry Sabato and his Crystal Ball team from the Center […]

Photo: Amy Jackson

War on drugs: When the options for addicts aren’t enough

His family and friends describe Luke Beckelman as someone with a big heart and loving soul. The former Monticello High student’s passion was hip-hop: writing it, rapping and making several videos, says his mom. He also was an addict. And he sold drugs—twice to a confidential informant in 2015—which led to his arrest for felony […]

Former mayor Dave Norris urges the city to stop kicking the can forward and resolve the Water Street Parking Garage morass once and for all.
Staff photo

Parking garage ‘soap opera’ leads city to reject Brown’s offer

Mayor Mike Signer and City Councilor Kathy Galvin insist there is nothing personal in the city’s dispute with Mark Brown over control of the Water Street Parking Garage. In meetings with reporters July 6 after the city rejected Charlottesville Parking Center’s June 24 proposed settlement of the escalating controversy over the fate of the garage the city co-owns with Brown, […]