In brief: Taking back their streets, Cockburn controversy, Cantwell returns and more

Skyclad Skyclad

Calming effect

That’s the reason we did this—people fly down the street,” says Shawnee West as she watches a car drive through the intersection of Little High and 11th streets.

West is standing at the edge of the circular traffic-calming mural she designed with the help of one of her neighbors. Last fall, West and dozens of her neighbors painted the geometric eight-petal blue flower with pink-and-white butterflies surrounding it. The color scheme was inspired by the mural on the adjacent Charlottesville Day School. Some of the children who helped signed their names along one of the outer rings.

West, who spent about a month gathering signatures from neighbors for a project petition she then submitted to the city, says this intersection is a particularly dangerous one because it’s a main thoroughfare for both city and school buses, but is only a two-way stop. Neighbors asked for four stop signs but were denied. She says they’ve also tried to garner enough support to petition for speed bumps on both Little High and East Jefferson streets.

“Of course we dread the worst thing that could happen,” she says. “People wait until there’s a serious crisis before anyone does anything and we’re trying to prevent that.”

West and her fellow Little High residents will give the mural a second coat of paint in May, to ensure their efforts have a lasting effect.

“When you do something, people want to help, they want to be part of something,” she says. “And to be part of a community of people who say, ‘What can I do?’—it’s great.”

“Local news comment sections prove that SATAN IS REAL, Y’ALL.”—Congregate C’ville’s Brittany Caine-Conley on Twitter in response to the web comments on C-VILLE’s story, “Still here: White supremacy strikes again.”

Dem caucusers

Localities in the 5th District held caucuses last week that gave Leslie Cockburn enough delegates to secure the nomination at its convention in Farmville May 5 to challenge Representative Tom Garrett in November, according to an unofficial tally.

Leslie Cockburn at the Charlottesville Democratic caucus April 21. Photo Natalie Jacobsen

Dem discord

The chair of the Greene County Democrats, Elizabeth Alcorn, announced her resignation April 21 and cited violation of campaign rules by Cockburn staff, who were asked to stop campaigning at the Madison County caucus, where Alcorn was an official. One of them was black and Cockburn accused the Madison caucus officials of a “racist incident,” according to Alcorn’s resignation letter.


Some Western Albemarle parents were hot and bothered over Laci Green’s video.

After the Sexual Assault Resource Agency showed a video on male sexual pleasure to Western Albemarle High School students, upset parents complained, and the school axed its years-long relationship with the nonprofit. County schools spokesperson Phil Giaramita says the video wasn’t reviewed first, but SARA documented the approval of its sex ed curriculum by the head P.E. teacher.

Crying in his beer?

Chris Cantwell, aka the Crying Nazi, was arrested March 31 in Loudoun County for public intoxication. Cantwell was out on $25,000 bond for alleged use of tear gas at the August 11 tiki torch march through UVA. He’ll be back in Albemarle Circuit Court April 26 for a judge to reconsider his bond.

Coach convicted

Charlottesville High School track coach Melvin Carter was sentenced to 180 days of suspended jail time April 20 when he pleaded guilty to assault and battery of a juvenile. The incident did not take place on school ground, according to Commonwealth’s Attorney Joe Platania.

Pilot identified

Kent D. Carr, 51, of Staunton was the pilot of the Cessna that crashed into Bucks Elbow Mountain in Crozet on April 15. Says his obituary, “He loved aviation and was flying home at the time.”

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