Ideas for Holiday Spirit

If you are still not in the holiday spirit, here are a couple of suggestions. Muncie’s MITS bus service is offering the annual toiur of lights tomorrow and Friday. The free bus tour past local private and public holiday lighting displays will be offered at 6:15 and 7:30 p.m. Friday evenings. There is no charge. And if you missed the Muncie Community Christmas sing earlier this month, it will be telecast at 5:30 p.m. Thursday afternoon on WIPB-TV Channel 49. It will also be rebroadcast on Christmas Day at 1 p.m.

Anderson Man Gets Three Year Term in Baby Shaking Case

An Anderson man charged with severely injuring a baby by shaking it was sentenced Monday to three years in prison for battering a woman in an unrelated case. Sean D. Grant pleaded guilty on Nov. 27 in Madison Circuit Court. Grant’s plea agreement called for him to receive a six-year sentence with three years suspended. Lawyers would then argue where Grant would serve the remaining three years, according to the agreement. Prosecutors said Grant deserved prison time because he was convicted in 2006 for battering the same woman and was out on bond in the shaken-baby case at the time.

Hearings Resume in Muncie Mayoral Recount

Beginning today 8:30 the commissioners courtroom in the Delaware County Building, the Republican Party is expected to disclose what evidence it has to prove its allegations that the Democrats committed voter fraud in the Nov. 6 election. Democrat James Mansfield defeated Republican Sharon McShurley by 11 votes. For the most part, Republicans have been said little about their evidence since the party’s court petition for a recount. Last week, Republican attorney David Brooks said some of his evidence would include signed affidavits from absentee voters who allege Muncie City Councilman Monte Murphy illegally helped them vote and collected their ballots. Democratic attorney Mike Quirk has said the Murphy charges are bogus, and that Democrats have talked to those same voters and many deny signing the Republican affidavits. TOMORROW is the deadline to certify election results, per state law.

Suspect Jailed in Anderson Fatal Shooting

The day after an Anderson teen died of gunshot wounds he suffered Sunday, police believe they have found the man responsible for the shooting. Jalon N. Johnson of Anderson, was being held in the Madison County Jail on $10,000 bond late Tuesday for allegedly shooting 17-year-old Ashtin Logan on Sunday. Johnson was arrested on suspicion of reckless homicide and criminal recklessness. Johnson was taken into custody around 4 p.m. Tuesday at Anderson’s Wal-Mart, his place of employment. He asked for his attorney, David Alger, and refused to speak with investigators. Police say the investigation was still ongoing and more arrests could be made.

Anderson Gas Leak Closes Main Street

A gas leak on Main Street, near 25th Street, poses no danger to nearby residents but will have Vectren workers busy the rest of the week. The leak was discovered in a cast-iron main under concrete that makes it inaccessible to workers. About 40 feet of the main will eventually be replaced with plastic pipe. The city will be providing barricades for traffic throughout the work. Lane closures will be used during the day. In the evening and night hours, all lanes will be open unless Vectren needs to have some closed after hours. All lanes will be closed daily on Main Street between 8:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. until the work is finished.

BSU Police Department Lawsuit to Start January 22nd

The wrongful-death lawsuit against former Ball State University policeman Robert Duplain is headed to trial next month. Geoffrey Fieger, lead counsel for the parents of Michael McKinney, a BSU senior who was shot and killed by Duplain four years ago, will not stand trial on criminal charges next month as expected. As a result, U.S. District Judge Richard Young of Indianapolis on Tuesday denied Fieger’s motion to postpone the trial of McKinney vs. Duplain, scheduled to start Jan. 22 and last two weeks. Duplain, at the time a rookie officer, shot and killed McKinney at 3:27 a.m. on Sunday, Nov. 8, 2003, while responding to a call of a residential burglary in progress at a house close to The Village, a commercial district near campus where McKinney had been drinking. The student was highly intoxicated.

Eastbrook Schools Task Force Devises Solutions

A task force created to come up with solutions for Eastbrook Community School Corp.’s declining enrollment presented three recommendations to the school board Monday night. None of those recommendations included closing schools. Task force member Harmony Mitchener, a Washington Elementary kindergarten teacher, presented to the board the recommendations on which she said the group reached consensus: Maintain status quo for next school year. Reduce class sizes by looking into staff arrangements. Continue the task force and expand it to include middle school, high school and administrative representatives.The group’s recommendations were affected, in large part, by the announcement of the plans for businesses and homes on Ind. 18 near Interstate 69.

Anderson Mayor Names New Parks Superintendent

Mayor-elect Kris Ockomon has nominated Fred Reese Jr. as superintendent of Parks and Recreation. By state statute, the parks and recreation superintendent is a mayoral appointment recommended by the mayor and approved by the parks board, according to a press release. State law also calls for qualifications for park superintendent, such as training or experience in the field of parks and recreation, as well as a certification or an advanced degree in the field of parks and recreation. Reese is vice chairman of the Rev. J.T. Menifee Scholarship Board, and he is a basketball coach for Liberty Christian School, AAU and Anderson Sports Center. Reese actively volunteers at the Geater Center and has been a YMCA youth basketball trainer. Doug Zook, current superintendent for Parks and Recreation, said he enjoyed his time in the department.

Muncie Dollar General Store Robbed and Manager Shot in Leg

The Dollar General store at 1904 North Walnut Street was robbed around 10:15 a.m. this morning. The robber also shot the clerk in the leg. She was taken to Ball Memorial Hospital by ambulance and is listed in good condition. The perpetrator is described as a black male with medium build, about six feet tall. Police immediately descended upon the area and followed footprints in the snow and also photographed shoe prints thought to belong to the robber. The Muncie Police Crime Scene Investigation van was still on the scene as of 1:30 p.m. Tuesday. No arrests have been made so far.