Part 2 of our 2009 Year-in-Review
(Editor’s Note: Here’s a look at the top news stories from July to December 2009. The top stories from the first half of the year ran in Thursday’s paper.)
Two local doctors, pediatrician Christine Creus and chiropractor William Chadwick, passed. Creus, 41, who served as the county’s sole pediatrician for 13 years, died after a six-month battle with cancer. Chadwick served the community for 40 years and died at age 75.
The Justice Department is suing the owner and two employees of Rolling Oaks Apartments for allegedly discriminating against black people when renting apartments, though a lawyer representing property owner Chandi Biswas said his client “strongly denies” discrimination. The lawsuit claims employees Kenneth R. “Ken” Scott and Frankie L. Roberson told white individuals acting as renters that a major selling point of Rolling Oaks was the lack of black tenants. The employees also said the apartments had adopted policies intended to discourage black people from applying to live there.
The old Thorsby School was added to the Alabama Register of Landmarks and Heritage. “This was sort of a last stand to save something historic,” town historic preservation committee member Glenn Littleton said.
Gov. Bob Riley was given a tour of the still-under-construction Jemison Intermediate School by Chilton County Superintendent Keith Moore. The school is being built from a $1 billion school construction bond Riley proposed and the state Legislature approved in 2007.
David Driver was appointed Clanton’s first full-time fire chief by a unanimous vote of the City Council.
A mix-up with paperwork allowed a teenage suspect to be released from Chilton County jail and commit another robbery. Timothy Jake Wells Jr. had already been arrested twice and faced several burglary and robbery charges. He was caught again.
Chilton County Sheriff’s deputies found the body of 18-year-old Steven Dorough burning in a yard in Verbena. The teen died from a gunshot wound to the back of the head. Two other men, Christopher Kroeger and Joshua Ready, were arrested and charged with murder. A witness saw the crime and alerted the Prattville Police Department, who shared the information with sheriff’s deputies.