Associated Press

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Thomas J. Piccard
AP

A prosecutor says the former police officer who sprayed a courthouse in West Virginia with bullets expressed hatred for the federal government in writings found at his home and on his body.
 
     U.S. Attorney William Ihlenfeld said Thursday that 55-year-old Thomas J. Piccard expressed his hatred in writings found after the Oct. 9 shooting at the federal courthouse in Wheeling.
 
     Ihlenfeld wouldn't provide further details. But he says Piccard's hatred of the government was one of three factors that contributed to the shooting.
 

Judge Michael Thornsbury
Associated Press

A Delbarton man convicted of selling drugs to a sheriff is seeking his release from prison until a judge hears a petition in his case.
 

Pills, Drugs, Prescriptions, prescription drugs
RayNata / wikimedia

An industry trade group has launched a campaign in West Virginia opposing legislation that would require prescriptions for medications containing pseudoephedrine.
 
     Pseudoephedrine is also used illegally to make methamphetamine.
 
     The Consumer Healthcare Products Association began running ads this week on Charleston-area news websites. The group also has set up a website called Stop Meth, Not Meds, a Facebook page and a Twitter account.
 

WDTV

The Allegheny County Medical Examiners Office has confirmed the identities of three of the five people who died in an Elkins house fire this week.

Forensic Supervisor Anthony Bofo says 29-year-old Alan Chamberlain died Tuesday night at the West Penn Burn Center outside of Pittsburgh.

His 2-year-old daughter Brianna Chamberlain and her half-sister, 11-year-old Catherine Bolgar, also died there Tuesday.

Brianna's twin and a 4-year-old sister died at an Elkins hospital, but the West Virginia Fire Marshal’s Office has not yet released their names.

West Virginia's two U.S. senators say they'll be watching closely to see how Ohio-based Murray Energy treats safety and the workforce of the five CONSOL Energy mines it's buying.
 
     Senators Joe Manchin and Jay Rockefeller have requested a meeting with Murray Energy to discuss the transition.
 
     The companies announced the deal Monday for the sale of the Blacksville No. 2, Loveridge, McElroy, Robinson Run and Shoemaker mines.
 
     Pennsylvania-based CONSOL said it wants to shift resources to natural gas development.
 

CONSOL Energy Inc. is selling all five of its longwall coal mines in West Virginia to Ohio-based Murray Energy for $3.5 billion.
 
     Pennsylvania-based CONSOL said Monday the deal for its Consolidation Coal Co. subsidiary is good for long-term growth.
 
     CONSOL is selling McElroy Mine, Shoemaker Mine, Robinson Run Mine, Loveridge Mine and Blacksville No. 2 Mine, plus river and dock operations. The mines produced a combined 28.5 million tons last year.
 

DuPont's Washington Works
Parkersburg News & Sentinel

Nine Ohio and West Virginia residents who have cancer and other diseases have filed federal lawsuits this month against chemical giant DuPont, alleging the company knowingly contaminated drinking-water supplies with a chemical used by one of its plants.

Pills, Drugs, Prescriptions, prescription drugs
RayNata / wikimedia

A Boone County judge has ordered four pharmaceutical drug distributors to reveal their shipments to West Virginia pharmacies over the past five years.
 
Circuit Judge William Thompson acted Thursday in a lawsuit filed last year by former state Attorney General Darrell McGraw. The suit accused the companies of helping to contribute to the state's pain pill abuse epidemic.
 

The federal Mine Safety and Health Administration has labeled two West Virginia coal mines and one in Kentucky as pattern violators, meaning they've repeatedly broken federal health and safety regulations.

One of the mines is Pocahontas Coal Co.'s Affinity Mine in Raleigh County, where two men died within two weeks of each other in February.

The others are Brody Mining's Brody Mine No. 1 in Boone County and Tram Energy's Mine No. 1 in Floyd County, Ky.

They're the first added to the list since MSHA began using new screening criteria in March.

A Fairmont man is facing charges that he embezzled about $10,000 from a youth football league.

Environmental groups are reacting to a ruling from a federal judge which says the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has no legal right to force a West Virginia chicken farmer to obtain pollution permits for runoff from her Hardy County farm.

U.S. District Judge John Preston Bailey ruled that the runoff entering the Chesapeake Bay watershed from Lois Alt's poultry farm is stormwater and therefore not subject to regulation under the Clean Water Act.

WVSU campus in Institute, W.Va.
Steve Shaluta / W.Va. Department of Commerce

West Virginia State University will host a program aimed at increasing awareness of what it's like to be poor.   The Simulation of Poverty program is set for Saturday in the Wilson University Union. It's designed to raise awareness and encourage solutions to poverty. 

A company involved in the problematic federal health care exchange website has a contract to design a system to manage West Virginia state government accounts.
 
     CGI Group subsidiary CGI Federal is the developer of the complex U.S. government website that's been hit by technical problems, resulting in long waits for Americans to sign up for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act.
 

West Virginia's Head Start preschool program is no longer available in every county due to federal budget cuts, state officials said Tuesday.

The federally funded program helps prepare low-income children for elementary school and also provides them with meals and health care. The programs are a legacy of President Lyndon B. Johnson's 1960s war on poverty.

State correctional facilities map
Division of Corrections

A West Virginia Department of Agriculture spokesman says the agency hasn't yet selected a site for a hog farm that would help feed state inmates.

Clark Davis

The clerk of West Virginia's biggest county says she needs more time to answer a lawsuit over the state's ban on same-sex marriages.
 
     Kanawha County Clerk Vera McCormick filed a motion in U.S. District Court in Charleston, asking the deadline for her response be extended past Wednesday.
 
     The New York-based gay rights group Lambda Legal sued earlier this month, declaring West Virginia's Defense of Marriage Act a violation of the 14th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.
 

Cecelia Mason / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

From the Associated Press: Congress has passed legislation to reopen the partially-shuttered federal government and avert a potentially disastrous default on U.S. obligations, clearing the measure for President Barack Obama's promised signature.

Passage of the bill late Wednesday in the House and Senate ended a Washington-created crisis that closed much of government for 16 days. It came on the eve of the date the Treasury Department warned it would no longer be able to borrow to pay the government's bills.

Little Blue Run Coal Ash Impoundment
Wiki

More than 50 West Virginia and Pennsylvania property owners are suing FirstEnergy over groundwater pollution, soggy yards, and foundation damage they say was caused by a leaking coal ash impoundment.

The lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Wheeling accuses the Ohio-based power company of negligence, reckless conduct, trespassing and creating a nuisance.

It says arsenic and other substances have leached out of the unlined, 1,700-acre Little Blue Run impoundment into groundwater, and the air has been fouled by the noxious odors of hydrogen sulfide gas.

Americans Eugene Fama, Lars Peter Hansen and Robert Shiller won the Nobel prize for economics on Monday for developing new methods to study trends in asset markets.

The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences said the three had laid the foundation of the current understanding of asset prices.

While it's hard to predict whether stock or bond prices will go up or down in the short term, it's possible to foresee movements over periods of three years or longer, the academy said.

This story will be updated as more information becomes available.

Brooke County Sheriff Chuck Jackson said one person is dead after an early morning house explosion in West Virginia's Northern Panhandle.

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