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Charles Fishburne

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Charles Fishburne is a correspondent for WCVE Public Radio. He brings over 40 years experience as a broadcast journalist and news executive in Richmond, Washington D.C. and New York. Charles was also a long-time television news anchor and news director in Richmond.

Articles by Charles Fishburne

Man Gets Two Life Sentences In Murder of Missing Girl

A Nelson County man convicted of abducting and murdering a county teenager has been sentenced to two life terms in prison. Forty-nine year old Randy Taylor was convicted of killing 17-year old Alexis Murphy in a rare murder trial in a case where the body was never found. The only words he spoke during his May trial were “not guilty,” and yesterday he said again, “I did not kill Alexis Murphy.”

Chesterfield Supervisors Change Prayer Policy

Chesterfield County Supervisors will begin their meetings with prayers once again. But with a change. Instead of inviting guest ministers to pray, they will do it themselves. The county’s previous policy required ministers who delivered the opening invocations be ordained religious leaders of monotheiestic religions that follow Judeo-Christian traditions, but they were instructed to keep the prayers generic.

The ACLU said that wasn’t good enough and also unconstitutional. They demanded in a letter that people of all faiths be allowed to participate.

Richmond Center Posts Videos on Racial Injustice

There is a new report out on racial injustice in the Richmond region that is both provocative and hopeful. The project took seven years, 15 volunteers and a federal education grant, to produce four video programs on education, transportation, housing and economic development, and the legacy of racial injustice.

The videos are available at the Richmond Peace Education Center website at

Triple A Says Gasoline Prices Continue To Slide

Triple A reports pump prices continue their mid-summer slide, despite world problems. Gasoline prices continued to tick lower last week due primarily to lower crude oil prices as the situation stabilizes in Iraq. The national average at $3.59 per gallon Friday is the lowest since April 8. Virginia was 3.39, Richmond 3.35, compared with 3.49 this time last year. Triple A says prices should continue to slide or remain flat in the near future, barring any geopolitical concerns, major hurricane or refinery disruptions.

Convicted Killer's Request to Be Own Attorney Refused

A federal judge has denied a Virginia inmate’s request to function as his own attorney in his death penalty appeal. William Morva, convicted of killing a hospital security guard and a sheriff’s deputy during an escape in 2006, said he was horrified by the contents of the filing of his court-appointed attorneys and asked the judge to let him represent himself.

The Roanoke Times reported Morva spoke in a loud, assertive tone and wore an enormous beard with hair descending below his shoulders during the two-hour hearing conducted by two-way television from prison.

Portsmouth to Support Local Black History Museum

Portsmouth has created a museum of local black history in a building that once was a Jim Crow era library. The City of Portsmouth has agreed to fund the Portsmouth Community Colored Library Museum’s operation, maintenance and management and also to insure the 900 square foot building and exhibits while they are on display.

The African-Americn Historical Society spearheaded the effort to create the museum and retains ownership of all the artifacts. It will also provide volunteers, raise funds, and promote museum programming, exhibits and events.

USDA Approved $40 Million Loan to Improve Southside Electric System

The US Department of Agriculture is guaranteeing a $40 million loan for Southside Electric Cooperative for system improvements. Southside Electric is based in Crewe and serves more than 45,000 members thoughout Southern and Central Virginia.

The loan will be used to build or improve more than 1,300 miles of line and it includes more than $8 million for smart grid projects.

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said the USDA has awarded loan guarantees totally more than $263 million to rural electric systems in eight states to modernize systems and to improve their reliability.

I-95 Overpass To Be Dedicated In Memory Of Slain Virginia State Trooper

An Interstate 95 overpass in Prince George County will be dedicated this morning in  memory of a slain Virginia State Trooper. Virginia legislators, Prince George County officials, state and local law enforcement, Virginia Department of Transportation and family and friends of Trooper Leo Whitt will gather at ten this morning to dedicate a bridge spanning I-95near the Prince George-Sussex County line.  Whitt was 48 years old when he was shot and killed on the evening of April 12, 1985 during a traffic stop.  He left behi