Hundreds of Alabamians currently living in public housing may have to find a new place to live. The Department of Housing and Urban Development Office of the Inspector General is now proposing reducing the number of over income families living in public housing. The almost 30 page report says in the U.S. there are currently 25,226 families receiving public housing assistance whose income exceeds the eligibility requirements. Right now the Department of Housing and Urban Development only requires families to meet certain income limits when they are admitted to the public housing program. If a family's income increases while living there, they can stay. The report calls these families "over income" families. The report says there are currently 811 over income families in Alabama that are living in public housing. Alabama ranks as the fourth highest in the nation when it comes to the number of over income families living in public housing. The report says reducing the number of over income families in public housing will put over 100 million dollars to "better use" by providing that money to eligible low-income families who need housing. It recommends that housing authorities be directed to establish policies to reduce the number of over income families in public housing.
Florida fugitive arrested in Cherokee County
Cherokee County authorities arrested a Florida man yesterday wanted in the Tampa-St. Petersburg area. Sheriff Jeff Shaver said 35 year old Rikki L. Speakman, of Dover, Fla. was arrested in Sand Rock Wednesday. Shaver said that Investigators received information about the Florida fugitive and were able to locate him. Speakman is wanted by Hillsborough County, Fla. authorities on a probation violation involving grand theft. He remains in the Cherokee County Detention Center awaiting extradition to Florida.
Anniston cocaine arrests
Two Anniston residents are being held in the Calhoun County Jail awaiting a preliminary hearing after they were charged with trafficking cocaine.
47 year old Claressa Williams, and 23 year old Michael Mathews, were arrested Jan. 26 on charges of trafficking about 35 grams of cocaine.
Rainbow city fatal
Alabama State Troopers have not released the name of a Rainbow City woman killed in a midday collision at the intersection of Blount County Roads 39 and 47 Thursday. Blount County Coroner John Mark Vaughn confirmed that the 26-year-old woman was pronounced dead Thursday at the scene of the collision between her Ford Fusion and a transfer truck. Vaughn said there were no other injuries in the crash, which happened about 11:45 a.m. Thursday morning.
Criminal mischief arrest
An Attalla man has been arrested in connection to criminal mischief, according to Etowah County Sheriff Todd Entrekin. 42 year old James Timothy Kitchens, has been charged with one misdemeanor count of third-degree criminal mischief, public intoxication; and a felony charge of unlawful breaking and entering of a vehicle.
Deputies responded to a suspicious person at a residence on Sand Valley Road. The homeowner called 911 after finding Kitchens, who he did not know, inside a vehicle at the property. Deputies found Kitchens tossing and turning inside the vehicle. Kitchens told the deputies he was trying to get comfortable so he could sleep.
Kitchens is in the Etowah County Detention Center on $3,100 bond.
Rainbow city drug arrest
A Rainbow City man has been arrested on drug possession charges. 36 year old Donovan Remeir Rutledge, has been charged with unlawful possession of a controlled substance and unlawful possession of salvia. Etowah County Drug Enforcement Unit agents went to an address on Chestnut Street in Gadsden Thursday in reference to a complaint of drug activity. As agents drove up, Rutledge took off running behind the residence. Agents pursued him on foot and saw Rutledge toss a gun to the ground as he was running. Rutledge was apprehended a short distance later, without further incident. Further investigation resulted in the seizure of heroin and salvia from his pockets. A loaded 9mm handgun was recovered from the yard. Rutledge was arrested and transported to the Etowah County Detention Center. Further charges may be forthcoming related to the firearm.
A single-vehicle crash early Wednesday morning claimed the life of a 28 year old Boaz man. Preston Cole Lovell, was killed when the 2004 GMC Sierra he was driving left DeKalb County Road 1 one mile south of Aroney, struck an embankment and overturned. Lovell, who was not using a seat belt, was ejected from the vehicle. He was pronounced dead at the scene. Alabama State Troopers continue to investigate the crash.
Voter registration requirements
Residents of Kansas, Alabama and Georgia are no longer able to register to vote using a federal form without providing proof of U.S. citizenship after a federal elections official added the requirement without public notice or review by the agency's commissioners. The move by Brian Newby, the new executive director of the U.S. Election Assistance Commission, has sparked a backlash from one of its commissioners, who is asking the changes be withdrawn. The American Civil Liberties Union says it's a brazen move that will create additional barriers. Newby defended his decision as a routine administrative action taken at the request of the states. He took over the agency's top job last November and came from Kansas, where the secretary of state has pushed for such laws for years.