A private contract mail route truck that transport mail for the United States Postal Service (USPS) was involved in a one vehicle accident on the morning of Saturday, May 22. The truck was enroute from the mail processing facility at Millbrook to the Fayette Post Office at the time the accident occurred. Debra J. Fetterly, United States Postal Service’s Strategic Communications Director for Alabama and South Florida Districts, said that the vehicle carrying the mail ended up overturned in a ditch alongside Highway 18 East. The accident occurred approximately five miles east of Fayette.
A Berry man who was driving drunk when he caused a serious accident that injured a 17-year-old has been sentenced to serve 15 years and a day in prison for first-degree assault. Wesley Aaron Studdard, 31, pleaded guilty in the Fayette County Circuit Court during a hearing held on May 11. 24th Judicial Circuit District Attorney Andy Hamlin announced the sentence on May 19.
What began as an investigation into a residential break-in near Lynn led multiple law enforcement agencies to Fayette County, where a majority of the allegedly stolen items were found and the suspect was arrested. Michael Dylan Tittle, 27, of Lynn, has currently been charged in Fayette County with receiving stolen property, since a large portion of the items taken from the Lynn residence were located there, noted Lynn Police Chief Bryan Kirkpatrick.
The Hamilton State Trooper Post reported two separate accidents during the past week that claimed the lives of two Fayette County residents. They released the following information concerning the accidents. A two-vehicle crash that occurred at approximately 6:43 p.m. on Wednesday, May 12, claimed the life of a Bankston man. Miles David Whitson, 70, was killed when the 2004 Toyota Tacoma he was driving attempted to pass two vehicles and collided head-on with a 2006 Dodge Ram. Whitson was pronounced deceased at the scene.
“Temporary Princess,” a local business that sells formal dresses and hosts girl’s and ladies’ fashion pageants, recently held a charity contest to collect dog food and raise money for the Fayette County Animal Shelter. The contestants competed to see who could collect the most dog food and raise the most money for the shelter. The response was overwhelming as more than 2,100 pounds of dog food was collected and $1,000 raised.
The Alabama Department of Transportation (ALDOT) bid one project in Fayette County during the March 26 bid opening. The project is expected to improve mobility and safety in the area. ALDOT will review the contractor’s bid to ensure its accuracy before granting final approval. Construction typically begins within two months after the contract is awarded.
The Fayette County Commission discussed at its March 8 meeting applying for a $300,000 Community Block - CARES grant that would be used with other funds to build a new clinic in Fayette. All commissioners were present for the meeting. Commission Chairman Mike Freeman said that the current clinic is full, and that the county needs a new, more efficient clinic. He said that the commission has a short window of opportunity to apply for the grant, and thinks that a clinic would be a worthwhile project. The deadline to apply for the grant is April 1.
The revised Fayette County Hazard Mitigation Plan is being finalized and will soon be submitted to local municipalities and the Fayette County Commission for adoption. Fayette County Emergency Management Agency (EMA) Director Russ Taylor said that the plan is a requirement of the Federal Disaster Mitigation Act of 2000, and must be updated every five years in order to maintain eligibility for certain federal disaster assistance and mitigation funds.
Editor’s note: As we approach a new year, we pause to take a look back at some of the top news stories of the first six months of 2020. In a year that was dominated by the COVID-19 pandemic, there were also numerous other newsworthy stories throughout the year.
Although Fayette County no longer leads the state in the positivity rate of COVID-19 tests during the past two weeks, the county still ranks in the top 10 with a positivity rate of 51 percent. As of Sunday, Dec. 20, Fayette County had recorded 236 positive test out of a total of 453 tests performed during a two-week period. Two weeks ago, Fayette County had the highest rate in the state with 56 percent of the tests being positive.