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Auxiliary water-line project underway in Vicksburg

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Construction begins on Vicksburg's auxilliary water line. (Photo by Thomas Parker)

Construction on an auxiliary water line for the City of Vicksburg has begun. The line will run from the city’s water plant on Haining Road along North Washington Street to a valve near the Jessie Brent Interpretive Center.

In May of 2017, a break on the city’s main water line caused the city to be without water for several days. Schools were shut down and more than 29,000 residents had no water. Mayor George Flaggs Jr. and North Ward Alderman Michael Mayfield made it a priority to construct an alternate line following that incident.

These 30-inch pipes will be installed for the alternate water line. (Photo by Thomas Parker)

Vicksburg Public Works Director Garnett Van Norman says the installation of the 30-inch back-up line will give the city a mechanism to continue service to businesses and residential customers in the event of another break in the main water service line. Van Norman says the project is should take about a year to complete.

Florence, Miss., based Hemphill Construction is the contractor for the project. Hemphill’s bid of $5.03 million was the lowest of six bids on the project. Initially, the city projected the project to cost around $6 million.

The city’s portion of the bill will be around $1 million dollars. In July, Flaggs signed an agreement with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers which put $4.5 million in grant funds from the Water Resources Development Act into the project.

The city also provides water through a sales agreement to Culkin and the Yokena-Jeff Davis water districts.

During construction, speed limits along Haining Road and North Washington will be reduced from 45 mph to 30 mph. Vicksburg Police will be closely monitoring traffic in the area and speeding and other fines can be enhanced within the construction zone.

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Deion Sanders coached high school to championship before leaving for JSU

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Jackson State University head coach Deion Sanders coached his final high school football game last night at Trinity Christian High School where they won the Texas Christian Athletic League Championship.

Sanders is the Tiger’s offensive coordinator and his son, Shedeur, is the team’s starting quarterback. They defeated the Heir Eagles Academy 59-28 to finish with a great 8-3 record.

Sanders posted members of his team on Twitter after the big win and showed how proud they are to be the champs.

Sanders also had three Vicksburg natives on the championship team who all contributed to winning the big game. Shardez Taylor, Marvin Martin Jr, and Quentin Pollard all had great performances this season for the Tigers.

Saturday’s game marked Sanders’ final game at Trinity. His focus is now on his new Jackson State football family. He was named head coach for JSU two months ago. He has already begun bringing in major recruits for Jackson State, including Shedeur who will be joining him next year.

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Vehicle takes out hydrant and utility pole

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Photo by David Day

A single vehicle collision has taken out a fire hydrant and a utility pole on Cherry at Baum.

Photo by David Day

At 10:40 p.m. E-911 Dispatch received a call that a dark blue Kia SUV had impacted a utility pole on Cherry Street near East. The first officer on scene called in that a fire hydrant had also been impacted and that water was gushing into the roadway.

Photo by David Day

Neither the driver or the passenger of the Kia was injured however a man was taken into custody at the scene.

No disruption of utility services in the area was noted and that traffic was flowing smoothly.

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Crime

High speed chase ends in fiery crash

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(photo by David Day)

A high-speed chase Saturday evening that began near the Waffle House in Vicksburg has ended in a crash in Claiborne County and a vehicle in flames.

First reports indicate the incident began around 5:10 p.m. as an argument at the Waffle House at 4100 Pemberton Square Blvd. A man and woman left the scene and stopped at a Shell gas station on U.S. Highway 61 South where the man pulled the woman, who is pregnant, out of the vehicle by her hair.

The man, Bojara O’Quinn of Claiborne County, then fled, leading Vicksburg police officer Michael Battle on a high-speed chase south on 61 South. The chase exceeded 110 mph at times.

The chase ended just inside the Claiborne County line on Shiloh Road in a crash where the vehicle, reportedly a rental with Illinois plates, burst into flames. The crash occurred right at 5:30 p.m.

O’Quinn is in custody and received minor injuries in the crash. The woman involved received very minor injuries and is apparently safe.

Deputies with the Claiborne County Sheriff’s Department, and troopers with the Mississippi Highway Patrol assisted in O’Quinn’s capture.

Bojara O’Quinn (photo by David Day)

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