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Hosemann talks about bells, school children and Vicksburg in wide-ranging interview

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Mississippi Lt. Gov. Delbert Hosemann (Photo from his Facebook page)

If you visit Lt. Gov. Delbert Hosemann’s Facebook page, you’ll see dozens of posts with photos and videos of churches and people ringing bells.

The posts are in response to Hosemann’s recent request for Mississippians to ring those bells every day at 6 p.m. in support of those working daily to stem the tide of the COVID-19 crisis.

“We need to ring these bells daily as a sign of support for our health care workers who are on the front line of this crisis,” Hosemann said in an interview with the Vicksburg Daily News on Tuesday.

Hosemann kicked off the initiative by ringing the replica of the Liberty Bell on the grounds of the Mississippi Capitol on Monday. The Capitol Bell was a gift for the purchase of bonds in 1950, one of 54 identical bells commissioned by the U.S. Treasury and presented to each of the then-48 states, Alaska, Hawaii, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands in the “Save for Your Independence” campaign.

Hosemann recounted stories from around the state of bells ringing including in Louisville where the church bells hadn’t tolled in several years.

The lieutenant governor also discussed his “Healthy at Home: K-12 Students’ Perspective on COVID-19” program that he launched at the end of March.

The program encourages students in kindergarten through third grade to think, draw, and write about their COVID-19 school and at-home experiences. For children in grades four through six, the program includes writing prompts, and students in seventh through 12th grade are encouraged to submit essays. Completed assignments can be submitted to Hosemann’s office at [email protected], and parents and teachers can go to www.ltgovhosemann.ms.gov for more information.

Hosemann spoke about the 2020 legislative session that has been put on pause during the crisis. The lieutenant governor said that he has been in contact with Mississippi House Speaker Phillip Gunn along with state Sen. Briggs Hopson and state Reps. Oscar Denton and Kevin Ford.

The legislature will probably be called back into session in May to address general business, Hosemann said, adding that a second session may be called around the second week of June to address the state budget.

A Vicksburg native whose mother lived in the city until recently, Hosemann still has great fondness for the area. He mentioned that Interstate 20 from U.S. Highway 61 North to the Mississippi River Bridge is a priority area, and that the crossover from East Clay Street to 61 North was a dangerous area. Hosemann said he lobbies for this area to get more attention.

“Vicksburg is a priority to me,” Hosemann said. “Vicksburg and Warren County haven’t gotten their share of the big projects.”

He also discussed the topic of flooding and farming in the region, along with road conditions near Eagle Lake along Highway 465.

Mississippi expects to receive $1.8 billion from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act or CARES Act, he said, and Hosemann is lobbying for the next round of federal aid to include infrastructure to improve roads and bridges statewide but in particular in the Vicksburg area.

To hear the complete interview recording, click here.

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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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