DECADE IN REVIEW: 2008

2008: Scruggs admits his guilt
Four months after being indicted, famed Oxford attorney Dickie Scruggs pleaded guilty in March to conspiring to bribe Circuit Judge Henry Lackey of Calhoun County for $40,000.
Scruggs, who had made millions by suing asbestos companies, tobacco makers and other big businesses, later received a five-year jail sentence, the maximum recommended by prosecutors.
Scruggs was not the only one convicted on similar or related charges; his son Zach and their law partner Sidney Backstrom also went to jail.
Also in 2008:
* Toyota, citing economic conditions, said the rollout of the first Prius Hybrid from the Blue Springs plant will be delayed “until market conditions allow.” As of the end of 2009, the plant was still not operational.
* In Northeast Mississippi and around the country, gas prices topped the $4 mark over the summer, but they started falling toward the end of the year. In December, gas could be found for $1.25 to $1.50 a gallon.
* The University of Mississippi hosted the first 2008 presidential debate between Barack Obama and John McCain, who temporarily put the event in jeopardy when he suggested that the two men return to Washington to deal with the emerging financial crisis.
* Starkville native Mark Keenum, who’s name had been mentioned in previous Mississippi State University presidential searches, finally landed the position.
* Voters elected Tupelo Republican Roger Wicker over former Gov. Ronnie Musgrove to fill Trent Lott’s U.S. Senate seat, and Democrat Travis Childers of Booneville took over Wicker’s 1st District seat in the U.S. House of Representatives.
* The CREATE Foundation announced tuition guarantees for Lee County high school graduates to attend Itawamba Community College.

This is part of a look back at the decade by the NEMS Daily Journal newspaper.

NEMS Daily Journal