By NEMS Daily Journal
Deputy slain in arrest attempt
• A Tippah County deputy was killed early Friday morning while responding to a disturbance call, and a Pontotoc man has been charged with capital murder in his death.
Deputy Dewayne Crenshaw, 62, was shot as officers tried to subdue a suspect at a house in Ripley. Arrested was 26-year-old Franklin Fitzpatrick of Pontotoc, who was being held in a jail outside Tippah County.
Crenshaw was a Purple Heart and Bronze Star recipient for his Army service in Vietnam.
Supporters back state hospital
• A pubic hearing in Tupelo drew nearly 400 people in support of the North Mississippi State Hospital.
The hospital, along with three others in Mississippi, has been asked to come up with contingency closing plans because of state budget problems.
But at the hearing Monday, defenders of the hospital spoke passionately about the need to keep the hospital open.
“Any sheriff in 82 counties will tell you this is a facility we cannot afford to close,” said Lee County Sheriff Jim Johnson, whose department responds to calls involving the mentally ill.
Before the state hospitals were opened in Tupelo and Purvis, many of those committed as dangerous to themselves or others would spend time in jail because there was no place for them to go.
Tupelo gets future police building
• The city of Tupelo appears to be on its way to a new police headquarters, thanks to a cigarette raid that resulted in the building’s seizure by the government.
The Milam Manufacturing building at Franklin and Front streets was used as a warehouse for contraband cigarettes, but the operation was broken up by federal agents in May 2009.
On Wednesday, government officials said they plan to turn over the building to the city, which hopes to raze it and build a new police headquarters. Police now operate out of two cramped buildings downtown.