DRAKE SENTENCED TO 15 YEARS FOR FILMING ASSAULT – A former, long-time, Wise County resident was sentenced to 15 years in prison for filming the sexual assault of a 16-month-old toddler. It only took the Galveston jury 20 minutes last Friday to find Alisha M. Drake, 24, guilty of filming the assault. Last February, Drake filmed her boyfriend, Jason Grant, 34, formerly of Paradise, sexually assaulting the baby at a home in Bacliff. The toddler was Grant’s own granddaughter. Jurors were shown the videotape of the assault. Drake’s voice could be heard on it. Adam Poole, chief of child abuse at Galveston County District Attorney’s office, told the Houston Chronicle it was “the worst I’ve ever seen.” The jury was “visibly affected and disturbed” after watching it, he added. In the years leading up to her arrest, Drake had lived in Aurora, Bridgeport and lastly Rhome, where she was arrested last April by the Wise County Sheriff’s Office and transferred to Galveston County where she had been awaiting trial for the production of child pornography, a second degree felony. The maximum sentence she could have received was 20 years. Grant is scheduled to go to trial in October for sexual assault of a child. He faces up to 99 years in prison with no chance of parole for the first-degree felony.
MORROW TO SEEK FIFTH TERM – Precinct 1 Justice of the Peace Jan Morrow will seek a fifth term, according to a press release from the Wise County Republican party. “I have appreciated the confidence and support of the people to be able to serve them, and look forward to the exciting new civil law reform and added duties in the Justice Court,” Morrow said in the press release.
ALZHEIMER’S SUPPORT – The monthly support group for those caring for someone with Alzheimer’s or related dementia is 7 tonight in the board room at the west campus of Wise Regional Health System in Decatur. For more information, call Angie at 940-627-6888.
PARADISE CHAMBER – Paradise Chamber of Commerce is having their luncheon and general meeting noon-1 p.m. Monday, Sept. 9, at the Paradise City Hall. Nancy Neal with Cendera Funding will be the speaker. David Hamilton with State National Bank will also speak on his business. Bring business cards and a door prize for a drawing. Lunch is $10 a plate.
LOOKING FOR TALENT – The Second Annual “Paradise Has Talent” competition will be held on Saturday, Sept. 28, as a part of the Main Street Festival. The contest will include two age divisions and cash prizes. Entry forms and information can be found online at paradisehistoricalsociety.com or on the Paradise Main Street Festival Facebook page and must be submitted by Sept. 21. Call Karen Bohmfalk at 940-210-3181 for more information.
PTO FUNDRAISER – Rann Elementary PTO will hold a garage sale fundraiser 8 a.m.-noon Saturday, Sept. 14. Donations will be accepted Sept. 9-13 at the school’s gym.
GIRLS NIGHT OUT – Decatur Main Street’s Girls Night Out in downtown Decatur is 6-8 tonight. Visitors are invited to shop and enjoy refreshments at downtown stores.
SHERIFF’S POSSE RODEO – Tonight is Slack Night at the Wise County Sheriff’s Posse rodeo. Admission is free for the event that begins with mutton bustin’ at 7:30 p.m. and rodeo performances at 8 p.m. at the Sheriff’s Posse Grounds on Farm Road 51 South in Decatur. The rodeo continues Friday and Saturday. Tickets at the gate are $10.
CUB SCOUTS – A meeting for those interested in joining Cub Scout Pack 115 of Decatur is 6:30 p.m. Monday, Sept. 9, at the First United Methodist Church Wesley Center in Decatur. The group is open to boys in first through fifth grade.
COOKING CLASS FULL – Registration is now full for Texas A&M AgriLife Extension’s Dinner Tonight Cooking School tonight at Weatherford College Wise County.
CORRECTION – A story in Wednesday’s Messenger said that after Wise Regional Health System purchased the former North Texas Community Hospital in Bridgeport in March, it closed the facility for several weeks for renovation before reopening it on May 17. It should be noted that the hospital’s Emergency Room did not close. It was open throughout the transition and continued to treat patients. The Messenger regrets the omission.
FUNERALS – Service for Chip Foster, 66, of Cottondale is pending at Jones Family Funeral Home in Bridgeport.
FUNERAL for Barbara Ann Baker, 69, of Runaway Bay is 2 p.m. today at First Baptist Church in Decatur with burial at Perrin Memorial Gardens in Perrin. Hawkins Funeral Home in Bridgeport is handling arrangements.
FUNERAL for Gary Don Carpenter, 63, of Park Springs is 2 p.m. today at Victory Baptist Church in Park Springs with burial at Sunset Cemetery. White Family Funeral Home in Bowie is handling arrangements.