Upper Valley Dispatch

Jury Finishes First Day of Deliberations in Murder Trial of James Robarge (Updated at 4:10 p.m.)

Newport — A Sullivan Superior Court jury is now deliberating in the murder trial of James Robarge. Closing arguments took place this morning. Defense lawyers argued the case against the 45-year-old Robarge in the murder of his wife was circumstantial, and also said another man’s DNA could not be accounted for. The prosecution said hard evidence showed that Robarge killed his wife, Charlestown resident Kelly Robarge, the same day she filed for divorce in 2013. Prosecutors said parts of the oil pan of James Robarge’s

Road Trip: When It Comes to Road Responsibilities, Some Vt. Upper Valley Towns Have a Bigger Burden Than Others

A large section of any municipality’s budget is likely to be used on roads — building roads, rebuilding roads, paving roads and plowing roads, all in an effort to keep residents and visitors moving swiftly and safely through the town. But some towns are saddled with a larger package of road responsibility than others. The Vermont Agency of Transportation keeps data on the mileage of roads in each of the state’s town, and we’ve broken it down by Upper Valley towns below. Some have only

Robarge Testifying On the Stand In Murder Trial

Newport — Public defender Caroline Smith called defendant James Robarge, who is accused of murdering his estranged wife in 2013, to the witness stand around 10:30 this morning. The prosecution rested earlier this morning, and Judge Brian Tucker subsequently denied the defense’s motion to dismiss the case. The trial in Sullivan Superior Court started Jan. 14. Defendants are not required to take the stand during trials. Another of Robarge’s public defenders, Alex Parsons, had hinted during opening statements that Robarge might do so. “James Robarge

Local Churches Host Successful Football-Themed Food Drives

There’s still no word on who “won” a friendly challenge between United Methodist Church conferences in the Seattle area and New England that were battling to bring in the most food and money for their local food shelves by Super Bowl Sunday. But Pastor Pat Williams, of the Lake Sunapee and Grantham churches, has already ruled the effort a success, as those two churches alone took in more than $383 dollars and 318 units of food/household items. The New England conference as a whole took

Hartford Man Pleads Not Guilty in Pipe Bomb Case

White River Junction — The man accused of having drugs, guns and two pipe bombs in the Hartford home he was living in was held on $25,000 bail today following an arraignment in Windsor Superior Court. Kyle J. Fellows, 52, pleaded not guilty to charges including cocaine trafficking, possession of heroin and other drugs, and having a “destructive or hoax device.” Samantha Caldwell, 31, who was at the Gifford Road home when police executed a search warrant on Friday, pleaded not guilty to possession of

Update at 5:30 p.m.: I-91 Northbound Near Ascutney Reopens

UPDATE AT 5:30 P.M.: This area has reopened. EARLIER: Ascutney — Interstate 91 northbound between Springfield, Vt., and Weathersfield has been shut down temporarily this afternoon because of a couple of weather-related accidents. One of the accidents has knocked an Agency of Transportation snow plow on its side. State Police are advising motorists to slow down and allow plenty of distance between vehicles. ∎ Posted online Monday at 2:50 p.m.

Valley Visual: From the Archive: Snowstorm in White River Junction

Traffic wends its way down Main Street in a snowstorm in White River Junction, Vt., circa. 1968. Valley News photograph ∎ Originally posted to the Valley Visual blog. Follow the Valley News on Twitter @VNewsUV.

Amateur Photo Contest Now Accepting Entries

The Valley News Amateur Photography Contest, which has been been running for more than 20 years, is accepting entries until Feb. 27, 2015. A panel of Valley News judges will then look at all of the entries for the contest, narrowing the field to 24 finalists. The finalists will be displayed at the Valley News booth at the 37th Annual HomeLife Expo at Leverone Field House in Hanover from March 20-22, 2015. Visitors to the Expo will cast ballots for their favorite photo and the

Next Week in 'Valley Parents': Seniors Get Techie

Just this month, an older friend and I had a major communication breakthrough. He emailed me. He’s had an account for years but couldn’t quite get the hang of it. So, when a message appeared in his inbox, he’d print it out and go from there. Days later, his handwritten reply, bearing a Pennsylvania postmark, would show up in an actual mailbox. A devoted father and grandfather, his newfound ability to communicate online is a big improvement — finally, family in Australia, New Hampshire and

At Emergency Meeting This Morning, Hartford Selectboard Addresses Recycling, Delinquent Tax Penalty

Hanover — During an emergency meeting this morning, the Hartford Selectboard scuttled plans to pay for a municipal curbside recycling program with a 1-percent options tax on hospitality sales. Instead, Town Meeting voters will be asked whether they would like to add $180,000 to the current municipal budget to maintain the program. That funding was removed from the proposed budget. Town leaders removed funding for the program from the municipal budget because a new state law requires private haulers to begin accepting recyclables, which has