Monthly Archive for December, 2001

First Night Tonight

Tonight is the 20th annual First Night Virginia New Year’s Eve celebration on the Downtown Mall. The usual impressive line-up of events are scheduled from 3pm until 12am, including concerts and puppet shows, ice skating and face painting, theater and, of course, fireworks at midnight. An all-admission pass is just $10 for adults, $5 for kids, and toddlers are free. City buses will run until 1am, and they’re free to anybody with a First Night pass. For those of you too cheap to spend $10, or with an urge to volunteer, First Night is desperate for dozens more volunteers. Give them two hours, they’ll give you a pass for the night. Call 434-975-8269 for more information.

FL Man Leads Louisa Police on Chase

Rodney Pough of Pensacola, FL, has been arrested and charged with attempted capital murder. A state policeman attempted to stop Pough in Henrico for speeding, but the suspect fled west on 64 at over 100 mph. He drove over a tire-deflation strip and continued to drive on his rims, so two police cars got ahead of him and created a “rolling roadblock” by driving slowly in both lanes. As Pough approached, he shot twice through his front windshield at the cars, injuring one of the officers. The suspect crashed his vehicle in Louisa and ran into the woods, leading to a manhunt involving state police, dogs and a couple of helicopters. He was tracked down by a pair of bloodhounds at 3:40am, and his now in custody. Today’s Progress has the story.

Escaped Convict Caught in WV

Oscar Junior McCauley IV, a convicted felon who who esacaped from a Nelson County sheriff’s deputy three weeks ago, has been captured in West Virginia. At 4:30am yesterday morning, Albemarle police responded to a report of a stabbing and the abduction of 29-year-old Christian Brooke McCauley, and another report of a stabbing of 29-year-old Anthony Ray Shifflett. Though today’s story in the Progress gets quite muddled from there, one can only assume that Oscar McCauley was accused of these stabbings, though it’s quite impossible to determine at what point the abducted Christian McCauley was released, or what the details of that are. No matter, Oscar McCauley was arrested in Ranson, WV and is being held in Martinsburg on $1M bail. The story also explains the circumstances surrounding his escape: he somehow unlocked his handcuffs while in the back of the deputy’s car, and asked the deputy for a cigarrette. He obliged, and McCauley hit the deputy in the head, took his handgun, and took off running. Today’s Progress has the details. Kind of.

3 Orange/Madison Arsons

Two unoccupied Orange homes and a barn in Madison were all destroyed last night in fires that occurred within a half-hour span. All were within ten miles of one another. Jack Fray, chief of the Madison County Volunteer Fire Department, notes that the barn fire was quite similar to the six arsons all reported on October 20th. Reed Williams has the story in today’s Progress.

Broadslate Lays Off 150

Charlottesville’s Broadslate Networks is closing down. According to a post on the Neon Guild mailing list this afternoon (below), they have laid off 150 of their employees, and are keeping a few on to maintain things until they can sell the company. It’s impressive that they burned through $60M in venture capital in just six months. The company owns a tremendous amount of fiber optics, which they’re in the business of leasing the use of. 4:47pm Update: An anonymous poster has pointed out that they do not, in fact, own much in the way of fiber optics, despite misleading press to the contrary. 12/22/01, 1:18pm Update: Today’s Progress reports that not all 150 were laid off, but 120 were; apparently, the few dozen employees remaining are local folks.

To: Neon Guild Mailing List
From: Tracey Linkous
Subject: Broadslate closing its doors
Date: Fri, 21 Dec 2001 14:37:54 -0500

My friend Katie Van Sciver called to let me know that Broadslate closed their doors this morning. From what I was told, they laid off 150 or so people and have only a skeleton crew to maintain their current clients until they can sell the company. Several folks we all know were laid off today including Katie Van Sciver, Paula Gunter, and Chuck Moran. Morgan Allen’s position was phased out a few weeks ago. I’m sure there are many others you will know, but this is who I am aware of currently. I have encouraged Katie and others to network as much as possible perhaps becoming more involved and active in some of the many wonderful networking groups our town hosts including: the Neon Guild (, Charlottesville Company of Friends (, the Charlottesville Young Professionals ( or 817-2394); and the Communication Arts Guild (

Please reach out to as many people as you can in this tough economy and Holiday season to nurture one another.

Your fellow community catalyst,



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