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ROOFING CONTRACTOR PLEADS GUILTY TO THEFT CHARGE

James Twaddle Ordered to Pay Restitution to Victims

FRANKFORT, Ky. (March 19, 2014) – Attorney General Jack Conway and his Office of Consumer Protection today announced that a roofing contractor accused of failing to perform repair services for  Kentucky residents, despite being paid to do so, has pleaded guilty to one count of theft by deception under $10,000, a class D felony. James Twaddle, 41, entered the plea on March 18 in Bullitt Circuit Court. His two-year prison sentence is suspended for five years on the condition that he repays $7,389.96 to the victims. He must pay the restitution in full by June 30, 2014 or he will be taken into custody.

 

Twaddle was previously indicted on 26 counts of theft by deception in Jefferson, Larue, Scott, and Grayson counties. Many of these cases are still pending and involve victims who were solicited following storm events.

 

Twaddle was the president of Restore-IT USA, a roofing company located in Columbus, Ohio. Twaddle operated his business in Kentucky from an office located on Forest Green Blvd in Louisville.  From May 2012 until Aug. 2012, Restore-IT USA employees would visit neighborhoods and sign residents up for roof repairs, collecting payments prior to any work being completed.  Twaddle allegedly deposited the money into a company bank account and transferred the funds to his personal account; however, the roof repairs were never performed.  Twaddle has also been indicted in Ohio on 42 counts of theft and insurance fraud related to the same scheme in the Columbus area.

 

“Consumers who need work done quickly to repair storm-damaged homes and property are at risk of falling victim to unscrupulous fly-by-night contractors, also known as ‘storm chasers,’” General Conway said.  “Common scams include fraud, shoddy construction, charity scams, impersonating officials and loan scams, and I urge consumers to report any incidents of possible fraud or shoddy construction work and repair using my Office of Consumer Protection Hotline at 1-888-432-9257.”

 

General Conway also encourages consumers needing storm repair work or cleanup services to follow these important tips:

 

  • ·         Never pay in advance for labor. Scam artists often take advance payments from consumers and never return to complete the work. If an advance is needed to purchase materials, offer to purchase the materials yourself.
  • ·         Use local, reputable contractors for repairs, if possible. If local contractors bring in out-of-town workers, ask who will be responsible for their work if it is not satisfactory.
  • ·         Ask if the contractor is licensed, bonded (if required by the city or county), and insured.
  • ·         Check unknown companies out with the Better Business Bureau or call the Attorney General’s Office of Consumer Protection to see if information is available about the company.
  • ·         Demand a written contract. If possible, get estimates from several contractors.
  • ·         Be suspicious of unfamiliar, out-of-state vehicles and those who offer repair work at unreasonably low prices. Contact local law enforcement about your suspicions.
  • ·         For additional information or to file a consumer protection complaint online, visit www.ag.ky.gov.

 

The Office of Consumer Protection enforces the Kentucky Consumer Protection Act to safeguard the state’s consumers and combat unethical business practices. The office also counsels consumers regarding inquiries and complaints, issues consumer alerts, and conducts consumer education presentations across the state.

 

State highway workers directed to remove signs posted illegally on state right of way

HIGHWAY DISTRICT 12 – Tuesday, March 18, 2014 – It is illegal to place a sign on state right-of-way. It is also illegal to attach a sign to a structure already installed on state right-of-way. Highway workers in the seven counties of KYTC District 12 have an ongoing directive to remove such signs from roadsides and intersections. District 12 includes the following counties: Lawrence, Johnson, Floyd, Martin, Knott, Pike, and Letcher.

 

“There are more political signs this time of year than any other type,” said Mary Westfall-Holbrook, Chief District Engineer. “But the only signs allowed on state property are state signs.”

 

As examples, Westfall-Holbrook cited sale signs for a business and those advertising a number to call about jobs. “Even posting a sign for a yard sale, taped to a speed limit sign or a stop sign is illegal,” she said.

 

People sometimes put a lot of money and work into such signs, she noted. “The fact is, though, they create safety problems, such as sight distance issues, and it is our responsibility to make the roads as safe as we can. They interfere with mowing and litter pickup, and recently have interfered with snow and ice removal.”

 

Warmer weather means that maintenance crews will be cleaning out ditchlines and replacing cross drains. Illegal signs interfere with this work, too.

 

“In the interest of safety and maintenance, our crews have been directed to remove all illegal signs. We have had a few blitz programs in the past, warning people in advance and then spending an entire week or more taking down signs. By now, though, people should know that putting signs on state right-of-way is not permissible. Now we take them down as we see them.”

 

Westfall-Holbrook said signs will be at the nearest maintenance facility for about a month in case the sign owner wants them back so they can be put on private property. “We don’t have to keep them or return them, so when we clean out the lot, they will be destroyed,” she cautioned. “We are not responsible for damage to any sign or sign post that we remove, since they were installed illegally to begin with.”

 

If people want to remove their own signs, rather than run the risk they are damaged or destroyed when the state removes them, that is their choice, Westfall-Holbrook said. “We aren’t trying to sound mean about this. It is simply part of our job, and something we take seriously. We really believe that most taxpayers would rather we spend our time patching potholes or cleaning out ditchlines instead of taking down signs that shouldn’t be there in the first place.”

Cats fall short in bid for Championship

By Ricky Blair

The Kentucky Wildcats let an opportunity for the championship of the SEC tournament slip away on Sunday afternoon, March 16.  Going against the #1 ranked Florida Gators and falling down by as many as 16 points, the Wildcats fought their way back to within one point when they called a time-out with 14 seconds to go in the game.  The Cats set up a play for Andrew Harrison to drive and give the ball to a cutting James Young for a running layup. But as Young took the ball from Harrison, his feet slipped out from under him, and with it, a chance for the championship.

Despite losing the game by a score of 61-60, the Wildcats showed improved play throughout the tournament.  It was this young team’s third game within a 48-hour period, but they showed a resilience that had been lacking all season long.

A poor shooting night did not help the Wildcats cause – they only made 35 percent of their shots from the field and 27 percent from behind the three-point arc.  Even though the ball did not consistently go in for the Cats, these young Cats kept chipping away at the Gators’ lead by playing tenacious defense.  After giving up 40 points in the first half, the Wildcats held the Gators to only 21 points in the second half, which helped set up the last second opportunity.

Kentucky saw contributions from several players.  Aaron Harrison led the Wildcats for a second straight day in tournament play, pouring in 16 points, while Willie Cauley-Stein recorded a double-double with 10 points and 11 rebounds.

The Wildcats will enter NCAA play with a 24-10 record on the season and a number 8 seed, as they battle Kansas State in the first round of the tournament.

Kentucky moves into SEC Championship game

By Ricky Blair

This is what the Kentucky fan base has been waiting for all year long, a team that plays with confidence and swagger.  For the second straight game in the SEC tournament in Atlanta, GA, that is exactly what the fans received.

The Wildcats disposed of the third seeded Georgia Bulldogs 70-58.  This time, it was the Harrison twins that led the way.  Aaron finished with 22 points, 15 of those came in the first half.  Andrew, who is playing his best basketball of the season, had 12 points and set a career high in assists for the second straight game with 9.

Kentucky went up by as many as ten during the first half, but settled for only a 36-32 lead going into the locker room.  Georgia cut the lead down to two early in the second half and this young team started to pick up some of their old habits according to Coach John Calipari, who said “when the lead was cut, they came to the sidelines and were pouting……I told them to just go out and have fun”.  The team responded to the message and went on a run that put them up by double digits.  Once the Wildcats went back to work, they put the throttle down and looked sharp, finishing with an 18-point victory.

This was a total team effort.  In addition to how well the Harrison’s played, Julius Randle had another double-double, going for 12 points and 11 rebounds.  James Young was also solid again, putting in 14 points, going 6 of 8 from the field.

Kentucky moved on to play Florida in the SEC championship game.

What Others Think of Us

“I care not what others think of what I do, but I care very much about what I think of what I do! That is character!”  Theodore Roosevelt 

 

Being overly concerned about what others think of us, or might think, gets in the way of our being our authentic selves. This concern likely begins in childhood when we may have been teased or bullied for being different. Perhaps we had a new haircut, wore glasses or were shorter/taller than our peers.

All it took was one or two mean kids to embarrass us in front of the others for us to begin to become self-conscious and concerned about how others might judge us. Of course then we did not realize that it was only a couple of mean-spirited individuals who said anything, and the others just accepted us as we were. We may have then erroneously assumed that everyone was looking at us in a judgmental way.

Then in junior high or high school, where social insecurity can make students quite judgmental, we notice that the most attractive, athletic or well-dressed students seem to get the most attention. We may begin to judge ourselves for not measuring up, and assume others judge us that way as well.

We then carry these feelings into adulthood where they are no longer appropriate. The criticisms of children and adolescents are ego-based and superficial. Only with maturity do young people learn to discern and appreciate the deeper qualities that make up an individual.

It is true that some adults remain at a less mature level and continue to judge and gossip about others. They do this to make themselves feel better, and their comments say more about themselves than they do about the intended target. We do not need these kinds of people as friends. We should neither dwell upon their judgments, nor should we conduct our lives in ways that will win their approval.

We have one life to live, and we are each unique beings. There is much freedom, joy and contentment in exploring who we really are, knowing what is important to us, and living in alignment with what is true for us.

 

Gwen Randall-Young is an author and award-winning Psychotherapist.  For permission to reprint this article, or to obtain books or cds, visit www.gwen.ca

UK to face Louisville in Sweet 16 in Indianapolis

UK was the team that was supposed to be undefeated going in to the NCAA Tournament, not Wichita. UK was supposed to be the favorite this year, not Wichita. After a so so season by Kentucky standards, the young Wildcats appear to have hit their stride after beating Kansas State Friday, then defeating #1 seed and undefeated Wichita State in a thriller.

UK fans are hoping for another win over Louisville
UK fans are hoping for another win over Louisville

UK will continue the gauntlet, called the Midwest Region by taking on in State and bitter rival, Louisville in Indianapolis next weekend. In what has been the worst Region seeding in a long time, the Midwest was loaded with such powers as Michigan, Duke, Louisville, Kentucky, Kansas State, Undefeated Wichita State and a red hot Tennessee squad.

For UK to make the Final Four, they will still have to beat Louisville and either Michigan or Tennessee. Kentucky fans are ready for another run to the Final Four and it will have to continue by beating the hated Cardinals.

Cardinals Rout Huskies on Senior Day

Senior Day games bring a lot of emotion for the players and fans alike.  Some teams start off with a wave of emotion early on and then the energy goes away which allows the other team to get back in the game.  It happened when Louisville went to SMU last Wednesday during the Mustangs’ Senior Day.  The Mustangs were up by 14 early in the game and then the Cardinals got right back in the game and took a 32 – 30 lead into halftime.

The 11th-ranked Cardinals made sure the 19th-ranked Huskies never got back into the game after taking an early 10 – 2 lead in route to an 81 – 48 victory.  It was one of the most complete games they have played from beginning to end this entire season.  The Cardinals clinched a tie for the AAC regular season conference title with Cincinnati.

Louisville coach, Rick Pitino, was worried that Russ Smith would be a bit too amped up for his last game in the KFC Yum center.  What he got was a Smith performance unlike any he has seen.  Smith finished the game attempting only two shots while dishing out a career-high 13 assists.  Pitino said, “I can’t ever imagine Russ Smith, knowing him, on senior night, would pass up all opportunities to score and get 13 assists. It shows you how much he has grown. If any pro scouts wondered tonight whether he can be a point guard, I think the thing is now closed. He can pass, he can handle, and he had an amazing performance by him.”

Pitino added about Smith, “I think he (Russ Smith) was trying to say, because we were making such a big deal out of it, was not getting carried away on Senior Day and stay focused. More than anything else, he got to play point guard and he knows the role of a point guard, which is pass before shot. So he moved over from the 2 to the point and that is why he had to do what he had to do.”

This was also the Senior Day for Luke Hancock, Stephan Van Treese, and Tim Henderson.  Together the Cardinals’ quartet of seniors helped become the all-time winningest class in the school’s prestigious history.  Hancock poured in 16 points.  Van Treese was all over the floor finishing with 6 points, 2 steals, and a season-high 13 rebounds.  Henderson started and scored the game’s first basket.

Louisville fans may have also witnessed the last game for sophomore forward Montrezl Harrell.  Harrell had another monster game for the Cardinals scoring 20 points and grabbing 11 rebounds.  NBADraft.net and draftexpress.com both have Harrell projected as the 25th pick of the first round.  That could change based on his performance of late.  Pitino said of Harrell, “His wing span is just phenomenal. He’s an incredible basketball player right now. He’s improved his passing. He’s improved his dribbling. He’s improved his one-on-one moves.”

Louisville’s defense was outstanding against the Huskies.  They held Connecticut to a season-low 48 points and an abysmal 29.4 shooting percentage.  Shabazz Napier and Ryan Boatright, one of the AAC’s top backcourts, were held to a combined 4 of 24 shooting and committed 9 turnovers.

Huskies’ coach, Kevin Ollie, was not pleased with his team’s performance after the game saying, “I didn’t see anything like this coming. And I’m glad it came because now we know how tough we have to be to be a champion. [Louisville] is a champion. We weren’t tough enough. We weren’t together enough. [Louisville] took every opportunity to take advantage of it. That’s what champions do. That’s why they’re the champions.”

A coin toss was held after the game to determine the number one seed for the upcoming AAC conference tournament with Cincinnati winning.  The conference tournament begins this Wednesday.  Louisville will earned a first place bye and will play the winner of South Florida and Rutgers Thursday at 3:00.

U of L Senior Day - Photos by Jason Sheehan
U of L Senior Day – Photos by Jason Sheehan

UofL 2014 Senior Day (4) UofL 2014 Senior Day (3) UofL 2014 Senior Day (2)

Wildcats begin SEC Tourney play with impressive win

By Ricky Blair – Fear the tweak! After hearing all week about this big tweak of change the Wildcats had made since their last regular season game, all eyes were on the lookout to see what this big change could be. If the tweak was not obvious the change in attitude and hustle were evident. After a slow start to the game for the Wildcats, this young team showed some of the enthusiasm that they have been missing all year long. Led by James Young’s 17 points and Dakari Johnson’s 9 rebounds the Wildcats went to the locker room at halftime with a 42-32 advantage.

The Cats came out of the locker room and held the lead for most of the second half, but a run by LSU with 14 minutes to go closed the gap to six and challenged this young group to see if this new found confidence could stand this test. The Wildcats did steady the ship and cruised to an 85-67 win over the Tigers. Julius Randall who had missed several easy shots during the contest finished with 17 points and 16 rebounds, Young finished with 21 points.

Coach John Calipari said ‘this was not the tweak” after Andrew Harrison had said more team work and having fun had made a difference, so there may be more to come. The first step in tourney play was successful; hopefully this is just the beginning.

NCAA Seeding Slams Kentucky Teams

The NCAA must have been spending a lot of time recently in Colorado in a weed shack. I don’t disagree with the UK Wildcats getting an 8 seed with their 10 losses. They will be playing in the MidWest Region with their first game in St. Louis, Mo. against Kansas State. If they win, the would likely face South #1 Seed and undefeated Wichita State. Louisville, a 4 seed in the MidWest as well. Should they win their first two games and UK wins their first two, the two Kentucky powers would have to play each other.

James Young - Photo by Steve Harp - East KY Media
James Young – Photo by Steve Harp – East KY Media

Louisville is 29-5 and ranked number 5 in the AP poll. Kentucky is 24-10 and dropped out of the rankings. By contrast, Duke was unbelievably ranked #7 with a 26-7 record and an absurd 3 seed, also in the MidWest Region. Kansas was a 2 seed in the South with a record of 24-9. Again, the people doing this years seeding have got to be Colorado High. The selection committee did get the #1 seeds right with Florida, Virginia, Arizona and Wichita State.

NCAA TOURNAMENT BRACKET

This year’s selection committee proved there is a love affair with Duke and Kansas and an innate hate for UK and Louisville. My hope is the Wildcats continue to keep their momentum and or Louisville remains hot and one or the other brings the NCAA Title home to Kentucky for the 3rd straight season.

Hey Selection Committee, ease up on the Colorado Purple Passion, Your seedings lead me to believe you may be high.

 

From UK Athletics:

Kentucky Makes Record 53rd NCAA Appearance

Wildcats, seeded eighth in the Midwest Region, to face Kansas State Friday

LEXINGTON, Ky. – For the 53rd time in program history the Kentucky Wildcats are among the field for the NCAA Tournament, it was announced Sunday evening. Kentucky claimed an at-large bid following a 61-60 loss to No. 1-ranked Florida on Sunday in the Southeastern Conference Tournament Championship.

Kentucky, seeded eighth in the Midwest Region, is set to travel to St. Louis, Mo. and will take on ninth-seeded Kansas State in the second round of NCAA Tournament. The game is set for Friday, March 21st. Time and television information will be announced later in the evening. The winner of the UK-KSU matchup will play the winner of No. 1-seeded Wichita State and the winner of the 16-seed First Round play-in game between Cal Poly and Texas Southern.

Series History

Kentucky is 8-0 all-time against Kansas State, with two postseason meetings. UK downed KSU 68-58 in the national championship game in Minneapolis, Minn., to claim the program’s third NCAA title. The two schools also met in the 1976 NIT, where UK pulled out an 81-78 win.

UK has never played Wichita State, but the Wildcats own an 11-4 record all-time against Missouri Valley opponents. Kentucky has also never played Cal Poly and is 1-0 against Texas Southern, with an 83-35 win in 2007.

NCAA Tournament History

  • Kentucky is 42-10 in tournament openers and has won 20 of its last 21 second round (previously first-round) tournament games. The Cats won their opener during the 2012 title run against Western Kentucky, 81-66.
  • UK has claimed a 14-5 record in the second round since 1992.
  • Since 1992, UK is 107-31 (.781) in postseason play (SEC, NIT and NCAA).

40 and 0, YEAH RIGHT!!!

Before the season started, everyone in the nation who did their preseason polls, had UK 1 or 2 and some had UK even going 40 & 0 with a National Title. Oh, how the mighty have fallen. Despite having the best recruiting class ever, at least on paper, & despite having Poythress and Cauley-Stein coming back from a disappointing season last year, UK has fought to be mediocre by Wildcat standards.

James Young had a miserable night vs Florida. Photo - Steve Harp - East KY Media
James Young had a miserable night vs Florida. Photo – Steve Harp – East KY Media

UK has 9 losses, that include two spankings by Florida, a home loss in overtime to Arkansas, disappointing road losses to Arkansas and South Carolina. In the Florida loss Saturday, a must win for UK, Wildcat players stood around for what seemed like several minutes, as the ball was passed around the perimeter. With players like Randle, Johnson and Cauley-Stein down low, it is amazing UK simple does not feed the post every trip down the court. This team has entirely too much talent to have more than 1-2 losses, yet they find themselves looking at a 7-12 seed depending on who you ask.

USA Today, has UK as a 7 seed in the East playing a 10 seed. ESPN’s Joe Lunardi, the bracket guru, has KY as a 7th seed in the South at Raleigh North Carolina. The unfortunate part is that he also has Florida as a #1 in the South as well as Michigan, Cincinnati and #2 seed Virginia. UK could make it to the South Region Final and possibly avenge two beat downs to Florida.

The only thing that will be considered a saved season will be a Kentucky run to the Final Four. Without it, this season will be considered on of the worst UK has seen in some time, even eclipsing last seasons debacle. Only time will tell, but believe this, BIG BLUE NATION is not happy with this years team. Maybe some of the players