Sharon Parker

To Report News or News Questions call 812-595-1089 



WEEK OF January 25 - 29


Short-term closure planned Monday on I-265 EB for structure removal
UPDATE: The I-265 EB closure near MM 6 in Clark County is expected to begin at approximately 8:30 a.m. on Monday (1/25).

CLARK COUNTY, Ind.— A short-term road closure is scheduled to take place Monday (Jan. 25) on I-265 EB in Clark County while crews remove an overhead sign structure that was damaged during a crash last weekend. The structure is located at MM 6.3, just west of the I-65 interchange.
Exact timing of the closure has not yet been determined, but traffic impacts are expected to last approximately three-to-four hours. Temporary signs will be placed next week until a new structure can be set.
Motorists are encouraged to utilize an alternate route, as well as mapping apps with real-time traffic updates. Drivers should slow down, use extra caution and drive distraction-free in and near all work zones. All work is weather-dependent and schedules are subject to change.

Donate to United Way when Shopping at Wal-mart online

Walmart is starting 2021 off right by supporting communities across the U.S. through their online-only round-up and donate campaign.
Now through January 29, 2021, customers can add a donation to United Way at checkout when they make a purchase through Walmart.com or on the Walmart app. Donations will be distributed to local United Ways based on the zip code of the donor’s credit card used for purchase.

2021 Indiana Missing Children's Day Poster Contest 

The Indiana State Police is proud to partner again in 2021 with the U.S. Department of Justice in promoting the National Missing Children’s Day Poster Contest.  In 1983, President Ronald Reagan proclaimed May 25th as National Missing Children’s Day.  This day is dedicated to encouraging parents, guardians, caregivers and all concerned individuals with the well-being of children to make child safety a priority.  It serves as a reminder to continue our efforts to reunite missing children with their families and loved ones.  It also serves as an occasion to honor those who are dedicated to this very noble cause.  The National Missing Children’s Poster Contest provides an opportunity for schools, law enforcement, and parents/guardians to discuss and promote child safety. The state winner will receive a national award certificate from the U.S. Department of Justice and their poster will be selected to go to the national judging competition.  The national winner, along with his/her parents and teacher, and the state manager will be invited to Washington, D.C. to participate in the U.S. Department of Justice’s National Missing Children’s Day ceremony. Some important facts about the contest:

There is NO LIMIT on the number of posters a school can submit.
Only one (1) poster per student is allowed for submission.
Students who submit posters MUST be in the 5th grade. 
Artwork should reflect the theme “Bringing Our Missing Children Home.” This phrase MUST appear somewhere on the poster.
The theme may be depicted in the artwork through one or a combination of illustrations and can be created using media such as acrylics, watercolor, pencils, charcoal, magic markers, spray paint, crayons and pastels. Digitally produced images, collages, cut-outs and stamping WILL NOT be eligible for consideration.
The finished poster MUST measure 8 ½ X 14 inches.
The poster must be submitted with a COMPLETED application, which includes a description of the poster and a brief biography of the artist.
All poster contest rules can be found at https://ncjtc-static.fvtc.edu/Resources/RS00005796.pdf
Deadline for submissions from participating organizations to be received by Sgt. Danielle Elwood  is February 22, 2021.

Submissions are to be sent to:

Indiana State Police Museum
c/o Sgt. Elwood
8660 E 21st Street
Indianapolis, IN 46219

To learn more about the National Missing Children’s Day Poster contest visit:  https://www.ojjdp.gov/missingchildrensday/ 

 2021 Starlight Strawberry Festival Cancelled

The decision has been made to cancel the 2021 Starlight Strawberry Festival. This decision was based on the input from festival leaders, with a concern that even with a successful vaccine not enough people would be vaccinated to risk such a large gathering of people. We appreciate your patronage and support of all our past festivals, and pray for better days ahead. Our hardworking committee will visit the status for a 2022 Festival in the Fall of 2021.


​The Next Generation Hoosier Educators Scholarship provides 200 high-achieving high school and college students interested in pursuing a career in education the opportunity to earn a renewable scholarship of up to $7,500 each year for four academic years. In exchange, students agree to teach for five years at an eligible Indiana school or repay the corresponding, prorated amount of the scholarship.


Must be an Indiana resident;
Must be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen;
Must be a current high school senior or college student in Indiana;
Must have graduated or will graduate from an Indiana accredited high school or non-accredited nonpublic high school;
Must be able to utilize the scholarship for at least two full academic years;
Must rank in the top 20% of high school graduating class or have a top 20% ACT or SAT score;
Must currently attend or plan to attend an eligible Indiana institution as a full-time student;

In some cases, degree-seeking students may use the scholarship during the summer while enrolled part-time. Refer to the specific guidelines for using the scholarship during summer terms.

Must pursue or intend to pursue a course of study that would enable the student to teach at an eligible Indiana school after college graduation;
Must obtain a license to teach in Indiana and serve as a teacher in an eligible Indiana school for five consecutive years after college graduation;
Must maintain a 3.0/4.0 GPA, complete 30 credit hours per year or their equivalent and meet all other requirements established by their program to renew the scholarship;
Must file a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) each year;
Must not be in overpayment or default on a federal student loan or grant; and
Must complete the service requirement or have all funds provided converted to a loan that must be repaid.

**Priority will be given to students graduating high school although current college freshmen and sophomore students are eligible to apply.


The 2021-2022 application is available in ScholarTrack until January 31, 2021.

Review the 2021-2022 Application Procedures and Academic Requirements prior to applying.
Submit a complete application in ScholarTrack.
Submit a complete and clean FAFSA.


After the January 31, 2021 deadline passes, the Commission will review all applications and notify all applicants of their scholarship status via email by March 19, 2021.
Recipients and waitlisted finalists will be provided further instructions via email.



Benchmark Family Services needing Foster Parents

Benchmark Family Services is in need of loving families to become licensed foster parents. We provide all the training and support necessary. Must be 21 years of age, and able to pass background checks. Please contact me by phone or PM for additional information. (812) 418-7313

















Coal is a former Pet of the Week and is still available. Coal is such a pretty black kitty and loves to play with his toys. Coal's life was saved by one of the Humane Society's Volunteers. He was seen laying in the road believed to be dead. Luck for Coal he moved at the right moment and was saved by the volunteer. He had an eye issue when found and it looked as if he was blind in the one eye. That has all cleared up and he is so ready for his forever home. If you would like to visit with Coal and his furry brothers and sisters, stop by or call he Humane Society located at 1075 North Gardner Street in Scottsburg at 812-752-7500.














Meet Jenny. Jenny is a Hound Mix 1 to 2 years old , timid. Would do good with an older family or a quiet family. Jenny may have been abused in the past, but is so sweet. She sticks to her Foster mom like velcro. Jenny would be a very faithful dog and look at those eyes! She is such a sweet soul. Her foster mom said she stayed right with her as she was doing yard work and using noisy tools and Jenny was not bothered. What a great companion she would be. If you would like to set up a meet and greet with Jenny call the Humane Society of Scott County at 812-752-7500



Centra members!!! We just got some exciting news...
Comimg soon Scottsburg will have a DRIVE UP - ATM / ITM ...

This is an offsite location from our branch. (Doing the happy dance).
It will be located at 1050 North Gardner Street, just down the road from our branch. (The old vacant Scott County Bank location).
We will not be using the building but there will be a drive up machine - that you can use as an ATM (any time) and an ITM- interactive teller to do actual transactions (during business hours).
How exciting?!!!
Over the last couple of months - we have gotten an updated drive thru system and a brand new ATM at our branch- now we are getting an off site DRIVE UP ATM/ ITM!!! [💙] We are getting fancy here in Scottsburg!
Not exactly sure of the “go live” date yet - but I wanted to share this great news now !!! I will keep everyone updated on open date.
Ps- do not worry - we will still be eventually opening back up the lobbies and the Walmart location too- this is just a bonus!!!

Sellersburg Police Department

The individuals who keep breaking into vehicles hit again early this morning around 4am just outside our area in Floyd County. These are juveniles from Louisville. They were in a stolen vehicle and chased by the police. They struck a police vehicle during the pursuit. This is just a reminder for everyone to continue to lock your vehicles and remove all valuables (especially firearms). If anyone sees or hears anything please dial 911. If you are a night owl and see dome lights on in vehicles in your neighborhood, call the police. If you see a car driving slowly in your area and several people out running around, call the police. Please DO NOT approach these juveniles. They have been known to be armed and have even shot at homeowners who have confronted them. Please share and let your neighbors know. When they check the vehicle doors and find them locked, they move on to the next one.

Scott County OUTREACH

The Scott County OutReach is providing shelter for those in need if the temperature falls to 32 degrees or colder. Contact Troy at 812-414-8783 between 6am - 7pm to make arrangements. Shelter is provided between 7pm - 7am and transportation is provided. 





Columbus Police Officer Faces Battery and Official Misconduct Charges

Today, January 12, 2021, a Columbus Police Officer was arrested on felony Battery and Official Misconduct Charges after an investigation by detectives with the Indiana State Police-Versailles Post. The Columbus Police Department contacted the Indiana State Police on June 17, 2020 and requested an investigation be conducted after an officer allegedly struck a suspect while the suspect was in custody in the back of a Columbus Police vehicle the previous day.  The investigation by ISP Detectives determined that on June 16, 2020, Officer John Velten, a 14 year veteran of the Columbus Police Department, arrested an adult male after responding to a fight on Indiana Avenue in Columbus, Indiana.  While handcuffed in the back seat of the police vehicle, the suspect began hitting his head against the interior of the police vehicle.  As a response, Officer Velten struck the suspect with his fist while the suspect was still handcuffed inside of the vehicle.  Officer Velten’s actions caused moderate injuries to the suspect. At the conclusion of the investigation, the case was turned over to a special prosecutor to review the case.  As a result, charges of Battery Resulting in Moderate Injury, Level 6 Felony and Official Misconduct-Level 6 Felony were filed against John Velten.  He was arrested today when he turned himself in to detectives at the Bartholomew County Jail.  According to the Columbus Police Department, which has been fully cooperative with ISP Detectives, Velten has remained employed with the City of Columbus in a non-law enforcement related capacity since the investigation began.  The Columbus Police Department will be releasing additional information on the status of John Velten’s employment with the City of Columbus.

Winter coyote sightings are no cause for alarm

The new year will bring coyote sightings around Indiana. Seeing coyotes, especially during winter, is normal and should not cause alarm. Coyotes become more active during winter. Young coyotes are leaving their parents to find a new home, making them more visible. In January, coyotes will also be looking to breed, making them even more active. Bare vegetation also increases people’s chances of catching a glimpse. Where people are, coyotes follow. Coyotes like to eat animals and plants that thrive around yards and homes. Their diet includes rabbits, mice, fruit, and squirrels. They thrive around people because of the abundant food that comes with human development. Coyotes are a common member of Indiana’s urban wildlife community, as are raccoons, red foxes, and opossums. Seeing a coyote is not necessarily cause for concern. They are common everywhere in the state, even in urban areas like downtown Indianapolis, Fort Wayne, and South Bend. Coyotes are an important part of Indiana’s wildlife community and provide benefits by helping control rodent populations and cleaning up carrion. Problems between coyotes and people are uncommon. To prevent them, be proactive by removing food and water sources, keeping pets leashed or contained, and trying to scare a coyote when you see it.

Follow these quick tips for making your yard less attractive to coyotes:
Clean up fallen fruit from trees or gardens.
Keep garbage secure.
Make sure pet food and treats are not left outside.
Take down bird feeders if you see a coyote around your yard; they could be attracted to the rodents eating the seeds.
Never intentionally feed a coyote; it could lose its fear of people.

If you see a coyote, try to make it uncomfortable:
Wave your arms.
Spray it with a hose.
Throw tennis balls or small stones, but don’t throw anything that could be food, like apples.
Carry a jar of coins or a small air horn to make noise.

Making a coyote feel unwelcome around people can help it maintain its natural fear of humans. Never corner or chase a coyote — they should always have a clear escape path to get away from you. Keep pets leashed, in a kennel with a secure top, or indoors to reduce the possibility of a negative interaction with any wildlife, including coyotes. Find more information about coyotes, including factsheets and a webinar, at wildlife.IN.gov/5688.htm. Other webinar resources, including tips for maintaining positive interactions with wildlife in general, can be found at on.IN.gov/fishwilded.


Brown County State Park launches auto tour

Brown County State Park has created a way for guests to experience Brown County State Park’s unique cultural and natural history from the comfort of their own vehicles. The park’s Auto Tour guides guests to five stops along the park’s south loop. Signs will be posted at each location. Guests will start at the Nature Center and journey along the main park road to learn about the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) camp area, the two nature preserves in Brown County State Park, the state-endangered yellowwood tree, and Kelp village. There are several vista overlooks along the drive. To access this tour, go to the Brown County State Park Website (on.IN.gov/browncountysp) and click on Photos, Video & Audio at the bottom of the page. The link includes audio for the tour as well as a map to help you navigate. In total, the tour should take about an hour, longer if you decide to get out and look around at each stop. Please adhere to park speed limits and other park signage throughout the tour. This tour can also be completed on a bicycle if you’re looking for more exercise. Brown County State Park is at 1405 S.R. 46 W., Nashville, IN 47448.


Scott County Public Library

No contact curbside services are available to pickup books, audiobooks, and DVDs at the library. Give us a call at 812-752-2751 and select your branch and we'll be glad to help get an appointment scheduled for pickup and explain the process.





DECEMBER 15, 2020― The Scott County Health Department (SCHD) is expecting their first shipment of a COVID-19 vaccine in early 2021. The department already has their distribution plan in place but are awaiting final guidance from Indiana Department of Health (IDOH). Scott County Preparedness Coordinator Patti Hall stated, “We were able to use our H1N1 influenza plans and experience to quickly create our plans for distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine. We will be using our bays for drive-thru services for all patients.”
At this time it is still unknown who will qualify or have priority for the vaccination. For now, there is not a waiting list for the vaccine. The health department expects to use an online scheduling tool provided by IDOH to make the process more streamlined. The vaccine will require a second dose and a person is not fully immunized until both doses are received. More information will be provided to the public once SCHD has received their instructions and guidance from the Indiana Department of Health.

Scott County Farmers Market to Receive Permanent Structure

Members of the Scott County Community Foundation (SCCF) Board of Directors and staff, Scott County Farmers Market and Preservation Alliance Inc. (PAI) celebrated a groundbreaking ceremony for the future site of a permanent Farmers Market structure. The Scott County Community Foundation is funding the structure as a gift to the community to celebrate Scott County’s Bicentennial. It will be located on the grounds of the Scott County Heritage Center and Museum.
“While many of the Bicentennial activities had to be canceled this year due to COVID-19, we wanted to end the year on a positive note,” shared SCCF Executive Director Jaime Toppe. “Scott County has deep agricultural roots, as well as a rich history throughout the community and right here at the Museum. Many families used this land to farm many years ago. We want to celebrate this heritage with a gift that can be used for many years to come.”
The gift was made possible by an unrestricted grant from Lilly Endowment Inc. In the fall of 2018, Lilly Endowment notified community foundations of a board engagement grant opportunity to recognize the important role that the community foundation’s board of directors plays in both leading the Foundation and serving Scott County. Thirteen board members met the giving incentive during this time-period, resulting in an amazing return on investment with a grant for $100,000, shared Toppe. The SCCF Board of Directors voted to use the funds to provide this permanent gift to residents.
Farmers Market Master Sharon Parker and PAI vice president Jimmy Hutton also expressed their appreciation for the project. PAI is the nonprofit which oversees the operation of the Museum. The Farmers Market had tremendous growth this year with their move to the Museum grounds, and hopes to expand the number of vendors and offerings. The Museum will also benefit from the new structure, with potential plans for educational lunches, demonstrations and special events. The planning committee hopes to have the structure in place for the opening of the 2021 Farmers Market. Happy birthday, Scott County!
On hand for the special ceremony were (left to right): Farmers Market vendor Chris Wakeman, SCCF Board Treasurer Daniel Brunner, SCCF Board Chairman Heather White, SCCF board member Ryan Payne, PAI Vice President Jimmy Hutton, PAI board member Mary Beth Comer, PAI board treasurer Lena Lundgren, SCCF Financial Officer Charlotte Boswell, Museum volunteer Janet Payne, Farmers Market vendor David Parker, Farmers Market Master Sharon Parker, SCCF board member Al Riggle, SCCF Executive Director Jaime Toppe and SCCF board secretary Melissa Woods.



Centerstone is open and our clinicians are here to help anyone who may be experiencing stress, anxiety, substance use issues, depression or another mental health condition, and we will continue to provide these services during the COVID-19 crisis. We are providing most services via telephone or telehealth (video conferencing), so the process if very easy. Locally, you may also call

1-877-HOPE 123.








Investigation underway after apparent hunting accident death (Bartholomew County)

Indiana Conservation Officers are investigating an apparent hunting accident that claimed the life of a Columbus man.

Yesterday at approximately 8:57 a.m., officers were dispatched to the area near the 9200 block of South State Road 58 in Columbus after a hunter was found unresponsive by a family member after the hunter failed to return home.

John Walker, 54, of Columbus, was found suffering from a gunshot wound that initial investigation suggests came from an accidental discharge of his firearm. Walker was pronounced dead at the scene. Exact cause of death is pending autopsy results.

This investigation is still ongoing, and more information will be released as it becomes available. 

Investigation underway after apparent hunting accident death (Bartholomew County)

Indiana Conservation Officers are investigating an apparent hunting accident that claimed the life of a Columbus man.

Yesterday at approximately 8:57 a.m., officers were dispatched to the area near the 9200 block of South State Road 58 in Columbus after a hunter was found unresponsive by a family member after the hunter failed to return home.

John Walker, 54, of Columbus, was found suffering from a gunshot wound that initial investigation suggests came from an accidental discharge of his firearm. Walker was pronounced dead at the scene. Exact cause of death is pending autopsy results.

This investigation is still ongoing, and more information will be released as it becomes available. 

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