News to Know for Jan. 21: Impeachment trial begins; Fire forces 7 from home overnight; Wear layers - it’s cold

News to Know for Jan. 21

RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - “You wanna wear all the layers.” - Andrew Freiden

That’s because it’s cold.

Another cold day, with a slow warming trend returning

Cold weather continues with a gradual warm-up later this week and rain likely Saturday.

Impeachment Trial

It’s a huge day on the Hill: the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump starts this afternoon, after a month-long stalemate. But the back-and-forth on how this trial will play out is far from over.

As the Senate reconvenes with Chief Justice John Roberts presiding over the rare impeachment court, senators sworn to “impartial justice,” the legacy of Trump’s presidency and the system of checks and balances are at stake before a politically divided nation.

A first test will come midday Tuesday when the session gavels open to vote on Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s proposed rules for debate. You can watch the whole thing play out live here or on the NBC12 Facebook page.

Fire Forces 7 Out of Home

Overnight in Richmond, a family of seven is displaced after a house fire in the city’s northside. It happened around 2 a.m. at a home on 2nd Avenue.

3 treated after overnight house fire in Richmond.
3 treated after overnight house fire in Richmond. (Source: NBC12)

Due to the cold weather, it took crews about 45 minutes to get it under control.

Officials say all 7 made it out of the home safely thanks to a working smoke alarm.

Chesterfield Escaped Inmate Arrested

In Chesterfield, an inmate who escaped custody nearly 3 weeks ago by removing his GPS monitor is back behind bars.

Jai Alquan King
Jai Alquan King (Source: Chesterfield County Sheriff's Office)

Police arrested 30-year-old Jai Alquan King during a traffic stop yesterday on Willis Road in Richmond.

King is charged with felony escape.

Gun-Rights Activists Rallied Peacefully

Tens of thousands of gun-rights activists from around the country rallied peacefully at the Virginia Capitol to protest plans by the state’s Democratic leadership to pass gun-control legislation, a move that has become a key flashpoint in the national debate over gun violence.

The size of Monday’s rally (an estimated 22,000 ended up showing up) and the expected participation of fringe militia groups raised fears that the state could see a repeat of the violence that exploded in 2017 in Charlottesville. But the rally concluded uneventfully around noon, and the mood was largely festive.

“I’m hoping people realize that gun owners are not violent people and we don’t want our hands to be toedwhen it comes to protection of our loved ones," said Jefferey Hopkins, 2nd Amendment supporter from Massachusetts

Attendees spilled into the streets, chanting “USA” and waving signs denouncing Democratic Gov. Ralph Northam. See a timeline of events from the day here.

Security measures remain in place at the Capitol today and the temporary state of emergency lasts until 5 p.m.

Minimum Wage Rally

Today, another rally will be held at the state Capitol, but this one will be on a much smaller scale.

Organizers with “Raise the Wage” hope hundreds will turn out for a rally calling for a minimum wage hike. They want the state to force employers to pay their workers at least $15 an hour. The rally begins at 11:30 a.m.

Handheld Phone Ban Push

Delegate Jeff Bourne will be speaking at the Pocahontas Building at 10 a.m. to talk about his distracted driving legislation.

In December, Richmond City Council approved a measure to toughen state law. Right now, it’s illegal to text or send an email while you’re driving, but come June, you can’t even hold a phone if you’re behind the wheel in the city of Richmond.

U.S Census Bureau Hiring in Richmond

The 2020 census count beings in rural Alaska today. Before counting can begin in Virginia in March, the US Census Bureau needs to fill more than 3,000 open positions in Richmond.

Jobs include census takers and office personnel, with pay up to $24 an hour. There’s a job fair next month - Apply here.

Gordman’s is Also Hiring

Today, Gordman’s - which is what most Peebles stores are becoming - is holding job fairs all across the state for their 17 new Virginia stores.

It’s from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. here in central Virginia. You can head to the current Peebles stores in Ashland, Colonial Heights, Emporia, Hopewell, or Louisa.

Those new stores are expected to open on March 17.

Chesterfield School Calendar

Chesterfield parents, right now the school board needs your input on the proposed calendar for next school year.

The proposed traditional calendar includes staggered start dates, all after Labor Day. The traditional and year-round calendar also include adding two more holidays - Yom Kippur and Eid al-Fitr

Final Thought

“If you don’t know the guy on the other side of the world, love him anyway because he’s just like you. He has the same dreams, the same hopes and fears. It’s one world, pal. We’re all neighbors.” - Frank Sinatra

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