The week in review

Most candidates: Kristin Szakos announces she'll seek a second term on City Council February 14. Dem precinct chair Jonathan Stevens says he'll run for Charlottesville commissioner of revenue. Former city commonwealth's attorney Steve Deaton says he wants his old job back; incumbent Dave Chapman, who ousted Deaton in 1993, has not said whether he intends to seek a sixth term.

Latest alleged attempted abduction of a UVA student: An anonymous woman leaving Pi Kappa Alpha on Rugby Road at 2:30am February 17, who says she was trying to get a taxi, climbs into a car and the driver pulls to the side of the road near Kellogg dorm, locks the doors, and attempts to assault her, according to the Cav Daily. The mystery victim, who reported the incident on UVA's JustReportIt site but has not actually been interviewed by police, reportedly says she was able to kick the suspect and flee.

Latest child porn sentence: Former Albemarle cop and teacher Charles Farrell Long gets three years in prison February 20 and 17 years suspended for possession of child pornography, WINA reports.

Latest Julian Bond arrest: It's been awhile since the retired UVA prof and civil rights icon was cuffed and hauled away, but it happened February 13 after he tied himself to the White House gate in protest of the Keystone XL pipeline, according to the AP. Also arrested: Robert F. Kennedy Jr. and actress Daryl Hannah.

Biggest crime spree: Police say Kevin Scott Burchardt, 33, of Amherst, could be responsible for burglaries in 19 jurisdictions, and he's racked up 19 counts on five armed burglaries in Albemarle, according to a release. He was arrested December 31 in Wintergreen.

Biggest Valentine's bummer: Albemarle police set up a speed trap on U.S. 29 south between Fontaine Avenue and I-64 and write 148 speeding tickets for motorists driving between 68 and 81mph on February 14. The 10 officers and one supervisor running the DMV-grant-funded operation also write up two reckless driving charges, six registration, three inspection, and three equipment violations, one driver's license violation, and one failure to move over ticket.

Smallest world: Albemarle Circuit Court Judge Cheryl Higgins discloses she used to live near alleged embezzler Jim Baldi and offers to bring in another judge if he felt that was a potential conflict in a February 13 court hearing, the Daily Progress reports. Baldi declines the offer.

Worst: Days after 18-year-old Kimberly Welch dies on the tracks, a UVA first-year male, also 18, lies down in front of a Norfolk Southern freight train going 25mph February 15 near the Amtrak station, NBC29 reports.

Worst reminder of a mass murder: Christopher Speight, 42, pleads guilty February 15 to killing eight people in the Appomattox home of his sister, with whom he lived, in 2010. His victims include his sister, her husband, and his niece and nephew, WINA reports. Speight receives five life sentences.

Worst news at Northrop Grumman: The company announces plans to lay off 60 employees in Charlottesville and Maryland, according to WINA.

Best economic indicators: Retail sales in the region are up $96 million to $2.29 billion last year, the Charlottesville Regional Chamber of Commerce reports. Home sales in 2012 are up 15 percent over 2011, while inventory of unsold houses is at its lowest level since 2005, according to  Charlottesille Albemarle Association of Realtors.

Worst: Gas prices jump 16 cents over the holiday weekend with Charlottesville pushing $3.60 a gallon, the Richmond Times-Dispatch reports, and we've spied gas at $3.67 a gallon.

Weediest: City Council will look at removing jail time from marijuana convictions at its February 19 meeting, although its resolution last year asking that the General Assembly revisit pot laws was pretty much ignored in Richmond.

Best get: John Kerry gives his first foreign policy speech as secretary of state February 20 at UVA.

Most Lincolnesque: Western Albemarle grad Billy Campbell plays Abe in the National Geographic Channel's Killing Lincoln, which airs February 17.

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