2017-08-09 / News Briefs

Gecker named president of state education board


Dan Gecker at his offices in Shockoe Bottom. Photo by Ash DanielDan Gecker at his offices in Shockoe Bottom. Photo by Ash DanielFormer Chesterfield supervisor and state Senate candidate Dan Gecker has been named president of the Virginia Board of Education.

Gecker succeeds Billy K. Cannaday Jr., who previously served as superintendent for the state and Chesterfield County Public Schools. Gecker, a real estate developer who served eight years on the county board of supervisors and eight years on the Chesterfield Planning Commission, will oversee a board that establishes statewide curriculum and high school graduation requirements. He was named president in July.

In 2015, Gecker ran as a Democrat for the 10th District state Senate seat vacated by longtime state Sen. John Watkins. He narrowly lost to current Sen. Glen Sturtevant, a Republican.

Police seek suspect in attempted robbery

County police are searching for a man who attempted to rob the Qdoba Mexican Eats restaurant at 7201 Hancock Village Drive on Aug. 5.

At about 10 p.m., the suspect approached an employee, displayed a knife and demanded that they open the register. The employee challenged the suspect, who then fled on foot without taking anything. No one was injured during the incident.

The suspect is described as a white male, approximately 5 feet 9 inches tall, wearing a black North Face hoodie, black Adidas pants and black Adidas shoes. The suspect’s face was covered with a dark colored bandana and aviator sunglasses.

Anyone with information is asked to contact county police at 748-1251 or Crime Solvers at 748-0660.

Teens charged for thefts from cars

County police have charged two teenagers connected to thefts from parked cars along Frederick Farms Drive on the evening of July 31.

At 11:50 p.m., police responded to a report that two unknown suspects were pulling on vehicle handles along Frederick Farms Drive, which is near the intersection of Hull Street and Genito roads. Both suspects were located, with one being detained and the other fleeing on foot. The suspect who fled was soon located along Bailey Bridge Road.

The investigation indicates that the suspects attempted to enter 10 vehicles, and actually entered about five. Both suspects were found to be juvenile males, with the 16-year-old acting as a lookout and the 15-year-old entering vehicles. For the 16-year-old, the officer issued a juvenile complaint for four counts of conspiracy to commit petit larceny, one count of illegal wearing of mask to conceal identity and one count of curfew violation.

For the 15-year-old, the officer completed a juvenile criminal complaint for four counts of petit larceny, four counts of tampering with auto, one count of illegal wearing of mask to conceal identity and one count of curfew violation.

Both juveniles were released to their parents.

Man drowns at Robious Landing Park

Authorities have identified a man who drowned on Aug. 2 at Robious Landing Park near James River High, according to media reports.

Gerald Franklin Manikus, 62, of Goochland, died while launching his kayak around 7:45 a.m. According to witnesses, Manikus drowned after his kayak got away from him. Manikus reportedly struggled to retrieve his kayak, which had his life vest inside. Manikus went under water and didn’t return.

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