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Tuesday, January 4, 2011

East Side Man Gets 20 Years In Prison

It was standing room only in the Sydney Street courtroom for the sentencing of 30 year old Jason Getson of Martha Avenue in the stabbing death last May of his estranged wife, 28 year old Melanie Davis in the parking lot of a Rothesay Avenue tanning salon. Prosecutor Jim McAvity called it brutal and senseless. Mr. Justice Hugh McLellen described the killing as a nightmare and horror for Melanie's parents that words can't convey. The judge accepted a joint submission from the defense and prosecution that Getson, who receives an automatic sentence of life in prison, serve 20 years before being eligible for parole. McAvity calls it the worst murder he has ever prosecuted.

He says with 26 different stab wounds Davis was essentially killed twice, once by having her throat slit and once by having the knife go through her heart.

After sentencing, some people in the courtroom were yelling insults at Getson as he was being led away. When he smirked at them, there were outbursts of anger. Defense lawyer Rod MacDonald told the court Getson lost it when Davis made clear to him their marraige was finally over. The court heard Davis was not only stabbed 26 times but Getson also kicked and punched her while she lay in a pool of blood outside the tanning salon. Getson bought a pair of hunting knives just two days before the savage attack.

Deadline Approaches For National Contest Featuring A Saint Johner

The founder of the Joshua group in Saint John is hearing lots of good feedback on his nomination as a Champion of Change.
Bobby Hayes helps city kids struggling with poverty a chance to spend time with other kids, feeds them when needed and gets them a present on their birthday which otherwise would not happen.

Hayes tells CHSJ News the nomination came from his sister and another woman who works with him.

He says they believe the work he does is a great things and Hayes agrees saying it's not about him but the kids and they are worth voting for.
Should he win, Hayes would get another $25,000 for the Joshua Group, he already won $10,000 by making the top ten.
The deadline to vote for Bobby Hayes as a Champion of Change is coming up on January 10th.  To find the link to vote, click here

Alward Government To Help Famillies With Winter Heating Costs

The Alward government resurrecting the Home Energy Assistance Program last fall and is expected to help 55,000 people in the province.
The $100 benefit is available to help low-income families cope with high-energy prices.
The one-time payment will go to those who have incomes up to and including $28,000 in 2009 and cheques will be begin going out this month.
You can apply on the Department of Finance website or by calling 1-800-669-7070.
Forms are also available at Service New Brunswick outlets.
For more info click here

15 People Displaced After North End Fire

About 15 people forced to flee after a fire in an apartment building in this north end early this morning.
The call came in for the blaze around 3:30 this morning at 3 Clarendon Street was contained mostly to a stairwell and the back of the three-storey building. Fire officials are looking into the cause.

Some tenants hope to be allowed back in the building today but others may be out for some time.  Canadian Red Cross volunteers are arranging a play to stay, food and clothing for seven adults and three children from three apartments in the building.

Former Mayor Laid To Rest Today

A former Mayor, M-L-A and Common Councillor Eric Teed will be remembered at a funeral service at noon today before he's laid to rest. The funeral service will be held at Trinity Anglican Church. Teed was 34 when he became the youngest Mayor in the history of the city in 1960 and then he also served on Common Council from 2001 to 2004 as well as being an M-L-A from 1970 to 1974.

Teed called for higher density housing in the area south of City Road saying it was the only way you were going to increase the population in the city core. That appears to be the thrust of the new municipal plan.

Cause Of Early Morning Fire Being Investigated

There were no injuries after a fire early this morning at 3 Clarendon Street off Douglas Avenue. It began at the back end of the apartment house and was reported shortly after 3:30. The tenants managed to leave the building but some people will have to find other accomodation for a while. There's no word on a cause.

Murderer To Be Sentenced Today At Sydney Street Courthouse

A 30 year old east side man is scheduled to be sentenced today for murdering his estranged wife brutally last May.

Jason Getson of Martha Avenue pleaded guilty to second degree murder in the stabbing death of 28 year old Melanie Davis who was handcuffed and stabbed 25 times. She was living on Douglas Avenue at the time.

The two were travelling along Rothesay Avenue in the same car on the morning of May 10th when it pulled into a parking lot of a tanning salon where she was attacked and died a short time later at the Regional Hospital.

The court was told when Getson entered the guilty plea that she thought they were going to see a marraige mediator. The knife used in the savage attack was never recovered.

Coast Guard Property Beside Market Square To Be Developed This Year

Mayor Ivan Court is looking beyond the pension crisis and whether the province is going to give the city some slack when it comes to its contributions this year.

Councillor Gary Sullivan wants his former colleague, now the M-L-A for Saint John Harbour Carl Killen to formally introduce the proposed changes in the Legislature.

The Mayor tells CHSJ News a deal is about to be signed which will finally see a long awaited development take place adjacent to Market Square.The Hardman Group proposed a few years ago to build a hotel and condos.

There will also be public hearings scheduled on applications to expand McAllister Place and permit a new shopping centre on Fairville Boulevard.

Common Councillor Calling For More Ward Meetings

Common Councillor Donnie Snook wants to increase the number of ward meetings in his jurisdiction.

Snook tells CHSJ News Ward 3 is spread out among the city and he wants to give everybody the opportunity to attend those meetings.

Snook says three out of the five priority neighbourhoods in Saint John are in his ward and access to transportation can be a key issue in those areas.

Snook will be making a motion at tonight's council meeting, which kicks off at city hall at 6 o'clock.

Nearby Resident Raising Questions About Q-Plex

It looks like the Q-Plex will be opening up at the end of this month. That's the latest word from Mayor Murray Driscoll who tells CHSJ News it's being commissioned as we speak.

Mike Cole lives near the Q-Plex and he argues the project seems to have expanded from just adding another ice surface to something far larger and more expensive.

 He wonders what the final bill will come to and what the ongoing costs will be to maintain all of the facilities.

Cole maintains the additional parking lot is not necessary.

Memorial Cup Selection Committee Coming To Saint John

The selection committee who will choose where the Memorial Cup tournament is going to be held next year tours Saint John February 9th.

Seadogs President Wayne Long is optimistic about Saint John's chances.

Long characterises those as excellent if an objective decision is made.