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The Catawba County Board of Commissioners meets Monday night (August 15) in regular session. The meeting's location has been moved due to an event going on in downtown Newton.

The board will hold three public hearings. One to consider the approval of an Economic Development Agreement with Peoples Bank, which intends to renovate and expand its Headquarters in Newton and commit to retain 75 current employees and add 25 new workers. The employees will receive average salaries of $50,000 per year, and the company will invest $3.5 million in construction and equipment during the investment period.
Another public hearing will be held to consider the submission of a Federal 5310 Urban grant application for the Enhanced Mobility of Seniors and Individuals with Disabilities Program. And a third public hearing is scheduled to consider a financing agreement for Catawba Valley Community College (CVCC) and the  three school districts for various construction projects and refunding of debt.

The Board will also consider awarding a bid for audio visual needs for the Justice/Public Safety Center expansion to Technical Innovations in Charlotte.

Monday's Catawba County Board of Commissioners meeting gets underway at 7 p.m. at the Government Center, at 100A Southwest Boulevard in Newton. The location of the meeting has been changed due to the Soldiers Reunion in Newton.

Area residents were among 15 defendants sentenced to prison time for methamphetamine trafficking. U.S. District Judge Richard L. Voorhees handed down the prison terms this week according to an announcement Thursday (August 11) from Jill Westmoreland Rose, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of North Carolina. The sentencing took place in U.S. District Court in Statesville and among those headed to prison are:

36-year-old William Mitchell Lee Pope of Connelly Springs. He was sentenced to 146 months, followed by five years of supervised release. 25-year-old Codey Wayne Michaels of Valdese was sentenced to 120 months followed by five years of supervised release. 33-year-old Ryan Lewis Craig of Conover was sentenced to 83 months followed by four years of supervised release. 22-year-old Lindsey Jordan Price of Taylorsville was sentenced to 63 months followed by three years of supervised release.

These prosecutions stem from an ongoing Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) investigation led by ICE’s Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), and the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), with the assistance of the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation, North Carolina State Highway Patrol, Alexander County Sheriff’s Office, Alleghany County Sheriff’s Office, Ashe County Sheriff’s Office, Boone Police Department, Caldwell County Sheriff’s Office, Catawba County Sheriff’s Office, Hickory Police Department, Iredell County Sheriff’s Office, Lenoir Police Department, Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office, Mooresville Police Department, Pineville Police Department, Statesville Police Department, Burke County Task Force, and a host of law enforcement agencies throughout North Carolina, Texas, Georgia, and Tennessee.

Thursday, 11 August 2016 17:29

Morganton Woman Charged with B&E and Larceny

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24-year-old Heather Traywick Kelley of Watts Street in Morganton has been arrested by Officers in Burke County on felony counts of breaking & entering and larceny.

Yesterday (August 10), Burke County Deputies responded to an alarm at Southern Legacy on Highway 18 South. Deputies found the door open and asked Emergency Communications to notify the business owner.

A witness who lives nearby told Officers he saw a female enter the business by prying the door open with a metal bar. The witness described the suspect and told Officers she drove away in a silver Hyundai.

The business owner identified the suspect as Heather Kelley. Morganton Public Safety located the suspect a short time later and took her into custody.

Kelley was placed in the Burke-Catawba District Confinement Facility under a $10,000 secured bond. She was scheduled to make a first appearance in District Court today.

The investigation is ongoing. Further charges are pending.

Thursday, 11 August 2016 17:26

Hickory Man Charged with Indecent Exposure

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55-year-old Michael Cliff Brown of 3rd Avenue Place S.E. was arrested at about 8:30 Wednesday morning (August 10) on one misdemeanor count of indecent exposure.

He is accused of standing in front of the Life House while naked, shouting as passers-by. The Life House, located on 2nd Avenue Place S.E., is described as a Christian resource center for the homeless and others facing hardship.

Brown was taken into custody at the Life House and placed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility under a $600 secured bond. A first appearance in District Court was set for September 14 in Newton.

33-year-old Brandon Lee Bradshaw of Van Horn Road in Connelly Springs was arrested today (Thursday, August 11) by Catawba County Sheriff's Officers. He's charged with failure to appear on two counts apiece of breaking and/or entering, and larceny after breaking and entering, along with single counts of burning certain buildings and conspire to commit felony larceny.

Bradshaw was locked up in the Catawba County Detention Facility under $200,000 bond. A Superior Court appearance is scheduled for October 3. 

49-year-old James Eugene Harwood was arrested Wednesday (August 10) by authorities in Burke County. He's charged with felony assault by strangulation. Following the arrest, Harwood was placed in jail in Morganton under no bond on a 48-hour hold. A court appearance was scheduled for today (Thursday, August 11).

Thursday, 11 August 2016 05:11

Bridge Closed In Burke County

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A bridge has been closed in Burke County, it will likely remain closed until late in the fall. The North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) has closed the bridge on Nobby Lail Road over Cub Creek in eastern Burke County. Crews will replace the original bridge, which was built in 1961, and no longer meets the needs of area traffic.

The contractor, R.E. Burns and Sons, expects the new bridge to be ready by the end of November. An off-site detour directs traffic to Miller Bridge Road, Warlik Chapel Road, Mineral Springs Mountain Road, and then back to Nobby Lail Road.

The repair of aging bridges part of Governor Pat McCrory's 25-year transportation plan. The Governor's 2016-17 budget increases repair and replacement funding for bridges by 58 percent, totaling $242 million.

The bridge on Nobby Lail Road is one of 12 bridges in Burke, Rutherford and McDowell counties that are part of a $7.5 million contract expected to be completed by October 2017. Eight of the bridges are completed, two are in progress, and, according to NCDOT, the whole project is 15 percent ahead of schedule.

19-year-old Lane Allen Baker of North 4th Avenue in Maiden was arrested Wednesday (August 10) by Probation and Parole Officers. He's charged with three counts of felony probation violation. Following the arrest, Baker was placed in the Catawba County Detention Facility under $12,000 bond. A Superior Court appearance is scheduled for next Monday (August 15).

45-year-old Marty Baird Peters of East Parker Road in Morganton was arrested by Burke County Sheriff's Officers. He's charged with felony obstruction of justice.

According to a news release issued by the Sheriff's Office on Wednesday (August 10), Detectives with the Burke County Criminal Investigations Division intercepted an active attempt by Marty Peters to influence material witnesses in an ongoing investigation into an alleged sexual offense.

Peters was arrested April 6 on a charge of first degree sexual offense. According to the news release, Investigators discovered that Peters was attempting to make contact with state witnesses in order to influence their testimony in regards to the allegations made against him.  

Following the arrest, an additional $25,000 bond was added to the existing $100,000. He's currently being held in jail in Morganton under that total secured bond amount of $125,000. He's scheduled to appear in District Court on the obstruction of justice charge Friday (August 12).

A man charged with murder in an incident that occurred at the accused shooters residence in April, is back in jail for reportedly violating pre-trial release conditions. 36-year-old Jason Daniel Clary of Taylorsville is charged with murder in connection with the April 11 shooting death of 35-year-old Travis Harold. The incident occurred at Clary's home on Mount Wesley Church Road. Clary is claiming self-defense.

Today (Wednesday, August 10) shortly after 9:30 a.m., members of the Alexander County Sheriff’s Office assisted the Alexander County Director of Pre-Trial Release in going to Clary's residence to conduct a random drug test. The test was given and the results showed that a controlled substance, Suboxone, was detected in Clary’s system. Clary was taken into custody without incident and transported to the Alexander County Detention Center, where he was brought in front of Magistrate Watts. No bond was given.

A bond hearing was held on July 6 in Superior Court in front of Judge Mark Klass. Clary’s conditions for release included a stipulation that he could not test positive for any controlled substance. Any violations of that condition would result in immediate revocation of the bond, which was set at $500,000 secured, and the defendant was to be arrested without warrant.
Clary is scheduled for a first appearance in Alexander County Superior Court next Monday (August 15).

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