News (2379)

Monday, 17 June 2019 11:51

Two Arrested on Felony Firearms Charges

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52-year-old Johnny Edward Harris and 35-year-old Benjamin Lee Watkins, both of the same address on 3rd Street S.W. in Hickory, were arrested by Hickory Police at 11:45 a.m. Friday (June 14). They were each charged with felony possession of a firearm by a felon. According to H.P.D.'s arrest reports, both men were in possession of a handgun at the time of their arrests.

Harris and Watkins were taken into custody without incident at their residence. They were both taken to the Catawba Co. Detention Facility with bond for each set at $5,000, secured. Watkins has since been released. Both men will make first appearances in District Court on June 24 in Newton.

29-year-old John Patrick Williams of 3rd Street Place N.E. in Hickory was arrested by Hickory Police early Sunday morning (June 16) on one felony count of possession of a schedule VI controlled substance and one misdemeanor count of possession of drug paraphernalia.

He was arrested in connection to an incident on June 16. At that time, Officers spotted a vehicle with a revoked plate in the parking lot at a convenience store on 13th Avenue Drive S.E. During the incident, Police reportedly found 77 grams of hash, nine dosage units of resin in pods, 69.2 grams of wax, one dosage unit of Subutex, 1.1 grams of marijuana, one dosage unit of gummies, and drug paraphernalia.

Williams was taken into custody without incident at about 4:30 a.m. Sunday at the store. He was jailed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility under a $10,000 secured bond. Williams was scheduled to make a first appearance in District Court tomorrow in Newton.

47-year-old Ralph Maxton Meachum of Forest Hill Drive in Lenoir was arrested Saturday (June 15) by Caldwell County Sheriff's Officers. He's charged with felony assault on a handicapped person. Meachum was jailed in the Caldwell County Detention Center under $25,000 secured bond. A District Court appearance is scheduled for Tuesday (June 18).

50-year-old Melea Melissa Walker of Midway Sand Road in Granite Falls was arrested Sunday (June 16) by Lenoir Police Officers. She's charged with felony possession of a stolen motor vehicle. Walker was detained in the Caldwell County Detention Center under $25,000 secured bond. A District Court appearance is scheduled for Tuesday (June 18).

The Morganton Department of Public Safety was continuing to search for the third suspect in an armed robbery that occurred late last week.

Just before 5 a.m. last Thursday (June 13), Public Safety Officers responded to Speedway on South Sterling Street reference an armed robbery in progress. After arriving on the scene, officers came into contact with three black males dressed in dark clothing with handguns. The three suspects fled on foot.

Two suspects have been apprehended. A third suspect, 18-year-old Stephen Jamal Craig, whose last known address is Elizabeth Avenue in Shelby, is still at large. Craig is described as a black male, 5' 8", 140 pounds, with black hair and brown eyes. He is considered armed and dangerous. Use extreme caution if contact is made with this subject. Do not approach him. Call 911 immediately. The charges pending against Craig are felony counts of robbery with a dangerous weapon and first-degree kidnapping.

If you have information on this case call Morganton Public Safety at (828) 437-1211 or Morganton-Burke Crime Stoppers at 828-437-3333.

Charges have been filed in a stabbing case in Alexander County. Last Wednesday (June 12) shortly before 5 p.m., 911 received a call of a stabbing on Wood Road off Three Forks Church Road. Officers arrived on the scene and found a 39-year-old man with several stab wounds to the chest area.

Witnesses confirmed that a 14-year-old white juvenile female ran from the scene before officers arrived. Alexander County Sheriff's Officers established a perimeter on Wood Road, Three Forks Church Road and Highway 90 West. Off duty officers as well as on duty officers, the North Carolina State Highway Patrol, the Taylorsville Police Department, and Probation & Parole assisted with setting up the perimeter.

The Sheriff’s Office K-9 unit along with the NC Department of Public Safety blood hound K-9 assisted with the search. Shortly before 6:30 p.m. Wednesday officers found the juvenile in a wooded area near the scene of the stabbing. She was taken into custody without incident.

Alexander County EMS was called to the scene to check the physical well-being of the juvenile. The victim was transported via helicopter to Carolinas Medical Center with serious injuries. No update on the victim's condition has been provided. The Juvenile Court Counselors Office from the Department of Juvenile Justice was contacted in reference to the incident. The Juvenile Court Counselor has charged the juvenile with attempted murder and assault with a deadly weapon inflicting serious injury with intent to kill.

Monday, 17 June 2019 03:58

Newton Man Charged With Assault

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57-year-old Willie Duran Armstrong of West Herman Street in Newton was arrested Sunday (June 16) by Newton Police Officers. He was charged with assault with a deadly weapon and disorderly conduct. Armstrong was placed in the Catawba County Detention Facility without bond. A District Court appearance is scheduled for next Monday (June 24).

The Catawba County Sheriff’s Office Reports that a person taken into custody passed away Saturday (June 15). 

Just before 5 p.m. Saturday the individual was at the Catawba County Detention Facility in Newton and was about to go before the magistrate. The person complained of an illness and collapsed. Catawba County EMS and the Newton Fire Department responded and were unable to resuscitate the individual. 

The Catawba County Sheriff’s Office and State Bureau of Investigation are investigating the matter. An internal investigation is also being conducted to ensure proper procedure and policy was followed. The victim’s name is being withheld, pending notification of next of kin. 

A fire that claimed two lives is under investigation. At approximately 11:30 p.m Saturday (June 15), Alexander County 911 received a call on Pine Meadows Lane in reference to a mobile home on fire. Fire departments responded from Sugar Loaf, Vashti and Taylorsville to the fire scene. Upon arrival they discovered the mobile home fully engulfed on fire.

After the fire was extinguished firefighters discovered two deceased bodies inside the mobile home. The bodies were in different rooms of the home. The victims were badly burned beyond recognition. An autopsy was scheduled today (June 17) to confirm the identities of the victims.

The fire is believed to be the result of arson. SBI Agents, the SBI Arson K-9,Sheriff’s Office Detectives and K-9 and the Alexander County Fire Marshals Office were investigating.

Shortly after 1 p.m. Sunday (June 16) a person of interest was found by officers and was being questioned. Anyone with information on this case is asked to call Sheriffs Office Communications at 828-632-2911 or the Crime Stoppers Line at 828-632-8555.


41-year-old Jorge Luis Marrero of North Carolina Avenue in Maiden was arrested by Maiden Police yesterday (June 13) on a felony warrant as a fugitive awaiting extradition to another state.

Marrero is wanted by authorities with the parole office in Waterbury, Connecticut in New Haven County. He is wanted for violating the conditions of his parole. Marrero is on probation following a larceny conviction.

The suspect has been jailed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility where he is being held without bond. A first appearance in District Court was scheduled today in Newton.

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