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Tuesday, 01 December 2015 13:01

Pedestrian Struck In Roadway In Boone

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On Monday (November 30), at approximately 6:15 p.m., Boone Police responded to a motor vehicle collision with a pedestrian. According to a news release, a 2002 Honda Accord driven by 18-year-old Tyler Christian Devore of Statesville, struck a pedestrian, 66-year-old Harry Edward Noblett of Boone.

The accident happened in the 700 block of Blowing Rock Road. Mr. Devore was traveling south on Blowing Rock Road when Mr. Noblett entered the highway walking across the southbound lanes to the center turn lane before walking back into the southbound lanes. There was not a designated crosswalk at this location.

Mr. Devore was not injured. Mr. Noblett sustained serious injuries. Mr. Noblett was taken to Watuaga Medical Center before being transferred to Baptist Hospital in Winston Salem. Alcohol nor speed appear to be a factor for Mr. Devore in the collision. Alcohol is suspected in regards to Mr. Noblett. The investigation is on-going.

Tuesday, 01 December 2015 12:50

Conover Man Faces Multiple Meth Trafficking Charges

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29-year-old Rodolfo Adames Gutierrez of Herman Sipe Road in Conover was arrested today (Tuesday, December 1) by Catawba County Sheriff’s Officers. He’s charged with four counts of trafficking in methamphetamine, along with single counts of maintain a vehicle, dwelling or place to keep controlled substance, driving while license revoked, and misdemeanor child abuse. Gutierrez was incarcerated in the Catawba County Detention Facility under $225,000 bond. No court date was listed.

Tuesday, 01 December 2015 11:05

Man Charged With Assaulting Detention Officers

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41-year-old Jonathan Leonard McCorkle of Icon Way in Charlotte was arrested Monday (November 30) by Lincoln County Sheriff’s Officers. He’s charged with two counts of Felonious Malicious Conduct by a Prisoner and one count of Felonious Assault on a Detention Officer.

The charges are in connection with incidents in which McCorkle allegedly assaulted several Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office detention officers during an altercation Monday night in the detention facility. According to a news release, officers learned that McCorkle, who was being held on a writ to appear in court, was making threats to kill himself. After being alerted to the information, officers went to McCorkle’s cell to relocate him to a more secure cell, which is standard procedure when an inmate is potentially suicidal.

As officers were attempting to move the inmate a struggle ensued and McCorkle bit Detention Sgt. Roger Jones on the right forearm and then spit blood on Jones and two other officers.

Following his arrest, McCorkle was taken before a Lincoln County magistrate and placed in jail under a $100,000 secured bond. No court date is listed.

The filing period starts today for local offices up for election in the 2016 Presidential Preference Primary. Filing opens at noon today and will last through Noon, Monday, December 21. To file, you must be a registered voter in the county in which you wish to run for office.

Candidates for the following offices may file at the Catawba County Board of Elections office in Newton: North Carolina Senate 42nd District, North Carolina House 89th District,       North Carolina House 96th District, Catawba County Board of Commissioners (two seats open), Register of Deeds, Catawba County Schools Board of Education (three seats open), Catawba County Soil and Water Conservation District Supervisors (one seat open).

A number of seats on the county, state and national level are open in 2016. Candidates for some offices must file with the North Carolina State Board of Elections office, including:     President and Vice President, United States Senate (one seat), United States 5th Congressional District, United States 10th Congressional District, North Carolina Governor, Lt. Governor and Council of State offices. District Court Judge- 25th Judicial District (two seats open).            

In Caldwell County, the following races will be conducted: There are three four-year terms available on the Caldwell County Board of Commissioners, A four-year term for Register of Deeds, a two-year term for N.C. State Senate District 45, and a two-year terms for N.C. House of Representative District 87.

The filing period is beginning earlier than in the past this year due to changes in North Carolina’s primary election schedule. The primary will be held earlier this year, on March 15. Previously, North Carolina's primary was held in May. A second primary, if necessary, would be held on May 3, 2016 for state and/or local offices and on May 24, 2016 for federal offices.

Filing fees for the offices listed above vary from office to office. A full list of offices and filing fees is available at the Catawba County Government website.

Staff will be available from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday through Friday to assist with the candidate filing form and the required campaign committee forms. Candidates must be 21 years old and be a registered voter in the district for which they are filing.

For more information on filing you may call the Catawba County Board of Elections office at 828-464-2424 or visit the county website.

A woman was transported to the hospital following a single-vehicle accident in Hildebran in which the driver’s vehicle overturned multiple times. The driver told authorities she was run off the road. The North Carolina State Highway Patrol was dispatched to 3rd Avenue NW at North Center Street at 9:13 this morning (Tuesday, December 1). 20-year-old Jacquelyn Cunningham of Connelly Springs was traveling on North Center Street when she went off the road near the intersection with 3rd Avenue NW.

Cunningham’s vehicle hit a deep ditch and overturned multiple times, in the process striking a street sign and a power pole. Cunningham was transported to CHC in Valdese with what the investigating trooper did not believe were life-threatening injuries. Cunningham did tell the trooper that she was run off the road by a white truck. There were no witnesses to the accident to confirm that story.

Duke Energy responded to the scene to repair the power pole. The investigation into the accident is continuing.

26-year-old Jarae Maran Millsaps of Wilkesboro Boulevard in Lenoir was arrested Monday (November 30) by Lenoir Police Officers. He’s charged with felony counts of breaking and/or entering, larceny after breaking and entering, and possession of stolen goods, along with two misdemeanor counts of larceny. Millsaps was incarcerated in the Caldwell County Detention Center under $45,000 secured bond. He made a first court appearance Monday, and is scheduled to appear in District Court next on December 17.

41-year-old Libby Ann Williams, who is listed as a homeless person from Morganton, was arrested Monday (November 30) in Catawba County. She faces charges from warrants out of Burke County. Williams is charged with deliver methamphetamine, possession with intent to manufacture, sell, and deliver methamphetamine, and sell methamphetamine. Williams was locked up in the Catawba County Detention Facility under $10,000 bond. A District Court date is set for Wednesday (December 2).

Tuesday, 01 December 2015 05:34

Statesville Boy Attacked By Rottweiler In Raleigh

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A 22-month-old son boy was attacked by a friend's Rottweiler on Friday morning (November 27). The boy's family, who is from Statesville, was in Raleigh visiting friends for the holiday when it happened.

According to WSOC, Ryder Wells crawled through a doggie door into the backyard where the dogs were. The dog's owner is a family friend.

Family members are hopeful that the boy will recover, however, according to the WSOC report, the boy will have a long road to recovery. He's already had two surgeries, and will likely need several more.

Raleigh police said the attack was an accident and they don't expect to file any charges.

A Hickory teenager involved in an automobile crash that killed his high school classmate 15 months ago pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter and driving while impaired during Catawba County Superior Court on Monday (November 30). The defendant will serve 60 days in jail.

18-year-old David Arthur Engelmann entered the plea in connection with the death of 17-year-old Jay Brian Robertson II, a Hickory High School classmate. The fatal accident occurred on August 31, 2014.

Pursuant to the plea agreement, the Honorable Daniel A. Kuehnert, Superior Court Judge from Burke County, gave Engelmann a suspended sentence of 13-25 months along with 18 months of unsupervised probation while he is a student at SUNY-Binghamton in New York. However, there is a stipulation that Engelmann must report to a designated facility in New York and submit to alcohol/drug testing within four hours of receiving notice from his attorney, Steve Brackett, at the request of the District Attorney’s Office. Those results must be turned over to the DA’s Office for review.

Additionally, Engelmann will serve a 60-day split jail sentence in Catawba County. He will report to the jail at 3 p.m. on Dec. 24 and remain incarcerated there until 3 p.m. on Jan. 8, 2016. The remaining 45 days of that split sentence will be served starting at 3 p.m. seven days after the final day of Engelmann’s spring semester in college. Kuehnert also required that he pay restitution in the amount of $4,775 to Jay Robertson and Nicole Rice, parents of the deceased, within 12 months, and Engelmann is not allowed to operate a motor vehicle for the next 12 months.

According to the investigation and accident reconstruction by Hickory Police Department Master Patrol Officer Amanda Efird, Engelmann was driving a Subaru Forester along 6th St. NW in the Viewmont community of Hickory when he allegedly ran off the road, overcorrected and flipped the vehicle. Robertson was ejected from the vehicle through its open sunroof and died as a result of injuries sustained in the crash.

Engelmann, who was 17 at the time of the fatal crash, was traveling at least 49 mph in a 35 mph zone, and an open bottle of tequila was found in the vehicle. Investigation by Hickory Police Department revealed that Engelmann’s blood alcohol level was .09.

Tuesday, 01 December 2015 05:14

Minimum 25 Year Sentence Imposed In Sex Offense Case

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Sexual offenses with a 12-year-old female led to a lengthy active prison sentence for a Newton man. 21-year-old Jose David Rodriguez-Basquez pleaded guilty to three counts of sexual offense with a child by an adult offender and two counts of indecent liberties with a child during the Monday (November 30) session of Catawba County Superior Court.

The Honorable Gregory B. Hayes, Superior Court Judge from Catawba County, sentenced Rodriguez-Basquez to serve 25 to 35 years in custody of the North Carolina Department of Adult Corrections. The defendant will have to register as a sex offender and enroll in satellite-based monitoring for the remainder of his life.

Investigation by Newton Police Department Detectives Ronnie Crawley and Spencer Cline revealed that Rodriguez-Basquez, 20 years old at the time, and the female victim were caught showering together at her home when her parents returned from a trip on Aug. 27, 2014.

The defendant and victim met some months prior to the showering incident and had exchanged nude photographs with each other. There also were text message exchanges that indicated Rodriguez-Basquez’s desire to have sexual intercourse with the girl. They also met on one other occasion when inappropriate touching occurred.

Assistant District Attorney Lance Sigmon pointed out that Rodriguez-Basquez provided a full confession to investigators during the subsequent interview following his arrest, but that interview revealed cause for concern when he admitted to having a fetish for child-themed pornography and anime depicting young girls having sex.

Rodriguez-Basquez offered an apology to the victim and her family, claiming repentance for his actions after 14 months of incarceration at the Catawba County Detention Facility.

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