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News (811)

A break-in and safecracking at a Salvation Army store is under investigation. According to a news release from the Granite Falls Police Department, on Wednesday (March 11) at approximately 9:00 a.m., a breaking, entering, larceny, and safe cracking was reported at The Salvation Army Granite Falls Family Store located at 4370 Hickory Blvd. in Granite Falls. An employee opening the business for daily operation noticed the business to be ransacked, items stolen, and the security safe forced opened. At this point employees of the business called the Granite Falls Police Department. Officers located forced entry to a side entrance door of the business. An undisclosed amount of cash was stolen from the security safe. Approximately two hundred dollars of additional property was stolen and approximately three hundred dollars of damage occurred during this incident.

Granite Falls Police detectives processed the scene and collected items of evidence. G.F.P.D. detectives have been working throughout the day collecting video surveillance and possible witness statements in the area. Please contact Detective Joey Morrison at (828) 396-3358 or Caldwell County CrimeStoppers (828) 758-8300 with any information related to this investigation. Individuals may remain anonymous.  

35-year-old Timothy Scott Eller was charged Wednesday (March 11) by Granite Falls Police Officers with filing a false report to law enforcement. The charge is in connection with an alleged armed robbery. Eller initially filed a report of an armed robbery at the Wal-Mart in Granite Falls last Thursday (March 05). In the initial reported information, Eller alleged that he had been robbed at knifepoint inside his vehicle as he traveled through the parking lot of the Wal-Mart in Granite Falls. Within minutes of officers arriving at Wal-Mart, false statements and rumors begin to post to social media sites about the alleged robbery.

After interviewing witnesses and reviewing video surveillance systems, investigators could not corroborate the statements given by Eller in regards to the alleged robbery. During subsequent interviews between Granite Falls Police detectives and Eller, Eller admitted to making false statements about being robbed. As a result of the investigation by G.F.P.D. detectives, it has been determined that no ongoing threat to the community exist in relation to this incident and no armed robbery occurred as originally reported. Eller is scheduled to appear in District Court May 5.

The Lenoir Police Department is seeking information on a robbery last week at a convenience store. Last Saturday (March 7) at 1:43 a.m., a suspect entered the Holiday to Go #2 convenience store, which is located at 718 SW Morganton Blvd. in Lenoir. The suspect, who was described as young black male wearing a dark blue hooded sweatshirt, went behind the counter and told the clerk “give me all your money.” When the clerk refused to give the suspect any money, he left the store on foot. The suspect did not produce, nor did the clerk see, any type of weapon during the incident.

The suspect is pictured in the photo that accompanies this story. The Lenoir Police Department is asking anyone with information relating to this, or any other crime, to contact Crime Stoppers at 828/758-8300 or the Lenoir Police Department at 828/757-2100.

Governor Pat McCrory, U.S. Under Secretary of Commerce for International Trade Stefan M. Selig and Walmart Vice President of U.S. Manufacturing Cindy Marsiglio joined Michael D. Penner, President of PEDS Legwear, for a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the opening of PEDS’ new $16 million facility today (Wednesday, March 11) in Hildebran. PEDS is the maker of brands such as Peds, Medi-Peds, and Growing Socks.


Governor McCrory and former North Carolina Commerce Secretary Sharon Decker announced in June that PEDS (formerly Richelieu Legwear International Inc.), was expanding its presence in Burke County through an investment of $16 million in a state-of-the-art manufacturing facility.


PEDS invested $7 million to rescue International Legwear Group (ILG), a failing sock company based in Burke County, N.C.—an area particularly hard hit by the recession and offshoring. Within 10 days of ILG’s announcing its liquidation, PEDS re-hired workers who had been laid off and saved the company’s ongoing accounts. A news release from the Governor’s office says the company expects to hire a total of 205 workers by 2018.

Wednesday, 11 March 2015 14:42

Motorist Hits Conover Bojangles

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A motorist ran into the Bojangles restaurant on Conover Boulevard in Conover yesterday (March 10) at about 6 p.m. The driver, Denice Cannon of Valdese, was unhurt, and no one in the restaurant was injured.

Cannon was traveling east on Conover Boulevard when she attempted to apply the brakes. She told Police the brakes failed and said she swerved into the restaurant parking lot to avoid a collision with another vehicle. The left front area of her 1995 Plymouth hit the side of the restaurant.

Conover Police Officer Steve Brewer said Cannon was charged with failure to reduce speed to avoid a collision.

Wednesday, 11 March 2015 14:06

Hickory Man Faces Trafficking Charges in Maiden

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23-year-old Spencer Travis Ellis of 14th Avenue Drive NE in Hickory was arrested today (Wednesday, March 11) by Maiden Police Officers. He’s charged with conspire to traffic opium or heroin and two counts of trafficking opium or heroin. Following the arrest, Ellis was incarcerated in the Catawba County Detention Center under $50,000 bond. A court appearance is scheduled for Friday (March 13).

40-year-old Rodriquez Lavan of 2nd Street S.E. in Hickory was arrested by Hickory Police at about 4:40 yesterday afternoon (March 10) on one felony count of possession of a stolen motor vehicle.

Events leading to his arrest unfolded when a 46-year-old male victim came to H.P.D. headquarters to report that his vehicle, a 2007 Chevrolet Impala, had been stolen from the parking lot at the Deluxe Inn on Highway 70 S.W. in Hickory.

A short time later, Officers spotted the vehicle at the intersection of 3rd Avenue S.E. and Highway 127 South. Police stopped the vehicle on the 500 block of 4th Street S.E. Two men jumped and ran from the vehicle. One of the men, Rodriquez Lavan, obeyed Officers’ commands to come back. He was taken into custody without further incident. The other suspect remains at large.

Lavan was placed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility under a $20,000 secured bond. A first appearance in District Court was set for today.

A GMC Sierra truck ran off the roadway at about 12:30 today and hit two trailers before running up a hill and coming to a stop. The incident occurred at the Hickory Trace Village apartments on 5th Street N.E. in Hickory.

A Hickory Police spokesperson said emergency personnel responded to a possible cardiac event in connection to the accident, but it’s not clear if the victim was the driver of the truck. One person on the scene did receive C.P.R. and was transported to a local hospital.

Hickory Police, the Hickory Fire Department and E.M.S. personnel all responded to the scene.

No further details are available.

31-year-old Joshua Craig Wright of Columbus, Georgia was arrested by Hickory Police at about 5 a.m. yesterday (March 10) on one count of felony possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.

He was arrested after Officers on foot patrol at the Red Roof Inn on Lenoir-Rhyne Boulevard S.E. in Hickory detected the odor of marijuana coming from a hotel room. The occupants didn’t come to the door when Officers knocked, so a search warrant was obtained and executed.

The search led to the discovery of a marijuana roach, digital scales, a broken glass pipe, short straws, a printer, two-and-a-half counterfeit one-dollar bills and a .38-caliber Jiminez Arms handgun.

The other male occupant was not arrested.

Wright was placed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility under a $25,000 secured bond. A first appearance in District Court was set for today.

Additional charges are possible.

A woman was struck by a train and killed early this morning in Hickory.  The victim is 45-year-old Betty Sue Propst Powell, who is believed to be a homeless person from Hickory.

The accident occurred at 1:05 a.m. as the victim was walking north on a sidewalk on the left side of the road, heading toward South Center Street. According to the train conductor and a witness, a westbound Norfolk Southern train approached with its horn sounding. The victim was hit by the train’s lead engine. It’s not clear why the victim stepped into the train’s path.

Hickory Police responded to the scene where they found the victim still alive, but unable to communicate. She was transported to Frye Regional Medical Center by Catawba County E.M.S. where she passed away a short time later.

Video footage shot from the train has been sent to Norfolk Southern’s offices in Roanoke, Virginia for processing. Corporate officials representing Norfolk Southern and the company’s own investigative team also responded to the scene.

At this time, it’s not known if the railroad-crossing gate was lowered prior to the accident.