Fire Department Chief Ken Hair presented plaques of appreciation to Lenoir Police Department Corporal Joe Hamrick and Caldwell County Sheriff's Office Deputy Paul Exon Tuesday night (December 3) for their lifesaving efforts during a recent house fire.
Deputy Exon was the first to arrive on the scene on Bradford Mountain Road in the early morning hours of November 16. Deputy Exon was driving near the home when he heard the call. He immediately drove to the location. Deputy Exon said that no one was outside when he arrived, so he banged on the door to wake up the family inside. The family woke up and got out of the house before flames engulfed the entire home.
As the family was leaving the house, Cpl. Hamrick arrived on the scene. The family told Deputy Exon and Cpl. Hamrick that several of their pets were still inside the house. Cpl. Hamrick and Deputy Exon entered the house and were able to save three family dogs.
Once the Lenoir Fire Department arrived, Firefighters were able to put out the blaze, but the family lost everything.
A couple who went missing from Lincoln County on Monday (December 2) has been located. Lenoir Police located 81-year-old Charles William Whitener and his wife 80-year-old Maxine at the Comfort Inn in Lenoir at around 7:30 a.m. today (December 5). Both are in good condition and a family member went to Lenoir to pick them up. A Silver Alert was issued on Monday after the couple were reported missing from the son’s residence on Beth Haven Church Road in Denver.
The Hickory Public Library will hold a public input meeting for the future expansion of Ridgeview Branch Library. The public is invited to this session. The meeting will take place on Monday, December 16, at 6 p.m. at the Ridgeview Branch Library. Architects from McMillan Pazdan Smith will present draft design plans and drawings. Community members will then be asked to give feedback on the draft report and recommend changes for the final design.
The Ridgeview Branch Library is located at 706 1st Street SW in Hickory. For more information, please call Library Director Sarah Greene at (828) 304-0500.
42-year-old Jason Matthew Basnett was arrested Wednesday (December 4) by authorities in Burke County. He's charged with felony larceny, possession or receiving goods from a construction site. Basnett was arrested shortly before 3:30 p.m. Wednesday and placed in jail in Morganton under $15,000 secured bond. A District Court date is set for Friday (December 6).
34-year-old John Kevin Pace of Dogwood Drive in Hickory has been arrested by Burke Co. Sheriff’s Officers on a charge of indecent liberties with a minor. He was arrested at about 3:40 yesterday afternoon (December 4). A press release from the Sheriff’s Office states that Investigators interviewed Pace, who admitted to inappropriate contact with a minor.
Pace was taken into custody and placed in the Burke/Catawba Detention Facility under a $25,000 secured bond. A first appearance in District Court was set for tomorrow in Morganton.
Milling operations are underway in Hickory along Main Avenue NW, from Ninth Street NW to Fourth Street NW, as part of the City Walk project. The work began earlier today (December 5). One lane will remain open and the contractors will direct traffic around equipment. Drivers are asked to use caution when driving through the work zone. Milling work in this area should be completed by the end of the day on Friday (December 6).
For more information about the City Walk and construction updates, continue to check www.CraftingHickory.com.
53-year-old Richard Lee Morris, who is listed as a homeless person from Claremont, was arrested Wednesday (December 4) by Catawba County Sheriff's Officers. He's charged with possession of methamphetamine, simple possession of schedule II controlled substance, and shoplifting with concealment of goods. Morris is also charged with four counts of failure to appear on charges including possession of methamphetamine and misdemeanor larceny. Morris was confined in the Catawba County Detention Facility under $9,000 bond. District Court dates were scheduled Wednesday, January 23, and January 28.
41-year-old Nikki Michelle Neely of 20th Avenue Drive NE in Hickory was arrested by Long View Police Officers. She's charged with felony possession of schedule II controlled substance and misdemeanor possession of drug paraphernalia. Neely was placed in the Catawba County Detention Facility this morning (December 5) under $1,500 bond. A District Court appearance is scheduled for next Monday (December 9).
22-year-old Michael Tyler Tomlin of Mcarver Street in Gastonia was arrested Wednesday (December 4) by Caldwell County Sheriff's Officers. He's charged with felony counts of flee to elude arrest with a motor vehicle and possession of a firearm by a felon. Tomlin was brought to the Caldwell County Detention Center where bond was set at $25,000 secured. A District Court appearance was scheduled Wednesday.
38-year-old Michael Scott Henderson of Hiddenite, will spend five to seven years in prison after he was convicted of two counts of attempted breaking and entering, attempted larceny after breaking and entering, and admitting his habitual felon status during Catawba County Superior Court on Tuesday (December 3).
The Honorable Jesse B. Caldwell, Superior Court Judge from Gaston County, imposed the active prison term for Henderson. Henderson’s sentence length was enhanced by his habitual felon status that included prior convictions for possession of stolen goods in Catawba County (September 2000), breaking and entering in Catawba County (September 2005) and breaking and entering in Alexander County (May 2011).
A neighbor of one of the victims saw the defendant walk around the victim’s house on February 27, 2019. When deputies from the Catawba County Sheriff’s Office arrived, they found a basement window busted out and heard noise inside the home. They ordered the defendant to come out, and he exited the home.
The other offenses occurred on June 10, 2019, and involved the break-in of a shed housing a mower and other equipment at a church. The defendant attempted to sell the mower at a pawn shop. Co-defendants in the case gave confessions regarding the break-in and what was taken on two different trips to the church on the date of offense.
Jamie Phares and Brandi Trouille handled investigation of the cases for the Catawba County Sheriff’s Office. Ben Faulkenberry prosecuted the matters for the District Attorney’s Office.
48-year-old Renous Alan Hughes of Hickory, was given an active prison sentence of six to nine years following his conviction for multiple crimes during Catawba County Superior Court on Monday (December 2).
The Honorable Karen Eady-Williams, Superior Court Judge from Mecklenburg County, imposed the prison term for Hughes after he pleaded guilty to flee to elude arrest with a motor vehicle, larceny of a motor vehicle, felony larceny and he admitted his status as a habitual felon.
The length of Hughes’ sentence was enhanced by his habitual felon status stemming from prior convictions for possession of stolen goods in Catawba County (August 1990), flee to elude arrest with a motor vehicle in Burke County (April 2001) and possession of stolen goods in Caldwell County (September 2007).
Authorities say that Hughes fled from police and committed the larcenies in July 2017 and July 2018 in both Catawba and Caldwell counties.
Nathan Starnes and Mike Hoyle handled investigation of the cases for the Catawba County Sheriff’s Office, and Clint Ferguson investigated the case for the Granite Falls Police Department. Assistant District Attorneys Melanie Earles and Jennifer C. Mathews prosecuted the matters for the State.
47-year-old Lisa Marie Hansen of Main Avenue Drive NW in Hickory was arrested Tuesday (December 3) by Catawba County Sheriff's Officers. She's charged with felony counts of larceny of a firearm, obtaining property by false pretense and possession of a stolen motor vehicle. She's also charged with larceny of a motor vehicle, hit and run failure to stop with property damage, fictitious or altered title, registration, card or tag, failure to report accident and improper backing.
Hansen was jailed in the Catawba County Detention Facility under $8,500 bond. District Court appearances were scheduled today (December 4) and next Monday (December 9).
According to the Burke County Sheriff's Office, scammers identifying themselves as Lt. Westbrook are calling residents and telling them that they have missed jury duty. The scammer is telling residents to purchase a VISA debit card, provide the scammer with the debit card number and mail to 175 Government Drive in Morganton which is not a legitimate address.
After submitting a sum of money, they are directed to meet with Judge Erwin. This is a SCAM. Do not send any money in this situation. You would never be directed to send money in this manner for missing jury duty.
A Silver Alert has been issued for a missing endangered man, 81-year-old Charles William Whitener of Greenville, N.C. Whitener and his wife, 80-year-old Maxine Nixon Whitener were last seen Monday (December 2) at their son's residence on the 1,600 block of Beth Haven Church Road in Denver, N.C. The Whiteners are believed to be suffering from dementia or some other cognitive impairment.
Charles Whitener is a black male, six feet tall and weighing around 260 pounds. He has short gray hair and brown eyes. He was last seen wearing burgundy pants, a blue shirt, and a blue jacket. Maxine Whitener is a black female, 5'7" tall and weighing around 140 pounds. She has medium-length black hair and brown eyes.
Authorities say the couple may be in Tennessee.
Anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of Charles & Maxine Whitener should call the Lincoln Co. Sheriff’s Office at 704-732-9050 or Lincoln County Communications at 704-735-8202.