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News (811)

A woman sustained life-threatening injuries in a fire at a senior living facility over the weekend. At approximately 11:10 a.m. Sunday, Hickory firefighters were dispatched to a reported fire alarm, located at 300 17th Street SW, West Hickory Senior Apartments. Firefighters responded with two engines, one ladder, one rescue and two command units.

The call was initially reported as an activated fire alarm in the apartment by a medical alert system that the resident activated. On arrival firefighters found a fire in the apartment and one patient with severe burns. The elderly female was transported to Catawba Valley Medical Center with life threatening injuries where she was airlifted to Baptist Medical Center. Investigators determined the fire started as a result of smoking in bed while oxygen was in use. The apartment suffered moderate damage and no other residents were displaced as a result of the fire.

A Hickory man will spend at least a quarter of a century behind bars after pleading guilty to first-degree burglary and first-degree rape Friday (March 6) during Catawba County Superior Court.

43-year-old Roger Wayne Propst of Hickory, was given an active sentence of 25-35 years in custody of the North Carolina Department of Adult Corrections by the Honorable Hugh B. Lewis, Superior Court Judge from Mecklenburg County. When he is released from prison, Propst will be required to register as a sex offender and is subject to satellite-based monitoring for the remainder of his life.

The guilty plea is in connection with a case in which the defendant broke into the home of the victim just before 4 a.m. on June 25, 2014, and sexually assaulted her multiple times, inflicting numerous stab wounds to her neck, chest and hands in the process. The victim advised officers responding from the Hickory Police Department that she woke up to Propst on top of her, stabbing her with a knife. Propst also stole a bicycle from the victim's residence, he was later arrested without incident.

The defendant was in violation of a domestic violence protection order that the victim had against him that was valid until Aug. 12, 2014.

Lance Sigmon prosecuted the case for the District Attorney’s Office. Investigation for Hickory Police Department was conducted by Investigator Paul Clark, and Master Patrol Officer Jeremy Moore was the primary officer responding on the case.

Based on the lower number of flu cases that health officials are seeing across the state and region, Caldwell Memorial Hospital is lifting visitor policy restrictions effective today for those visitors under 18 years of age. Kiosks for hand sanitizer, tissues, and masks will remain at the entrances as a proactive infection control measure, and the public should continue to use them as indicated on the kiosk signage when appropriate. A news release asks the public to please note that if any change occurs in the amount or severity of flu cases, Caldwell Memorial will reinstate the visitor restrictions for those under 18 to protect the health of their patients, their employees and volunteers, and their community.

Monday, 09 March 2015 05:04

One Killed In Watauga County Fire

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One person was killed in a fire in Watauga County over the weekend. According to a news release from the Watauga County Sheriff’s Office, Sunday (March 8) at approximately 9:15 a.m., Watauga County Communications received a report of a Structure Fire at 8210 US Highway 321 North in Sugar Grove. The building was occupied by Riverview Grocery and Apartments. Beaver Dam Fire Department and Fall Creek Fire Department were dispatched to the scene. First arriving units found extensive fire involvement throughout the structure.

Despite assistance from eleven fire departments, the structure was a total loss. The resident of one of the apartments was unable to evacuate and has died. The other residents displaced by the fire are being assisted by the American Red Cross. The Watauga County Fire Marshall's Office, Watauga County Sheriff’s Office and the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation are investigating the incident.

WHKY reminds the public that it’s time to spring forward this weekend. When local standard time is about to reach two o’clock this Sunday morning (March 8), all clocks should set forward one hour to 3 a.m., or simply set clocks forward one hour before going to bed Saturday night.

Sunrise and sunset will be about one hour later on March 8 than the day before. As a result, there will be more light in the evening.

35-year-old Sandy Kale Champion was arrested today (Friday, March 6) by Burke County Sheriff’s Officers. She’s charged with felony forced breaking and entering. Champion has since been released from custody and is scheduled to make District Court appearances next Thursday (March 12), April 9, and April 28.

The Western Piedmont Workforce Development Board (WPWDB) has created a website designed to offer access to job search tools, grant information, business resources and materials vital to job seekers and businesses in the Unifour area. The new website went live today (March 6). The website is available at www.westernpiedmontworks.org or it can be accessed by visiting www.wpcog.org and clicking on the "Workforce Development" link under "Services."

The website features a Career Centers that includes regular updates and postings regarding workshops, job fairs, business recruitment events, training opportunities, grants and articles related to both job seekers and employers.

The Western Piedmont Workforce Development Board is housed within the Western Piedmont Council of Governments (WPCOG), a voluntary association of local governments. Local governments eligible for WPCOG membership include Alexander, Burke, Caldwell and Catawba counties and the 24 cities and towns within those counties.

Friday, 06 March 2015 13:31

McDowell County Man Wins Big in NCEL

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Jack Piercy, Jr. of McDowell County was on his way to visit a family member in Morganton on Monday morning when he stopped to buy fuel at the Gate store on Green Street. There, he bought the winning $10 ticket in the North Carolina Education Lottery’s (NCEL) $1,000,000 Jackpot game.

A $1 million prize in the game can be claimed in 20 annuity payments of $50,000 or a one-time payment of $600,000. Piercy chose the lump sum, worth $415,503 after taxes.

Piercy is a native of Old Fort and a retired locomotive engineer. He says he’ll let his wife decide how to spend the prize money. Piercy says they may use some of their winnings to travel, but also says the couple will share with their four sons and five grandchildren.

After Piercy’s win, two $1 million prizes remain to be claimed in the NCEL’s $1,000,000 Jackpot game.

The Granite Falls Police Department is investigating a report of a robbery. The robbery reportedly occurred in the parking lot of Walmart Thursday evening (March 5). The Granite Falls Police Department is reporting that the robbery was not a random act of violence. Police say the the alleged suspect and victim are “friends”. No further information was available.

51-year-old Timothy Michael Sample of Hickory was arrested Monday (March 2) by Alexander County Sheriff’s Officers. He’s charged with Robbery with a Dangerous Weapon and Conspiracy to Commit Robbery with a Dangerous Weapon. He was placed in jail under $175,000 secured bond. His first court appearance is scheduled for Monday (March 9) in Alexander County District Court.