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News (864)

The Office of Governor Pat McCrory announced a number of appointments today (April 15), including several involving area residents.

Laura J. Easton of Caldwell County and Patricia Skinner of Gaston County have both been appointed to the North Carolina Institute of Medicine. Easton is the president and CEO of Caldwell Memorial Hospital Inc. Dr. Skinner is the president of Gaston Community College.

The institute’s goals are to monitor and study health matters and review input to form a basis for health policy decisions. The term length is four years.

JoAnn Smith of Catawba County and Morgan Daven of Buncombe County were named to the North Carolina Advisory Committee on Cancer Coordination & Control.

Smith is the administrative director for nephrology & oncology at Frye Regional Medical Center.

Daven is the senior director of primary care at the American Cancer Society. Daven is a reappointment to the committee.

The committee recommends a plan for the statewide implementation of an interagency, comprehensive, coordinated cancer control program to the secretary of the state Department of Health & Human Services, among other duties. The term length is four years.

57-year-old Jeanne Towery Testerman of Maiden was arrested by Hickory Police early this morning (April 15) on charges of felony forgery of bank notes and larceny by employee.

Testerman, a former part-time employee at Docutek Document Technologies on Highway 321 South in Hickory, allegedly made out extra payroll checks totaling $7,125 between June 3, 2013 and March 3 of this year.

Testerman was given a $3,200 unsecured bond with a first appearance in District Court set for tomorrow.

The 2012-2013 Hickory Public Schools (HPS) Annual Report entitled, "Our Family Album," is available to the community. Copies are provided to all students and staff members this week. Students are encouraged to take their copies home to share with family members.

The 20-page publication, which resembles a photo spread of school achievements and activities, provides a snapshot from 2012-2013 including teacher & principal of the year award winners, a message from Superintendent Dr. Walter Hart, a brief review of operating costs & accountability and photos representing community partnerships, sports, performing arts and more.

Hard copies are available at the HPS Administrative Services Building, 432 4th Avenue S.W. in Hickory. For details, contact Beverly Snowden, HPS Public Information Officer, at 828-322-2855.

The entire publication is available in a PDF format here.

37-year-old Chassidy Rena Bollinger of 10th Street N.E. in Hickory was arrested by Hickory Police at about 4:45 yesterday afternoon (April 14) on two felony counts each of habitual shoplifting and larceny by transfer of price tag. She was also charged with misdemeanor larceny.

She was arrested at the Hickory Probation Office on warrants from Gaston and Iredell counties.

A bondsman posted Bollinger’s $20,000 secured bond and she was released. District Court dates were set for April 23 in Gastonia and April 28 in Statesville. She’ll also appear in a Catawba County courtroom on May 8 on another habitual larceny charge.

41-year-old James Howard Weise, Jr. of Sandalwood Court in Newton was served a felony indictment by Hickory Police shortly after eleven o’clock Sunday night (April 13) on one count of failure to return hired property.

Weise allegedly failed to return a rental vehicle to Mike Johnson’s Hickory Toyota in November of 2012. He and the 2012 Toyota Camry were found by authorities in Gatlinburg, Tennessee later that month.

Weise was taken into custody without incident at the Kangaroo Express on Highway 70 S.E. He was placed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility under a $10,000 secured bond with an appearance in Superior Court set for April 25 in Newton.

According to published reports, the N.C. State Highway Patrol responded to an accident in Drexel at about 11:15 Monday morning. A telephone pole was snapped and a payphone was destroyed when they were hit by a purple Hyundai Sonata driven by Morgan Baker.

The Hyundai was traveling north on Drexel Road when the driver attempted to make a right turn onto U.S. 70 East. Baker accelerated through the turn in order to avoid a collision with a van that was attempting to turn left onto U.S. 70 East. Baker told Troopers she thought the van was going to sideswipe her. The Hyundai then ran off the right side of the road. When Baker attempted to apply the brakes, she inadvertently hit the accelerator and drove into the payphone and the pole.

The car came to a rest on top of the payphone in a gas station parking lot on Highway 70 E. with the telephone pole across the car’s hood.

Baker’s injuries were described as non-life-threatening. The vehicle was said to be a total loss. Damage to the pole, owned by CenturyLink, was estimated at $1,000. No one lost power as a result of the accident.

Baker was charged with failure to maintain lane control.

In addition to the Highway Patrol, Triple Community Fire & Rescue and Burke County Emergency Services responded to the crash scene.

Workers from CenturyLink and Wells & Seals Towing helped extract the Hyundai from beneath the pole.

Transportation Insight announced Friday (April 11) its intent to develop a new corporate campus near downtown Hickory to be completed by the end of 2015.

Transportation Insight is a globally recognized third-party logistics (3PL) provider. The company was founded in Hickory in 1999. Over the past 15 years, the supply chain management firm has assembled a series of corporate facilities in Hickory including offices near the First Baptist Church and CenturyLink.

The new Transportation Insight corporate campus will be located at the site of the historic Lyerly Full Fashioned Mill at the intersection of Highway 127 and 1st Avenue near downtown Hickory. Once complete, the new corporate campus will feature 70,000 square feet of office space. The development is being handled by affiliate OHM Holdings, Inc. for the benefit of Transportation Insight.

City Manager Mick Berry says Transportation Insight will maintain its workforce in Hickory and add jobs with a conservative commitment of over 200 total jobs. The city is helping the expansion by providing property tax relief for seven years, if the company hits is job and investment targets. 100% of new property taxes paid will be rebated up to $40,000 for seven years.

For more information about Transportation Insight, visit www.transportationinsight.com.

On March 6 of this year, the Market Basket convenience store on Grace Chapel Road in Granite Falls was robbed. A white male dressed in a gray sweatshirt and black pants with a bandanna over the bottom half of his face and a toboggan on his head walked into the store and pointed a gun at the clerk and demanded money. The man fled on foot after the robbery.

Since the robbery, no leads have developed. The same suspect is believed to have committed a similar robbery in Catawba County two weeks later.

The Caldwell Co. Sheriff’s Office has released a photo of a person of interest in the case. The man in the photo is wearing a flat bill Pittsburgh Pirates hat.

Anyone with information regarding the robbery or the identity of the person in the photo should call the Caldwell Co. Sheriff’s Office at 828-759-1526 or Crime Stoppers at 828-758-8300. Crime Stoppers may remain anonymous and could receive a cash reward.

35-year-old Nathaniel Matthew Cox of Summer Way Drive in Lenoir was arrested by Caldwell Co. Sheriff’s Officers yesterday (April 13) on charges of felony fleeing to elude arrest with a motor vehicle; reckless driving to endanger; unsafe passing over a yellow line; failure to stop for a stop sign or flashing red light; driving while license revoked; fictitious or altered registration card or tag; chop shop activity with a vehicle I.D. number or part number changed; no liability insurance; possession of methamphetamine; failure to appear on a charge of resisting a public officer; failure to secure a passenger under 16; and two counts of failure to appear for non-support.

Cox was placed in the Caldwell Co. Detention Center under a $120,000 secured bond, plus a $1,000 cash bond on the non-support charges. No court dates are currently listed.

Lincoln County Sheriff’s Detectives are asking for the public’s help in locating a person suspected of indecent exposure on February 18 at the Arby’s drive-thru on Highway 73 in Denver.

The individual placed an order at the drive-thru shortly before 6 p.m. and drove to the window to pick up the order. The white male paid for and was given the order. When the worker returned to give him change, he exposed himself to her and then drove away.

The man is described as a white male with a slender build, approximately 30 years old with a short haircut. At the time of the incident, he was wearing an orange t-shirt.

The suspect vehicle is believed to be a dark-colored black or blue Ford F-150 four-door pickup. The truck had a toolbox on the back. The driver reportedly leaves the tailgate down.

Anyone with information about the suspect or the suspect vehicle should contact the Lincoln Co. Sheriff’s Office at 704-736-8864, the Lincoln Co. Communications Center at 704-735-8202 or Crime Stoppers at 704-736-8909.