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News (1023)

Catawba County's Senior Nutrition Services is conducting its annual fundraising drive, which helps pay for Meals on Wheels and related programs in the county.

Senior Nutrition Services, a part of Catawba County Social Services, operates Meals on Wheels, Frozen Meals, Seniors Morning Out and the Nutritional Supplement programs. Each of the programs is designed to give seniors the option to remain in their homes as long as possible. During fiscal year 2013-2014, a total of 1,539 seniors were served.

Senior Nutrition Services relies heavily on donations from local individuals, churches, civic groups and businesses to help fund Meals on Wheels. A donation of $21 pays for one week of meals for a senior. $91 pays for one month of meals and $1,092 pays for an entire year of meals.

To donate by check, make checks out to Catawba County Social Services and write "Senior Nutrition Services" in the memo line. Mail checks to: Senior Nutrition Services, P.O. Box 207, Newton, N.C. 28657. Online donations can be made at www.catawbacountync.gov/dss. Click on the red "Donate Now" button. To receive an acknowledgement letter for tax purposes, be sure to include a name and address.

For more information, contact Jan Shaffer, supervisor of Senior Nutrition Services, at 828-695-5617.

The Iredell County Sheriff’s Office is asking for the public’s assistance in identifying a suspect in a case involving financial transaction card fraud.

The incident was reported on October 11. The case was assigned to Detective Sergeant Scott Maple of the Sheriff’s Economic Crime Unit.

The victim told Officers that he was coaching his son’s football team at Scott’s Creek Elementary on October 10 when he found that his debit card had fallen out of his pocket. The victim received a call from his bank the next morning and was told that his debit card had been used fraudulently several times at four different retail stores in Iredell County.

Images of possible suspects were obtained from video surveillance footage. Anyone who can identify the persons in those images should contact Iredell County Crime Stoppers at 704-662-1340 or Det. Scott Maple at 704-878-3180.

Wednesday, 05 November 2014 10:53

Hickory Police Investigating Two Armed Robberies

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Hickory Police are investigating two armed robberies that occurred in Hickory yesterday (November 4).

The first incident occurred at about 5:40 p.m. Tuesday as a suspect armed with a handgun approached an 18-year-old female victim in a parking lot near the Valley Hills Mall. He forced the victim to take him to a nearby CashPoints ATM. It’s not clear if he took any cash from the victim.

At about 6:10, a man Police believe to be the same suspect approached a 28-year-old male victim in the parking lot at the OfficeMax store near the Hickory Corners shopping center. The suspect pointed a handgun at the victim and attempted to take the victim’s property.

No injuries were reported to either victim.

Police say the suspect in both incidents is described as a tall, thin, black male wearing a red hooded sweater and khaki pants. The investigation is ongoing.

Results below reflect all precincts reporting.  All races involving a single county will be certified by the appropriate county boards of election on November 14.  All races involving more than one county or races on a statewide or federal level will be certified by the State Board of Election on November 25.


Streets and Sidewalks Bond
23 of 23 precincts reporting

Yes        6,895    60.05 %
No         4,587    39.95 %    

Economic Development Bonds
23 of 23 precincts reporting

Yes        6,374    55.49 %
No         5,113    44.51 %


Catawba County Board of Commissioners (3 seats)
40 of 40 precincts reporting

Randy Isenhower        R    28,922    28.34 %
Kitty Barnes            R    28,228    27.66 %
Sherry Edmonds Butler    R    27,211    26.66 %
Charlotte Williams        D    16,193    15.87 %
Write-In (Miscellaneous)         1,508    1.48 %

Sheriff Coy Reid ran unopposed for Sheriff of Catawba County.


Burke Sheriff
33 of 33 precincts reporting

Steve E. Whisenant    D    13,166        56.72 %
Stacy E. Buff        R    10,046        43.28 %

Burke County Board of Commissioners (2 seats)
33 of 33 precincts reporting

Wayne Abele, Sr.    R    11,338        26.59 %
Maynard Taylor        R    10,768        25.25 %
David L. Rust, Jr.    D    9,078        21.29 %
Steven M. Smith    D    8,138        19.08 %
Richard C. Evey        L    1,672        3.92 %
Ginny Godfrey        L    1,652        3.87 %


Alexander County Board of Commissioners (3 seats)
16 of 16 precincts reporting

Milton H. Campbell    R    7,119        21.08 %
Josh Lail            R    6,734        19.94 %
Ronnie Lynn Reese    R    6,457        19.12 %
Marty Loudermilt    D    4,770        14.13 %
Joel Harbinson        D    4,385        12.99 %
Lisa Barnes        D    4,299        12.73 %

Alexander County Board Of Education, District 2 (2 seats)
5 of 5 precincts reporting

David S. Odom             1,668        34.49 %
Sallie Hartis             1,546        31.97 %
Darian Sigmon             1,235        25.54 %
Louise McIlvain             365            7.55 %

Sheriff Chris Bowman ran unopposed for Sheriff of Alexander County.


Caldwell County Board Of Education (4 seats)
21 of 21 precincts reporting

Teresa Branch            13,435        20.81 %
Joe Sims                 11,360        17.59 %
Duane Knight            10,614        16.44 %
Dottie Darsie             10,379        16.08 %
Helen Hall                9,728        15.07 %
Annette Caldwell-Swanson    8,689        13.46 %


N.C. Senate District 42 (Catawba/Alexander)
56 of 56 precincts reporting

Andy Wells        R    31,769        59.50 %
Patrice (Pat) Hensley    UN    21,627        40.50 %

N.C. Senate District 46 (Burke/Cleveland)
54 of 54 precincts reporting

Warren Daniel        R    29,774        58.76 %
Emily B. Church    D    20,893        41.24%

N.C. House of Representatives District 96 (Catawba)
20 of 20 precincts reporting

Jay Adams            R    14,722        67.24 %
Cliff Moone        D    7,174        32.76 %

N.C. House of Representatives District 86 (Burke)
28 of 28 precincts reporting

Hugh Blackwell        R    13,440        64.07 %
Jim Cates            D    7,536        35.93 %


2726 of 2726 precincts reporting

Thom Tillis    R    1,412,806    48.87 %
Kay Hagan    D    1,364,533    47.20 %
Sean Haugh    L    108,140    3.74 %

199 of 199 precincts reporting

Patrick McHenry    R    132,936        61.02 %
Tate MacQueen        D    84,921        38.98 %

244 of 244 precincts reporting

Virginia Foxx    R    138,481    61.03 %
Josh Brannon    D    88,434    38.97 %


27-year-old Jesse James Ralph Lefevers of Hollomans Place in Lenoir was arrested by Lenoir Police Friday (October 31) on charges of possession of stolen goods or property, simple possession of a schedule II controlled substance, simple possession of a schedule IV controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Following his arrest, Lefevers was taken to the Caldwell Co. Detention Center with bond set at $80,000, secured. He has court dates in Lenoir coming up on November 6, December 2 and January 15. He also faces a variety of charges for B&E, larceny and possession of burglary tools in Catawba and Lincoln counties, with a felony charge for possession of a schedule II controlled substance in Catawba County.

30-year-old Jeffery Lee McKinney of 1st Avenue N.W. in Hickory was arrested by authorities in Burke County yesterday (November 3) on charges out of Caldwell County for breaking & entering, felony possession of stolen goods or property and felony larceny after breaking & entering. He was taken to the Caldwell Co. Detention Center with bond set at $10,000, secured. McKinney was scheduled to make a first appearance in District Court yesterday in Lenoir.

Caldwell County has been extended membership into the Charlotte Regional Partnership’s Foreign Trade Zone. The move is seen as a potential boost for area companies that import and export goods.

A Foreign Trade Zone (FTZ) is a federally-designated area that enables businesses to capitalize on lower tax rates for importing and exporting goods. Companies that use the FTZ program do not pay taxes on imported goods until those goods leave the zone and enter domestic commerce. In addition, raw materials can be imported, manufactured and exported without companies paying tariffs or duties on the product.

Along with Caldwell, Rutherford and Polk counties have joined the partnership, upping overall membership in the regional partnership to 15.

Caldwell County Economic Development Commission Executive Director Deborah Murray says Caldwell’s inclusion in the FTZ is “a significant competitive development for Caldwell County” that increases the county’s ability to compete on a global basis.

Companies interested in learning more or determining eligibility should contact Murray at 828-728-0768 or by email at dmurray@caldwelledc.org.

To mark the completion of the Golden Spike Campaign, the Newton Depot Authority is hosting a Milepost Celebration on Saturday, November 15 at the Historic Newton Depot. The general public is invited to attend from 12 noon until 2 p.m. Live music and refreshments will be offered and docents will lead tours of the pavilion and museum. There is no charge to attend.

The Golden Spike Campaign raised over $500,000 in charitable and in-kind gifts to expand the Historic Newton Depot into the Southeast Narrow Gauge & Short Line Museum.

The newly-constructed outdoor pavilion, which is the centerpiece of the campaign, showcases and protects a 1920s steam engine, along with the restored vintage rail cars recently moved to the pavilion.

The expanded museum interprets the unique role of narrow gauge railroads in terms of shipping the Catawba Valley’s agricultural and dairy products to a broader market and later serving the burgeoning manufacturing sector. The Newton Depot was a major stop on what was at one time the longest narrow gauge line in the Carolinas, connecting Chester, South Carolina and Lenoir, North Carolina. Historians credit the short line for facilitating transportation for the furniture and textile industries that became the backbone of the local economy.

Future plans call for additional interpretive signage and improved visitor amenities, such as paving the adjoining parking areas for the public and school buses.

For additional information, contact Tom Warlick at 828-464-3930.

Tuesday, 04 November 2014 13:37

Meth Operation Busted in Caldwell County

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39-year-old Charles Quentin McLean of Union Baptist Road and 30-year-old Heather Nicole Swanson of Donihue Place, both from Lenoir, have each been arrested by Caldwell Co. Sheriff’s Officers on one count each of felonious trafficking in methamphetamine by possession and felonious trafficking in methamphetamine by transportation.

They were arrested yesterday (November 3) as the result of an investigation into a large-scale methamphetamine trafficking operation. The investigation had been ongoing for over a year with multiple law enforcement agencies assisting. The Sheriff’s Office believes that McLean and Swanson were responsible for bringing large amounts of methamphetamine into Caldwell County.

During a previous undercover operation, both McLean and Swanson were stopped in a vehicle and caught with a quarter pound of crystal meth. The drugs have a street value of $17,400, according to N.C. state drug guidelines. Also seized during the investigation was over $650 in cash. The Sheriff’s I.C.E. Unit is continuing to identify other individuals involved. Additional arrests are expected.  

McLean and Swanson were both incarcerated in the Caldwell County Detention Center with bond for each set at $200,000, secured. First appearances in District Court in Lenoir were scheduled for November 6.

39-year-old Jerald Leon “Bubba” Martin, Jr. of Hubbard Street in Lincolnton was arrested by Lincolnton Police Sunday (November 2) on charges of felony breaking & entering, felony larceny after breaking & entering and felony possession of stolen goods.

At about 6:45 a.m. Sunday, Lincolnton Police responded to a B&E in progress in the area where Turner Street comes to a dead end. Officers arrived to find two suspects walking with stolen items from the break-in in their possession. When the suspects saw the Officers, they ran into a wooded area, leaving the stolen items behind. All of those items were returned to the owner.

Officers were able to identify one of the suspects as Jerald “Bubba” Martin. He was found a short time later at his residence and taken into custody without further incident. The other suspect was identified as a juvenile. His information was forwarded to the Department of Juvenile Justice for possible charges.

Officers credited citizens in the neighborhood for calling in the theft in progress and by giving corroborating information regarding the identity and location of the suspects.

Following his arrest, Martin posted bond and was released. He will next appear in a Lincoln County courtroom on November 25.