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49-year-old Tommy Lee McCombs of Hickory was convicted this week in Catawba Co. Criminal Superior Court on two counts of felony larceny and one count of felony possession of cocaine. He was also convicted as an habitual felon. McCombs was sentenced to no less than 103 months and no more than 136 months in the North Carolina Division of Adult Correction.

The larceny crimes occurred in December 2013 and February 2014 in Hickory and involved the theft of body wash valued at $10.68 and men’s clothing valued at $35.99 from two local merchants. The misdemeanor larceny offenses were elevated to the felony level based on the defendant’s prior convictions for misdemeanor larceny.

The cocaine possession occurred in December 2013 in Hickory and was the result of a trespassing complaint in which McCombs was found to have cocaine in his possession.

Officers Paul Clark, Joshua Null and David Lee of the Hickory Police Department conducted the respective investigations and Assistant District Attorneys Brenda Brewer, Michael Van Buren and Kyle Smith prosecuted the cases. The Honorable Timothy Kincaid presided over the convictions.

McCombs will be transported to the Division of Adult Correction for processing.

Republican Congressman Patrick McHenry (NC-10) held the last of six Town Hall meetings in the area last night (August 6) at Maiden High School.

According to published reports, a large number of questions from constituents centered on the immigration issue. Congressman McHenry reportedly described the nation’s immigration system as “broken” and said the best solution is for constituents to vote in a Republican majority in the U.S. Senate in the November election.

Thursday, 07 August 2014 11:18

Hickory Man Convicted as Habitual Felon

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37-year-old Angelo Lamar Jackson of Hickory was convicted this week in Catawba Co. Criminal Superior Court for possession of cocaine. He was also convicted as an habitual felon. Jackson was sentenced to no less than 27 months and no more than 45 months in the North Carolina Division of Adult Correction.

The crime occurred in January 2013 in Hickory. Hickory Police Officer Justin Hussey conducted a vehicle stop on 2nd Street S.W., leading to the discovery of cocaine inside the vehicle Jackson was driving.

Assistant District Attorney Michael Van Buren prosecuted the case and the Honorable Nathaniel J. Poovey presided over the conviction.

Jackson will be transported to the Division of Adult Correction for processing.

Jason White, a local trial lawyer, has announced his candidacy for Superior Court Judge of North Carolina’s Judicial District 25B, Catawba County.

White was born and raised in Alexander County. He graduated from Alexander Central High School and attended college and played baseball at the University of North Carolina-Asheville. After graduation, he served one season as an assistant baseball coach at Duke University then enrolled in Campbell University’s Norman Adrian Wiggins School of Law.

After graduating from law school, he and his wife Sarah McCall White returned to Hickory where he joined the law firm of Sigmon, Clark, Mackie, Hanvey & Ferrell, P.A. His practice focuses primarily on litigation and encompasses all types of Superior Court matters, both civil and criminal.

He has appeared in a variety of jury and non-jury trials in District and Superior Court throughout the State, United States District Courts, the North Carolina Industrial Commission and the North Carolina Court of Appeals.

In January 2014, White was rated “excellent” in all six disciplines of the N.C. Bar Association's Judicial Performance Evaluation Survey. The survey asks association members to rate each trial court judge candidate on integrity & impartiality, legal ability, professionalism, communication and administrative skills. White received an overall performance rating of 4.73 out of five.

23-year-old Jeremy Lewis Leatherman of Hickory was convicted this week in Catawba Co. Criminal Superior Court on felony counts of indecent liberties with a child, third-degree sexual exploitation of a minor, convicted sex offender on premises designated for children and failure to report a new address as a convicted sex offender. Leatherman was sentenced to no less than 26 months and no more than 41 months in the North Carolina Division of Adult Correction. He will be required to register with the North Carolina Sex Offender Registry for the remainder of his life and be subjected to satellite-based monitoring for the remainder of his life.

The crimes occurred in December 2013 and February 2014 in Catawba County and in the City of Hickory. Investigators Lori Dingess from the Hickory Police Department and Tommy Scarborough from the Catawba County Sheriff’s Office handled the investigation, with assistance from the Children’s Advocacy & Protection Center of Catawba County. Assistant District Attorney Michael Van Buren prosecuted the case and the Honorable Nathaniel J. Poovey presided over the conviction.

Leatherman had previously been convicted of felony sexual misconduct or attempt involving a child under 15 in June of 2009 in Scott County, Missouri.

He will be transported to the Division of Adult Correction for processing.

23-year-old Donald Scott Young of Connelly Springs was convicted last week in Catawba Co. Criminal Superior Court on one felony count each of trafficking in opium or heroin, possession with intent to manufacture, sell & deliver a schedule VI controlled substance, possession of a schedule II controlled substance, possession of a weapon of mass destruction, possession of a gun on educational property and possession of a stolen motor vehicle. Young was sentenced to no less than 70 months and no more than 93 months in the North Carolina Division of Adult Correction. He was also ordered to pay a $50,000 fine.

The crimes occurred in August 2012 in Hickory. He was arrested when an off-duty Catawba County Sheriff’s Deputy noticed a vehicle in the parking lot at CVCC and saw weapons in the vehicle. Hickory Police responded to the scene where an investigation determined that the vehicle was stolen. Young had the keys to the stolen vehicle and illegal controlled substances in his possession.

Officer Kyle Stephens with the Hickory Police Department handled the investigation, with assistance from the Catawba County Sheriff’s Office. Assistant District Attorney Kyle Smith prosecuted the case and the Honorable Jeffrey P. Hunt presided over the convictions.

Young has been transported to the Division of Adult Correction in Raleigh for processing.

39-year-old Larry Allen Boone of Newton was convicted last week in Catawba Co. Criminal Superior Court on five counts of felony obtaining property by false pretense, felony larceny and five counts of misdemeanor possession of stolen goods or property. He was also convicted as habitual felon. Boone was sentenced to no less than 87 months and no more than 114 months in the North Carolina Division of Adult Correction.

The crimes occurred in September and October 2011 in the City of Hickory. Boone stole items from a home where he was working as a handyman and then pawned the stolen items at local pawnshops.

Officer Lance Bean of the Hickory Police Department handled the investigation and Assistant District Attorney Al Reeder prosecuted the case. The Honorable Jeffrey P. Hunt presided over the convictions.

Boone has been transported to the Division of Adult Correction for processing.

Thursday, 07 August 2014 07:16

Teen Faces Felony Meth Charges in Lincolnton

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18-year-old Joseph Scott Cirillo was arrested last Thursday (July 31) by Lincolnton Police Detective Dwayne McAllister on felony charges of possession with intent to manufacture, sell or deliver methamphetamine and possession of precursor materials.

The arrest was the result of an investigation conducted by the Lincolnton Police Department’s Narcotics Unit. At 1:52 Thursday afternoon, Officers responded to an address on South Poplar Street after a possible meth lab was found on the property.

Officers located the lab at an outside location on the property. Narcotics Detectives arrived and assisted the responding Patrol Officers. According to a statement released by Lincolnton Police, the lab utilized the “one pot method.” It was documented, photographed and seized as evidence.

Following his arrest, Cirillo was placed in the Lincoln County Detention Center where he was held without bond. He will next appear in District Court on August 12.

The investigation is ongoing and more arrests are possible.

The Lincolnton Fire Department, Lincoln County E.M.S., the Lincoln Co. Sheriff’s Office Narcotics Division and the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation all assisted in the case.

Amir and Sharon Rashidi turned the first shovels of dirt in a partnership with the City of Conover yesterday. The partnership will bring 45,000 square feet of retail development to the northernmost point of Conover Station. The proposed building will be designed in keeping with the traditional pre-war architecture of the site.

Amir Rashidi had previously established the United Machine & Metal Fabrication Company and his wife Sharon operates The Perfect Workout in Newton. The couple believes The Perfect Workout can increase its activity with increased floor space and readily available parking while providing an asset for the improvement of community health.

Architect Ray Campbell and builder Building Systems of Hickory have proposed a facility that will include a state-of-the-art 25,000 square foot fitness center and 19,000 square feet of office and retail space to accommodate businesses that wish to take advantage of increased activity at the site.

The parking lot will be donated back to the City of Conover and shared with all of the facilities developed in the Conover Station project. Some additional on-street parking will also be available.

For more information, contact the City Manager’s office at 828-464-1191 or visit the city’s website at www.conoverstation.com.

18-year-old Jacob Dean Coley of Morganton has been indicted on a charge of murder.

Coley had initially been charged with accessory to the fact of murder in connection to the killing of 31-year-old Damond Lamont Kincaid of Winston-Salem. Kincaid’s body was found off a dirt road in the Linville Gorge area, near Highway 105. Investigators believe Kincaid was killed on August 11, 2013.

33-year-old David Matthew Higgins, who allegedly admitted to the crime, was charged with murder last August. Higgins led authorities to Kincaid’s body. The victim had been decapitated.

Following his indictment, Coley was confined in the Burke-Catawba District Confinement Facility where he is being held without bond. An appearance in Superior Court was set for September 22 in Morganton.

Higgins will appear in Superior Court on September 8.