A delegation from the City of Hickory is in Washington, D.C. today as the city prepares to file its application for a TIGER Discretionary Grant (Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery). The group from Hickory includes Mayor Rudy Wright, Councilman Hank Guess, Councilman David Zagaroli, Interim City Manager Andrea Surratt and Staff Liaison Yaidee Fox.
The city is seeking a $13.5-million grant, an amount that would cover approximately one-third of the city’s $40-million bond projects. Those bond projects include the Citywalk, Riverwalk, Streetscapes & Gateways and Park 1764. This year’s application will mark the city’s third attempt to win a TIGER Grant.
The Hickory delegation has had the chance to meet briefly with U.S. Senator Thom Tillis and U.S. Representative Virginia Foxx, and has also met with staff members from the offices of U.S. Senator Richard Burr and U.S. Representative Patrick McHenry. They have also met with the U.S. Dept. of Transportation, seeking feedback on last year’s application.
The city’s grant application will be filed near the end of May or early June. Grants will be awarded in late July or early August of this year.
A Morganton man will spend at least 11 years in prison after he pleaded guilty to first-degree sex offense with a child during Burke County Superior Court on Tuesday (March 21).
46-year-old Marty Baird Peters was given an active prison sentence of 11-20 years by the Honorable Daniel A. Kuehnert, Superior Court Judge from Burke County, following entry of his guilty plea. Peters will serve his sentence in custody of the North Carolina Division of Adult Corrections.
The offense involved a then 11-year-old female victim who reported to a school student resource officer that in January 2016 Peters had her watch pornographic movies with him and later used a sexual gratification device to touch her private area.
The Burke County Department of Social Services was contacted and made an assessment of the home, discovering pornographic materials that Peters said were his. He said he was the only person with access to them.
During a forensic interview conducted by Selena Moretz of the Gingerbread House Child Advocacy Center, the victim gave an identical narrative of the events that took place that she disclosed to the resource officer.
The defendant admitted to watching pornography with the victim and affirmed use of the device to touch her private area.
Det. Isaac Propst was lead investigator for the Burke County Sheriff’s Office, and he was assisted by Moretz. Michelle Lippert prosecuted the case for the District Attorney’s Office.
46-year-old Jeannie Phillips Burns of D.R. Prestwood Mobile Home Park Drive in Hudson was arrested Wednesday (March 22) by Hudson Police Officers. She's charged with possession of methamphetamine. Following the arrest, Burns was jailed in the Caldwell County Detention Center under $3,000 secured bond. No court date was listed.
35-year-old Christopher Alan Townsend of Majestic View Place in Lenoir was arrested Wednesday (March 22) by Caldwell County Sheriff's Officers. He's charged with felony larceny. Following the arrest, Townsend was placed in the Caldwell County Detention Center under $10,000 secured bond. A Superior Court date is set for May 1.
The Hickory Police Department is seeking public assistance in the investigation of a pedestrian who was struck during a hit and run that occurred on Monday, November 28, 2016 at approximately 8:00 p.m. in the 200 Block of 12th Ave NE between Viewmont Baptist Church and the Cubbard Express Exxon Convenience Store across Hwy 127 from Dunkin Donuts.
The victim, 28-year-old Joshua Edward Holden of Hickory, was located on the ground with severe injuries believed to be sustained from being struck by a vehicle. Holden was transported to Frye Regional Medical Center and then later to Baptist Hospital in Winston Salem. He remains in critical condition.
The Hickory Police Department is continuing this investigation and asks anyone who may have witnessed this incident, has information or was in contact with Holden on November 28th to contact Inv. J. Patterson at 828-261-2626 or email@example.com.
33-year-old Donald Allen Parlier of South Main Street in Granite Falls was arrested Wednesday (March 22) by Lenoir Police Officers. He's charged with possession of methamphetamine, probation violation, and five counts of failure to appear. Parlier was incarcerated in the Caldwell County Detention Center under $27,500 secured bond. A District Court appearance was scheduled for today (Thursday, March 23) and a Superior Court date is scheduled for April 24.
28-year-old Dominique Terrell Stinson of 1st Street S.E. in Hickory was arrested by Hickory Police at about 1:45 yesterday afternoon (March 22) on one felony count of possession with intent to sell or deliver cocaine and one misdemeanor count of resisting, delaying or obstructing a public officer. He’s accused of possessing two grams of crack cocaine.
Stinson was taken into custody on the 100 block of 9th Avenue S.E. and placed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility under a $27,500 secured bond. A first appearance in District Court was set for today in Newton.
31-year-old Michael Anthony Pizza has been arrested by Iredell Co. Sheriff’s Officers and charged with five counts as an adult offender committing a sexual offense with a child and five counts of indecent liberties with a child.
Events leading to his arrest began on January 22 of this year when a report was filed regarding a child who was assaulted by an acquaintance. The case was assigned to Detective Patrick Dixson of the Special Victim’s Unit and the child was interviewed at the Dove House Children’s Advocacy Center. Several additional witnesses were identified and interviewed.
As a result of the investigation, Michael Anthony Pizza was arrested and taken to the Iredell County Detention Center where he was processed and given a $1,000,000 secured bond. He’ll appear in District Court on April 10.
Pizza has a criminal history including assault with a deadly weapon, first-degree trespass, injury to personal property, assault on a female and violation of a domestic violence protective order.
28-year-old Joshua James Hampton of Rock Barn Road NE in Conover was arrested Wednesday (March 22) by Granite Falls Police Officers. He's charged with felony possession of a stolen firearm and probation violation. Hampton was jailed in the Caldwell County Detention Center under $180,000 secured bond. A District Court appearance was scheduled for today (Thursday, March 23).
27-year-old Justin Robert Campbell and 24-year-old Morgan Noel Monroe, both of the same Gypsy Drive, Statesville address, were both arrested last Saturday (March 18) by Iredell County Sheriff's Officers. Both suspects are charged with
felony counts of breaking and entering, and two counts of Larceny after Breaking and Entering. Campbell is also charged with one count of Possession of Firearm by Felon.
On February 21, 2017, Justin Campbell and his girlfriend, Morgan Monroe, allegedly entered a residence on Lucas Lane in Statesville thinking that no one was home. The homeowner surprised the couple who then tried to offer house and yard work for hire. While the suspects were in the home, $160 was removed from a pocketbook.
The couple then allegedly returned on March 9, when the homeowner was not there. The couple broke a window to gain access to the home and removed U.S. currency, two rifles, and a revolver. Campbell then made multiple attempts to sell the firearms.
Campbell received a $10,000 secured bond and Monroe's bond was set at $5,000 secured. Both suspects are scheduled to appear in District Court April 10. The investigation is ongoing and additional charges may be forthcoming.
39-year-old Forrest Henry Mask was arrested Wednesday (March 22) by authorities in Burke County. He's charged with felony possession with intent to manufacture, sell, and deliver schedule II controlled substance. Mask was placed in jail in Morganton under $6,500 secured bond. A court appearance was scheduled for today (Thursday, March 23).
36-year-old Eve Caroline Carpenter was arrested this morning (Thursday, March 23) by authorities in Burke County. She's charged with felony possession of schedule II controlled substance. Carpenter was placed in jail in Morganton under $3,500 secured bond. A court appearance was scheduled for today.
60-year-old Samuel Robin Tallent of Cansler Road in Vale was arrested Tuesday (March 21) by Lincoln County Sheriff's Officers. He's charged with three felony counts apiece of the sale of methamphetamine, delivery of meth, and possession with intent to sell and deliver meth.
The charges against Tallent stem from a several months-long investigation into methamphetamine sales in western Lincoln County. Detectives say several street level methamphetamine buys were made from the man on multiple dates at various locations throughout the Vale area. Using undercover and surveillance techniques, detectives were able to identify the man and build a case.
Warrants were obtained on March 17 but Narcotics Detectives were unable to locate the suspect. On Tuesday, patrol deputies with Adam District located and arrested the man near the intersection of Bud Davis Road and Peeler Road.
Tallent was placed in the Harven A. Crouse Detention Center under $15,000 secured bond. A District Court appearance is scheduled for April 10.
Firefighters continued to battle a wildfire Wednesday (March 22) in the Linville Gorge area.
Burnout operations were conducted on the south end of the White Creek Fire Wednesday afternoon with the objective of securing private property. The fire, which was reported Thursday March 16, is burning near Shortoff Mountain at the south end of Linville Gorge on the Grandfather Ranger District of Pisgah National Forest. The fire is now estimated at 2,750 acres and 50% contained. Law enforcement officials determined lightning to be the likely cause of the fire.
The fire continues to burn within the containment lines. Atmospheric conditions this afternoon are causing smoke to lift upward before dispersing, instead of settling at ground level. This caused the smoke plume to be much more visible Wednesday evening. There were concerns that smoke may impact areas close to the fire overnight.
Passing storms Tuesday evening (March 21) provided no measurable rainfall on the fire. The storms did produce lightning elsewhere in surrounding area, prompting firefighters to respond to multiple new ignitions which were extinguished at small acreages.
Today (Thursday, March 23) firefighters were scheduled to patrol and monitor the fire area, as well as work to extinguish any hot spots near fire lines. Minor burnout operations may occur. 154 firefighters are currently on scene.
An area closure is in effect for all U.S. Forest Service lands east of State Road 1238 (Old NC 105 / Kistler Memorial Highway), south of Conley Cove Trail (Tr #229), south of Table Rock Picnic Area, west of Back Irish Creek Forest Service Road #118 (Blue Gravel Road) and Roses Creek Forest Service Road #99, north of Highway 126. In addition, the following trails are closed: Shortoff Trail (Tr #235), Rock Jock Trail (Tr #247), Pinch-In Trail (Tr #228), Linville Gorge Trail (Tr #231) south of Conley Cove Trail (Tr #229), Mountains to Sea Trail (Tr #440) from State Road 1238 at Pinnacles to the Table Rock Picnic Area, and any social trails existing within the closure area. Public entry is prohibited within this area.