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Tuesday, 18 October 2016 11:08

Suspects Arrested Following Traffic Stop

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46-year-old Sandra Lynn Gaul of Clarence Beam Road in Cherryville and 59-year-old Billy Steve Schronce of Fairview Drive in Lincolnton were both arrested by Lincoln County Sheriff's Officers. Gaul is charged with one felony count each of breaking and entering, larceny of a firearm, possession of stolen goods and possession with intent to manufacture schedule II controlled substance. She was also charged with one misdemeanor count of possession of drug paraphernalia. Schronce is charged with one felony count of possession of a schedule II controlled substance.

Investigators were in the area of the Gastonia Highway on Monday (October 17) when they recognized a passenger in a passing vehicle as a woman wanted on several felony charges.
The officers stopped the vehicle on the Gastonia Highway near Gaston-Hillside Drive. The woman, Sandra Gaul, was taken into custody.  

A search of the woman and the vehicle turned up methamphetamine packaged for sale and a glass pipe. When the driver of the vehicle was asked for his identification he handed the officers his wallet. In addition to his identification detectives found a small amount of meth in his wallet.  

Gaul is charged in connection with an October 10 break-in at the residence of Galan Peterson of Dave Peterson Lane in Vale. Stolen in the break-in were 32 rifles, shotguns and handguns and a credit card. Warrants were obtained on Gaul after she attempted to use the stolen credit card at several stores in Gastonia. She was identified on store security systems when she attempted to use the credit card.

Gaul was taken before a Lincoln County magistrate and placed under a $50,000 secured bond. Schronce was placed under a $10,000 secured bond. Both suspects were scheduled to appear in District Court today (Tuesday, October 18).

None of the firearms, valued at $21,300, have been recovered.  Anyone with information about the firearms is asked to call the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office at 704-732-9050, the Lincoln County Communications Center at 704-735-8202 or the Lincolnton/Lincoln County Crime Stoppers at 704-736-8909. If your Crime Stoppers tip leads to an arrest you could receive a reward of up to $1,000.

Tuesday, 18 October 2016 10:42

Vandalism at Bethlehem Church Under Investigation

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The Alexander County Sheriff’s Office is investigating a complaint of vandalism and littering at a local church. Grace Baptist Church, located at 627 Rink Dam Road in Bethlehem, was the recent target of vandals who threw empty beer bottles and beer cans in the church’s front yard.

The vandalism is an apparent protest of the church’s stance against the upcoming alcohol referendum. The bottles, which bore a printed white label that read, “If we can’t have the tax, you can have the trash,” were thrown into the churchyard sometime between Thursday evening (October 13) and Friday morning (October 14). 15 beer bottles were recovered from the scene and will be processed for any latent evidence.

Investigators are asking for the public’s assistance in solving the case. Anyone with information should call the Alexander County Sheriff’s Office at 828-632-1111 or the Alexander County Crime Stoppers Tip Line at 828-632-8555. Callers may remain anonymous.

The City of Newton is offering curbside leaf collection starting October 24. Collection will continue until January 13.

The city will have two trucks operating this leaf season. Collection will begin at the south end of the city and the trucks will travel in a grid pattern. The trucks will run a route through the entire city and then will restart at the beginning of the route. The process will continue until leaf season is over. City staff anticipates a route will require three weeks to complete.

Residents are asked to ensure that tree limbs, sticks and metal are removed from the leaf piles. Yard debris other than leaves will clog or damage the machine, slowing down the collection process. Also, please keep leaves out of the roadway by raking them behind the curb. Leaves should be placed in the utility strip adjoining your property. Leaves placed behind the sidewalk or in ditches will not be collected. Please note that the vacuum truck cannot reach leaves that are raked beside parked cars.

For more information, call the Newton Public Works and Utilities Department at 828-695-4310.

34-year-old Jeffrey Michael Brown was arrested Monday (October 17) by authorities in Burke County. He's charged with felony possession with intent to manufacture schedule VI controlled substance. Brown was placed in jail in Morganton under $15,000 secured bond. A court appearance was scheduled for today (Tuesday, October 18).

24-year-old Jacob Ballard Hensley was arrested Monday (October 17) by Burke County Sheriff's Officers. He's charged with felony larceny. Hensley was placed in jail in Morganton under $20,000 secured bond. A court appearance is scheduled for December 12.

A second person has been charged in connection with child sexual assault incidents that reportedly occurred between January 2005 and December 2009.

43-year-old Beverly Kistler Sherbert of Davis Road in Lincolnton was arrested Monday (October 17) by Lincoln County Sheriff's Officers. She's charged by with one felony count of accessory after the fact of a felony and one misdemeanor count of common law obstruction of justice. According to a news release, the charges stem from Sherbert’s knowledge of alleged incidents involving sexual assault and that she did not report them. She is also accused of encouraging the victim by text messages to drop the charges.

The Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office received a report on September 16 in reference to the crime of indecent liberties that occurred when the victim was a juvenile. Detective Harrington began the investigation and following an interview on September 28 the suspect was charged.

47-year-old Scott Allen Sherbert, also of Davis Road in Lincolnton, was previously arrested and charged with two felony counts of taking indecent liberties with a minor. The victim and both suspects in the case are related. Scott Sherbert was released after posting a $100,000 secured bond. His next District Court date is December 13. Beverly Sherbert was released on a $10,000 unsecured bond. She was scheduled to appear in District Court today (Tuesday, October 18).

The Burke County Sheriff’s Office has made six arrests in connection to several breaking and entering with larceny cases. The crimes occurred in the western end of the county near Lake James over the past several weeks.

31-year-old Brandon Kelly Fox of Browning View Road in Morganton is charged with felony armed robbery with a dangerous weapon. 33-year-old Anthony Random Mull of Highway 70 West in Glen Alpine is charged with felony possession of stolen goods. 42-year-old Travis Alvalon Scott, 34-year-old Terry Joseph Brown, 38-year-old Johnnie Denise Hickman, and 34-year-old Heather Renee Brown, all of the same George Drive, Nebo, address, were all arrested and charged with felony larceny. Scott faces two counts and the other three George Drive residents face one count apiece.  

Officers with the Burke County Sheriff's Office received information in regards to stolen goods being taken to an address in McDowell County. Officers followed up on the information and recovered a stolen Sea-doo with a trailer, and a Polaris four-wheeler at 96 George Drive approximately two weeks ago.  

The investigation continued and officers returned to that address last week and arrested four of the suspects for their involvement. Officers recovered a motorcycle last week and a four-wheeler this week off Browning View Road in two separate fields and wooded areas. Anthony Mull was arrested at a garage off Highway 70 West near Glen Alpine last Thursday (October 13). On Friday (October 14), officers arrested Brandon Fox on Snowhill Church Road. Fox was hiding in the trunk of his girlfriend’s vehicle, Sabrina Starnes. There was a loaded 12 gauge shotgun lying beside Fox along with narcotics inside the trunk.

Bond for Fox was set at $200,000 secured, a District Court date is set for November 7. Mull's bond was set at $1,000 secured, his District Court appearance is scheduled for November 1. Scott's bond is $35,000 secured, he has District Court dates October 24 and 31. Terry Brown's bond is $10,000 secured, his District Court date is October 31. Hickman's bond was set at $5,000 secured, she's scheduled to appear in District Court October 31. Heather Brown's bond is $10,000 secured, she's scheduled to appear in District Court November 1.The investigation is ongoing and further arrests are expected.

Tuesday, 18 October 2016 05:11

Road Closure Expected Today In Morganton

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City of Morganton Water Resources workers was planning to close a section of State Road today (Tuesday, October 18) to install a valve on a water line in the area. Workers were scheduled to close the road as early as 8 a.m. The road was expected to re-open by 4 p.m., barring any unforeseen problems.

Residents will still be able to access State Road via South College Street and Oak Grove Street. Wall Lumber Company will still be accessible via State Road.

Tuesday, 18 October 2016 05:08

Hickory City Council Meets Tonight

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Hickory City Council meets tonight (Tuesday, October 18) in regular session.

Among the items on the agenda, under reaffirmation and ratification of second readings, the board will consider three items related to the acceptance of a temporary construction and permanent sanitary sewer and storm drainage easement for the property of Hickory Springs Manufacturing Company, for installation of utilities infrastructure. The first reading votes were unanimous for all three items.

Also under second readings, council will consider the acceptance of the bid and award to the contract to General Services Inc. in the amount of $78,300 for repairs and coating at the Water Treatment Facility. Council will also consider approval of a close out deductive change order number one with Wilkie Construction related to Phase II of the planned improvements to Hickory Optimist Park. These items were also approved unanimously on first reading.

In addition, at tonight's meeting, under new business, council will consider the approval of the application for the North Carolina General Assembly and acceptance of the authorized grant-in-aid allocation of $250,000. These funds would be used to mitigate structural damage to Highway 70 as a result of the failed 96 inch storm drainage pipe at the site of the sinkhole.

Tonight's Hickory City Council meeting starts at 7:00 at the Julian G. Whitener Municipal Building at 76 North Center Street in downtown Hickory.

Monday, 17 October 2016 14:00

Shoplifting Incident Leads to Three Arrests

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32-year-old Bobby Glenn Ray, Jr. of Bessemer City and 30-year-old Megan Smith Ray of Dallas, N.C. were both arrested yesterday (October 16) by Hickory Police in connection to a shoplifting incident. Bobby Ray was charged with felony habitual larceny and was also served with a felony warrant as a fugitive awaiting extradition to another state. Megan Ray was charged with aiding & abetting larceny. Also arrested on a number of outstanding warrants was 35-year-old Jamie Marie Ballew of Gastonia. She faces two felony counts of failure to appear and misdemeanor counts of larceny and injury to personal property.

They were arrested after Police responded to a shoplifting call at the Lowe’s Home Improvement store on 21st Drive S.E. As Officers spoke to the store manager, Police dispatchers gave information on the suspect vehicle, which was being followed by a witness.

The N.C. State Highway Patrol stopped the vehicle at exit 28 on Highway 321 South. Megan Ray was the driver. Hickory Police arrived and assisted with the arrest at about 5:30 Sunday afternoon. A Husqvarna backpack blower and a 300-piece Kobalt tool set, valued at $488, were recovered.

Bobby Ray was wanted in Hall County, Georgia for a probation violation. The warrants for Ballew’s arrest were issued in Gaston County.

All three suspects were placed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility. Bond for Bobby Ray was set at $32,000, secured. Megan Ray was given a $2,000 secured bond and Ballew’s bond was set at $30,000, secured. Bobby Ray was due in court today. Megan Ray has a November 9 court date and Ballew will appear in Superior Court in Gastonia on November 15.

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