Granite Falls Police are currently on the scene of an accident involving a tractor-trailer on Highway 321 southbound, near the Captain’s Galley restaurant.  As of 2:45 this afternoon (May 12), southbound lanes are reportedly blocked.  A witness on the scene told WHKY that the truck was carrying landscaping materials.

It’s not clear if anyone was injured in the crash or if any other vehicles were involved.

No further details are available.

54-year-old Carroll Lee Fagan of 38th Avenue N.W. in Hickory was arrested by Hickory Police at 7:30 last night on two felony counts each of obtaining property by false pretenses and embezzlement of state property by public officers & employees, plus two misdemeanor counts of failure to deliver a title.

Fagan was taken into custody without incident at his residence.  He was jailed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility under a $64,000 secured bond.  Fagan faces numerous additional charges related to embezzlement, improper tags and titles and more.  He has court dates set for May 18 and July 27.

Thursday (May 11) at approximately 2:40 p.m., Mayor Rudy Wright was found deceased at his home.

“It is with deepest sorrow, that I must inform you of the untimely passing of Mayor Rudy Wright today at his home,” said City Manager Warren Wood said in a news release from the city. “My thoughts and prayers are with his family during this difficult time. While the Hickory Police Department is conducting an investigation, at this time there are no indications of suspicious circumstances. I ask that you respect the family’s privacy and allow them time to grieve.”

U.S. Congressman Patrick McHenry, who represents the 10th District, issued a statement Thursday evening regarding Mayor Wright's passing. "Giulia and I are shocked and saddened to learn of Mayor Wright's sudden passing. Mayor Wright was synonymous with Hickory, displaying his love for the city during the entirety of his nearly two decades of service as mayor. His tenure was marked by significant economic transformation in our area, throughout which Mayor Wright always remained the city's biggest advocate and booster. Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife Donna and the entire Wright family as they mourn this loss."

Additional information will be released as it becomes available. Mayor Rudy Wright had served as Hickory’s Mayor since 2001.

65-year-old Billy Joe Henry of “F” Avenue S.E. in Hickory was arrested by Hickory Police at 9:45 yesterday morning (May 10) in connection to a case out of Charlotte. He was charged with one felony count each of first-degree rape, attempted murder and kidnapping, plus one misdemeanor count of assault on a female.

Henry was taken into custody without incident at his residence. He was placed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility under a $500,000 secured bond. An appearance in District Court was set for May 15 in Charlotte.

At about 4:15 Wednesday morning (May 10), Alexander County 9-1-1 took a call regarding a shooting on Zeb Watts Road in the Ellendale Community.  The caller said a 15-year-old male had shot himself.  

Officers arrived on the scene and found a white male with an apparent gunshot wound to the abdomen.  The victim was transported by Alexander County E.M.S. to Frye Regional Medical Center in Hickory where he underwent surgery.

Witnesses told Police that the victim and other teenagers had three firearms lying on a swivel stool.  The victim grabbed a 9mm pistol from the stool, causing the firearm to discharge, injuring the victim.

The investigation is early stages.

17-year-old Quincy Harold Michael of Highland Avenue N.E. and 17-year-old Brandon Wade Fleming of Wandering Lane N.E., both from Hickory, were arrested by Hickory Police early this morning (May 10).  They were each charged with felony possession of marijuana.  Michael was also charged with one misdemeanor count of failure to appear.

They were arrested after Police conducted a traffic stop late last night at the corner of 20th Avenue Drive N.E. and 16th Street N.E.  They stopped a 2002 Ford Explorer for an expired registration plate.  

Five people were in the vehicle.  47 grams of marijuana were found in the vehicle’s front passenger area.  Fleming, who was a front seat passenger, was taken into custody without incident.  43 grams of marijuana were found on Michael’s person.  He was a passenger in the rear.  He was also taken into custody without incident.  The driver was cited for driving with an expired registration.

Both suspects were placed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility with bond for Michael set at $10,500, secured, while Fleming was given a $4,500 secured bond.  Fleming has since been released, but Michael remained in custody as of this afternoon.  First appearances in District Court were scheduled today in Newton.

23-year-old Montavious Lemar Mayfield of 3rd Avenue Court S.W. in Hickory was arrested by Hickory Police early this morning (May 10) on one felony count each of possession of a stolen firearm and possession of a firearm by a felon, plus misdemeanor counts of carrying a concealed weapon, second-degree trespass and resisting, delaying or obstructing a public officer.

Mayfield was taken into custody at about 1:45 a.m. today at a residence on 9th Avenue S.E. in Hickory. He was armed with a handgun at the time of his arrest.

Mayfield was placed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility with bond set at $20,900, secured. He was scheduled to make a first appearance in District Court today in Newton.

41-year-old Christopher David Leatherman of Highway 10 West in Newton was arrested by Hickory Police yesterday (May 9) on a charge of common law robbery.

He was arrested in connection to a robbery Saturday (May 6) at the LifeWay Christian Store on Highway 70 S.E.  Officers responded to the call shortly before 6 p.m. Saturday.  

After the suspect was in the store for a short period of time, he approached the register and requested money.  No weapons were displayed.  The suspect then left on foot.

Through the use of social media, Officers identified the suspect as Christopher David Leatherman.  Warrants for his arrest were issued on Sunday (May 7).

Leatherman was taken into custody without incident at his nearest relative’s address in Denver, N.C.  He was served with multiple outstanding warrants at the time of his arrest.  Those include shoplifting, breaking & entering, breaking & entering a motor vehicle, larceny, possession of stolen goods and obtaining property by false pretense.

Leatherman was placed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility under a $293,700 secured bond.  A District Court appearance on most of the charges was set for today in Newton, with another court date on the shoplifting charge coming up on June 5.

More than 30 employers will be on-site each day during the Catawba Goodwill Job Fair at the Goodwill Career Connections Center, which runs May 15-19.

A resumé-writing workshop will be held on Tuesday, May 9, from 3-5 p.m.  A speed interviews workshop will take place on Thursday, May 11, 3-5 p.m.  Call 828-466-2346 to reserve space in the workshops.

The Connections Center is located at 837 Conover Boulevard West in Conover.  More information is available at

In Caldwell County, automotive components manufacturer GKN Driveline and retail grocery store Lowes Foods are the latest businesses to commit to attend the 14th “Caldwell is Hiring” job fair scheduled for Thursday, May 18 from 8:30 a.m. until noon at the J.E. Broyhill Civic Center in Lenoir.
Nearly 50 businesses are planning to attend with more than 2,600 jobs available.  GKN Driveline will be hiring for 156 positions and Lowes Foods has 63 openings.

More information is available under the "news" tab at  The Broyhill Center is on Hickory Boulevard S.E. in Lenoir.

On Friday night (May 5), Statesville Police conducted a special operation to address recent shooting incidents and violent crimes in the area.  32 traffic stops were conducted.  At least five subjects were charged with a variety of offenses.  Among the items seized were two firearms, 2.1 grams of crack, 4.8 grams of marijuana and $180 cash.

26-year-old Mark Londel Seabrook Dukes of Statesville was charged with a domestic violence protection order violation and a pre-trial release violation.  He was held under a $200,000 secured bond.  His only listed court date is on May 25 on misdemeanor marijuana charges, traffic violations and two misdemeanor probation violations.

27-year-old Anthony Jonathan Smyre of Statesville was charged with possession of marijuana paraphernalia.  He was given a $1,000 secured bond.  Smyre will appear in District Court on June 6.

20-year-old Keith Eugene Lackey, Jr. of Statesville was arrested for possession with intent to sell or deliver cocaine, maintaining a vehicle for a controlled substance, simple possession of marijuana, possession of marijuana paraphernalia and possession of drug paraphernalia.  Lackey’s bond was set at $15,000, secured.  A District Court date was scheduled on May 24.

25-year-old Quantaey Lewis McDonald of Statesville was charged with possession of a firearm by a felon, possession of drug paraphernalia, communicating threats, larceny, damage to property and possession of marijuana.  McDonald was held without bond for communicating threats.  He was given a $25,000 secured bond on the other charges.  McDonald will appear in District Court on May 16.

21-year-old Shabaz Daequan Lovette of Statesville was arrested for carrying a concealed weapon, no operator’s license and displaying a fictitious tag.  His bond was set at $5,000, secured.  A District Court date was scheduled for August 8.  He has another court date coming up on May 31 on a misdemeanor marijuana charge and a Superior Court date on July 10 for felony breaking & entering.

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