32-year-old Eric Christopher Ragan of Murray Road in Winston-Salem was arrested by Hickory Police just after 4:30 Friday afternoon (July 7) on one felony count of possession of cocaine.

On Friday, Hickory Police responded to an accident in the parking lot at the Subway restaurant on Highway 70 S.E.  The accident involved a 2003 Chrysler PT Cruiser driven by Eric Ragan.  During the investigation, Officer’s found 0.5 grams of cocaine on Ragan’s person.

The suspect was taken into custody without incident.  Ragan was placed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility under a $5,000 secured bond.  He has since been released.  A first appearance in District Court was scheduled today (July 10) in Newton.

63-year-old Michael Henderson of 2nd Avenue S.E. in Hickory was arrested by Hickory Police at 8:30 Friday night (July 7) on one felony count of possession of a schedule II controlled substance.  Henderson was taken into custody without incident at his residence.  He was processed and released under a $5,000 unsecured bond.  A first appearance in District Court was scheduled today (July 10) in Newton.

46-year-old Johnny Lee Shade, Jr. of North Davis Avenue in Newton was arrested by Hickory Police shortly after three o’clock Saturday morning (July 8) on two felony counts of failure to appear on a felony.  The warrants for his arrest were issued in Swain County in September of last year.  Shade faces multiple felony counts of obtaining property by false pretense.

Shade was taken into custody without incident at a hotel on 13th Avenue Drive S.E. in Hickory.  He was placed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility under a $10,000 secured bond.  He has since been released.  An appearance in District Court was scheduled for July 11 in Bryson City.

27-year-old Lauren Molita Anderson of 19th Avenue S.E. in Hickory (a.k.a. Lauren Mathis Anderson) was arrested by Hickory Police early Saturday morning for a felony probation violation. Anderson is on probation as she serves a 24-month suspended sentence following an April 2017 conviction in Catawba County for larceny and unauthorized use of a motor vehicle.

She also faces charges for possession of marijuana paraphernalia, shoplifting; resisting, delaying or obstructing a public officer and a misdemeanor probation violation.

Anderson was taken into custody without incident at about 1:30 a.m. at a used car dealership on Highway 70 S.W. in Hickory. She was placed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility under a $22,500 secured bond. An appearance in Superior Court was scheduled for July 17 in Newton. District Court dates were set for July 26 and September 14.

Officials with the N.C. Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) confirmed Friday (July 7) that water quality in Pott Creek and South Fork of the Catawba River near Lincolnton is returning to normal conditions after a 200,000-gallon manure spill on June 26.  State officials have also confirmed that public water suppliers for Lincolnton and Dallas, which use the South Fork of the Catawba River as a source and are downstream of the spill, are returning to normal operations.

A pump malfunction on June 26 at the Gladden Dairy in Catawba County caused the manure to spill into the headwaters of nearby Pott Creek, which flows into the South Fork of the Catawba River, officials said.  Repairs to the dairy’s waste management system are ongoing.  DEQ officials will continue to monitor the situation.

Following the spill, DEQ officials have been monitoring and sampling the water quality from the spill location, downstream into South Carolina.  Officials confirmed that the factors used to measure the quality of the water are returning to normal conditions for this time of year.

State water quality officials also will continue to monitor conditions in the creek and investigate the spill to determine any appropriate enforcement action.  State and local officials are working together to address any water quality and public health concerns related to the spill.

30-year-old Johnny Trevor Rippy of North Brushwood Circle in Newton was arrested by Hickory Police shortly after 11 o’clock last night (July 6) on one felony count of possession of a controlled substance.  The warrant for his arrest was issued by the Caldwell Co. Sheriff’s Office in September of last year.

Rippy was taken into custody without incident at a residence on 1st Street S.W. in Hickory.  He was processed at the Hickory Police Department and then released under a $5,000 unsecured bond.  He was scheduled to appear in Superior Court on July 24 in Lenoir.

43-year-old James Paul Dugger of Freezer Locker Road in Hudson was arrested by Hickory Police shortly before two o’clock yesterday afternoon (July 6) on one felony count of possession of cocaine and one misdemeanor count of possession of drug paraphernalia.

He was arrested after Hickory Police received information regarding narcotics activity in two rooms at the Budget Inn on Highway 70 S.W.  In one of the rooms, Officers found 0.1 grams of crack cocaine, multiple smoking pipes and other paraphernalia. Dugger was arrested.  Another male in the room and a female were not charged.  In the parking lot, Police also found and seized a syringe containing a brown liquid.

Dugger was placed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility with bond set at $5,000, secured.  He was scheduled to appear in District Court today in Newton.

Sutter Street Manufacturing plans to create 72 new jobs with an expansion in Catawba County.  The upholstered furniture manufacturing company plans to invest $1.9 million over three years to upgrade its 411,000 square foot facilities in Claremont.

Sutter Street Manufacturing produces upholstered home furnishings for Williams-Sonoma, Inc. through brands like Pottery Barn, West Elm and Williams-Sonoma Home.  Williams-Sonoma established the operation in 2007 with 25 associates.  Sutter Street Manufacturing now employs 583 artisans.  The 72 new jobs will be phased in over the next three years.

While compensation will vary by position, average salaries for the new jobs are expected to be $47,840, above the Catawba County current average annual wage of $39,780.  

A performance-based grant of $300,000 from the One North Carolina Fund will help facilitate Sutter Street Manufacturing’s expansion in Catawba County.  All One North Carolina grants require a matching grant from local governments and any award is contingent upon that condition being met.

For more information about Williams-Sonoma, including job opportunities, visit careers.williams-sonomainc.com.

17-year-old Luca Tyler Buntic of Brookwood Drive in Maiden and 17-year-old Andrew Joseph Auten of Falling Creek Road N.E. in Hickory have both been arrested by Hickory Police. They were each charged with one felony count of breaking & entering a motor vehicle and larceny after breaking & entering.

Events leading to the arrests began early Tuesday morning (July 4) when Officers responded to a civil disturbance on 29th Avenue N.E. Upon arrival, Officers encountered the victim of a vehicle break-in, along with Andrew Auten, who was one of the suspects. Auten was taken into custody without incident on the scene just after 1 a.m. yesterday.

An arrest warrant was issued for Luca Buntic, who fled the scene before Police arrived. Buntic was located and arrested shortly before nine o’clock last night (July 4) at a gas station on Highway 70 S.E., near Fairgrove Church Road.

Both suspects were placed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility. Bond for Buntic was set at $15,000, secured, while Auten was given a $5,000 secured bond. They were both scheduled to make first appearances in District Court today in Newton.

Monday, 03 July 2017 17:03

Lenoir Man Killed in Logging Accident

A Lenoir man was killed in a logging accident in Caldwell County today (July 3).  The deceased has been identified as 51-year-old James Wilson Coffey, Jr. of Pisgah Church Road in Lenoir.

At 10:05 this morning, Caldwell County Sheriff’s Deputies and personnel with Patterson Fire & Rescue and Caldwell County Emergency Services responded to the logging accident on the 2700 block of Setzer’s Creek Road in Lenoir.  Mr. Coffey had been struck by a falling tree and was deceased on the scene.

Authorities say Mr. Coffey’s death appears to be accidental.

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