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27-year-old Bradley William Hughes of Love Road in Claremont was arrested Wednesday afternoon (January 7) by Catawba County Sheriff’s Officers. He’s charged with one felony count of possession of a controlled substance in jail. Following the arrest, Hughes was detained inthe Catawba County Detention Facility under a $5,000 bond.  He has since been released. A District Court appearance was set for tomorrow (January 9.)

38-year-old Debbie Shannon Watson of Lawing Street in Lincolnton was arrested at about 6:20 p.m. yesterday (January 7) by Hickory Police on one felony count of possession with intent to manufacture, sell or deliver marijuana, shoplifting and possession of drug paraphernalia.

According to Police reports, the drug charge was filed after Watson was found to be in possession of 18.1 grams of marijuana. She was taken into custody without incident at Hickory’s Valley Hills Mall and placed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility with bond set at $5,000, secured. A first appearance in District Court was scheduled for tomorrow in Newton.

29-year-old Billy Ray Green, Jr. of Elizabeth Avenue and 33-year-old Andrew Brooks of Hoffman Road, both from Lincolnton, have been charged with one count each of misdemeanor larceny and misdemeanor possession of stolen goods.

A quick response from the public yesterday (January 7) led to the arrest of two people for the theft of trail cameras from a resident on the 4900 block of Highway 73. Following a news release that was reported by local and social media, the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office received more than 30 calls from the public identifying the suspects.

The cameras, valued at $850, were reported missing on December 31. One of the cameras continued to send back email pictures to the victim after it was stolen.

Last night, the suspects brought the stolen cameras to the Sheriff’s Office where they were interviewed by Detectives. Green and Brooks reported to the Sheriff’s Office this morning and were taken before a Magistrate and then released after they each posted a $1,000 unsecured bond. No court dates are currently listed.

The Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office expressed its appreciation to the public and the news media for their help in the case.

Thursday, 08 January 2015 11:37

NewArt School of Music Adds Two to Faculty

The NewArt School of Music, which operates out of the Newton-Conover Auditorium, has announced two additions to its faculty.

Harpist Grace Wepner-Ludtke is returning to NewArt School of Music after a brief hiatus. Wepner-Ludtke is a professional harpist, performing solo, chamber and orchestral music for audiences throughout the Southeast.

She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in music with a concentration in harp performance from Converse College. She has performed in venues throughout the United States and Europe, including Carnegie Hall, St. George's Church, Lincoln Cathedral and Liben Castle. Wepner-Ludtke currently performs with the North Carolina Harp Ensemble conducted by Jacquelyn Bartlett and serves as Ensemble Manager.

Jeremy Whitener has been hired to teach voice. Whitener received his degree in Choral & Vocal Music Education from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro in 2013. While at UNCG, Whitener taught voice and led master classes and coached middle school and high school age singers.

He has performed in many venues across North Carolina, singing a variety of styles ranging from musical theater, opera, art song, pop and more. Whitener currently teaches elementary music at Mountain View Elementary and conducts the Chancel Choir at Friendship United Methodist Church.

The NewArt School offers instruction in piano, guitar, flute, harp, voice and more. For more information, contact Ingrid Keller at ikeller@newton-conoverauditorium.org or 828-464-8100. The Newton-Conover Auditorium is located at 60 West 6th Street in Newton.

36-year-old Natasha Marie Bolden of Highway 16 South in Taylorsville turned herself in at Hickory Police headquarters at about 10:45 yesterday morning (January 7) on two felony counts of obtaining property by false pretense.

Events leading to her arrest began on November 4 when Police responded to Neill Grading & Construction Company on Tate Boulevard in reference to worthless checks written by Bolden for construction on two businesses located in the Moretz Mill building.

The checks were returned for insufficient funds. Police did not release the amount of the bad checks, but did say the total value was less than $100,000. The businesses in question were to be a florist and a restaurant.

Bolden was processed at H.P.D. and then released after posting a $2,000 unsecured bond. She was scheduled to make a first appearance in District Court tomorrow in Newton.

Wednesday, 07 January 2015 14:02

Suspect Sought in Theft of Trail Cameras

Lincoln County Sheriff’s Detectives are investigating the theft of two trail cameras from property on the 4900 block of Highway 73.

Deputies were dispatched to the victim’s residence at about 2:15 p.m. on December 31. The victim said two trail cameras attached to the same tree had been stolen. The cameras, valued at $850, were cable-locked to a tree on the backside of the property. The cameras were removed by breaking the case of the camera off the lock.

The camera was noticed missing when the victim received a picture in his email of the suspect taking the camera. One of the cameras continued to send back email pictures to the camera’s owner after it was stolen.  

The suspect appears to be a white male in his late 20s or early 30s with brown hair.

Detective Frank Runyon is the investigating officer.

Anyone who has information about the theft or can identify the suspect or the location in the photos should contact the Sheriff’s Office at 704-732-9050, the Lincoln County Communications Center at 704-735-8202 or Crime Stoppers at 704-736-8909.

A Crime Stoppers tip leading to an arrest could result in a reward of up to $1,000.

Hickory Police are looking into the possibility that three separate shoplifting incidents at three different Lowes Foods stores may be linked.

Between 6:20 Monday evening (January 5) and 10:20 the next morning, an unknown female at the Lowes store in Viewmont took Prilosec, Zyrtec, Nexium, an early pregnancy test, Allegra and Breathe Right strips valued at $335.

Between 4:30 p.m. and 8:20 p.m. Monday, an unknown suspect at the store on 29th Avenue Drive N.E. near Sandy Ridge Road took Zantac, Prilosec, Zegerid and Omeprazole valued at $365.

Sometime between December 18 and December 27, at the Lowes store on Highway 127 South in Mountain View, two unknown white females and a male juvenile concealed and stole over the counter medication including Coricidin, Zyrtec, Prilosec, Nexium, Prevacid and Omeprazole. The stolen items were valued at $696. The incident was not reported to Police until yesterday (January 6).

Anyone with information should call Hickory Police at 828-328-5551.

36-year-old Terry Lee Taylor of Miller’s Park Lane in Vale is wanted by Lincoln Co. Sheriff’s Officers on one felony count each of breaking & entering a building, possession of a stolen motor vehicle, larceny of a motor vehicle and two felony counts of safecracking. Taylor is wanted in connection to a break-in at a western Lincoln County business.

On January 5, while conducting a property check at 2361 Ben Yount Lane in Vale, Deputy Barry Holt found a basement door at PTI, Inc. and Geymont Construction open. Detectives also learned that tools had been taken from an outbuilding nearby.

A white 2000 Ford Econoline Van was also stolen. The van has an oval shaped burgundy sign on each side that reads “GCI Geymont Construction Inc.”

Warrants for Taylor’s arrest have been issued, with several additional charges pending. He is also wanted on similar charges in Cleveland County. Taylor is believed in be in Lincoln or surrounding counties.

Anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of Terry Lee Taylor should contact the Sheriff’s Office at 704-732-9050, the Lincoln County Communications Center at 704-735-8202 or Crime Stoppers at 704-736-8909. Crime Stoppers may remain anonymous. A tip leading to an arrest could result in a reward of up to $1,000.

Wednesday, 07 January 2015 11:43

Viewmont Business Association to be Reorganized

The Viewmont Business Association (VBA) is being reorganized after not officially meeting for several years. Members of the Viewmont Strut Promotions committee have been assisting with the reorganization. The Viewmont Strut that has been held for five years on the fourth Saturday in September.

The first official VBA meeting will be held on Monday, January 12 at 6 p.m. at the Hickory Moose Lodge, 1040 2nd Street N.E. (N.C. 127) in Viewmont. The Hickory Moose Lodge will provide light refreshments for those in attendance.

During the meeting, the group will adopt by-laws, hold elections and discuss other logistics. Businesses wishing to join the VBA will be required to pay dues, which are $50 per year.

The VBA includes businesses along N.C. 127, between 8th Avenue N.E. & N.W. (near Morphis Law & Mediation and Adrienne’s) to the Belle Hollow Shopping Center and Bumblebees (29th Avenue to 35th Avenue N.E. & N.W.).

For more information about the VBA and to review proposed by-laws and membership information, go to www.HickoryNC.gov and click on the Business tab at the top of the page above the photos. The Viewmont Business Association is listed under “Recognized Business Associations”.  

For more information, contact City of Hickory VBA Staff Liaison Mandy Pitts at 828-261-2290 or mpitts@hickorync.gov.

Due to the forecast of severe frigid temperatures, Hickory Public Schools has announced that they will be on a two-hour delay tomorrow (Thursday, January 8).

Catawba County Schools will operate on a two-hour delay, as well.

Newton-Conover City Schools have also announced a two-hour delay. Superintendent David Stegall cited the possibility that buses might not crank right away. The delay will allow school officials to check all buses and school boilers before students arrive. Staff members will be on a regular schedule.

Burke County Schools will be on a two-hour delay for students and staff.

Caldwell County Schools has announced a two-hour delay for students. Faculty and staff will be on a regular schedule. The WrapAround program will also be on a two-hour delay.

The City of Newton has also announced that the restrooms at all city parks are closed due to cold weather. The restrooms will reopen on Monday, January 12, weather permitting.

Additional closings or postponements will be announced on 1290 AM WHKY and on whky.com.