The robbery of a convenience store in Newton at gunpoint earlier today (July 19) is under investigation. Shortly before 1 a.m. today, the Newton Police Department responded to the Circle K convenience store at 334 East 20th Street, in reference to an armed robbery.
Upon arrival, officers were advised that a black male, 5’10 – 6’0, approached the clerk outside the store and presented a handgun demanding the clerk give him money from the cash register. The clerk was escorted inside the store by the suspect. The clerk walked behind the counter to the cash register as the suspect continued pointing a gun at him. The clerk opened the register and gave the suspect money.
The suspect then fled the store on foot in a western direction. Officers searched the area but were unable to find a the man. There were no injuries during the robbery. Anyone with information on this case is asked to contact the Criminal Investigation Division of the Newton Police Department at 828-465-7430.
46-year-old Richard David Miller, Jr. of Hudson Chapel Road in Catawba was arrested by Hickory Police early this morning (July 19) on one felony count of possession of a schedule II controlled substance and one misdemeanor count of drug paraphernalia. He was taken into custody without incident at 1:30 a.m. today on the 800 block of South Center Street. Miller was jailed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility with bond set at $4,500, secured. A first appearance in District Court was scheduled today in Newton.
47-year-old Louis John Pivonka, Jr. of Falls Street in Morganton was arrested by Hickory Police at 12:25 p.m. yesterday on a felony warrant as a fugitive awaiting extradition to another state. Pivonka is wanted by the U.S. Marshal's Service for a probation violation. He was taken into custody at a Hickory Public Utilities building on 9th Avenue N.E. Pivonka was placed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility without bond on hold for the U.S. Marshal's Service. No court date is currently listed.
29-year-old Alvin Lorance Hames of Cameo Lane in Lenoir and 27-year-old Brandon Alan Ervin of Meadowlane Drive in Granite Falls were arrested today (July 19) by Caldwell County Sheriff's Officers. Hames is charged with possession with intent to sell and deliver methamphetamine and marijuana, and maintain a dwelling to keep or store controlled substances. Ervin is charged with possession of methamphetamine.
Early this morning, Narcotic Agents and SWAT with the Caldwell County Sheriff’s Office along with Narcotic Agents with the Lenoir Police Department executed a drug search warrant located at a residence on Cameo Lane in Lenoir. The search warrant was issued following several reported undercover controlled purchases of illegal drugs from the suspect, Alvin Lorance Hames. Ervin was also present at the residence and was reportedly found to be in possession of approximately one gram of methamphetamine.
Agents conducted a search and found 10.92 grams of crystal methamphetamine, 192 grams of marijuana, assorted items of drug paraphernalia, and a .22 long rifle. The street value of all the drugs seized during the investigation is $4242, according to North Carolina State Drug Guidelines.
Both suspects were incarcerated in the Caldwell County Detention Center, Hames under $150,000 secured bond and Ervin under $25,000 secured bond. They're both scheduled to appear in District Court in Lenoir Monday (July 22).
A duplex fire in Hickory resulted in the deaths of two dogs. Shortly before 10 p.m. Thursday (July 19), Hickory firefighters were dispatched to a structure fire at 104 12th Street NW. Firefighters responded with two engines, one ladder, one rescue truck, and two command units. Catawba County EMS also responded to the incident.
Upon arrival at 9:46 p.m., firefighters reported smoke and flames coming from the duplex. They checked the building to ensure all occupants were outside and then worked to extinguish the fire. Two dogs died in the fire, no other injuries were reported. Fire damages were considered to be major.
Fire investigators determined the fire cause to be unintentional and caused by an electrical failure in the dishwasher.
46-year-old Christmas Carol Roberts of Pinetop Place in Lenoir was arrested Thursday by Caldwell County Sheriff's Officers. She's charged with felony uttering a forged instrument. In addition, Roberts is charged with possession of a counterfeit instrument, currency, or check. Roberts was detained in the Caldwell County Detention Center under $5,000 secured bond. A District Court appearance is scheduled Monday (July 22).
39-year-old Keith Bernard Graham of Ontario Court in Hudson was arrested Thursday (July 18) by Caldwell County Sheriff's Officers. He's charged with felony counts of larceny of a motor vehicle and possession of a stolen motor vehicle along with a misdemeanor count of resisting a public officer. Graham was jailed in the Caldwell County Detention Center under $9,000 secured. A District Court appearance is scheduled for August 15, a Superior Court date is September 9.
41-year-old William Avery Laws and 45-year-old Ruth Marie Morrow Robinson, both of Hickory, were arrested Thursday (July 18) by Lincoln County Sheriff's Officers. Laws was charged with felony counts of larceny of a motor vehicle and possession of stolen goods in Lincoln County. He also has outstanding warrants in connection to vehicle thefts, those charges were filed by the Hickory and Lincolnton Police Departments. He's also charged with felony probation violation. Robinson is charged with felony counts of larceny of a motor vehicle, possession of stolen goods and conspiracy to commit felony larceny.
Deputies were dispatched to West Lake Imports on NC 16 Business North in Denver in connection with the theft of a gray 2013 Audi RS5. The owner told deputies he handed a man the keys to look at the vehicle. He also informed the man that he would need his personal information before he could test drive the vehicle. When the owner went inside the dealership the man fled with the vehicle. He was followed by a woman in another vehicle.
The investigation revealed that the suspects may be in Hickory. Detectives with the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office along with officers from the Hickory Police Department and Probation and Parole went to an apartment in Hickory Thursday, where the suspects and stolen vehicle were found. The suspects were taken into custody.
Laws was placed in jail under $125,000 secured bond on the theft charges. He was placed under a no bond hold for the probation violation. Robinson's bond was set at $5,000 secured. Both suspects were scheduled to appear in District Court today (July 19).
One lane of North Green Street in Morganton will be closed from Fleming Place to Catawba Street Monday (July 22) through Wednesday (July 24) of next week. The northbound lane of North Green Street will be closed so city electric crews can install electrical conduits for street lights in the area, weather permitting. The southbound lane of the street, heading into Downtown Morganton, will remain open.
Local traffic to homes and businesses in the area will be permitted, but all other northbound traffic, including semi-trucks, will be routed down Collett and College Street, around the work zone. Once work is completed, the lane will be reopened.
Another felony charge has been filed against 19-year-old Jonathan Andrew Johnson of Taylorsville. Johnson was initially charged with assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill inflicting serious injury, as reported Tuesday (July 16) on WHKY. He was arrested in connection to a Monday night (July 15) stabbing at an address on Liledoun Road in Taylorsville. The Alexander Co. Sheriff's Office's investigation into the case led to an additional charge of attempted murder. That charge was filed yesterday (July 17).
Johnson was initially jailed under a $250,000 bond. After the attempted murder charge was filed, he was given an additional bond of $1,000,000, bringing the total bond to $1,250,000, secured. Johnson's next appearance in Alexander County District Court is coming up on Monday, July 22.
43-year-old Kimberly Dawn Davis of 5th Street S.E. in Hickory was arrested by Hickory Police shortly before eight o'clock last night (July 17) on one felony count of larceny by anti-inventory device and one misdemeanor count of larceny.
She was arrested on an outstanding warrant dated June 27, 2019. The initial larceny and arrest occurred on August 24 of last year.
Davis was taken into custody without incident yesterday at a convenience store on Lenoir-Rhyne Boulevard S.E. She was jailed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility with bond set at $10,000, secured. An appearance in District Court was scheduled today in Newton.
33-year-old Ashly Renee Stone and 37-year-old Ian Howell Mauck, both from Conover, have been arrested in connection to vehicle break-ins that occurred in the Bethlehem community in Alexander County. Stone was charged with 11 counts of felony breaking & entering a motor vehicle, 11 counts of misdemeanor larceny, and one count of felony larceny of a firearm. Mauck faces nine counts of felony breaking & entering a motor vehicle, two counts of misdemeanor breaking & entering a motor vehicle, seven counts of misdemeanor larceny, and two counts of felony larceny of a firearm. Stone was arrested yesterday (July 17), while Mauck was arrested on July 10.
Stone is Mauck's girlfriend. The arrests were the result of an ongoing investigation into incidents that occurred on July 7 & 8. The investigation involves multiple jurisdictions, including the Hickory Police Department, the Conover Police Department, the Catawba Co. Sheriff’s Office, and the Burke Co. Sheriff’s Office.
Stone was jailed in the Alexander Co. Detention Center under a $175,000 secured bond. She'll make a first appearance in Alexander County District Court on Monday, July 22. No bond amount is currently listed for Mauck. His next court date was set for July 29.
40-year-old Keisha Ann Gantt of Gates Drive in Denver, N.C. was arrested by Hickory Police shortly after 4 p.m. yesterday (July 17) on one felony count of possession with intent to manufacture, sell, or deliver a schedule II controlled substance. She was also charged with misdemeanor counts of possession of schedule IV & VI controlled substances and possession of drug paraphernalia.
Gantt was taken into custody without incident at the Office of Adult Probation & Parole on 26th Street S.E. in Hickory. She was placed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility with bond set at $50,000, secured. She has since been released. A first appearance in District Court was scheduled today in Newton.
24-year-old Robert Vaughn Pippen of Pleas Hefner Drive in Taylorsville and 25-year-old Justin Dennis Lynch of NC Highway 16 in Conover were arrested Tuesday (July 16) By Iredell County Sheriff's Officers.
Both suspects were charged with attempted felony larceny, first-degree trespassing, and injury to personal property. Lynch has additional charges pending for two counts of felony possession of stolen property in Catawba County, he also has a failure to appear in court warrant for felony larceny, first-degree trespassing, and injury to personal property. In addition, there's a failure to appear warrant against Lynch in Burke County.
On Tuesday, a concerned citizen was traveling on Wilkesboro Highway when they saw a U-Haul truck parked on the side of the road in the 3400 block of Wilkesboro Highway just before 3 a.m. Investigation revealed that locks had been cut at a business in an effort to steal property. Deputies began a search of the area. They located a tandem axel U-Haul trailer sitting on the shoulder of the road on Snow Creek Road. It was later confirmed both the truck, and trailer were stolen from a U-Haul lot in Hickory.
Authorities conducted a search for the suspects, after several hours, based on evidence collected, Robert Vaughn Pippen was developed as a suspect. During the course of the investigation Iredell County Sheriff’s Office Detectives learned Pippin is currently on probation, and he had reported to their office after this incident. Justin Dennis Lynch was developed as a second suspect. It was additionally learned Lynch had numerous outstanding warrants in Burke and Catawba Counties.
Pippin was arrested by the Alexander County Sheriff’s Office and turned over to authorities in Iredell County. Justin Dennis Lynch was arrested at a hotel in Hickory, the Hickory Police Department assisted Iredell County Sheriff’s Office Detectives. The investigation is still on going. It is possible other charges will be filed. Information has been shared with Hickory Police Department, and Statesville Police Department as to the suspects possible involvement in crimes in their jurisdictions.
Pippen was issued a $7,500 secured bond by Magistrate T. Thompson. The total bond for Lynch is $47,000 secured. Lynch was scheduled to appear in District Court today (July 18). No court date was listed for Pippen.
44-year-old Aimee Michelle Jenkins was arrested Wednesday (July 17) by Morganton Public Safety Officers. She's charged with felony possession of a controlled substance in prison or jail. In addition, Jenkins faces misdemeanor counts of driving while impaired, texting and driving, and improper turn. Jenkins was arrested shortly after midnight Wednesday morning. She was not listed as an inmate in Burke County today (July 17). District Court dates are scheduled for Friday (July 19) and November 27 in Morganton.
39-year-old Danny Carl Lackey of Clarks Chapel Road in Lenoir was arrested Wednesday (July 17) by Caldwell County Sheriff's Officers. He's charged with felony possession of a firearm by a felon along with misdemeanor counts of resisting a public officer and carrying a concealed weapon. Lackey was detained in the Caldwell County Detention Center under $100,000 secured bond. A District Court appearance was scheduled today (July 18).
32-year-old Andrew Mark Calloway of Moss Lane in Granite Falls was arrested Wednesday (July 17) by Long View Police Officers. He's charged with breaking and entering, larceny after breaking and entering, and possession of stolen goods. Calloway was detained in the Catawba County Detention Facility under $20,000 bond. A Superior Court appearance is scheduled for September 9.
34-year-old Juan Moises McDonald of 21st Street S.E. in Hickory has been arrested by Catawba Co. Sheriff's Officers on charges of fleeing to elude arrest with a motor vehicle and unauthorized use of a motor vehicle. He was also charged with failure to appear on two counts of fleeing to elude arrest with a motor vehicle with two aggravating factors and failure to appear on two felony probation violations. In addition, McDonald was charged with two counts of non-support of a child.
Events leading to his arrest began at about 2:20 a.m. on July 11 when a Catawba County Deputy attempted to stop a vehicle in the area of Bethany Church Road and N.C. Highway 16 South in Newton for a traffic violation. The driver failed to stop and attempted to flee, traveling south on Highway 16 and onto Coley Fish Pond Road.
The driver eventually stopped in a driveway on the 2,000 block of Coley Fish Pond Road. He exited the vehicle and attempted to flee on foot. Deputies quickly apprehended the suspect, identified as Juan Moises McDonald.
During the investigation, Officers learned that the suspect was in possession of several sets of car keys that appeared to belong to an auto dealership. Deputies communicated with Newton Police and found that the vehicle tag and keys were stolen from a business in Newton.
McDonald was jailed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility under a $39,501 bond. Court dates were set for July 18 & 22 and for August 5 & 22. Additional charges from the Newton Police Department are pending.
17-year-old Khalil Sincere Rhynhart of 5th Street N.E. in Hickory was arrested by Hickory Police this morning (July 17) on one felony count of breaking & entering a motor vehicle and one misdemeanor count of larceny. Rhynhart was taken into custody without incident just after 8 a.m. today at a dental facility on 10th Avenue Drive N.E. in Hickory. He was placed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility with bond set at $5,000, secured. An appearance in District Court was scheduled today in Newton.
26-year-old Seth Allen Thornburg of Berry Road in Connelly Springs was arrested Tuesday (July 16) by Lenoir Police Officers. He's charged with felony possession of methamphetamine, and misdemeanor counts of possession of drug paraphernalia and carrying a concealed weapon. Thornburg was detained in the Caldwell County Detention Center under $20,000 secured bond. A District Court appearance was scheduled today (July 17).