23-year-old Dakota James Massagee of Main Street in Granite Falls was arrested last Friday (February 22) by Caldwell County Sheriff's Officers. He's charged with felony counts of financial card theft and obtaining property by false pretense. Massagee was brought to the Caldwell County Detention Center where bond was set at $3,000 secured. A District Court appearance is scheduled for March 18.
29-year-old Alvin Lorance Hames, Jr. of Maple Street in Granite Falls was arrested Sunday (February 24) by Caldwell County Sheriff's Officers. He's charged with felony flee to elude arrest with a motor vehicle. Hames was brought to the Caldwell County Detention Center where bond was set at $5,000 secured. A District Court appearance is scheduled for March 18.
19-year-old Austin Ryan Setzer of Hurricane Hill Road in Granite Falls was arrested Monday (February 25) by Caldwell County Sheriff's Officers. He's charged with felony larceny of a firearm. Setzer was detained in the Caldwell County Detention Center under $10,000 secured bond. A District Court appearance is scheduled Wednesday (February 27).
24-year-old Steven Christopher Griguts of Huntersville was arrested today (February 26) by Catawba County Sheriff's Officers. He's charged with three counts of first degree statutory sexual offense, five counts of indecent liberties with a child, and four counts of crime against nature. Griguts is also charged on a bill of indictment with larceny by employee. He was incarcerated in the Catawba County Detention Facility under $132,000 bond. A Superior Court appearance was scheduled today on the larceny by employee charge, a District Court date is set for Thursday (February 28) on all other charges.
The North Carolina Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) Commission has received reports of two different, but common, check scams. Here’s what to be on the lookout for.
In the first secret shopper scam, someone may contact you and hire you to be a “secret shopper” for your local ABC board. They’ll give you a check and direct you to cash it and use the money to buy gift cards. You’ll be asked to mail the gift card back to the person who contacted you. In these types of scams, your bank will often contact you to notify that the check is counterfeit, and your account will be debited in that amount.
The second scam involves internet sales. The scammer will claim they want to buy an item you're selling on eBay or Craig's List, and send you a check that appears to be from your local ABC board. The check will be for an amount higher than the price of the item. They'll ask you to cash the check and send them back the excess amount in cash. This scam also involves counterfeit checks that won't clear your bank account and will cause you to lose money.
It might be difficult to tell the difference between a real and counterfeit check. But you should be suspicious if you’re being hired to do something you didn’t apply for, or if you receive a check for more than your asking price on a sale item. Don’t share any personal or financial information with people who contact you, and don’t cash the check or send the scammer any money or gift cards.
If you’re contacted in either of previously mentioned ways by someone pretending to be your local ABC board or the NC ABC Commission, report the interaction to the NCDOJ’s Consumer Protection Division at 1-877-5-NO-SCAM or http://ncdoj.gov/complaint. Learn more about counterfeit check scams here.
36-year-old Brandon Louis Barras of Union Grove and 30-year-old Gregory Stephen Combs of Harmony were arrested by Iredell County Sheriff's Officers. Barras is charged with felony counts of possession with intent to sell and deliver methamphetamine and possession of meth along with a misdemeanor count of possession of drug paraphernalia. Combs is charged with felony possession of meth and misdemeanor possession of drug paraphernalia.
According to a news release issued Monday (February 25), on Sunday February 17, 2019 at approximately 11:30 a.m., a traffic stop was conducted on a vehicle on Wilkesboro Highway at Isaac Road for a traffic violation. After the officer questioned the driver briefly, a search of the vehicle was conducted.
During the search meth was found in the front passenger seat area where Gregory Stephen Combs was sitting. Meth was also found in the back passenger seat area where Brandon Louis Barras was sitting. Barras and Combs were then placed under arrest and transported to the Iredell County Detention Center. The driver of the vehicle was issued a citation for the traffic violation and released.
Bond for Barras was set at $5,000 secured, Combs received a $1,500 secured bond. Both men are scheduled to appear in District Court March 4.
31-year-old Kenneth Oliver Minton of Mintwood Drive in Hickory was arrested by Burke County Sheriff's Officers. He's charged with felony counts of possession of methamphetamine and trafficking in opiates or heroin in addition to a misdemeanor count of simple possession of schedule IV controlled substance.
According to a news release issued Monday (February 25), on February 4, 2019, at 8:00 p.m., deputies with the Burke County Sheriff’s Office were dispatched to a possible crime in progress at the Hildebran BB&T Bank. Upon arrival, deputies found a truck occupied by Kenneth Oliver Minton and another man in the bank parking lot. A search of the truck led to the discovery of multiple controlled substances, which were seized.
The second person in the truck was charged with two counts of misdemeanor failure to appear. Minton was brought to the Burke-Catawba District Confinement Facility where bond was set at $25,000 secured. He is no longer listed as an inmate. A court date was scheduled last Friday (February 22). No upcoming court dates were listed.
53-year-old Jeffery Dean Tucker of Maiden was given an active prison sentence of eight to 10 years for felony flee to elude arrest with a motor vehicle and his habitual felon status.
Tucker was sentenced to the active prison term on Friday (February 22) by the Honorable Daniel A. Kuehnert, Superior Court Judge from Burke County, more than a year after he was found guilty of the offenses by a Catawba County jury.
The defendant was found guilty on February 15, 2018, but sentencing was deferred at that time until a pre-sentencing evaluation of the defendant was completed by the North Carolina Division of Adult Corrections.
Tucker was wanted on federal warrants when he was spotted driving a vehicle by officers with the Catawba County Sheriff’s Office on December 18, 2014. He led multiple officers on a high-speed chase before exiting his vehicle and disappearing into a wooded area. He later was taken into custody.
Tucker’s sentence length was enhanced by his habitual felon status stemming from prior convictions for common law robbery (March 1986), assault with a deadly weapon inflicting serious injury (February 1988) and breaking/entering (February 1995), all in Catawba County.
Tyler Whisenant and Aaron Turk led the investigation for the Catawba County Sheriff’s Office. Melanie Earles prosecuted the cases for the District Attorney’s Office.
A Hickory man will serve an active prison term of eight to 13 years following his conviction for assaults on a law enforcement officer during Catawba County Superior Court on Monday (February 25).
48-year-old Barry Talmadge Hildebran was sentenced to serve his prison time by the Honorable Nathaniel J. Poovey, Superior Court Judge from Catawba County, after pleading guilty to assault with a deadly weapon on a law enforcement officer, assault with a firearm on a law enforcement officer and possession of a firearm by a felon. Hildebran will serve the prison sentence in custody of the North Carolina Division of Adult Corrections.
The offenses occurred February 12, 2016, when Deputy Scott Gay of the Catawba County Sheriff’s Office tried to serve a warrant on Hildebran at the residence where the defendant was staying.
Deputy Gay observed Hildebran attempting to climb out of a second-story window. Deputy Gay announced “Sheriff’s Office.” At that time, Hildebran pointed a shotgun at the deputy, who ran back to his patrol car while radioing for help, and grabbed his AR-15 rifle.
Hildebran then jumped from the window and again pointed his weapon toward the deputy. Gay and Hildebran fired their weapons simultaneously. Deputy Gay’s bullet shattered the wooden stock of the shotgun and struck Hildebran’s hand. Hildebran then ran toward Lake Hickory and jumped in, attempting to swim away but eventually swam back to the shoreline.
Later, as Hildebran was being taken into custody, he attempted to pull a knife on deputies. Hildebran’s charge for possession of a firearm by felon stemmed from an October 2013 larceny after breaking/entering conviction in Cleveland County.
The cases were investigated by the Catawba County Sheriff’s Office. Assistant District Attorney Melanie Earles prosecuted the cases for the State.
51-year-old Desmond Leon Smith of 2nd Avenue S.E. in Hickory was arrested by Hickory Police just before nine o'clock Saturday night (February 23) for felony habitual misdemeanor assault. He was arrested in connection to a domestic assault that was reported to Police on Saturday. Smith was taken into custody without incident at his residence. He was jailed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility where he is being held without bond. An appearance in District Court was scheduled today (February 25) in Newton.
43-year-old Debra Ann Williams of 35th Avenue N.E. in Hickory was arrested by Hickory Police early this morning (February 25) on one felony count of common law robbery.
Williams was arrested in connection to an incident on February 23 at the Walmart Neighborhood Market on Highway 70 S.W. in Hickory. At that time, Loss Prevention Officers attempted to stop a larceny suspect, but were unsuccessful. Warrants for Williams' arrest were issued.
She was taken into custody without incident at about 12:20 a.m. today at her residence. Williams was jailed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility with bond set at $12,000, secured. An appearance in District Court was scheduled tomorrow in Newton.
60-year-old Cynthia Diane Dulin of Sweetwater Drive in Statesville was arrested by Hickory Police shortly after 5 p.m. yesterday (February 24) on one felony count of habitual larceny, one felony count of larceny, three misdemeanor counts of larceny and one misdemeanor count of second-degree trespass. She also faces one count of failure to appear on a misdemeanor larceny charge.
She was arrested after Police responded to a shoplifting call at the Belk store in Hickory's Valley Hills Mall. The suspect, Cynthia Diane Dulin, was detained by Loss Prevention Officers after attempting to take merchandise past the last point of sale. She was taken into custody without incident on the current charges and on outstanding warrants.
Dulin was placed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility with bond set at $29,500, secured. An appearance in District Court was scheduled today in Newton with additional District Court dates coming up on February 27 and April 1.
25-year-old Charles Robert Townsend of Maple Tree Place in Collettsville was arrested Friday (February 22) by authorities in Avery County on a charge filed in Caldwell County. He's charged with felony break or enter a motor vehicle. Townsend was jailed in the Caldwell County Detention Center under $10,000 secured bond. A District Court appearance is scheduled for March 6.
29-year-old Dennis Lee Crawford of Phillip Lane in Lenoir was arrested Sunday (February 24) by Granite Falls Police Officers. He's charged with felony possession of a stolen motor vehicle. Crawford was brought to the Caldwell County Detention Center where bond was set at $20,000 secured. A District Court date was scheduled today (February 25).
44-year-old Gary Lawson Greer, Jr. of Blue Creek Road in Lenoir was arrested Saturday (February 23) by Caldwell County Sheriff's Officers. He's charged with felony flee to elude arrest with a motor vehicle. In addition, Greer is charged with misdemeanor probation violation, resisting a public officer, speeding, driving while license revoked, expired or no inspection, canceled, revoked or suspended certificate or tag, operating a vehicle with no insurance, and expired registration card or tag.
Following his arrest, Greer was brought to the Caldwell County Detention Center where bond was set at $55,000 secured. A District Court date is set for Tuesday (February 26).
Starting today (February 25) the North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicles will start using the State-to-State Verification Service to confirm a person’s identity and driving history from other states. The service, which is outlined in the federal REAL ID Act, requires a person to have only one driver license or ID card in one state at a time.
With State-to-State, NCDMV can determine if applicants already hold a driver license or ID card in another state and verify important driving information such as suspended licenses. After a North Carolina driver license or ID card is issued, any out-of-state issuances will be canceled. If an applicant does not want to cancel the out-of-state issuance, they will not be issued a North Carolina driver license or ID card.
All existing North Carolina driver license and ID card issuances will be checked for duplicate issuances in the 21 states already participating in the program. More states are expected to join the program through 2022. NCDMV estimates more than 210,000 North Carolina customers have duplicate issuances in other states.
NCDMV will reconcile duplicate issuances with each state using the service to determine which issuance will be canceled. The state with the most recent issuance will hold the valid license or ID card. Currently, the following states are using the service: Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Delaware, Idaho, Iowa, Indiana, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Tennessee, Utah, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.
State-to-State is administered by the American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators. For more information on State-to-State, visit the AAMVA website.
35-year-old Audrey Leann James of Hudson Street in Maiden was arrested Saturday (February 23) by Newton Police Officers. She's charged with felony counts of possession with intent to manufacture, sell, and deliver methamphetamine, and possession with intent to manufacture, sell, and deliver schedule IV controlled substance along with a misdemeanor count of possession of drug paraphernalia. James is also charged on bills of indictment with felony counts of possession of methamphetamine, possession of schedule II controlled substance, and misdemeanor possession of drug paraphernalia.
James was detained in the Catawba County Detention Facility under $26,000 bond. District and Superior Court appearances were scheduled today (February 25).
27-year-old Derek Andrew Moser of 10th Avenue SE in Hickory was arrested Friday (February 22) by Catawba County Sheriff's Officers. He's charged with felony counts of assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill inflicting serious injury, second degree kidnapping, and larceny of a motor vehicle.
The charges stem from a shooting resulting from a dispute at a residence on Pinebark Court in Newton. During the initial call response, deputies found that the suspect had left prior to their arrival and may have left on foot, causing the roads in the area to be blocked. After investigating, it was determined that the suspect left the area by vehicle.
The kidnapping victim, a 22-year-old woman, was reported to be safe and cooperating with authorities. The victim in the shooting, a 29-year-old Conover man, was treated and released. Moser turned himself into police at approximately 11:45 p.m. Friday (February 22).
Moser was jailed in the Catawba County Detention Facility under $145,000 bond. He was scheduled to appear in District Court today (February 25). Anyone with relevant information to this case, please call the Catawba County Sheriff’s Office at 828-464-5241.
28-year-old Terrance Michael Blevins of 31st Avenue NE in Hickory was arrested Friday (February 22) by Troopers with the North Carolina State Highway Patrol. He's charged with felony larceny of a motor vehicle along with misdemeanor counts of driving while license revoked, fictitious information to an officer, failure to appear, probation violation, and second degree trespassing. Blevins was incarcerated in the Catawba County Detention Facility under $21,500 bond. District Court dates were scheduled today (February 25), Wednesday (February 27) March 11, and May 15.
38-year-old Riane Leigh Brownlee of Dalzell, South Carolina, was arrested Saturday (February 23) by Claremont Police Officers. She's charged with possession of a stolen automobile, possession of a stolen firearm, and driving while license revoked. Brownlee was detained in the Catawba County Detention Facility under $20,000 bond. A District Court appearance was scheduled today (February 25).