39-year-old Fredrick Darius Dula and 36-year-old Lakesha Leeanne Deskins, both of the same Charlie Ridge Place Lenoir address, were both arrested Friday (December 9) by Caldwell County Sheriff's Officers. They're each charged with felony counts of trafficking in cocaine and maintaining a vehicle or dwelling to keep controlled substances. Dula is also charged with violating a house arrest order.
Sheriff Alan C. Jones announced the Caldwell County ICE Unit and his Deputies executed a search warrant at the home of Fredrick Darius Dula and Lakesha Leeanne Deskins at 2343 Charlie Ridge Place in the Dulatown Community of Lenoir. This is the second raid on Dula and his residence since May of this year. On May 11, Ice Unit agents conducted an investigation and executed a search warrant on Dula. He was subsequently arrested and charged with drug violations. He had since been released and was on Electronic Monitoring.
During the past month, Ice Unit Agents have been conducting an undercover investigation on Dula and Deskins, who were suspected of selling crack cocaine. Throughout the investigation, a series of controlled buys for crack cocaine were made from the residence.
On Friday, the Sheriff’s Office SWAT Team executed a drug search warrant at his home. Agents searched the home and seized more than three ounces of crack cocaine and more than $2,300 cash. A 2001 Chrysler vehicle was also seized during the raid. The cocaine was found in the living room and master bedroom areas. The cocaine has a street value of close to $18,000 according to North Carolina Drug Guidelines. Dula was jailed in the Caldwell County Detention Center under a total bond of one-million, fifty thousand dollars secured. Deskins' bond was set at $100,000 secured. Both suspects were scheduled to appear in District Court today (Monday, December 12).
A teenager who had been missing since November 25 has been located and is safe. A grandparent of Madison Olivia Burnette located the teen Saturday (December 10) and brought her to the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office. She had not been seen since leaving her residence on November 25 with two females in a black Honda.
A judge dismissed the charges filed against a man charged with murder in Caldwell County based on an insanity finding. That decision was made last Thursday in Caldwell County Superior Court in the case against 23-year-old Donald Paul Malick III of Monroe.
Malick was charged with murder for the April 2010 shooting death of 19-year-old Casey Marie Moore, attempted murder for shooting his father, Donald Malick II, and assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill inflicting serious injury.
The younger Malick, 16 years old at the time, was visiting his father when an altercation led the son to shoot his dad. When Moore, the daughter of Malick II’s girlfriend, reached for the phone to call 911, Malick III shot and killed her.
During a hearing in Caldwell County Superior Court last week, the Honorable Jeffrey P. Hunt, Superior Court Judge from Transylvania County, heard evidence presented by Assistant District Attorney Nancy Lee and Defense Counsel Shell Pearce regarding the case before dismissing the charges based on the insanity finding.
The defendant had a significant history of mental illness and had four psychiatric hospitalizations prior to the date of the offense.
The State’s expert found that at the time of the crime, the defendant suffered from mental illness and was unable to tell that the act he committed was wrong. Judge Hunt ruled that Malick was not guilty by reason of insanity after hearing all the testimony, reviewing medical records and interviews. All of the evidence from the State and the defense as well as the testimony of eyewitnesses supported Judge Hunt’s ruling that Malick III was legally insane at the time of the murder.
By North Carolina General Statute, Malick will now be admitted to a locked state mental hospital forensic unit for some undetermined period of time. His mental status will be reviewed as provided by law, and he may eventually qualify for release if the doctors find that he meets specific criteria as provided by statute.
48-year-old Carl Dennis Geter of Hickory will serve at least 17 years in prison following a guilty plea last week. Geter pleaded guilty to drug charges, a breaking and entering offense and he admitted his status as an habitual felon during Catawba County Superior Court on Thursday (December 8).
The Honorable Timothy S. Kincaid, Superior Court Judge from Catawba County, imposed an active prison term of 17 to 22 years in custody of the North Carolina Department of Adult Corrections for Geter.
The defendant’s habitual felon status enhanced his sentence. Geter had prior felony convictions for the sale of cocaine in Catawba County (May 1990), uttering a forged instrument in Cleveland County (October 2002) and sale and deliver of a Schedule II Controlled Substance in Cleveland County (November 2005), along with numerous other convictions.
Geter’s three counts of selling cocaine came as a result of three undercover buys by agents with the Catawba County Sheriff’s Narcotics Task Force during a span of a week in December 2015.
In June 2016, Geter broke into the Hickory home of a murder victim and stole numerous items, including televisions and an Xbox console.
The drug cases were investigated by the Catawba County Sheriff’s Office, and the breaking/entering case was investigated by Hickory Police Department. Sean Baetjer and Kyle Smith handled prosecution for the District Attorney’s Office.
33-year-old Jason Todd Hayes was arrested today (Friday, December 9) by Burke County Sheriff's Officers. He's charged with felony counts of forced breaking and entering and possession of stolen goods. Hayes was placed in jail in Morganton under $30,000 secured bond. He's scheduled to appear in District Court next Tuesday (December 13).
33-year-old Brandon Alan Beach of 6th Avenue N.W. in Hickory was arrested by Hickory Police early this morning (December 9) on one felony count of possession of a schedule I controlled substance and one misdemeanor count of possession of a schedule VI controlled substance.
Beach was taken into custody without incident shortly before 2 a.m. today on 2nd Street N.E. in Hickory. He was processed and then released under a $2,500 unsecured bond. A first appearance in District Court was scheduled today in Newton.
25-year-old Sparkle Wynn Walsh of Walsh Vines Lane in Lenoir was arrested by Hickory Police shortly after 7 p.m. yesterday (December 8) on one felony count of larceny by servant or other employee.
The arrest was her second in connection to a reported larceny from the GameStop store on Catawba Valley S.E. in Hickory. Walsh was initially arrested on September 15 of 2015. She was a manager at the store. Walsh is accused of changing prices on merchandise and selling the items to her friends at a discount. The incidents took place over a period of three or four months. Total property loss was estimated at over $2,000.
Walsh was arrested without incident at Frye Regional Medical Center in Hickory. She was processed and released less than an hour later under a $1,000 unsecured bond. An appearance in Superior Court was scheduled today in Newton.
At approximately 3:35 a.m. today (Friday, December 9), Hickory firefighters were dispatched to a reported fire at 1464 6th street SE. Firefighters responded with two engines, one ladder, one rescue truck, and two command units.
Upon arrival, firefighters found some occupants standing in the yard and on the porch. They told firefighters that there had been a fire on the stove but it was out.
Once inside, firefighters found smoke in the house and damage to the kitchen cabinets. After ensuring everyone had evacuated, firefighters discovered a fire in the attic near the hood exhaust system. They were able to quickly extinguish the fire in the attic and clear the smoke out of the house.
No fire injuries were reported and fire damages were confined to the kitchen and hood system. However due to the smoke damage, the Red Cross responded to the scene and will be helping the occupant, who was displaced as a result of the fire. Fire investigators determined the fire was started by unsupervised cooking.
25-year-old Garland E. Washburn was arrested Thursday (December 8) by Burke County Sheriff's Officers. He's charged with felony malicious conduct by a prisoner and misdemeanor injury to personal property. Washburn was placed in jail in Morganton under $26,000 secured bond. A District Court date is set for Monday (December 12).
Two suspects have been arrested in connection to a November shooting in Burke County. 31-year-old Kevin Matthew Revis and 34-year-old April Dawn Coleman were both arrested Thursday (December 8) by Burke County Sheriff's Officers. Revis is charged with felony assault inflicting serious injury along with several misdemeanor highway violations. Coleman is charged with felony accessory after the fact.
The suspects were found in a vehicle parked off the roadway in an area near U.S. 70 in Connelly Springs. They are charged in connection with an incident that occurred on Sunday, November 12. Authorities responded to a shooting call at Knob Superette in Connelly Springs on that date. Deputies later found an abandoned vehicle Berea Church Road, which is a short distance from Knob Superette. Police also found a handgun in the roadway and a sawed-off .20 gauge shotgun inside the vehicle.
The victim in the shooting, Buddy Cook, arrived at CMC Valdese with a gunshot wound to the abdomen. He told officials he was shot by Matthew Revis.
Revis was jailed under $50,000 secured bond on the assault charge and $15,000 secured bond on the traffic violations. Coleman's bond was set at $10,000 secured. Both suspects are scheduled to appear in court Monday (December 12).
38-year-old Larry Dwayne Miller of Piedmont Street in Lenoir was arrested Thursday (December 8) by Lenoir Police Officers. He's charged with felony counts of possession with intent to sell and deliver cocaine and maintaining a vehicle, dwelling, or place to keep controlled substance. Following the arrest, Miller was jailed in the Caldwell County Detention Center under $5,000 secured bond, a District Court date is set for Monday (December 12).
27-year-old Jeremy Lee Mays, AKA "Mayhem" of Lexington, was arrested Tuesday (December 6) in Lincolnton by Troopers with the North Carolina State Highway Patrol. Highway Patrol charged Mays with driving while impaired, careless and reckless driving, failure to maintain lane control, driving while license revoked, failure to wear seatbelt, and failure to stop for a red light. Mays was also charged on outstanding warrants with common law robbery, assault on a female, and unauthorized use of a motor vehicle on warrants from Onslow County. On Wednesday (December 7), Lincolnton Police Office Detectives charged Mays with possession with intent to manufacture sell and deliver methamphetamine, trafficking heroin by possession, and trafficking heroin by transport.
According to a news release issued yesterday (Thursday, December 8), on Tuesday at approximately 4:45 p.m., Lincolnton Police Department patrol units were dispatched to the area of East Main Street and East Gaston Street, near U.S. Highway 321, to assist the North Carolina State Highway Patrol with a vehicle stop. Officers reportedly found a significant amount of heroin and methamphetamine in the possession of the driver.
The driver was identified as 27-year-old Jeremy Lee Mays. Narcotics investigators with the Lincolnton Police Department processed and weighed the seized heroin and methamphetamine. It was determined that the heroin was over the threshold weight for trafficking. Additionally, the heroin and methamphetamine was packaged in a manner that was indicative of trafficking, selling, and delivering the drugs.
The news release says that Mays is a validated gang member validated through the North Carolina Department of Corrections as a member of the Bound for Glory Gang, which is a White Supremacist Prison Gang. Following the arrest this week Mays was incarcerated in the Lincoln County Jail under $31,000 secured bond. He made his first appearance in Lincoln County District Court on Thursday. The investigation into this case is continuing.
Lincoln County Sheriff’s detectives are investigating a rash of church break-ins that have occurred during the last week.
For the fourth time since last Friday (December 2), detectives were dispatched to a church break-in in Lincoln County. Long Shoals Wesleyan Church south of Lincolnton is the latest house of worship burglarized by thieves. Stolen in the break-in were an X-Box and TV. There were no signs of forced entry.
On Saturday (December 3), deputies were dispatched to the Community Full Gospel Church on the Gastonia Highway. Someone had arrived to clean up the church for Sunday services but discovered the front area of the church had been ransacked and a number of items stolen including televisions, amplifier, speakers, and a bass guitar. The items were valued at $1,650. Entry was believed to have been made through an unsecured window.
On Monday (December 5), deputies were dispatched to the Howard’s Creek Baptist Church on Highway 27 West after a church member discovered a window screen on the ground near a side window on the church. Entry is believed to have been made through a side door that had been pried open. The pastor’s study was ransacked and a pink bucket and a blue bucket with money for the building fund had been stolen. Stolen in the break-in were a cash box, money and checks.
On Wednesday (December 7), deputies responded to a break-in at Trinity Second Chance Church on Laboratory Road. Church members arriving for a bible study discovered the main door in front of the church had been broken and was open. Stolen in the break-in were a bass guitar and case.
There is also believed to have been a church break-in in Gaston County. Detectives believe the break-ins are connected because all occurred in the same area south of Lincolnton. Investigators are working to see who is behind the spree.
If you know anything that can help investigators make arrests in these break-ins, call the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office at 704-732-9050, the Lincoln County Communications Center at 704-735-8202, or the Lincolnton/Lincoln County Crime Stoppers at 704-736-8909.
50-year-old Michael William McNeill of Hubert Lane in Connelly Springs was arrested by Hickory Police at 8:10 p.m. Tuesday (December 6) on one felony count of breaking & entering a motor vehicle and one misdemeanor count of larceny. The warrants for his arrest were issued in Burke County.
He was taken into custody without incident at the Walmart store on Highway 70 S.E. in Hickory. McNeill was placed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility under a $2,500 secured bond. He has since been released. An appearance in District Court was set for December 12 in Morganton.
The Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office named its law enforcement officers of the year last night (December 7).
The sixth annual “Sergeant John H. Howell II Memorial Deputy Sheriff of the Year Award” went to Detective Frank Runyon, a nine-year veteran, who began his career at the Sheriff’s Office in 2007 as a full time Civil Officer. He moved to the patrol division in 2008 and was promoted to Detective in 2013. He serves as treasurer of the local Fraternal Order of Police. This year, he coordinated an effort to raise thousands of dollars for the family of fallen Shelby Police Officer Tim Brackeen.
The sixth annual “First Sergeant Thomas R. Taylor Detention Officer of the Year Award” was presented to Detention Officer Robert Hooks, Jr. Officer Hooks is a five-year veteran of the Detention Center. He was hired in 2011 after a stint in the Navy. Officer Hooks studied Criminal Justice at Western Carolina University. On Thanksgiving Day of this year, Officer Hooks discovered an unresponsive inmate in a holding cell. He and other detention officers started C.P.R. until E.M.S. arrived, potentially saving the inmate’s life.
Permanent plaques are displayed in the lobby at the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office honoring each annual award recipient.
17-year-old Sulayman Admeer Williams of 23rd Avenue Drive N.E. in Hickory was arrested by Hickory Police late Tuesday night (December 6) on one felony count of breaking & entering a motor vehicle, plus misdemeanor counts of breaking & entering a building, larceny and damage to real property with willful & wanton injury.
Williams was taken into custody without incident at about 11:55 p.m. Tuesday on the 200 block of 26th Avenue N.E. He was taken to the Catawba Co. Detention Facility with bond set at $3,000, secured. A first appearance in District Court was scheduled today (December 8) in Newton.
50-year-old Joseph Tyrone Dillard of 3rd Street S.E. in Hickory was arrested by Hickory Police early Wednesday morning (December 7) for a felony probation violation. He is on probation following a February 2016 conviction in Catawba County for felony speeding to elude arrest.
Dillard was taken into custody without incident at about 45 minutes past midnight yesterday on 4th Street S.W., about two blocks from Hickory Police headquarters. He was placed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility under a $3,500 secured bond. An appearance in District Court was set for December 12 in Newton.
56-year-old Joel Nicholas Baker of Freezer Locker Road in Hudson was arrested Wednesday (December 7) by Caldwell County Sheriff's Officers. He's charged with felony counts of selling methamphetamine and maintaining a vehicle, dwelling, or place to keep controlled substances. Baker was confined in the Caldwell County Detention Center under $50,000 secured bond. A District Court appearance was scheduled for today (Thursday, December 8).
36-year-old Joshua Lee Parsons and 41-year-old Tabitha Rae Deaton, both of the same Rockfall Lane, Newton, address, were both arrested Wednedsday (December 7) by Caldwell County Sheriff's Officers. Parsons is charged with felony counts of possession of methamphetamine and possession of schedule II controlled substance. Deaton is charged with felony possession of methamphetamine. Parsons was locked up in the Caldwell County Detention Center under $10,000 secured bond, Deaton's bond was set at $3,000 secured. Both suspects were scheduled to appear in District Court today (Thursday, December 8).
38-year-old Brandon Shawn Pendley was arrested Wednesday (December 7) by Burke County Sheriff's Officers. He's charged with felony forced breaking and entering. Pendley was placed in jail in Morganton where bond was set at $155,000 secured. A court appearance is scheduled for next Monday (December 12).