A black 2009 Nissan Cube was stolen from the parking lot at the Dollar General store off of Highway 127 in Bethlehem. The victim’s dog, Gabby, was in the vehicle and was also stolen. The dog is a white Shih Tzu.
The incident unfolded at about 6:20 p.m. Wednesday (August 17) as the victim parked in front of the store with the engine running and the air conditioning on as the dog was left in the vehicle. Two white males entered the store and quickly exited. They got into the parked Nissan and drove away with the dog still inside.
The suspects were both described as white males with slim builds in their mid-20s.
The Alexander Co. Sheriff’s Office is investigating. Anyone with information regarding the incident or the whereabouts of the dog or the vehicle should call the Sheriff’s Office at 828-632-1111 or call Crime Stoppers at 828-632-8555.
24-year-old Morgan Brooks Sumpter of SW Melrose Street in Lenoir was arrested Thursday (August 18) by Lenoir Police Officers. He's charged with felony counts of breaking and entering and larceny after breaking and entering. In addition, Sumpter is charged with misdemeanor possession of drug paraphernalia. Sumpter was confined in the Caldwell County Detention Center under $2,500 secured bond. A District Court date is set for Monday (August 22).
45-year-old Brian Kelly Ferguson of NW Rankin Street in Lenoir was arrested Thursday (August 18) by Caldwell County Sheriff's Officers. He's charged with felony possession of methamphetamine and misdemeanor resisting a public officer. Following the arrest, Ferguson was locked up in the Caldwell County Detention Center under $20,000 secured bond. He was scheduled to make his first court appearance Thursday.
28-year-old Joshua Adam Chilcote was arrested Thursday (August 18) by authorities in Burke County. He's charged with felony possession of schedule II controlled substance. Chilcote was placed in jail in Morganton under $30,000 secured bond. A first court appearance was scheduled for today (Friday, Auggust 19).
18-year-old Trevin Ali Brown of 28th Street NE in Hickory was arrested Thursday (August 18) by Hickory Police Officers. He's charged with felony possession of cocaine, first degree burglary, second degree kidnapping, robbery with a dangerous weapon, and simple assault. Brown was detained in the Catawba County Detention Facility under $95,000 bond. A District Court appearance was scheduled for today (Friday, August 19).
Meetings Scheduled For Next Week To Discuss Road Widening Project Affecting Catawba, Iredell CountiesWritten by Rob Eastwood
The N.C. Department of Transportation will hold two public hearings next week regarding the proposed project to widen of N.C. 150 in Catawba and Iredell Counties to a multi-lane, median divided roadway. The project also includes the reconfiguration of the I-77/N.C. 150 interchange.
The purpose of the project is to improve traffic capacity and reduce congestion along N.C. 150 from the N.C. 16 Bypass to the U.S. 21/N.C. 150 interchange. An Environmental Assessment for this project was approved in March 2016. At this upcoming hearing the design alternatives will be presented to the public for review and comment.
The two Pre-hearing Open Houses and Public Hearings are scheduled at the following times and locations: next Monday, (August 22) at the Mt. Anderson Family Life Center at 4818 South N.C. Highway 16 in Maiden. And next Tuesday, (August 23) at Peninsula Baptist Church at 687 Brawley School Road in Mooresville. At both locations there will be an open house from 4-6:30 p.m. and the formal presentation will begin at 7:00 each night.
NCDOT representatives will be available to answer questions and receive comments regarding the proposed alternatives during the open house portion of the meeting. Interested citizens may attend at any time during the open house hours. The formal presentation will include an explanation of the location and design of each proposed alternative, as well as information about the state-federal relationship, the right of way and relocation requirements, as well as procedures that will be part of the project. The presentation and comments received will be recorded and included in the alternative selection process.
Maps showing the location and design of the project and a copy of the approved Environmental Assessment (EA) are available for public review at the following locations: NCDOT District 2 Engineer’s Office located at 124 Prison Camp Road, Statesville; NCDOT District 3 Engineer’s Office located at 1031 E. Gaston Street, Lincolnton; Town of Mooresville’s Engineering Dept. located at 2523 Charlotte Highway; Catawba County Planning & Parks Dept., located at 100-A South West Blvd., Newton; and
the Iredell County Planning Division, 349 N Center Street in Statesville.
Attorney General Roy Cooper issued a warning this week for citizens to watch out for vehicles damaged by devastating floods in Louisiana to show up for sale on new and used car lots in North Carolina.
The Attorney General said thoughts and prayers go out to the people suffering in Louisiana, however, he cautioned that flooded cars will be on their way to North Carolina and other states to trick unsuspecting car buyers. Cooper urged consumers to learn the warning signs to avoid these damaged vehicles.
After major storms, both new and used cars that were flooded will be offered for sale. These vehicles are frequently put through extensive cleaning that can make it difficult for prospective buyers to detect even serious damage.
Under North Carolina law, flood damage to a car must be disclosed in writing before the car is sold. Vehicles that have been partially or totally submerged in water resulting in damage to the body, engine or transmission are classified as flood vehicles, but title paperwork is sometimes unlawfully altered to remove any mention of flood damage. Failure to disclose damage to a vehicle is a class 2 misdemeanor prosecutable by local District Attorneys, and violators of the law can face civil penalties of up to $5,000 per violation.
To avoid buying a flood-damaged car:
Ask the seller directly if the car has been damaged in any way, including by storms or flooding. Consider getting a complete vehicle history report using a service like CARFAX. Request a copy of the title for any used car. Check the date and place of transfer to see if the vehicle comes from a state that recently experienced flooding. Flood damage will only be disclosed on the title if the insurance company officially declared the car totaled. Have the car examined by an independent mechanic of your choice before you buy. Avoid buying a car over the Internet if you haven’t seen it in person, especially if it is being sold in an area that recently experienced flooding. If possible, take the car for a test drive and remember to check for rust and mud in the trunk, glove box, and dashboard and beneath the seats. Look for rusty brackets under the dash and carpet, discolored upholstery, and mismatched carpet. Test electronics like headlights, windshield wipers, turn signals, power outlet, and radio. Run the heater and air conditioner, and look in the vents for signs of water or mud. Make sure all gauges on the dashboard are working accurately.
If you believe that you may have unknowingly purchased a flood-damaged vehicle, report it to the Consumer Protection Division by phone, toll-free within North Carolina, at 1-877-5-NO-SCAM. Consumers can also get tips on auto damage disclosure and file a consumer complaint online at ncdoj.gov.
36-year-old Jason Brian Allen of Sunny Lane in Cherryville was arrested August 7 by Lincolnton Police Officers. He's charged with felony possession of methamphetamine, felony possession of controlled substance in a detention facility, and misdemeanor possession of drug paraphernalia.
According to a news release issued today (Thursday, August 18), in the early morning hours of Sunday, August 7, Lincolnton Police initiated a traffic stop on a vehicle for an equipment violation. The driver of the vehicle was identified as Jason Brian Allen. A search was initiated and a glass pipe used to smoke methamphetamine and a small amount of methamphetamine were discovered.
While Allen was being searched later at the jail, additional amounts of methamphetamine were found in his possession. His bond was set at $17,500 secured. He made a first appearance in Lincoln County District Court August 8. Allen's next appearance in District Court is scheduled for August 25.
Lincoln County Sheriff’s deputies are investigating a rash of vehicle break-ins Tuesday night (August 16) to unlocked vehicles in a development off South Pilot Knob Road in Stanley.
Residents began reporting the break-ins the Wednesday morning (August 17) to vehicles parked at homes on Woodcrest Drive, Pinkney Place, Sedgebrook Drive East and Sedgebrook Drive West. Items stolen in the break-ins included a Glock 40 caliber pistol, laptop computer, a Verizon Jetpack, currency, credit cards and identification. In one case a vehicle with a Pennsylvania license plate and containing luggage was stolen. The vehicle was a 2013 Nissan Rogue, blue in color and displaying a Pennsylvania registration plate of KBG5190.
A total of 15 vehicle break-ins were reported. There were several other vehicle break-ins where the owners did not want to file a report. It appeared the thief or thieves went from street to street in the neighborhood to make entry into the vehicles. The break-ins appeared to be similar to those that have occurred in surrounding counties.
Thieves are still showing a tendency to break into unlocked vehicles because they want to get in and out of the area as quick as possible. During the investigation detectives recovered a Toyota Camry reported stolen from Asheboro. The vehicle was found abandoned on the power line right-of-way near Sifford Road.
The Lincoln County Sheriff's Office is offering tips to protect yourself from being a victim of a crime:
Lock your vehicle every time you leave, even for a short time.
Don’t leave valuable items in plain view. If you place items in the trunk, do it discreetly or before your arrive at your destination. If your car is parked in a carport or near your home, leave your exterior lights on at night. If you park on a street, choose a well-lit, open and visible space. Residents should also document and record all serial numbers on any items left in a vehicle.
If you see somebody acting suspicious or looking into vehicles, or if you have any information on the break-ins or the theft of the vehicle, call 9-1-1, the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office at 704-732-9050, the Lincoln County Communications Center at 704-735-8202 or Crime Stoppers at 704-736-8909.
City of Morganton workers planned to shut off water service to a section of Playmore Beach Road at 10:30 a.m. today, (Thursday, August 18) to repair a water line break. Approximately 50 customers will be affected on Playmore Beach Road from NC 18 to Hartland Road, including any side streets. Workers expect to have the line repaired by this afternoon barring any unforeseen problems.
For more information, call the Water Resources Department at 828-438-5276.
27-year-old Christina Michelle Hawes was arrested Wednesday (August 17) by authorities in Burke County. She's charged with felony larceny of a motor vehicle. Hawes was placed in jail in Morganton under $25,000 secured bond. A District Court appearance is scheduled for Friday (August 19).
22-year-old Aleia Kianna Rice of 1st Street S.E. in Hickory was arrested by Hickory Police at 10:40 a.m. yesterday (August 17) on one felony count of possession of a schedule II controlled substance.
She was arrested when Police stopped a 1992 Ford Explorer driven by Rice for a suspended license and an expired tag. The vehicle was stopped at a restaurant on Highway 70 S.W. in Hickory. Officers found 0.8 grams of crack cocaine on Rice’s person. One other person was in the vehicle but was not charged.
Rice was jailed under a $5,000 secured bond. She has since been released. A first appearance in District Court was set for today in Newton.
27-year-old Matthew Codi James Hildebran of 37th Street S.W. in Hickory was arrested by Hickory Police at 1:40 a.m. yesterday (August 17) on one felony count of possession of a schedule II controlled substance and misdemeanor counts of carrying a concealed gun and possession of marijuana up to half an ounce. He was also served outstanding warrants from the Catawba Co. Sheriff’s Office on one felony count of possession with intent to manufacture, sell or deliver a schedule II controlled substance and misdemeanor counts of carrying a concealed gun and possession of marijuana up to half an ounce. Those warrants were issued on August 1 of this year.
He was arrested Wednesday when Officers stopped a white 2001 Dodge Durango driven by Hildebran for expired tag and inspection violations. Upon further investigation, Officers learned that the sticker on the license tag was fictitious. The vehicle was pulled over at the intersection of 17th Street N.W. and Main Avenue N.W.
Police also saw a gun holster and located a 9mm handgun near the driver’s seat. They also found 1.5 grams of methamphetamine and 1.2 grams of marijuana.
Hildebran was taken into custody without incident and placed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility under a $12,000 secured bond. He has since been released. He was scheduled to make a first appearance in District Court yesterday in Newton with a Superior Court appearance on the Catawba County warrants coming up on September 8.
The Greater Hickory Cooperative Christian Ministry is in urgent need of donations.
Most-needed items include canned fruits and vegetables, spaghetti sauce, canned soups, canned tuna, canned chicken, rice, pasta, cereal and crackers.
Donations are accepted Monday to Thursday from 8 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. and on Fridays from 8 a.m. until noon.
The Greater Hickory Cooperative Christian Ministry is located at 31 1st Avenue S.E. in Hickory. Donations may also be made online at ccmhickory.com/donate.html. For more information, call 828-327-0979.
41-year-old Cruz Antonio Lopez was arrested Wednesday (August 17) by authorities in Burke County. He's charged with felony indecent liberties with a child. Following the arrest, Lopez was placed in jail in Morganton under $50,000 secured bond. A court appearance is scheduled for September 12.
32-year-old Christopher Davis Coffey of Dug Hill Road in Lenoir was arrested Tuesday (August 16) by Caldwell County Sheriff's Officers. He's charged with felony possession of a firearm by a felon. Coffey was detained in the Caldwell County Detention Center under $50,000 secured bond. A District Court appearance was scheduled for today (Thursday, August 18).
Two Bessemer City residents were arrested Tuesday afternoon (August 16) after a Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office detective observed a suspicious vehicle on George Brown Road.
Sheriff’s Detective Matt Burgess was in the area of George Brown Road when he saw a black Yukon driving slowly back and forth on the roadway. Detective Burgess conducted a traffic stop for suspicious behavior of the vehicle bearing Georgia license plates. The two adults in the vehicle were checked through NCIC where warrants were located out of the state of Georgia.
57-year-old Christie Ray Griffis and 37-year-old Lori Marie Carey both of Coho Road in Bessemer City were arrested on felony Fugitive from Justice warrants out of Pierce County, Georgia. Both suspects were placed in the Harven A. Crouse Detention Center without bond pending an extradition hearing. Griffis is wanted in Georgia for Felony Theft while Carey is charged with felony Aiding Another to Escape Custody.
There were two children in the vehicle who were both turned over to the Lincoln County Department of Social Services.
The Lincolnton Police Department reports the arrest of two suspects on sex offense charges in separate sting operations.
Last Sunday (August 14) detectives arrested 52-year-old Steven Joseph Porga of Cornelius. On Wednesday (August 17) detectives arrested 60-year-old Samuel Leroy Overholser of Newton. Both suspects are charged with solicit a minor for an unlawful sex act by a computer and appearing to meet the minor.
Both arrests were the result of two week investigations into the suspects. The suspects, and undercover detectives, posing as a minor child, exchanged dialogue and discussions on various social media outlets related to the suspects meeting the minor to engage in unlawful sexual activity. A date, time, and location were determined and the suspects arrived at the predetermined locations. Upon arriving to those locations, the suspects were arrested without incident.
Bond for both suspects was set at $75,000 secured. Porga appeared in District Court Monday (August 15), Overholser appeared in District Court Wednesday.
We have more information on the Officer-involved shooting Tuesday morning (August 16) at Walmart on Blowing Rock Boulevard in Lenoir. 32-year-old Carl Marcus Nivins of Lenoir, who had reportedly fired at Lenoir Police Officers, was killed in the incident. 24-year-old Natasha Rae Stanley of Morganton and 32-year-old Jose Alberto Flores of Rhodhiss were arrested on outstanding warrants from Burke County on unrelated charges.
Investigation into the incident has determined that the firearm used by Nivins, a .38 caliber Taurus revolver, was reported stolen from Burke County on August 13. Officers involved in this incident remain on paid administrative leave, per department policy. A Critical Incident Stress Debriefing for all involved personnel has been scheduled for later this week. It is anticipated that all employees will return to unrestricted duty soon thereafter.
No additional charges have been filed against Stanley or Flores, although more are expected in the coming days.
61-year-old Larocca Ned Taylor of Miller Bridge Road in Connelly Springs was arrested by Hickory Police at 4:20 yesterday (August 16) on one felony count for a change of mileage violation and one misdemeanor count of failure to deliver a title. According to North Carolina statute, the felony charge is intended to provide remedies for persons injured by motor vehicle odometer alteration.
The warrants for Taylor’s arrest were issued in June of this year. The complainant listed on the Hickory Police arrest report is the Catawba Co. Clerk of Court.
Taylor was arrested on a true bill of indictment at H.P.D. headquarters and released less than an hour later under a $15,000 unsecured bond. He was scheduled to make an appearance in District Court today in Newton.