29-year-old Barbara Elizabeth Sherrill of Lenoir (who also has a Hiddenite address) has been arrested by Alexander Co. Sheriff’s Officers on one felony count of making a false report of mass violence on educational property.
On Monday (March 12), Investigators took a report regarding someone who was threatening to place bombs at East Alexander Middle School. Other threats were posted on social media. The suspect told others about the bombs and said that law enforcement had “better hope they find them before they go off”.
School was dismissed Monday due to inclement weather. The Sheriff’s Office notified school authorities about the threat. Deputies and a K-9 trained in bomb detection searched the school, but did not find any threats.
With assistance from Caldwell Co. Sheriff’s Detectives, Barbara Elizabeth Sherrill was arrested without incident at her address in Lenoir. She was taken to the Alexander Co. Detention Center and charged accordingly. Sherrill was given a $20,000 secured bond with a first appearance in Alexander County District Court set for Monday, March 19.
Alexander Co. Sheriff Chris Bowman expressed his appreciation to the Iredell Co. Sheriff’s Office and the Caldwell Co. Sheriff’s Office for their assistance.
39-year-old Horace Lamar Morton of Campbell Road in Newton was arrested today (March 13) by Catawba County Sheriff's Officers. He's charged with possession of methamphetamine and possession of drug paraphernalia. Morton was jailed in the Catawba County Detention Facility under $3,000 bond. A Superior Court date is scheduled Wednesday (March 14).
24-year-old Jose Martires Canales Jr. and 22-year-old Kaslyn Elizabeth Wallace, both of Taylorsville, were arrested Friday (March 9) by Alexander County Sheriff's Narcotics Officers. Canales is charged with trafficking marijuana and maintaining a dwelling for controlled substance. Wallace is charged with possession of methamphetamine and possession of marijuana.
The suspects were arrested following a search at Canales’ residence at 5674 Black Oak Ridge Road in Taylorsville.
The search warrant came after a package was intercepted at the United States Post Office in Taylorsville. The package was being shipped to Canales' residence from Rancho Cordova, California. A six package line-up was then set up and the Alexander County Sheriff’s Office K-9 alerted to the odor of narcotics on the suspected package.
A controlled delivery operation was then conducted with assistance from the Taylorsville Police Department Narcotics Unit and the United States Postal Inspection Service. Approximately 11 pounds of marijuana were seized. The arrests follow an investigation that had been ongoing for several months.
Bond for Canales was set at $30,000 secured, Wallace was given a $2,500 bond. They were both scheduled to appear in court Monday (March 12).
One person was reportedly killed in a crash on a Burke County roadway. According to the North Carolina News Network, a woman was killed following a wreck on Highway 70 west of Glen Alpine. The woman's name had not been released. At least one person was airlifted from the scene. Reports state that it was a head-on crash, no additional information was available.
30-year-old Jerry Wayne Sigmon of Springs Road in Conover was arrested Monday (March 12) by Newton Police Officers. He's charged with possession with intent to manufacture, sell, and deliver schedule II controlled substance, possession of drug paraphernalia, and driving while license revoked. Sigmon was jailed in the Catawba County Detention Facility under $25,000 bond. A District Court appearance was scheduled today (March 13).
The City of Morganton Finance Department is again being recognized by the Government Finance Officers Association of the United States and Canada (GFOA) for its excellence in financial reporting. The city has been honored by GFOA on multiple occasions, including last year.
The City recently received the Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting from the association for its most recent Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR). It is the highest form of recognition for governmental accounting and financial reporting, and its attainment represents a significant accomplishment by a government and its management, according to GFOA.
Finance Director Karen Duncan says in a news release issued by the city: “Transparency and accuracy in all of the City’s financial reporting is paramount to us. We are thrilled to receive this again, as it speaks to the hard work and dedication of our staff.”
The CAFR was judged by an impartial panel to meet stringent criteria, including demonstrating a spirit of full disclosure in order to clearly communicate the city’s financial story.
The Government Finance Officers Association is headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, and is a major professional association servicing the needs of nearly 19,000 appointed and elected local, state and provincial-level government officials and other finance practitioners.
Lincoln County Sheriff’s detectives are investigating a rash of vehicle break-ins to unlocked vehicles in an area near Old Plank Road in Iron Station. Last Saturday (March 10) residents began reporting the break-ins to vehicles parked at homes on Old Plank Road, Lowes Lane, Old South Drive and Heartwood Lane. A total of 9 break-ins have been reported. The items stolen in the break-ins included a wallet, personal identification, money and 9 millimeter ammunition.
Thieves have a tendency to break into unlocked vehicles because they want to get in and out of the area as quick as possible. The Lincoln County Sheriff's Office is offering tips to prevent vehicle break-ins. Lock your vehicle every time you leave, even for a short period of time. Don’t leave valuables in plain view. Do not leave personal identification in your vehicle, these items can be used later to commit identity theft.
Do not leave a firearm in your car. If you place items in the trunk, do it discreetly or before you arrive at your destination. If your car is parked in a carport or near your home, leave you 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.
Anyone with information on the break-ins should call 911, the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office at 704-732-9050, the Lincoln County Communications Center at 704-735-8202, or Lincolnton/Lincoln County Crime Stoppers at 704-736-8909. All tips are investigated.
According to a news release issued Monday (March 12), the Burke County Sheriff’s Office received information about possible improprieties with an officer in the Burke County Narcotics Task Force regarding improper use of drug funds. The Sheriff’s Office initiated an internal investigation and when issues were discovered, Sheriff Steve Whisenant requested that the State Bureau of Investigation (SBI) take over the investigation last Friday (March 9).
Former Burke County Task Force Lt. Jody Price was terminated Friday. The SBI’s criminal investigation is continuing and those findings will be turned over the District Attorney’s Office when their investigation is completed. No additional information could be shared at this time. The Sheriff's Office says more information will be made available when the SBI concludes their investigation.
According to another news release issued Monday, with the planned dissolution of the Burke County Narcotics Task Force scheduled for June 30, 2018, Sheriff Whisenant had planned to reorganize the narcotics investigations within the Sheriff’s Office to begin July 1, 2018. Due to circumstances with the task force, that reorganization has been accelerated to begin immediately.
The Burke County Sheriff’s Office has incorporated the narcotics investigators into the Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigations Division (CID). Those officers will be supervised by the CID Lieutenant with administrative oversight by the Major at the Sheriff’s Office. In addition to who supervises the narcotics officers, the narcotics division’s mission and focus has been modified.
In preparing for the change in drug enforcement philosophy, Sheriff Whisenant, accompanied by Burke County CID supervisors and narcotics officers met with District Attorney Learner, Sr. Resident Superior Court Judge Ervin, Chief District Court Judge Cherry, and administrators and supervisors of the NC Public Safety’s Probation Division to seek their support in this new initiative and philosophy. Their support was given.
Sheriff Whisenant’s initiative includes a two-prong approach. In addition to continuing the collaborative work with federal and state authorities targeting major drug dealers, the Sheriff’s Office will begin more aggressive enforcement of criminal laws for small-time dealers and habitual addicts. Secondly, the Sheriff’s Office will develop a path of treatment for offenders who meet certain criteria and who have a commitment to change their behavior.
The Sheriff’s Office has been researching the LEAD (Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion Program) as one method of achieving these goals. Part of the treatment initiative to reduce substance abuse has been a positive working relationship with Catawba Valley Behavioral Healthcare (CVBH). CVBH has recently obtained a three-year grant from Kate B. Reynolds. This grant will provide a case manager for the Burke County jails to work with inmates while incarcerated as well as when released. With no cost to the taxpayers, this new position will be meeting many of the concerns that have been shared with CVBH, including the following quote.
"Substance abuse has a direct correlation with crime. If we reduce substance abuse; we reduce crime. Unfortunately our jails have significant numbers of persons who are addicted to prescription and/or illicit drugs as well as incarcerated persons who are suffering from mental illnesses and some who are homeless. We cannot arrest our way out of this growing problem. Releasing such persons to their same environments, with no jobs, without treatment, support, and/or social plans only exacerbates these issues." (Burke County Sheriff Steve Whisenant)
A mobile home fire Monday (March 12) in Hickory is being considered as arson, a suspect has been arrested. At 1:10 p.m. Monday, Hickory firefighters were dispatched to a structure fire at 521 18th Street Place SW. Firefighters responded with two engines, one ladder, one rescue truck, and one command unit.
Due to reports the fire was intentionally set, firefighters were advised to use caution while responding to the scene. Catawba County EMS and Hickory Police also responded to the incident. Upon arrival, firefighters reported the mobile home fully involved with fire. Firefighters worked to ensure there were no occupants inside the burning building and then worked to extinguish the fire. The fire was reported to be under control at 1:29 p.m.
No injuries were reported. Fire damages were considered heavy. The Red Cross responded to the incident and will be assisting the occupants. Fire investigators determined the fire was intentionally set. The news release from the Hickory Fire Department says a suspect was in custody and charges were pending.
The Hickory Police Department arrested 37-year-old Nora Mize Hill of Corry Drive in Statesville Monday and charged her with felony second degree arson, along with misdemeanor counts of resisting a public officer, breaking and entering and injury to personal property. A Hickory Police Department spokesperson confirmed that the arrest is in connection to the mobile home fire. Hill was placed in the Catawba County Detention Facility under $26,000 bond. District Court dates were scheduled today and April 10.
30-year-old Devan Hawk Enloe of Thad Miller Road in Lenoir was arrested Friday (March 9) by Lenoir Police Officers. He's charged with felony possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. Enloe was jailed in the Caldwell County Detention Center under $10,000 secured bond. A Superior Court date is scheduled for April 30.
18-year-old Sirena Alexis Everhart of Everhart Court in Lenoir was arrested Sunday (March 11) by Caldwell County Sheriff's Officers. She's charged with felony possession of a stolen motor vehicle. Everhart was placed in the Caldwell County Detention Center under $10,000 secured bond. A District Court appearance was scheduled today (March 12).
25-year-old Jordan Leigh Williams of Heron Cove Look in Hickory was arrested by Hickory Police just after ten o’clock Friday night (March 9) on one felony count of common law robbery and one count of breaking & entering with intent to terrorize or injure.
Williams is one of four persons connected to a breaking & entering and assault that occurred on January 29 of last year at a residence in the 400 block of 21st Avenue Place N.E. Miguel Christopher Sanchez was arrested the day after the incident and Mallory Leigh Combs was arrested on February 21 of this year.
Williams was taken into custody at the restaurant on North Center Street where she is employed. She was jailed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility with bond set at $5,000, secured. An appearance in Superior Court was scheduled today (March 12) in Newton.
29-year-old Lamar Montray Gibbs of Mable Street in Catawba was arrested by Hickory Police at about 10:40 Saturday morning (March 10) on one felony count of possession with intent to manufacture, sell or deliver a schedule II controlled substance and on misdemeanor count of possession of up to half an ounce of marijuana.
Officers were conducting a property check at a hotel on Fairgrove Church Road S.E. when they saw a vehicle parked at the rear of the hotel. Officers searched the driver, Lamar Gibbs, and found 5.1 grams of crack cocaine and 13.5 grams of marijuana.
Gibbs was taken into custody without incident and placed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility under a $10,000 secured bond. He has since been released. Gibbs was scheduled to make a first appearance in District Court today (March 12) in Newton.
38-year-old Jennifer Tester Miller of Silverstone Road in Vilas was arrested Friday (March 9) by Lenoir Police Officers. She's charged with felony counts of possession of methamphetamine and maintaining a vehicle, dwelling, or place to keep controlled substance. She's also charged with misdemeanor larceny. Miller was locked up in the Caldwell County Detention Center under $17,000 secured bond. A District Court date was set for today (March 12).
47-year-old Cynthia Anne Fisher of Duke Street in Granite Falls was arrested Friday (March 9) by Caldwell County Sheriff's Officers. She's charged with felony counts of possession with intent to manufacture, sell, and deliver methamphetamine and maintaining a vehicle, dwelling, or place to keep controlled substance. Fisher was jailed in the Caldwell County Detention Center under $60,000 secured bond. A District Court date was scheduled today (March 12).
National Consumer Protection Week was last week and the North Carolina Department of Justice issued a news release reminding citizens that this is a good time of year to make sure you are taking steps to avoid being the victim of frauds, scams, and unethical businesses practices. The news release from the NCDOJ lists some basic rules that can help protect all consumers:
Never pay up front fees to win a prize or sweepstakes or get a loan. Upfront fees are against the law in North Carolina, never share personal or financial information unless you know who you are speaking with, and why they need that information, and don’t feel pressured if you receive threats of fines or arrest. No law enforcement or government agency, such as the IRS, will call and threaten arrest because they claim you owe money or have broken a law.
In addition, monitor your credit regularly. You can get a free annual credit report from each of three credit bureaus and a free security freeze on your credit report at ncdoj.gov/securityfreeze. Prepaid debit and gift cards can be a red flag. If you’re asked to buy prepaid gift or online cards to pay for anything, it’s probably a scam. Don’t make the purchase. Be cautious when responding to telemarketers, door-to-door sellers, and email or text pitches. Instead of responding to unsolicited offers, decide when and where you want to go shopping.
The NCDOJ advises you to avoid get-rich-quick schemes. Beware of offers that sound too good to be true, or promise huge rewards with little or no risk. If you are contacted by a scammer, you can report it to the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division by calling 1-877-5-NO-SCAM or by filing a complaint online. Get tips on how to spot and avoid scams at ncdoj.gov.
19-year-old Matthew James Walker of Wilson Drive and 18-year-old Hunter Steven Salvesen of Hi View Drive, both from Boone, have been arrested by Watauga Co. Sheriff’s Officers in connection to a pair of break-ins earlier this month. They were both charged with single counts of armed robbery, felony larceny, breaking & entering, larceny after breaking & entering and injury to personal property, plus two counts each of possession of stolen goods or property. Walker also faces charges for carrying a concealed weapon and simple assault.
Just after 5 p.m. on March 7, the Sheriff’s Office took a call regarding a robbery in progress at an apartment on Bloomfield Drive in Blowing Rock. Boone Police and Sheriff’s Officers responded to the call. Officers found two individuals attempting to flee the scene on foot with items taken from the apartment. The suspects were apprehended in the rear of the apartment complex. Evidence recovered at the scene included two MacBook computers. Both suspects were taken to the Watauga Co. Sheriff’s Office.
At about 5:25 p.m. on the same date, the Sheriff’s Office took a call from an apartment on Crocker Road in Blowing Rock regarding a breaking & entering and larceny at the residence. Items taken included a Nikon camera and a white women’s bathrobe.
Investigators conducted interviews were executed searches based on evidence found at the scene. The Nikon camera and the bathrobe were recovered.
The two suspects, Walker & Salvesen, were both charged accordingly. They were placed in the Watauga Co. Detention Center with bond for each set at $120,000, secured. Appearances in District Court were scheduled for tomorrow (March 13) in Boone.
24-year-old Christian Dior Sifford of 12th Avenue S.E. in Hickory was arrested by Hickory Police just before nine o’clock Saturday night (March 10) on one felony count of possession of cocaine.
His arrest stems from an incident on June 27 of last year. At that time, Officers on patrol near the 100 block of 10th Avenue S.E. in Hickory encountered Sifford. On his person, they found 1.1 grams of crack cocaine and 0.7 grams of marijuana. He was initially arrested on that date.
Following his arrest Saturday, Sifford was placed in the Catawba Co. Detention Facility with bond set at $14,000, secured. He has since been released. An appearance in Superior Court was scheduled today (March 12) in Newton.
50-year-old Domingo Martinez Hernandez of Hudson, was sentenced to an active prison term of 13 to 21 years after being convicted of first-degree statutory rape during Caldwell County Superior Court last Thursday (March 8).
The Honorable Robert C. Ervin, Superior Court Judge from Burke County, imposed the sentence for Hernandez following his guilty plea. The defendant will serve his sentence in custody of the North Carolina Division of Adult Corrections.
Investigation by detectives with the Caldwell County Sheriff’s Office revealed that a family member walked into Hernandez’s bedroom and saw the 11-year-old female victim get out of the bed and run from the room without any clothing. The defendant also was naked under the sheets in the bed. The child reported to law enforcement that the defendant raped her.
Steve Raby investigated the case for the Caldwell County Sheriff’s Office, and Assistant District Attorney Nancy Lee handled prosecution for the State.
24-year-old Matthew Carroll Greene of Blowing Rock Boulevard in Lenoir was arrested Friday (March 9) by Caldwell County Sheriff's Officers. He's charged with felony counts of first degree burglary, larceny of a firearm and larceny after breaking and entering. He was on electronic house arrest prior to being picked up Friday. He was placed in the Caldwell County Detention Center under $100,000 secured bond. No court date was listed.