Local and State Headlines for Monday, June 18th, 2018

Body Found During Morganton Homicide Investigation (Burke County, NC)

The Burke County Sheriff's Office says the body of a man linked to a triple homicide in Morganton may have been found.  Investigators had been looking for Kenneth Douglas, who they believe was found in the woods about a mile from his home on Friday night.  Three people were found dead on June 8th, a day after investigators think they were shot to death.  The body found on Friday appeared as if it had been decomposing since around that time.  

Asheville City Districts Proposal Introduced (Raleigh, NC)

A bill proposing the split of Asheville into five city council districts is now being considered by lawmakers.  State Senator Chuck Edwards introduced the bill on Friday.  His current proposal calls for the election of five council members from each district, plus a citywide election for mayor and one additional council member.  Voters in Asheville overwhelmingly turned down a referendum in 2017 seeking approval to divide the city into districts.  

Woman Found Dead In Burke County (Burke County, NC)

The investigation of a murder on Highway 70 in Burke County is underway.  Deputies found a woman dead inside the Connelly Springs home after they responded to an assault call last night.  No arrests have been made.     

WCU Chancellor Dies After Brain Cancer Battle (Cullowhee, NC)

The Western Carolina University community is mourning the death of its school chancellor.  David Belcher had been on administrative leave since late 2017, more than a year after a diagnosis of brain cancer.  The school reached an all-time high in enrollment under his leadership.  Governor Cooper presented him with the Order of the Long Leaf Pine in the Spring.    

Interim Manager Announcement Expected Tomorrow (Buncombe County, NC)

Buncombe county commissioners are expected to name an interim county manager at tomorrow night's meeting.  The announcement was originally scheduled last week, but the board emerged with no name after hours in closed session.  Mandy Stone recently announced her retirement after less than a year on the job.  She began working for Buncombe County in 1981.  

Early Voting Changes Passed By Legislators (Raleigh, NC)

The early voting period in North Carolina will change under a new law passed by state legislators.  All voting sites must be open 12 hours a day during weekdays of the 17-day early voting period.  The last early voting day would be the Friday before Election Day, rather than that Saturday.  Supporters say streamlined hours will make it less confusing, but opponents feel the mandated 12-hour weekdays will strap some municipal funding.

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