Local and State Headlines for Tuesday, October 2nd, 2018

Police Identify SUV In Deadly Hit-And-Run (Asheville, NC)

Asheville Police are looking for an SUV believed to be at the center of a deadly hit-and-run.  Officers believe it was a 2003 to 2007 blue Toyota Highlander that hit Bradley Christopher Barnes on South Charlotte and Max streets early Sunday in downtown Asheville.  The SUV has damage to the front of the driver's side.    

Search Continues For Missing Woman Near Clingmans Dome (Great Smoky Mtns, NC)

Rescue crews are still searching for an Ohio woman who disappeared near Clingmans Dome a week ago.  A Great Smoky Mountains National Park spokeswoman says 500 miles of trails have been covered in the search for Mitzie Susan Clements.  She vanished while hiking the Forney Ridge Trail with her daughter.  A team of more than 100 from more than 40 agencies continue to search for any clues.      

Backpack Found By Volunteer Explodes (Asheville, NC)

A volunteer who was helping clean up the French Broad River in Asheville last weekend says he found a backpack that exploded in his kayak.  Police believe that more than two dozen Mountain Dew bottles inside the bag were used as part of a mobile meth lab.  The North Carolina SBI and bomb squad responded to the scene to assist the Asheville Fire and Police Departments.  No one was injured in the explosion.    

Body Confirmed To Be Missing Six-Year-Old (Gastonia, NC)

Gastonia's Police Chief says he was saddened to learn that a body found last week was confirmed to be that of six-year-old Maddox Ritch.  A medical examiner made the identification yesterday.  Ritch disappeared while walking with his father on September 22nd at Rankin Lake Park, which will re-open to the public tomorrow.  A Thursday visitation and Friday funeral service will both be held at Raymer-Kepner Funeral Home in Huntersville. 

Charges Pile Up Against Car Chase Suspects (Fairview, NC)

Charges are piling up against two men accused of leading officers on a car chase after hitting two Buncombe County deputies last week.  One of the suspects was charged with resisting an officer and felony assault.  The other man faces 16 charges related to the chase and has a bond set at 350-thousand dollars.  Investigators believe the car is connected to the shooting death of a woman in the South French Broad neighborhood last Wednesday.  

NAACP Seeking Extension Of Voter Registration Period (Raleigh, NC)

The NAACP is seeking to extend the voter registration period for counties hurt by Hurricane Florence.  The proposal requests that the state allow local boards to push back the deadline to accept registration forms by five days to October 17th in 29 counties.  State legislators will meet at the capitol today.  An extension on absentee ballots will be considered as well.

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