Local and State Headlines for November 1st, 2018

Republican Numbers Down In Buncombe, Henderson (Buncombe County, NC)

Republicans are reportedly showing up in lower numbers to vote early in Buncombe and Henderson counties.  A Western Carolina University political science professor told WLOS-TV that he took a look at the returns for early voting and found around a six percent drop in Republican turnout compared to the last midterm election in 2014.  Unaffiliated voters have reportedly risen in both counties.  Voters can still cast an early ballot today through Saturday ahead of next Tuesday's election.

Florence Damages Higher Than First Reports (Raleigh, NC)

The estimated damage caused by Hurricane Florence in North Carolina continues to rise.  Governor Roy Cooper said yesterday that the storm did 17-billion-dollars' worth of damage.  That's up four-billion from initial estimates.  The updated estimate far outweighs the combined totals of damage caused by both Hurricane Matthew and Hurricane Floyd.  

Macon County Crash Kills One (Macon County, NC)

The state highway patrol says one person was killed in a Macon County crash yesterday.  Two trucks heading in opposite directions on Highway 64 collided head-on when one crossed the center line.  A passenger in the truck that crossed the line died.  Three others were airlifted by helicopter to the hospital.       

Former Town Manager Pleads Guilty To Fraud (Tryon, NC)

Tryon's former town manager accused of fraud is pleading guilty.  Joe Davis was accused of using the town credit card to pay more than two-thousand-dollars in bills owed by former council member Roy Miller.  Miller allegedly agreed to persuade other council members to keep Davis at a certain pay level.  Both of the men were arrested in 2017 after the allegations arose against Davis earlier in the year. 

Accused Illegal Logger Arrested For Missing Hearing (Buncombe County, NC)

A Leicester man accused of illegally cutting down timber on conservation property is facing more trouble.  Scott Bobby Turner was ordered to pay almost 200-thousand-dollars for allegedly logging trees on Southern Appalachian Highland Conservancy's property in the Sandy Mush area in 2013.  Buncombe deputies arrested Turner this week after he failed to appear at two court hearings this year.  He's still in jail and is expected for a hearing this afternoon.             

Early Childhood Education Investment Approved By Buncombe County (Buncombe County, NC)

Buncombe County is investing more than three-million-dollars into early childhood education.  The money will be used to find more teachers and create more space for students.  The measure was approved by county commissioners this week, who will now be tasked with figuring out where to pull the money from.  One commissioner suggested looking at property taxes. 

Butler High Students Returning To Class Today (Matthews, NC)

Butler High students are returning to class today for the first time since Monday's deadly shooting at the school.  The Matthews Police Department is increasing officer presence today on the campus.  Police Chief Mark Pennington said the department will do its part to ensure a smooth transition back into school and will use all means necessary to ensure safety.  Sixteen-year-old Bobby McKeithen was shot by a ninth grader in the hallway on Monday morning. 

Student Found With Gun At Garinger High (Charlotte, NC)

A 16-year-old student is facing charges for allegedly bringing a gun to Garinger High School on Tuesday.  He was arrested just one day after the school shooting in Matthews' Butler High.  A counselor alerted a school resource officer that he may be carrying a weapon, which was later found in his pocket.  The student was arrested and charged with carrying a concealed weapon and three other counts.

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