Cooper Accused of Abusing Power, Morganton Man Dies In Industrial Accident

Governor Accused Of Improperly Using Authority In Pipeline Deal

(Raleigh, NC) -- An independent investigation is claiming Governor Roy Cooper improperly used his authority to secure a large mitigation fund connected to the Atlantic Coast Pipeline. The News & Observer says Republicans questioned the Governor yesterday after the report was released, alleging that some companies were pressured into agreeing to pour money into a 57-point-eight-million-dollar fund in order to obtain proper permitting for the project. Duke Energy says the fund and permitting processes were independent of each other. Cooper slammed the reports, saying it was full of inaccuracies.

Marion Woman Accused Of Extorting Former Judge

(McDowell County, NC) -- The SBI is investigating an extortion case involving a Marion woman and a former western North Carolina judge. Jennifer Tierce was served indictment warrants on Tuesday for allegedly trying to extort five-thousand-dollars from Randy Pool. He abruptly resigned as chief district judge in McDowell and Rutherford counties less than two weeks ago. Tierce was accused of threatening to send out sexually explicit messages and photos that Pool reportedly sent to her.

Three On Trial For Deadly Stabbing In Transylvania County

(Transylvania County, NC) -- The murder trial of three suspects in a 2017 stabbing death is underway in Transylvania County. Investigators say 18-year-old Saul Ayala was stabbed to death in a robbery in Brevard. Four suspects were initially charged with the murder, but one is now cooperating in the investigation. The Transylvania Times is reporting one suspect agreed to a plea deal in exchange for her testimony.

Franklin Chiropractor Accused Of Sexual Battery

(Franklin, NC) -- A chiropractor in Franklin is facing sex crime charges. Franklin Police Chief David Adams told WLOS-TV that seven victims have come forward with allegations that Erik Masden inappropriately touched them. He's been released on bond for four misdemeanor counts of sexual battery. The victims were patients of Masden's at Mountain View Chiropractic and Wellness Center.

Morganton Man Dies In Industrial Accident

(Morganton, NC) -- A Morganton man is dead in an industrial accident. Paramedics found Joshua McGee unconscious at Marion Machine Company in Marion Wednesday afternoon. McGee died at the scene. There's no word yet on exactly what happened.

Fire Breaks Out In McDowell County Business

(McDowell County, NC) -- Fire crews are investigating a blaze at a McDowell County business. WLOS-TV is reporting a fire spread through Columbia Forest Products last night. The company's website says it's the largest manufacturer of hardwood veneer and hardwood plywood in the country. Details are still coming in on the estimated damage.

Suspected Human Trafficking Case Lands Eight In Jail For Drugs

(Gaston County, NC) -- Investigators are trying to make sense of a suspected human trafficking case in Cleveland County. Troopers found eight people inside an SUV on I-85 at the Gaston-Cleveland counties line on Wednesday morning, and some of them are believed to be human trafficking victims. The driver ran away from the scene, but was caught several hours later. Investigators allegedly found meth and marijuana inside the SUV. Now, all of them are in Cleveland County jail under a one-million-dollar bond on drug charges.

Ten Men Arrested For Exploiting Children Online

(York County, SC) -- Ten suspects are facing child sex crime charges in York County. Sheriff's investigators said yesterday the men, mostly from the Charlotte area, were trying to talk to children online. Several suspects allegedly tried meeting up with someone they thought was a juvenile, but it turned out to be undercover agents. One of those charged is Michael Bovino of Mooresville, who was fired from his position as associate professor at Davidson College after his arrest.

Suspects At-Large In Hickory Kidnapping, Shooting

(Hickory, NC) -- Hickory police are looking for suspects in an alleged kidnapping and double shooting. Officers say two men kidnapped a salon owner Tuesday night and took him to his business called Premium Boutique on First Avenue Southeast. They reportedly shot the business owner and another man, who are both stable. The salon owner's girlfriend and her son were allegedly tied up during the kidnapping.

Mooresville High School To Re-Open After Gas Leak

(Mooresville, NC) -- Mooresville High School is expected to re-open today after dealing with a gas leak problem. School officials told WSOC-TV that Dominion Energy crews found a leak in the boiler room and made a repair Tuesday afternoon. They decided to cancel class early Wednesday morning after another leak was discovered. Some students claimed they noticed the gas smell during school hours on Tuesday.

Charlotte Bowl Game Needs New Sponsor

(Charlotte, NC) -- The annual college football bowl game in Charlotte needs a new sponsor. The Charlotte Sports Foundation said Wednesday that the New Year's Eve game at Bank of America Stadium will be the last one that Belk sponsors. The Belk Bowl traditionally features teams from the ACC and SEC. The foundation's executive director thanked Belk and other community partners for the success of the game.

Airport Gearing Up For Thanksgiving Travel

(Charlotte, NC) -- Charlotte airport officials are preparing for holiday travel. A busy period at Charlotte-Douglas International is expected to pick up at the end of this week and continue through the weekend after Thanksgiving. NBC Charlotte says more than 32-thousand local passengers will travel through the airport at the peak of the holidays. Drivers may have trouble finding long-term parking as early as Tuesday.

Poll: Most NC Residents Support Confederate Statures, Monuments On Public Land

(Undated) -- Nearly two out of three North Carolinians say Confederate statues and monuments should remain on public property. The Elon University poll released Wednesday found 65-percent of people surveyed support leaving Confederate monuments and statues on government-owned spaces including park, city squares, and courthouses. Thirty-five percent say they should be removed. The findings were released the same day Chatham County removed a 112-year-old Confederate monument from the front of the courthouse in Pittsboro.

Social Justice Groups File Suit To Restore Felons' Voting Rights

(Raleigh, NC) -- Three social justice groups are suing to having voting rights restored to felons. The North Carolina NAACP, Justice Served NC, and The Community Success Initiative filed suit against House Speaker Tim Moore, Senate leader Phil Berger, and the State Board of Elections. The suit aims to restore voting rights to convicted felons who have been released from prison and those who haven't served time in lockup. The lawsuit applies to about 70-thousand people.

Student, Teacher Injured When Barn At Johnston County School Collapses

(Princeton, NC) -- A student and a teacher were trapped under the wreckage of a small barn that collapsed on them at Princeton High School Wednesday afternoon. Johnston County school officials say the teacher and student were clearing items out of the barn before it was scheduled to be torn down. The two were taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.

Chemical Spill Closes Major Durham Intersection

(Durham, NC) -- A chemical spill closed a major intersection in Durham for more than an hour during the Wednesday evening commute. Durham authorities shut down North Roxboro Road near the Latta Road intersection around 4:30 p.m. Fire crews cleaned up after more than 300 gallons of swimming pool chlorine spilled from a tank and washed into a storm drain. Police say a valve sheared off the tank that was being hauled to a residential swimming pool.

UNC Bounces Back From Slow Start, Downs Elon 75-61

(Chapel Hill, NC) -- UNC didn't play like one of the top teams in college basketball but played well enough in the second half to down Elon, 75-61 in Chapel Hill last night. Fifth-ranked UNC was a 31-point favorite coming into the game but the Tar Heels were down 33-32 at the half. The second half was a different story as the Heels dropped 43 points on Elon while holding the Phoenix to just 28. Freshman forward Armando Bacot led UNC with a game-high 22 points and 14 rebounds.

Greensboro Man Shot By Police During Chase

(Greensboro, NC) -- A man is in serious condition after he exchanged gunfire with Greensboro police. The scene played out yesterday afternoon during a traffic stop on Business 85 North. Police say a driver sped off and crashed near the Randleman Road exit before firing shots at responding officers. They fired back, and the suspect was hit. It's not yet clear what charges he'll face. No officers were hurt.

One Dead, Two Charged In Winston-Salem Shooting

(Winston-Salem, NC) -- One person is dead and two others are arrested after a bad drug deal in Winston-Salem. Gunfire erupted Tuesday night near Peachtree Street and Argonne Boulevard. Ajian Jones was shot and later died of his injuries. Andres Harris and Danielle Miller were both taken into custody yesterday. The guy who police believe was dealing the drugs, Charvez Brown, is in the hospital with non-life-threatening injures. He'll likely face charges once he's released.

Greensboro Man Arrested In SC Child Predator Sting

(York Co., SC) -- A Greensboro man is under arrest in connection with a South Carolina crackdown on child predators. Steven Loflin Sr. was one of ten people taken into custody as part of "Operation Vigilant Shepherd." The York County Sheriff's office and 12 other state and federal agencies participated in the sting. They're working to identifying additional suspects. An investigation is ongoing.

Woman Accused Of Driving Into Back Of School Bus In Reidsville

(Reidsville, NC) -- A woman is facing charges after crashing into the back of a stopped school bus in Reidsville. The accident happened yesterday morning near Racine Boulevard and Northup Street. Ann Similean was charged with driving on a revoked license, failure to reduce speed and failure to stop for a stopped bus. No one was hurt.

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