Cases Hit 270 in WNC, Macon Teen Shot, Lawmakers Ready for Raleigh Session


Coronavirus Cases Top 270 In Mountains

(Raleigh, NC) -- Coronavirus case numbers in western North Carolina are over 270. Those are included in more than 56-hundred cases statewide reported by the News and Observer last night, which consists of numbers from county health departments and the state. Less than 500 people have had to be hospitalized. More than 70-thousand tests have been administered statewide.

Macon County Teen Injured In Shooting

(Macon County, NC) -- A Macon County teen is being treated for injuries in what appears to be an accidental shooting. The sheriff's office says his father brought the 13-year-old to an elementary school yesterday to find help. A school resource officer and teacher were there to assist and call 911. The boy was flown to Mission Hospital in Asheville for treatment. Sheriff Robert Holland told WLOS-TV the teen may have found his father's gun inside the car and accidentally fired it.

UNC Charlotte To Honor WNC Native In Virtual Program

(Charlotte, NC) -- A western North Carolina native who was killed on the campus of UNC Charlotte is expected to be honored in a virtual program. The university is planning an online remembrance program for Riley Howell and another student on April 30th, which marks the one-year anniversary of the shooting. The gunman pleaded guilty to murder and attempted murder last fall. Howell was credited with helping save the lives of other students when he jumped on the suspect inside a school building.

UNC Hospitals Prepared With Beds Ahead Of Peak

(Raleigh, NC) -- Officials at two UNC hospitals say they're prepared for a peak of coronavirus cases. The presidents of UNC Hospitals in Chapel Hill and UNC Rex Healthcare in Raleigh noted this week they'll have plenty of beds and medical supplies to care for patients. That also means that the hospitals may begin taking on non-emergency procedures again within a few weeks. North Carolina's Department of Health and Human Services is currently predicting peak cases to hit in about a month or so.

Mission Health Nurses Protest HCA

(Asheville, NC) -- Some nurses are continuing to protest HCA Healthcare. WLOS-TV reports around ten gathered outside Mission Hospital yesterday to voice concerns of the current nurse-to-patient ratio. Mission officials say the group is spreading misinformation and exploiting the public health crisis to organize more people. They say staffing is appropriate at this time.

Lawmakers Return For Session April 28th

(Raleigh, NC) -- State lawmakers are preparing to head back to Raleigh, with safe measures in mind. There will be limited access to legislative buildings when the session reopens for business on April 28th. Lawmakers, staff and the media will have their temperatures screened upon entrance. The plan is to make decisions on COVID-19 legislation for North Carolina. The chambers haven't revealed their plans yet for social distancing during the meetings.

Nearly Eleven-Hundred Coronavirus Cases Reported In Mecklenburg

(Mecklenburg County, NC) -- Mecklenburg County continues to have the largest amount of coronavirus cases in the state by far. The News and Observer reports the nearly eleven-hundred cases locally are almost double the 566 cases in Wake County. Statewide numbers were over 56-hundred as of Thursday, with about 150 deaths. Mecklenburg County health officials are recommending that people wear cloth face masks in public settings.

Gaston County Seeking Local Control For Coronavirus Restrictions

(Gaston County, NC) -- Gaston County leaders are urging Governor Cooper to allow local control on coronavirus restrictions. Commissioners discussed a letter they sent to the governor during a Facebook Live town hall yesterday. Commission chair Tracy Philbeck says he hopes businesses can slowly start to re-open in May. The county medical director emphasized the importance of getting resources to battle the coronavirus to the African American community, which has especially affected the Highland area.

UNCC To Honor Campus Shooting Victims In Virtual Program

(Charlotte, NC) -- Two students who were killed on the campus of UNC Charlotte are expected to be honored in a virtual program. The university is planning an online remembrance program for Riley Howell and Reed Parlier on April 30th, which marks the one-year anniversary of the shooting. The gunman pleaded guilty to murder and attempted murder last fall. Four other students were injured in the shooting, and will also be part of the ceremony.

CMS Could See 30-Million-Plus In Federal Relief

(Charlotte, NC) -- CMS is set to receive a chunk of COVID-19 relief from the federal government. WSOC-TV reports the state's education department held an emergency meeting yesterday to discuss what's coming North Carolina's way. Current estimations shows the state will get around 450-million-dollars. Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools should anticipate receiving at least 32-million of that number. CMS is the second-largest school district in North Carolina.

Information Limited On Meck Nursing Home Outbreaks

(Mecklenburg County, NC) -- The state and Mecklenburg County are limiting information on coronavirus outbreaks at long-term care facilities. There have been seven identified in Charlotte, but exactly where isn't available to the public. Meck health director Gibbie Harris says the cases don't pose a threat to the greater community. On the other hand, health officials in Rowan County reported an outbreak of nearly 100 cases at the Citadel in Salisbury this week.

McCaffrey Raising Money To Repair Ventilators

(Charlotte, NC) -- The Carolina Panthers' Christian McCaffrey is stepping up efforts to repair some life-saving medical equipment. He tweeted yesterday his initiative, 22 and You, is taking donations to help fix 20 ventilators that are available locally right now. The running back launched the 22 and You initiative earlier this month as a way to help healthcare workers, with money going to NC Healthcare Foundation and the South Carolina Hospital Foundation.

Wake County Votes To Extend Shelter-In-Place Order A Little While Longer

(Wake County, NC) -- The Wake County Board of Commissioners Thursday, announced it will extend its stay-at-home order through April 30th. The order was initially set to expire on April 16th. However, the new order includes amendments for some businesses. Retail stores will be allowed to continue operating, if they provide delivery or curbside pick-up options. And faith based organizations will be allowed to hold drive-in services, if churches and places of worship follow certain social distancing standards. All 12-mayors in Wake County's cities and towns have agreed to the amended order.

Coronavirus Cases Top 56-hundred Statewide

(Raleigh, NC) -- The number of confirmed cases of the coronavirus in North Carolina topped 56-hundred Thursday. The News and Observer also reports about 150 deaths, which consists of numbers from county health departments and the state. Less than 500 people have had to be hospitalized. More than 70-thousand tests have been administered statewide.

>>County Using User Cellphone Data To Monitor Movements Of Residents

(Wake County, NC) -- Wake County officials are now using cell phone data to determine how closely residents are following the statewide stay-at-home order. Commission Chair Gregg Ford told CBS-17-Thursday, that the County's Emergency Operations Center has been monitoring websites from Google and Unacast to track the movements of people. Ford said based on the latest data obtained, the overwhelming majority of residents in Wake County are staying at home.

School Superintendent Resigns Following Controversial Vendor Contract Issue

(Chapel Hill, NC) -- Effective June 30th, Chapel Hill-Carrboro School Superintendent Dr. Pam Baldwin will resign. Baldwin, who has led the District since 2017, submitted her resignation to the Board of Education at Thursday nights meeting. Baldwin's resignation comes after she and the District were criticized back in February for entering into a contract with a consulting firm without board approval. The Board responded by placing Baldwin on medical leave on March 25th.

Stein And Other AG's Want Feds To Block Garnishment Of Stimulus Payments

(Raleigh, NC) -- State Attorney General Josh Stein has joined several other attorney's general across the country in an effort to block debt collectors from garnishing federal stimulus payments to some residents as soon as they are deposited in their bank accounts. Stein and 24-other AG's have signed a letter sent to Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin, requesting that he issue an order preventing private creditors from accessing stimulus checks in order to pay overdue balances during the coronavirus crisis.

Guilford Co. Will Not Extend Stay At Home Order

(Guilford Co., NC) - Guilford County will not extend its stay-at-home order, which expired early this morning. Instead, the county is transitioning to the statewide stay-at-home order. Governor' Cooper's order is in effect until April 29th.

High Point Market Authority Cancels Spring Market

(High Point, NC) - The High Point Market Authority is canceling its spring market. The event was originally planned for April and then postponed until June. However, the Market Authority decided to cancel it altogether due to ongoing impacts of COVID-19. The next High Point Market is set to take place in October.

Third Person Wanted In Connection With Rockingham Co. Home Invasion

(Ruffin, NC) - A third person is wanted in connection with a home invasion in Rockingham County. Deputies are looking for 34-year-old Eric Blackstock in connection with the incident Tuesday afternoon. The suspects are accused of tying a teenage girl up before ransacking her home in Ruffin. Maurice Williamson and Shiheem Williamson were arrested following a manhunt.

Three Harris Teeter Workers Test Positive For COVID-19

(Greensboro, NC) - Three Harris Teeter associates are being treated for coronavirus. The associates who tested positive for COVID-19 all work at the Greensboro Distribution Center. They're currently in the care of a physician.

Herbalife Plant Shuts Down Temporarily

(Winston-Salem, NC) - The Herbalife plant in Winston-Salem is temporarily closed after an employee tested positive for coronavirus. The plant, which manufactures nutrition powders and concentrates, employs about 500 people. A spokesperson for the company says they voluntarily decided to shut it down for sanitation purposes. The facility is expected to reopen tomorrow.


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