Schools Will Open in NC, Three More Weeks of Phase 2

Schools To Open Under Governor's Plan

(Raleigh, NC) -- North Carolina is opening its public schools next month. Governor Cooper announced yesterday buildings will re-open with students required to wear face masks and maintain six-feet of distance. There will be a hybrid of in-person and virtual learning, but it will be up to each district to decide how that plan looks. Buncombe County's superintendent says parents will be receiving a lot of information in the next few weeks. Most schools will begin August 17th.

Asheville Council Approves Reparations For Black Community

(Asheville, NC) -- The city of Asheville is officially recognizing injustices to the black community. The city council unanimously passed a resolution yesterday to support reparations, which calls for new budgetary and programmatic priorities that help ensure certain gaps like wealth and education are closed. Councilman Keith Young said moving statues isn't enough anymore. The city will now create a Community Reparations Commission.

Woman At Center Of Racist Tirades Dies After Accident

(Asheville, NC) -- A woman who was caught on video shouting racial threats in Asheville is dead after being hit by a fire department truck. A witness told the Citizen-Times that Rachel Ruit stepped out into the path of the truck on Patton Avenue Monday. She died yesterday. Ruit had most recently been charged for allegedly assaulting a teenager and ripping off a woman's hijab over the July 4th weekend.

COVID-19 Hospitalizations Back To High

(Raleigh, NC) -- COVID-19 hospitalizations aren't slowing down in North Carolina. Public health officials said Tuesday more than eleven-hundred people were in hospitals for coronavirus, which broke last Saturday's high. The state also reported a record-high for virus-related deaths in one day with 42. Around 75-percent of inpatient and ICU beds are currently occupied.

Biltmore Estate Laying Off Hundreds

(Asheville, NC) -- The Biltmore Estate is laying off close to 400 people. An estate spokeswoman said yesterday the extended nature of the coronavirus pandemic is forcing a 15-percent elimination of its 26-hundred employees. Most everyone was expected to come back after the pandemic forced a shutdown at Biltmore earlier this year, until yesterday's announcement. Capacity is still limited on property.

Downtown Asheville Fire Called An Arson

(Asheville, NC) -- Investigators are looking for whoever set fire to a soon-to-be-apartment complex in downtown Asheville. Flames destroyed most of the half-built building on Hilliard Avenue June 19th. The fire was deemed an arson this week. A 25-hundred-dollar reward is being offered for information in the case.

Protesters Want Cornelius Confederate Monument Removed

(Cornelius, NC) -- Protesters are seeking the removal of a Confederate monument in Cornelius. NBC Charlotte says around 100 people took part in a peaceful protest yesterday outside the Mount Zion Methodist Church. A Confederate statue nearby has stood for over a century. It sits on private property owned by the Mount Zion Monument Association. The group says it's exploring all options.

Gyms, Bars To Remain Closed

(Raleigh, NC) -- Charlotte gyms and bars are being forced to stay closed for a few more weeks. Governor Cooper extended phase two re-opening guidelines yesterday by three more weeks until August 7th. He stressed the importance of avoiding a spike of COVID-19 cases before schools re-open. Outdoor gatherings are limited to 25 people.

Teen Vanished After Leaving Home With Dog

(Charlotte, NC) -- The CMPD is investigating the mysterious disappearance of a Charlotte teen. Seventeen-year-old Jewel McKie hasn't been seen since she left her home in the SouthPark area with pet poodle, Leo, on Sunday night. Her family says it's highly irregular not to hear from the teenager. Anyone with information is asked to call 911.

Five COVID-19 Outbreaks At Gaston County Group Homes

(Gaston County, NC) -- A number of COVID-19 outbreaks are being reported at Gaston County long-term care facilities. The county's Department of Health and Human Services confirmed yesterday they're investigating five locations. The most cases exist at the Brian Center in Gastonia, where 18 people have tested positive. The center is restricting visitors at this time.

Avett Brothers Coming To Speedway

(Charlotte, NC) -- A group of Charlotte-area Grammy Award winners are bringing live music to the speedway. The Avett Brothers announced yesterday they're playing a drive-in show on August 29th at Charlotte Motor Speedway. It will be the first time the Concord band has played live since before the coronavirus pandemic began. A filmed concert featuring Blake Shelton, Gwen Stefani and Trace Adkins will air at the speedway July 25th.

State Supreme Court Temporarily Blocks Bowling Alleys From Reopening

(Raleigh, NC) -- The North Carolina Supreme Count issued a ruling Tuesday, that temporarily blocked a lower court decision allowing bowling alleys in the state to reopen. The ruling comes as Governor Roy Cooper also announced that he would be extending Phase 2 of reopening, meaning bars, gyms and movie theaters must remain closed through August 7th. The ruling was in response to an appeal filed by attorneys representing Governor Cooper.

Repeat Drug Offender Charged With Killing Three Family Members

(Wake County, NC) -- Authorities in Wake County are investigating the deaths of three family members whose bodies were all discovered in separate locations. Evan Small is facing murder charges in connection with the deaths of relatives on Alta Vista Court, another on Bentley Meadow Lane and a third victim on Fairview Road Monday night. Although no motive has been established for the killings, court documents show Evan Small had recently been arrested for larceny. He also had several prior drug charges.

Local Attorney Becomes Raleigh's First Black Female Council Member

(Raleigh, NC) -- The City of Raleigh made history Tuesday by selecting the first African American woman to serve on the City Council. Stormie Denise Forte, a local attorney and radio talk show host, was chosen to serve out the remainder of the term of Saige Martin, who resigned last month amid charges of sexual abuse. That term is set to expire in 2021.

Guilford Co. Schools To Offer Tuition-Free Virtual Schooling

(Greensboro, NC) - The Guilford County Schools district is launching two, tuition-free, virtual schools for the upcoming academic year. Guilford eLearning Virtual Academy will serve grades K-through-five, and Guilford eLearning University Prep will serve grades six-through-12. Students can start applying now, and there are no prerequisites. The deadline to apply is August 1st.

Alamance-Burlington Schools Announce A-B Schedule

(Burlington, NC) - Alamance-Burlington Schools will operate on an A-B schedule this upcoming academic year. That means half of the students will attend classes on Mondays, Wednesdays and alternating Fridays, and the other half will attend school on Tuesdays, Thursdays and alternating Fridays. An A-B schedule will help schools maintain 50-percent capacity.

Three People Test Positive For COVID-19 On Wake Forest University Campus

(Winston-Salem, NC) - Wake Forest University says three people have tested positive for COVID-19 on its campus. They're all reportedly doing well and are self-isolating. The university is not releasing any details about the identity of the individuals, including whether they're students or staff. It did say that anyone who may have been exposed to the virus has already been contacted.

Elon Police Searching For Armed & Dangerous Man

(Elon, NC) - Elon police are looking for a man who's considered armed and dangerous. Police say 31-year-old Zachary Tanner of Liberty shot a person outside The Oaks Retirement Center late Sunday night. The victim is expected to be okay. Neither the victim nor the suspect lived or worked at the retirement center. Anyone with information on Tanner's whereabouts is urged to call Elon P-D.

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