WNC COVID Hospitalizations Drop, Senator Thom Tillis Diagnosed with Cancer


Judge Allows Removal Of Asheville Confederate Monument

(Asheville, NC) -- A judge is allowing the removal of an Asheville Confederate monument to continue. The Society of the Historical Preservation of the 26th North Carolina Troops filed a lawsuit last week, which claimed it had an agreement with the city of Asheville to restore the Vance Monument. This, after the city council voted to demolish the monument following a months-long study over what to do with it. A Buncombe County judge denied a restraining order yesterday, so the city will continue finding contractors for the demolition.

NC Senator Diagnosed With Cancer

(Washington, DC) -- One of North Carolina's U.S. senators is undergoing treatment for cancer. Republican Thom Tillis announced yesterday that doctors have detected early stages of prostate cancer, but the prognosis is good. The discovery was made when he went in for an annual exam, to which he said early detection can truly save lives. Surgery is scheduled for next week.

COVID Hospitalizations Drop In WNC

(Henderson County, NC) -- COVID-19 hospitalizations are dropping in western North Carolina. WLOS-TV reported on Monday that Mission Hospital, AdventHealth and UNC Pardee hospitals were treating a combined 24 cases. Statewide hospitalizations are just over 870. The Department of Health and Human Services reported more than 13-hundred new COVID cases on Monday.

Buncombe Students Return Full-Time

(Buncombe County, NC) -- Buncombe County's public school students are back in class full-time. All ages were welcome back for a five-day week yesterday for the first time since last spring when the pandemic first hit. Schools are still performing temperature checks before kids head inside. The state did relax guidelines last week, which don't require temperature checks anymore.

Catawba Falls Trail Closed This Week

(McDowell County, NC) -- A waterfall in the Pisgah National Forest is off-limits this week. The U.S. Forest Service has blocked off the Catawba Falls Trail in order to stabilize locations of recent landslides, which will require heavy equipment. The parking area for High Falls at the DuPont State Recreational Forest was closed last week. Crews spent a few days making improvements in appearance, function and traffic flow in the area.

State Launches Speeding Campaign

(Raleigh, NC) -- Law enforcement officials are more heavily targeting speeders in a statewide campaign. "Speed a Little, Lose a Lot" lasts through Sunday. It's an effort to prevent speed-related crash fatalities, which shot up eleven-percent from 2019 to 2020 in North Carolina. That increase came even as traffic numbers were down last year due to the pandemic. The director of the governor's highway safety program says drivers might be a little rusty this year, so we need to be careful on the roads.

CMPD Investigated North Charlotte Homicide

(Charlotte, NC) -- The CMPD is investigating a homicide in north Charlotte. Officers found a man shot to death in the parking lot of a shopping center on West Sugar Creek Road last night. The search is still on for a suspect.

UNCC Holding Vaccination Clinic Tomorrow

(Charlotte, NC) -- UNC Charlotte is hosting a large COVID vaccination clinic tomorrow. The university is teaming up with Atrium Health to give out doses to students, faculty and staff. Around 12-hundred vaccinations are expected to be given out as part of the clinic. NBC Charlotte says they're using the single-dose Johnson and Johnson vaccine.

Two Suspects Wanted After Allegedly Dumping Body

(Rowan County, NC) -- Two suspects are accused of dumping a body in Rowan County. Investigators say the woman may have died from an overdose and was left partially covered up in woods along Shuping Mill Road and Alana Drive as much as ten days ago. A passerby noticed the body on March 23rd. Deputies are searching for Michael Banks and Brooke Griffin, who both face charges of concealing a death.

Child Safe After Attempted Kidnapping

(Charlotte, NC) -- An attempted kidnapping is being investigating in southeast Charlotte. The CMPD says a car approached a child and someone threatened her on Thermal Road late Sunday morning, but she was able to run away. Surveillance footage recorded a gray Toyota Scion in the area.

Charlotte Man Runs For Autism

(Charlotte, NC) -- A Charlotte man is hitting the road to raise money for autism awareness. NBC Charlotte reports Richard Sexton is running a 750-mile trek from Cherokee County to the South Carolina coast from late April through the end of May. It's part of his effort to try and raise 50-thousand-dollars for the Champion Autism Network. Sexton will also be carrying a 25-pound ball in a backpack during the run.

Shooting Suspect On Run After Chase Into Orange County

(Orange County, NC) -- Alamance County deputies are continuing to look for the suspect in a drive-by shooting. The man reportedly led investigators on a chase on Highway 54 into Orange County after an attempted traffic stop last night. A deputy t-boned the suspect's car near Carrboro, but thankfully, no one was seriously injured. The driver was able to escape and flee the scene on foot.

Wake County Receiving High Number Of Vaccine Doses

(Raleigh, NC) -- Thousands of COVID vaccine doses are coming into Wake County this week as eligibility expands again across the state. Vaccines will be available to everyone in Group Four beginning tomorrow, which will affect all essential workers. A Wake County public health official told CBS17 that over 26-thousand doses are being delivered locally. That's the second-most Wake has received in one week since vaccines started rolling out.

UNC Students Needed For Vaccine Study

(Chapel Hill, NC) -- A new COVID prevention study is underway at UNC Chapel Hill. A research team at the university is looking for students who are willing to take a daily nose swab for four months after receiving the Moderna vaccine. The goal is to witness the complete benefits of the vaccine and see if it keeps the virus from spreading to those people who are unvaccinated. The university needs 600 students who haven't had COVID yet to take part in the study.

Search Continues For Missing Father In River

(Goldsboro, NC) -- The search is continuing to search for a father who jumped into the Neuse River to try to save his son. Witnesses told Wayne County investigators that the 38-year-old man dove in when his five-year-old boy fell while they were fishing at the Goldsboro Boating Access last Wednesday night. Crews have been searching the river for days and finally found the body of the boy on Monday afternoon.

Wake County Students To Make Schooling Decision This Week

(Wake County, NC) -- A deadline is coming up for students in Wake County's public schools to decide how they'll learn the rest of this academic year. Middle and high school students return to the classroom full-time next month, which marks the first time in a year that's happened. The school district needs to know by Thursday whether students are going to return to in-person instruction or stick with virtual learning. It will be a decision that stays in place until the end of this school year.

Feds Awards Winston-Salem Rental Assistance Funds

(Winston-Salem, NC) -- The federal government is giving Winston-Salem over a million dollars to help residents who are finding it hard to make ends meet. City officials announced yesterday they've been given about one-million-240-thousand dollars to help folks who are falling behind on their bills. The Rent, Utilities and Mortgage Assistance program is being funded through the federal coronavirus relief package.

Couple Wanted In Connection With Overdose Death Of Woman

(Rowan Co., NC) -- Rowan County investigators are looking for a couple in connection with the overdose death of a woman. Michael Banks and Brooke Griffin are accused of hiding the victim's body. Forty-five-year-old Tammy Lynn Becerra was found dead last week in a wooded area along Alana Drive, in eastern Rowan County. Investigators believe she died of an overdose, and Banks and Griffin put her body into Banks' vehicle to get rid of it. Anyone with information on their whereabouts is urged to call the Rowan County Sheriff's Office.

Sheetz Is Hiring Statewide

(Greensboro, NC) -- Sheetz is looking to fill positions at all of its locations in North Carolina. The convenience store chain is hosting a national hiring day tomorrow, March 31st. There are over two-thousand-800 full-time and part-time positions available, including 500 in North Carolina. Potential employees can visit any Sheetz location between the hours of 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. to apply.

Krispy Kreme Giving Free Doughnuts Today

(Winston-Salem, NC) -- Krispy Kreme is rolling out a new promotion that is sure to satisfy their guests. The Winston-Salem based chain is giving away free doughnuts each Monday though May 24th. It's separate from their promotion that requires proof of a COVID-19 vaccination to pick up a free sugary treat. No purchase is necessary, but Krispy Kreme is limiting freebies to one per guest.