Wildfire Grows to 700 Acres, Paper Mill Union Rejcts Contract

WNC Wildfire Spreads To 700 Acres

(Haywood County, NC) -- A wildfire in western North Carolina is growing. The blaze near Harmon Den in Haywood County had grown to 700-acres as of Wednesday, but firefighters are putting in major work to control it. A crew of close to 100 has contained 40-percent of the wildfire. Rain has helped ease the intensity of the flames.

Rutherford County Schools Adding SROs

(Rutherford County, NC) -- Rutherford County Schools is stepping up safety. The district as committed to adding school resource officers on each of its 19 campuses by the end of this month. East Rutherford High's principal says it's nice to know the response time will be in seconds instead of minutes or hours.

Vacation Rentals Surpass Hotel Rooms In Buncombe

(Buncombe County, NC) -- Vacation rentals are outnumbering hotel rooms in Buncombe County for the first time. Tourism officials revealed this week that there are now more than three-million vacation rentals in 2022, compared to around two-point-seven-million hotel rooms. Despite the amount of rentals, the demand was under two-million.

Trail Shelters Renovated In Pisgah National Forest

(Undated) -- Work is underway to replace two trail shelters in the Pisgah National Forest. The Pisgah Ranger District and the Pisgah Conservancy are working together to rebuild the Butter Gap and Deep Gap trail shelters on the Art Loeb trail. Federal monies are funding the projects. The old shelters are more than 40-years-old.

Canton Paper Mill Union Members Reject Contract

(Canton, NC) -- Canton's paper mill and its union members are still working through negotiations. WLOS-TV reports around 850 union members struck down contract terms for wages and benefits for the second time this week. Employees are trying to increase starting pay from the current 15-53-an-hour. Negotiators will soon consider a third contract.

Asheville Salvation Army Needs Volunteers

(Asheville, NC) -- The Salvation Army is looking for volunteers in the Asheville area. More workers are needed for the annual Red Kettle campaign, which is running at six locations right now. One Salvation Army representative told WLOS-TV they'd like to have enough people to expand kettles to 20 locations. Paid positions are also available.

CMS Student Shot After Exiting Bus

(Charlotte, NC) -- The CMPD is investigating the shooting of a student. Officers say a 17-year-old was injured when he exited a school bus on Lanza Drive yesterday. The boy is a senior at Rocky River High School. The search is still underway for a suspect.

Man Arrested After Gastonia Infant Injured

(Gastonia, NC) -- A man is facing charges for seriously injuring a baby in Gastonia. The child's mother brought the four-month-old boy to the hospital with multiple bruises and a skull fracture last weekend. Her boyfriend is accused of felony child abuse charges.

Christmas Town USA Starts Tonight

(McAdenville, NC) -- Christmas Town USA is starting again today in McAdenville. The annual light display was named one of the best in the country by USA Today each of the last two-years. The tree lighting will kick things off tonight at six. A yule log ceremony and parade will take place on December 15th.

Charlotte Homicides Outnumber 2021

(Charlotte, NC) -- The number of homicides in Charlotte in 2022 is already above all of last year. Four homicides over the last five-days have brought this year's total to 101 in the Queen City. The CMPD reported 98 in all of 2021.

Hundreds Of Tutors Needed

(Charlotte, NC) -- A new program has been formed in Charlotte to consolidate the search for tutors. Tutor Charlotte is currently looking for 800 people to help out with extra teaching for students, with a heavier focus on math and reading. Most tutors are just needed for one or two-hours-a-week. There is an option for virtual tutoring as well.

Security Guard Arrested After Shooting Another Guard

(Mecklenburg County, NC) -- A security guard is accused of shooting another guard at a Mecklenburg County building. They were both working at the Valerie C. Woodard Center on Freedom Drive overnight Tuesday. The county has removed them from their contracted work. The gunman was arrested for assault.

Hornets Host Washington Tomorrow

(Charlotte, NC) -- The Hornets are back in action tomorrow night. Charlotte will host Washington at the Spectrum Center. It's been an injury-plagued season so far for the Hornets, who were blown out by 35-point to the Celtics earlier this week. Charlotte is six-and-15 on the season.

Overnight Fire Causes Heavy Damage To A Raleigh Townhome Complex

(Raleigh, NC) -- Multiple fire crews from across the Triangle responded a huge blaze late into the night Wednesday, at a townhome apartment complex on Beason Drive in Raleigh. Although there have been no reports of injuries, several families who lived at the location had to be evacuated and are now displaced from their homes. Firefighters remained on the scene after midnight controlling hot spots. The cause of the fire is under investigation.

People In Raleigh Concerned About The Alarming Number Of Pedestrians Hit By Vehicles This Year

(Raleigh, NC) -- An unusual spike in vehicle accidents involving pedestrians is causing concern among Raleigh city leaders and residents. Police records show that 255-pedestrians have been struck by vehicles so-far this year, 25-of them fatal. The victims include an adult male who was struck and injured Tuesday night along New Bern Avenue and a 12-year old girl who was killed in a hit-and-run incident last Friday. Police are still looking for the driver.

NTSB Rules Man Who Fell To His Death From A Plane Near RDU Was Accidental

(Raleigh, NC) -- Federal officials have ruled that the death of a man who fell from a plane near RDU back in July was an accident. This, after the body of 23-year old Charles Crooks was discovered in the backyard of a Fuquay-Varina residence. The pilot of the aircraft told investigators from the NTSB, that Crooks went to the back of the plane after feeling sick and lifted the ramp door. That's when he apparently fell to his death.

New COVID Cases On The Rise Again In North Carolina

(Raleigh, NC) -- Health department figures released Wednesday show the number of new COVID cases in North Carolina are on the rise again. HHS is reporting 64-hundred new infections within the past week, representing a seven-percent increase over the week before. The Department also said 529-people are being treated at hospitals for COVID related illnesses. The number of COVID particles found in waste water were also up.

High School Basketball Officials Threatening To Walk Out On Strike

(Raleigh, NC) -- High school basketball referees in North Carolina are threatening to walk out on strike, unless they get a pay raise. The North Carolina High School Athletic Association is scheduled to vote on the issue today. High school officials from all sports are asking for a ten-percent increase in pay. If the Board votes no, some 800-NC refs could walk out on January, 1st.

Duke Takes Down Ohio State In Final ACC/Big Ten Challenge; UNC Falls To Indiana

(Durham, NC) -- The Duke Blue Devils were back home in Durham last night taking on the Ohio State Buckeyes in the final ACC/Big Ten Challenge game. Led by freshman sensation Kyle Filipowski, who had 16-points, No. 17 Duke beat Ohio State 81-72. Despite the Buckeyes pulling within five with just 3-minutes-6 seconds left in the second half, Duke was able to hold them off with the help of the 7-foot Filipowski. Meanwhile in Bloomington, the No. 10 Indiana Hoosiers knocked off 18th ranked North Carolina 77-65.

List of 70 Candidates for W-S Police Chief to Be Whittled Down

(Winston-Salem, NC) -- Winston-Salem's assistant city manager says over 70 people have applied to become the city's next police chief. During a public meeting on the selection process Wednesday, Patrice Toney said the list will be whittled down to 15 candidates by mid-December, then will be updated with the final three candidates in January. Another public meeting will be held at that time to get community input on the finalists.

Charlotte Murder Suspect Arrested in Guilford County

(Greensboro, NC) -- A man wanted in connection with a deadly shooting in Charlotte has been arrested in Guilford County. Investigators say Tyquawon Parker was arrested Monday by the Guilford County Sheriff's Office in the death of Ahylea Willard. She had been found shot at an apartment in east Charlotte a little over a month ago. Officials say the suspect stole Willard's Mercedes-Benz after killing her during an armed robbery.

Reidsville Man Who Said Trump Influenced him in J6 Riots Gets Probation

(Greensboro, NC) -- A Reidsville man who's been convicted of storming the U.S. Capitol on January 6th will not serve any prison time. The U.S. Department of Justice had wanted Matthew Wood to serve over four years in prison. The judge in the case said Monday she was swayed by Wood pleading guilty without a plea bargain, as well his sincere comments about being sorry for his actions and admission to how much he was influenced by Donald Trump. Wood will be on probation for three years, including a year of home detention. He'll also have to pay restitution.

Midterm Election Results Certified

(Winston-Salem, NC) -- The North Carolina State Board of Elections has unanimously voted Tuesday to certify the results of this year's general election. Voter turnout for the November election was at 51 percent. More than two-million-people cast their ballots during early voting and a little over a million-and-a-half ballots were cast on the actual election day November 8th.

Several New Laws Take Effect Thursday

(Raleigh-Durham, NC) - Several new laws for the state of North Carolina will go into effect Thursday on December 1st. One of them deals with organized thefts at retail stores, such as when groups of people hit one place of business. There will be more serious felonies in place if stolen items total over 50-thousand dollars. Part of a new transportation bill will go into effect that includes higher fines for used car dealers if they fail to formally inspect a vehicle before it's offered for sale. Another new law allows judges to extend domestic violence protective orders.

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