AP-NC Newswatch

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December 19, 2018
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December 19, 2018
AP-NC Newswatch





Latest North Carolina news, sports, business and entertainment at 6:20 a.m. EST



N. Carolina gov. vetoing bill with congressional race redo
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – North Carolina’s governor says he’s vetoing legislation directing new elections if fraud is found in a disputed U.S. House race because the hastily approved bill also adds new cover for lobbyists and people who violate campaign finance laws.
Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper said Tuesday he’ll sign the legislation if state lawmakers remove the section. Cooper objects to details like requiring that state elections officials refer apparent campaign finance crimes to a separate commission for a confidential review on whether prosecutors are notified.
The bill also would require new primary elections besides a new general election if mishandled ballots or other problems cast doubt on the true result in the 9th Congressional District race and force a redo.
Unofficial results show Republican Mark Harris leading Democrat Dan McCready by 905 votes.



Attorney: Man at center of ballot controversy broke no laws
BLADENBORO, N.C. (AP) – The attorney for a man at the center of a controversy in a disputed North Carolina congressional race said he hasn’t broken any campaign laws and ongoing investigations will prove it.
Attorney Cynthia Adams Singletary said in a statement Tuesday that any speculation regarding McCrae Dowless and the 9th District election is premature and unwarranted. Singletary said Dowless was “a highly respected member of our community who is routinely sought after for his campaign expertise.”
Republican candidate Mark Harris said in an interview last week that it was his decision to hire Dowless, who is the focus in an investigation into how absentee ballots were handled.
The state elections board has declined to certify the election results in light of mail-in absentee ballot irregularities in Bladen County and other issues in Robeson County.



Rescue says local dog was shot dozens of times with BB gun
MORGANTON, N.C. (AP) – A North Carolina animal shelter says a Morganton dog has been found suffering dozens of BB gunshot wounds to its face, head and body.
A Better Life Animal Rescue President Gwen Hood says the wounded dog named Brownie was found lying in a ditch during a snowstorm last week. News outlets report Brownie’s owner, Edith Pritchard, was found and the Jack Russell Terrier mix was taken to a veterinarian.
Brownie returned home Monday and is now blind in one eye. Pritchard says Brownie had been allowed outside unsupervised, along with her 6-year-old Chihuahua named Petey. Petey died suddenly the same night Brownie was wounded. Hood says it’s believed Petey got into something poisonous.
Hood says Brownie was tortured, and Burke County Sheriff Steve Whisenant says animal control is investigating.



US reviews report of imports from forced labor in China camp
BEIJING (AP) – The U.S. government is reviewing reports of forced labor at a Chinese detention camp where ethnic minorities must give up their religion and language and work in factories.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection said Tuesday that reporting by The Associated Press and other media “for the first time appears to link the internment camps identified in Western China to the importation of goods produced by forced labor by a U.S. company.”
The AP tracked shipments from a factory in a detention camp in China’s Xinjiang region to Badger Sportswear in North Carolina. The company ships clothing to universities, colleges and schools around the United States.
A U.S. workers group said “forced labor of any kind is a severe violation of university codes of conduct.”



Russian businessman to stay in jail pending laundering trial
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – A Russian businessman who lived a lavish life in North Carolina will remain in jail while he’s prosecuted on charges including money laundering and murder-for-hire.
An online court docket shows a federal magistrate judge ordered Leonid Teyf to stay in custody pending trial. The judge’s order Tuesday noted strong evidence against Teyf.
Prosecutors say in court documents that the 57-year-old Teyf stashed millions in U.S. bank accounts after helping to orchestrate a $150 million kickback scheme involving suppliers to the Russian military. They also accuse him of plotting to kill a man he suspected of an affair with his wife.
Defense attorneys argued in court documents that the charges are based on “questionable legal theories.” They note their client has lived in the U.S. nearly a decade without a criminal record.



State Senate take first step in override of Voter ID veto
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – North Carolina’s legislature has taken the first step to override the governor’s veto of legislation implementing a recently approved constitutional amendment on voter ID.
The state Senate voted Tuesday to override Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper’s veto of the bill filling in details to carry out the constitutional amendment approved by voters requiring photo ID to cast ballots in person.
The state House is likely to complete the veto override on Wednesday afternoon when it reconvenes. Both chambers are controlled by Republicans.
Democratic legislators acknowledge voter ID rules are necessary because of the referendum approved in November, but say details are being rushed and will prevent some minorities and poor people from voting.
The legislation greatly expands the number of qualifying IDs and exceptions compared to legislation blocked earlier this decade.



Financial software company to add 1,200 jobs in Charlotte
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) – A Charlotte financial technology startup plans to add more than 1,200 jobs in its hometown over five years.
North Carolina officials on Tuesday approved tax breaks for AvidXchange that with other state and local incentives could total almost $25 million. The software company sells software that helps midsize companies receive, approve, and pay their bills more efficiently.
AvidXchange now has more than 900 workers in Charlotte. The company plans to add white-collar headquarters jobs paying more than $68,000 a year.
State officials said the company founded in 2000 also was considering expansion in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma; The Woodlands, Texas; and Kansas City, Kansas.



Police seek clues after woman’s body found in trash bin
(Information from: Winston-Salem Journal, http://www.journalnow.com)
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (AP) – Police in North Carolina are searching for clues in the death of a woman whose body was found inside a metal trash bin.
The Winston-Salem Journal reports police say the body of 30-year-old Shantika Lashae Dunlap was found in the trash bin behind a business last Saturday.
Lt. Gregory Dorn said previously her boyfriend reported Dunlap missing last Wednesday after she stopped answering her phone. Dorn said she was last seen at the house the pair shared in Winston-Salem.
While police call Dunlap’s death suspicious, they aren’t calling it a homicide.
Dorn said after an autopsy was conducted Tuesday, law enforcement is waiting on toxicology results to rule on a cause of death.


AP-WF-12-19-18 1120GMT