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January 18, 2019
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January 18, 2019
AP-NC Newswatch





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




Probe: Miscommunication over barriers preceded statue’s fall
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (AP) – An investigative report says the University of North Carolina declined to put up portable barricades around a Confederate statue the night it was toppled because of concerns they would be unsightly.
WBTV obtained a draft of the investigative report . The television station reports that the campus police chief believed the concerns from Chancellor Carol Folt’s office amounted to a directive not to use the barriers. Folt said she hadn’t meant for her concerns to be perceived as an order, according to the report.
The report cites miscommunication between police and administrators, as well as insufficient staffing and training for officers as contributing factors that allowed the statue to be torn down in August 2018.
Media representatives of the university system and the Chapel Hill campus declined to make further comment.




North Carolina university leaders depart amid culture war
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – A conservative education analyst says the resignations of the women heading North Carolina’s public university system and its flagship university are part of the backlash of conservative Trump voters against culturally liberal academics who dominate universities.
Jay Schalin of the James G. Martin Center for Academic Renewal said Thursday that the innovation and cultural liberalism of college campuses has long conflicted with traditional values. Similar skirmishes in the campus culture wars have taken place on public universities in Nebraska, Iowa, California and Alabama in recent years
Schalin says conservative values now dominate the state’s legislature, which picks the University of North Carolina system’s governing board.
That board told both UNC-Chapel Hill Chancellor Carol Folt and system president Margaret Spellings to leave weeks earlier than they planned to go.




Charlotte mayor headlines with Cooper at King Day service
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – The mayor of North Carolina’s largest city will share the stage with Gov. Roy Cooper and others at the annual Martin Luther King Jr. service for state government employees.
Charlotte Mayor Vi Lyles is the special guest speaker for Friday’s King holiday observance at First Baptist Church in downtown Raleigh.
The historically-black congregation has shared the service locale over the years with the historically-white First Baptist Church at the opposite corner of Capitol Square.
The service usually features music by the state employees’ choir and the announcement of the annual winner of the John R. Larkins Award, which honors a state worker who has shown commitment to justice and equality.




Shutdown delays disaster relief for some N. Carolina farmers
(Information from: The Fayetteville Observer, http://www.fayobserver.com)
CAPE FEAR, N.C. (AP) – The federal government shutdown is delaying disaster relief for some North Carolina farmers.
The Fayetteville Observer reports the shutdown has mostly closed the federal Farm Service Agency responsible for a document required in farmer applications for state disaster relief. North Carolina set aside $240 million to assist farmers who sustained losses during Hurricane Florence and Michael last year.
The program is overseen by the state Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, and applications require certifications of acreage by the Farm Service Agency. State Department of Agriculture Chief Deputy Commissioner David Smith says about 900 farmers are waiting on that certification and more than 7,000 farmers say they need the program’s help.
The Farm Service Agency says it won’t be working on relief programs when some offices open Friday and Tuesday.




2 deputies out amid probe of evidence in missing girl case
LUMBERTON, N.C. (AP) – One investigator has been fired and another resigned from a North Carolina sheriff’s office following an internal investigation into evidence linking the suspect in a teen girl’s slaying to another attack.
Former Robeson County District Attorney Johnson Britt has said evidence linked the suspect in last year’s death of 13-year-old Hania Aguilar to a 2016 rape. Britt said a DNA match from that rape was given to the sheriff’s office, but deputies apparently didn’t follow up before Aguilar’s disappearance.
The county’s sheriff’s office announced Thursday it had terminated Investigator Darryl McPhatter and accepted the resignation of Maj. Anthony Thompson. They had been suspended following a probe of information from the prosecutor.
An agency spokesman didn’t immediately respond to a message asking what role the two played in the 2016 investigation.




Attorneys: 2 arrested by immigration officials at courthouse
(Information from: The Charlotte Observer, http://www.charlotteobserver.com)
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) – Defense attorneys say immigration agents detained two men at a North Carolina courthouse.
The Charlotte Observer reports the arrests Wednesday appear to be the first since new Mecklenburg County Sheriff Garry McFadden stopped participating in a program assisting immigration authorities. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement previously said it could use other ways to find suspects if they can’t take them into custody at the jail.
Defense attorney Bob Trobich told the newspaper his client, Leonardo Hernandez, was arrested Wednesday by ICE agents after arriving for a hearing on charges including kidnapping.
Trobich and Assistant Public Defender Rex Marvel say they saw ICE agents arrest a second man walking into a courtroom. His name wasn’t clear.
An ICE spokesman didn’t immediately respond to emailed questions.




Authorities ID 7-year-old boy after body found in water
KERNERSVILLE, N.C. (AP) – School officials in North Carolina have identified a boy whose body was found in some water.
News outlets report a Guilford County elementary school principal identified the boy as 7-year-old Logan Spruill.
Sgt. N.E. Triche said Guilford County sheriff’s deputies responded to a call from a home after a family member called about a missing child. After two hours of searching the area on Wednesday, deputies found the boy in the water. He was taken to a Greensboro hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
Colfax Elementary School Principal Julie Kimsey said Logan was autistic and had spoken his first sentence this week.
The sheriff’s office said an investigation is continuing.




North Carolina man accused of beating puppy with shovel
ASHEBORO, N.C. (AP) – Authorities in North Carolina have arrested a man who they say beat a puppy to death with a shovel.
The Randolph County Sheriff’s Office said in a news release that a citizen called to say they witnessed the incident on Jan. 9.
After an investigation, deputies arrested 49-year-old Donald Duran Baker of Asheboro and charged him with felony cruelty to animals. There was no word on why the puppy was beaten to death.
Baker was given a $25,000 secured bond and was scheduled to appear in court Thursday. Online records didn’t say whether Baker is represented by an attorney.



AP-WF-01-18-19 1120GMT