Latest North Carolina news, sports, business and entertainment at 11:20 a.m. EDT
FATAL LEO SHOOTING
Police: N Carolina authorities fatally shoot person at fire
APEX, N.C. (AP) – Police in North Carolina say authorities fatally shot a person at the scene of a house fire in Apex.
News outlets report authorities didn’t immediately identify the slain person or the officers involved.
Apex police Capt. Mitch McKinney says officers and Wake County Sheriff’s deputies responded to the home late Thursday. He says the Apex Fire Department also responded to put out the fire.
He says it’s unclear what led to the shooting and how many police officers or deputies were involved.
WORKERS MEMORIAL DAY
Workers mourned as North Carolina’s on-the-job deaths rise
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – Signs that more people are dying on the job has workers’ advocates demanding that North Carolina’s labor department do more to inspect and punish companies that imperil their workers.
Members of the AFL-CIO labor union, the NC Council of Churches and others on Friday remember the 183 North Carolina workers who died on the job in 2017, the latest year for which there are figures.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported last month that work-related fatalities in North Carolina increased in 2017 to the highest number since the Great Recession hit in 2008. Fatal occupational injuries in the state have ranged from a high of 234 in 2000 to a low of 109 in 2013.
Transportation accidents were the greatest category of workplace deaths, followed by falls and slips.
CONFEDERATE MONUMENTS-NORTH CAROLINA
2 guilty for toppling N Carolina campus’s Confederate statue
HILLSBOROUGH, N.C. (AP) – Two men face a day in jail after being found guilty of rioting, damaging property and defacing a Confederate monument that had stood for a century on the campus of North Carolina’s flagship public university.
The News & Observer of Raleigh reports that the state district court judge on Thursday found Raul Arce Jimenez and Shawn Birchfield-Finn Jimenez guilty in the toppling of the University of North Carolina monument nicknamed “Silent Sam.” They also were assessed a $500 fine and community service.
Jimenez was previously found not guilty of toppling a Confederate statue in Durham in 2017.
Eleven others have been convicted in the August melee in which the Chapel Hill statue was toppled. The monument was derided as a symbol of white supremacy and defended as a Southern heritage memorial.
Energy company worker hurt in North Carolina explosion dies
DURHAM, N.C. (AP) – An energy company employee who was critically injured in a natural gas explosion in North Carolina has died.
UNC Medical Center spokesman Tom Hughes confirmed Thursday that 51-year-old Jay Rambeaut of Creedmoor died. Hughes didn’t say when Rambeaut died, citing hospital policy.
Rambeaut, who worked for PSNC Energy, was among the first on the scene in Durham when a gas leak was reported a half-hour before the explosion on April 10. Firefighters were working to get people out of nearby buildings when the explosion occurred.
Rambeaut’s family has said as a result of the explosion, he had 150 holes in his chest from debris as well as a skull fracture and debris in his brain.
A coffee shop owner died and 25 others were injured, including nine firefighters.
POLICE SHOOTING-NORTH CAROLINA
Police: Man came at officer with knife before fatal shooting
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – A North Carolina police department says it has determined a man who was fatally shot by an officer came at him with a knife and refused commands to drop it.
Media outlets say a five-day investigation by Raleigh police showed 30-year-old Soheil Antonio Mojarrad took a knife from his pocket and yelled profanities at Officer W.B. Edwards in Saturday’s confrontation.
The report says when Mojarrad reached into his pants pocket, Edwards drew his gun and told him to stop. Mojarrad moved toward Edwards, who then shot him, it adds. Edwards’ body-worn camera wasn’t activated and his patrol car camera faced away from the encounter.
Cate Edwards, an attorney representing the Mojarrad family and daughter of former North Carolina Sen. John Edwards, says there’s no evidence deadly force was required.
Likely NBA top pick Zion Williamson referenced at NCAA trial
NEW YORK (AP) – The player widely projected to be the NBA draft’s top overall pick came up at a college basketball corruption trial as jurors heard a recording of a Clemson coach who seemed eager for help recruiting him.
The charismatic Zion Williamson played one year at Duke before entering the draft scheduled for June.
His name surfaced as recorded conversations were played Thursday at an aspiring agent and an amateur basketball coach’s criminal trial.
Prosecutors say the defendants teamed up with undercover FBI agents and a corrupt financial adviser to decide which college coaches should get money to steer players their way.
In a July 2017 recording, defendant Christian Dawkins was heard telling Clemson assistant coach Steve Smith he could help get Williamson’s family what it needed if Williamson attended Clemson.
Trump administration reevaluating offshore drilling plans
WASHINGTON (AP) – The Trump administration is reevaluating its controversial plan to sharply expand offshore drilling as it responds to a court ruling that blocked drilling off Alaska.
President Donald Trump has pushed to open nearly all U.S. coastlines to offshore oil and gas drilling. But a federal judge last month ruled against Trump’s executive order to open the Arctic and parts of the Atlantic. Coastal states also have opposed the expanded drilling.
Interior Secretary David Bernhardt told The Wall Street Journal on Thursday that the legal challenges may be “discombobulating” to the administration’s overall drilling plans. Bernhardt says the administration may have to wait for the challenges to fully play out in court.
Interior spokeswoman Molly Block says the agency “is evaluating all of its options.”
FORT BRAGG POWER OUTAGE
North Carolina Army base: Blackout was part of training
FORT BRAGG, N.C. (AP) – A sprawling North Carolina Army base says a power outage that lasted for hours was part of an unannounced training exercise.
Fort Bragg officials issued a statement Thursday saying the base purposely cut power throughout the installation “to identify shortcomings in our infrastructure, operations and security.” They said they didn’t announce the exercise so that they could test people’s “real-world reactions” to the type of problems caused by an event such as a cyber-attack.
They said normal operations would be fully restored by later in the day.
The blackout began late Wednesday on the base that includes 52,000 soldiers, lasting into the next day.
During the outage, the on-base Womack Army Medical Center said it was operating under reduced capacity and certain appointments needed to be rescheduled.