Latest North Carolina news, sports, business and entertainment at 6:20 a.m. EDT
Judges: All election board laws struck down to stay in place
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – North Carolina judges have agreed to delay enforcing their entire ruling striking down several parts of the state’s election administration laws until fall election results are certified.
Members of the three-judge panel signed Monday an order sought jointly by Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper and Republican legislative leaders involved in litigation challenging the latest iteration of the state election board.
A majority of the panel ruled last week that the current nine-member board structure was unconstitutional because it failed to give Cooper adequate control over the agency. Cooper has strong influence over only four board members.
The panel kept intact the board’s composition until after the November election, but it had not delayed rulings striking down other board-related laws until Monday. The order keeps the status quo through Dec. 3.
Despite delay, NC State Fair flirts with attendance of 1M
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – The 2018 North Carolina State Fair overcame a one-day delay and nearly topped 1 million in attendance.
The N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services said in a news release the 10-day event attracted 977,256 people, including record attendance on Friday and Sunday.
On Friday, the fair set an attendance day record of 109,396. On Sunday, the final day, the fair set a record for the day with 130,319 patrons.
The start of the fair was delayed as the remnants of Hurricane Michael rolled through the state.
The annual Junior Livestock Sale of Champions brought in a record $284,000 for the youth showing the animals and for livestock scholarship programs. The fair also brought in 230,813 pounds of food on Hunger Relief Day.
POLICE SHOOTING-NORTH CAROLINA
Police officer shoots, kills man in North Carolina
WASHINGTON, N.C. (AP) – Authorities say a white North Carolina police officer shot and killed a black motorist who stepped out of his vehicle with a gun during a traffic stop.
Washington, North Carolina, Police and Fire Services Director Stacy Drakeford issued a statement saying the shooting happened Sunday afternoon.
Drakeford said after the traffic stop was initiated, the driver got out of his vehicle with a gun. The officer then shot the man, fatally wounding him. The driver was identified as Cedric Pritchard of Washington.
Drakeford said by phone that Pritchard was black, and the officer involved was a white man.
Drakeford didn’t immediately respond to an email later in the day asking if Pritchard made any gestures with the gun.
The State Bureau of Investigation is investigating the case.
MURDER SUSPECT SHOT
Suspect in North Carolina shooting death shot by deputy
GREENVILLE, N.C. (AP) – Officials say one of two people accused in the shooting death of a man in a grocery store parking lot is hospitalized after a sheriff’s deputy shot him.
Greenville police told local news outlets Billy Earl Grizzard III and Kellie Anne Moseley were arrested Saturday in Beaufort County and charged in the shooting death of 19-year-old Seth Nicholas Street. They face additional charges in Beaufort County.
Moseley is jailed on a $200,000 bond. It’s not known if she has an attorney.
Police said officers chased Grizzard and Moseley after they were seen leaving a house they had broken into. Authorities said Grizzard was shot in the arm as deputies tried to arrest him.
One deputy is on administrative leave as the N.C. State Bureau of Investigation looks into the shooting.
CRIME VICTIMS AMENDMENT
“Frasier” actor Grammer on North Carolina TV for referendum
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – “Frasier” actor Kelsey Grammer is seeking to give a boost to a crime victims’ amendment on North Carolina ballots by appearing in a television commercial.
The pro-amendment group “Marsy’s Law for North Carolina” announced an ad Monday featuring Grammer is now airing on TV stations. Voters will decide on the referendum, which, if approved, would expand crime victims’ language already in the state constitution.
The Emmy-winning Grammer says his father was shot and killed, and he found out about his killer’s release through a tabloid. He also says his sister was raped and murdered. He says the amendment gives crime victims “the equal rights they deserve.”
Grammer is appearing on Georgia airwaves for a similar amendment there.
Kentucky, Florida, Oklahoma and Nevada also have crime victims’ amendment referendums this fall.
GIRL KIDNAPPED-SOLDIER CHARGED
Soldier charged with kidnapping 12-year-old girl
NEW BERN, N.C. (AP) – A Fort Bragg soldier has been charged with kidnapping a 12-year-old girl who disappeared from her grandmother’s home overnight and authorities say they had been communicating online.
The Craven County Sheriff’s Office said in a statement Monday that the girl’s grandmother woke up Sunday morning to discover the girl was gone, but she found a ransom note on the girl’s bed and her window open. Officials say the girl was found Sunday afternoon at Fort Bragg, more than two hours away by car, with 19-year-old James Peele of Chesterfield, South Carolina.
Capt. John Whitfield says investigators began looking at Peele because the two were Facebook friends. Peele is charged with kidnapping and Whitfield says Peele will face other charges, including statutory rape. No listing could be found for Peele.
Trump returning to North Carolina amid 2 close House races
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) – President Donald Trump is returning to North Carolina this week to rally voters as two Republicans face close congressional races.
Trump’s campaign staff announced he will appear Friday night at Bojangles Coliseum in Charlotte as part of his midterm campaign tour to promote Republicans in congressional races.
Incumbent Republican Rep. Ted Budd and GOP candidate Mark Harris are both touting the rally on social media. Trump also visited North Carolina to promote the two in August.
Harris, who unseated an incumbent in the Republican primary, faces Democrat Dan McCready in November in the race to represent a district stretching from the Charlotte area toward Fayetteville.
Budd, meanwhile, faces Democrat Kathy Manning in the race for a district that includes suburban and rural areas south and west of Winston-Salem and Greensboro.
Study: No gains for North Carolina 3rd grade literacy effort
(Information from: The Charlotte Observer, http://www.charlotteobserver.com)
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – Researchers say North Carolina’s Read to Achieve literacy program has had no gains with five years of test scores showing little benefit.
The Charlotte Observer reported Monday that North Carolina State University released a study last week over the third-grade reading campaign the state has spent more than $150 million on. It found the program was too focused on third grade and that having each school district implement it leads to inconsistencies from teacher skills to the type of summer reading camps offered.
State Superintendent Mark Johnson and other officials say the study doesn’t show that the program should end. They say they’re working to improve it as summer camps have been expanded to first- and second-graders, testing has been reduced and schools are doing more to work with parents.