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October 31, 2018
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October 31, 2018
AP-NC Newswatch

 

 

 

 

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

 

MUSLIM GROUP-MOSQUE THREAT
Muslim advocacy group seeks investigation into mosque threat
WASHINGTON (AP) – A Muslim advocacy organization is asking for an investigation into what it says was a bomb threat against a mosque in North Carolina.
The Council on American-Islamic Relations said in a news release it would like the alleged incident investigated as a hate crime.
Police said someone called in a bomb threat to Muhammad Mosque 36 in Charlotte last Sunday.
Communications director Ibrahim Hooper said at a time of attacks and threats targeting houses of worship, members of minority groups and national political figures, it’s imperative that the bomb threat be investigated as a hate crime and the perpetrator brought to justice.
The Washington-based civil rights organization is urging mosques and other houses of worship and faith-based and advocacy organizations to take extra security precautions.

 

 

NORTH CAROLINA-AMENDMENTS
North Carolina amendments could cement GOP agenda in place
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – North Carolina Democrats hope to win enough state legislative seats Election Day to strip Republicans of their veto-proof majorities. But the Republicans’ imprint on the state could last decades if voters also approve up to six constitutional referendums.
Among other things, the amendments would mandate photo identification to vote, lower the income tax rate limit in the state constitution and swing power over judicial vacancies and the state election board from the governor to the legislature.
Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper, fellow Democrats and allies are fighting all six, calling them unnecessary, confusing or GOP power grabs. Pro- and anti-amendment forces are spending millions of dollars combined.
Republican Sen. Paul Newton backs all six. He criticized the blanket opposition and says voters can make informed decisions on each of them.

 

 

NORTH CAROLINA-SCHOOL SHOOTING-THE LATEST
The Latest: Affidavit points out fight prior to shooting
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) – An affidavit filed in connection with a fatal shooting at a North Carolina high school indicates a recent fight in a store parking lot may have sparked the shooting.
WSOC-TV in Charlotte reports a Mecklenburg County arrest affidavit, based on a police interview, said Jatwan Cuffie was involved in the fight last Friday with four other boys outside a grocery store. According to the affidavit, Bobby McKeithen wasn’t involved in the fight, but was asked his opinion as to who won.
The affidavit said Cuffie took a gun to school for protection Monday, and when the teenagers arrived at Butler High School, McKeithen punched Cuffie in the face as they stood in a hallway. According to the affidavit, Cuffie then shot McKeithen and went to a classroom, where a teacher took a bag with the gun.
Police in Matthews, a Charlotte-area suburb, said Tuesday the gun was reported as stolen in August.
Cuffie made a court appearance Tuesday, charged with first-degree murder. His public defender requested a low bond and that Cuffie be be placed in his mother’s custody. A bond hearing on the matter is set for Nov. 7.

 

 

EX-COUNTY MANAGERS-INDICTMENTS
Former county official pleads guilty to accepting kickbacks
(Information from: The Asheville Citizen-Times, http://www.citizen-times.com)
ASHEVILLE, N.C. (AP) – A former North Carolina official has pleaded guilty to conspiring to defraud the federal government by accepting bribes in exchange for government contracts.
The Asheville Citizen Times reports former Buncombe County Assistant Manager Jon Creighton entered the plea Tuesday as part of an agreement. Former County Manager Wanda Greene and Assistant Manager Mandy Stone also are charged in the scheme and have pleaded not guilty.
Prosecutors say they accepted bribes from Georgia-based contractor Joe Wiseman, who hasn’t been charged.
The former managers were indicted as part of an ongoing federal investigation into county corruption that also netted Greene’s son and former County Business Intelligence Manager Michael Greene. He has pleaded guilty to conspiracy to defraud the federal government.

 

 

SEXUAL ASSAULT-COLD CASE
Police make arrest in 26-year-old sexual assault cold case
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) – Police in North Carolina have arrested a man in connection with a 26-year-old sexual assault case.
Charlotte-Mecklenburg police said in a news release Tuesday 52-year-old Kenneth McIllwaine is charged with first-degree kidnapping and second-degree rape.
According to police the victim reported on June 5, 1992 that she had accepted a ride home from the suspect, who drove her to another location and sexually assaulted her. A police report said the suspect then forced the woman to get inside a garbage bin and fled the scene.
A sexual assault kit was collected and tested in 1992. Additional testing completed last year helped confirm McIllwaine as the suspect.
Officials say McIllwaine is currently serving time for a rape committed in 1995 for which he was identified as a suspect in 2015.

 

 

DEAD CAT
3 charged in North Carolina after ‘Kitty’ found mutilated
(Information from: The Asheville Citizen-Times, http://www.citizen-times.com)
ASHEVILLE, N.C. (AP) – Police in North Carolina are searching for a third suspect in the mutilation of a family cat.
News outlets reported Monday that 26-year-old Shariah Jessamyn Metzger and 29-year-old Jace Lee Greene have been arrested on charges of improper burial of an animal. Asheville police are searching for Zackery Eugene Greene on the same charge.
Officers were alerted to social media images of showing the dead cat strung up and sliced open, posed with needles in its body and drugs in its mouth.
A Brother Wolf Animal Rescue spokeswoman, Andee Bingham, says the cat was microchipped.
Owner Aaron Nastor told the local ABC affiliate WLOS that Kitty was their sweet family cat, and crimes like this are not what Asheville is about.
It’s unclear if the suspects have lawyers.

 

 

STATE REP-DUI-OHIO
North Carolina rep up for re-election accused of DUI in Ohio
(Information from: The Charlotte Observer, http://www.charlotteobserver.com)
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) – A North Carolina state representative running for re-election will stand trial on a charge of driving under the influence in Ohio.
The Charlotte Observer reports documents from Ohio’s Erie County Municipal Court show Rep. Andy Dulin was charged July 1 after he was stopped along a turnpike around 60 miles (97 kilometers) west of Cleveland. Records show he refused a DUI test.
His trial is scheduled for Dec. 13. That’s after the election to decide whether the Republican will be returned to the state legislature to represent Charlotte’s House District 104.
In a Monday statement, Dulin called the report “an obvious last-minute smear campaign by the Democrats and their liberal allies at the Charlotte Observer.” He said he pleaded not guilty.
The newspaper’s candidate background checks were done before July.

 

 

BARN PARTY-SHOOTINGS
Teen shot in head at North Carolina barn party dies
HILLSBOROUGH, N.C. (AP) – A teenager who was shot in the head at a large party at a North Carolina barn venue has died.
Citing an Orange County sheriff’s release, news outlets report that 18-year-old Rashiya Melton died Monday. She was found behind the barn early Sunday morning and airlifted to a hospital.
A second person was shot in the leg but wouldn’t cooperate with investigators.
The sheriff’s office says around 300 people attended the party at Smokehouse Valley Farm, northwest of Hillsborough. Around 150 people were still there when deputies arrived.
Orange County Chief Deputy Jamison Sykes says many attendees were high-school age and aren’t cooperating. No arrests have been announced, but Sykes says charges are pending.
Sheriff Charles Blackwood says alcohol was involved.