Latest North Carolina news, sports, business and entertainment at 6:20 a.m. EDT
Residents slapped with eviction notices after AP story
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – Two mobile home residents in North Carolina have been hit with eviction notices shortly after complaining to The Associated Press about spikes in their monthly lot rental.
The notices from Florida-based company Time Out Communities were delivered Thursday, two days after the residents were prominently featured in an AP story on those living in hurricane-ravaged Robeson County.
Both residents said their rent had doubled or tripled and that they had few other affordable housing options available after the low-income county was devastated by hurricanes Matthew and Florence in recent years.
Both evictions were filed on the day the article came out, which a lawyer representing both clients called “suspicious.”
But Time Out says they started the paperwork for both beforehand and that other evictions were also filed that day.
Teacher shortages, assaults on police addressed in new laws
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper has signed legislation that helps public schools rehire retired teachers in hard-to-fill classrooms and increases prison time for someone who uses a gun to assault a law enforcement officer.
Cooper has announced he’s enacted another dozen bills with his signature.
One measure signed on Thursday will more than double the minimum prison sentence to roughly three years for someone convicted of a firearm-related assault on a police, correctional, probation or parole officer. Such crimes will become a more severe felony starting Dec. 1.
Another new law offers a way to hire ex-teachers without harming their state retirement benefits. The teachers could work in low-performing schools and those with a high percentage of students from low-income families. Math and science teachers would get higher salaries.
NC marker to honor astronaut killed in Challenger explosion
BEAUFORT, N.C. (AP) – North Carolina will honor an astronaut killed in the explosion of the space shuttle Challenger with a historic highway marker.
State officials say the dedication ceremony for the marker honoring Mike Smith will be held Friday near the Michael J. Smith Airport in Beaufort (BOW’ fert).
Smith was born in Beaufort and graduated from Carteret County High School.
He was the pilot of the Challenger space shuttle, which exploded moments after it lifted off from Cape Canaveral, Florida, in January 1986. All seven astronauts were killed.
Mayor of North Carolina’s largest city seeks 2nd term
(Information from: The Charlotte Observer, http://www.charlotteobserver.com)
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) – The mayor of North Carolina’s largest city has filed for reelection.
The Charlotte Observer reports Mayor Vi Lyles announced her reelection campaign Thursday and vowed to continue prioritizing affordable housing.
The 66-year-old Democrat is the city’s first black female mayor. She’s now trying to become the city’s first mayor to win a second term since Democrat Anthony Foxx in 2011. He left before his second term ended to become the U.S. Secretary of Transportation.
Prior to her mayoral role, Lyles worked on the City Council and as Charlotte’s budget director. Lyles is running against Republican David Michael Rice and Democrat Joel Odom. Filing for the election runs through next week.
RESTAURANT SHOOTING-NORTH CAROLINA
Police charge 2 in fatal Steak n’ Shake robbery
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) – North Carolina police have charged an ex-convict and a woman with murder in a fatal Steak ‘n Shake robbery attempt.
Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police said that 30-year-old Eddie Doh also was charged with attempted murder, assault and armed robbery. They say more charges could come once he’s released from the hospital, where he was brought after police shot him.
The department said in a news release Thursday that 26-year-old Kiara Monique Murphy was arrested Wednesday in connection with the shooting that killed 48-year-old employee Darnell Harris and wounded 53-year-old Robert Carpenter Jr.
Steak ‘n Shake employees told news outlets a masked man entered the restaurant and began firing Tuesday.
The Charlotte Obersver reports Doh previously pleaded guilty to accessory after the fact to first-degree murder in 2013 and was released in January after spending years in prison.
District attorney: Deputy justified in fatal shooting
BOONE, N.C. (AP) – A North Carolina district attorney says a deputy was justified in the fatal shooting of a man who had attacked him in March.
Watauga County District Attorney Seth Banks says in a statement released on Thursday that it was necessary for Deputy Adam Gregg to use deadly force in self-defense in the shooting on March 30.
The Watauga County Sheriff’s Office says when Gregg spotted a suspect in some attempted break-ins east of Boone, 22-year-old Andrew John Mason attacked him. According to Banks, Mason knocked a stun gun out of Gregg’s hand and began hitting the deputy him in the face and kicking him.
Banks said Mason reached for Gregg’s holstered service weapon before Gregg pulled out the gun and shot Mason, who died at a local hospital.
This story has corrected the spelling of Deputy Adam Gregg’s name.
CHICKEN HOUSE FIRE
Fire marshal: 11,000 chickens destroyed in overnight fire
TAYLORSVIL:LE, N.C. (AP) – A North Carolina fire marshal says a large fire destroyed a chicken house and killed 11,000 birds.
News sources report Alexander County Fire Marshal Russell Greene says the fire on Thursday morning caused an estimated $300,000 in damages. Investigators say the fire was accidental and probably electrical, but an exact cause has not been determined.
Firefighters managed to save a nearby chicken house, limiting damage and saving the chickens inside.
HOTEL DEATHS-CARBON MONOXIDE
NC hotel carbon monoxide levels not high at time of deaths
(Information from: The Asheville Citizen-Times, http://www.citizen-times.com)
ASHEVILLE, N.C. (AP) – Tests have found that carbon monoxide levels weren’t elevated at a North Carolina hotel shortly after two guests were found dead last month.
The Asheville Citizen-Times reports three tests by the city’s fire department found no elevated carbon monoxide levels in the Best Western room where 28-year-old Jacob Galloway and 39-year-old James Landreth were staying.
The North Carolina men were visiting the area for a rugby tournament and had celebrated their victory June 8. They were found dead the next day by another person staying in the room. A search warrant says police found no indication of drug use or foul play.
A Friday statement by Asheville police says authorities are still awaiting final autopsy and toxicology reports. It said those may take up to eight months to complete.