Latest North Carolina news, sports, business and entertainment at 11:20 a.m. EDT
ELECTION 2020-RACIAL DISCORD
Trump’s America: Where politics dictate definition of racism
ERIE, Pa. (AP) – Americans are engaged in a heated national debate on race, and President Donald Trump’s provocations are often at the heart of the discussion.
In interviews with The Associated Press across a half-dozen states, voters see a country divided by racial animus. They say race relations are better than a generation ago, but worse than before Trump’s presidency.
Opinions break down largely along ideological lines. The debate has been fanned by Trump’s use of white identity politics and inflamed by white supremacist violence like last weekend’s shooting in El Paso, Texas.
Scott Bremner is a talk-radio host in Pennsylvania. He has often found himself refereeing race issues on the air. He tried to establish whether his listeners could agree on what racism is. He realized that the answer was no.
N Carolina court revives case over scorching skateboard ramp
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – A North Carolina appeals court is reviving a lawsuit by the parents of a toddler burned so badly on a scorching metal skateboard ramp that he needed special hospital treatment.
The state Court of Appeals on Tuesday resurrected legal claims against the town of Swansboro and American Ramp Co. that a lower judge had dismissed.
The lawsuit by Eric and Jean Suarez claims the town was negligent when it specified the municipal skate park should have ramps made of stainless steel though it was exposed to full sunlight, then didn’t warn visitors of potential burn injuries.
The couple’s 18-month-old fell onto a metal ramp in August 2014 and suffered skin damage that required his transfer by helicopter to a pediatric burn department in Chapel Hill.
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE-OFFICER SHOOTING
Authorites release names in fatal officer-involved shooting
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) – North Carolina authorities have released the name of a man fatally shot by a police officer responding to a domestic disturbance call.
Charlotte-Mecklenburg police say 55-year-old Delano Williams was shot Friday by Officer John Juhasz.
Juhasz was hired in February 2017. He has been placed on administrative leave per department protocol.
Police on Monday also released recordings of six 911 calls related to the incident.
Authorities had said last week that officers responded to two 911 calls on Thursday night and Friday morning, the second from a woman who said her father was pointing a gun at her.
After officers arrived, a woman came out of the home with a gunshot wound to the leg. Authorities say Juhasz then encountered Williams at the rear of the house and shot him.
RIP CURRENT RESCUES
Over 40 rescued from rip currents at 1 North Carolina beach
WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH, N.C. (AP) – A North Carolina ocean rescue official says more than 40 people had to be saved from dangerous rip currents at a single beach in one day.
News outlets report Dave Baker, ocean rescue director for Wrightsville Beach, confirmed dozens of swimmers were rescued from rip currents there by late afternoon Sunday.
He said red flags indicating a high rip current hazard were flying all day. The town says that when red flags are in the air, swimmers are discouraged from getting in the water and conditions are seen as potentially life threatening to those who enter.
The National Weather Service reported the risk for rip currents across the North Carolina coast Sunday was moderate, meaning swimmers should swim near a lifeguard and pay attention to warnings and beach officials.
GUN SHOP-HORSEMEN CONGRESSWOMEN
Gun shop billboard targeting congresswoman replaced
MURPHY, N.C. (AP) – A North Carolina gun shop that drew nationwide attention with a billboard targeting four minority congresswomen has replaced it with a sign praising the First Amendment.
A billboard sponsored by Cherokee Guns had shown the congresswomen with the apocalyptic phrase “The 4 Horsemen Cometh” altered to read “The 4 Horsemen are Idiots.”
Television station WDEF reports that the billboard was replaced on Monday with one reading: “First Amendment. Enough Said.”
The billboard had targeted Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar, Ayanna Pressley and Rashida Tlaib, all of whom have drawn the wrath of President Donald Trump. It was signed “the Deplorables.”
WDEF reports that the chief salesperson for the gun shop said they took down the original message because of death threats posted online.
North Carolina man charged with stealing ambulance
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) – A North Carolina man has been charged with stealing an ambulance from a hospital parking bay and leading police on a high-speed chase.
Newsoutlets report that the ambulance belonging to the Dallas Rescue Squad was taken from CaroMont Regional Medical Center Friday night.
Police charged 29-year-old Joshua Kyle Poindexter of Kings Mountain with larceny of a motor vehicle, fleeing to elude arrest, failing to heed a siren and reckless driving.
Authorities say GPS software allowed police to track the stolen ambulance. They said Poindexter led police on a chase that exceeded the speed limit by 15 mph (24 km/h) before he was arrested in Cherryville, almost 20 miles (32 km) away.
No one was injured.
Waiting-in-line badge: NC airport overwhelmed by Boy Scouts
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) – Preparation failed to pay off for thousands of Boy Scouts leaving a worldwide jamboree who overwhelmed Charlotte International Airport over the weekend.
Passengers reported security lines 500 deep on Friday as scouts who attended the 2019 World Scout Jamboree in West Virginia tried to return home.
The airport is about a three-hour drive from the Jamboree site and was a popular spot for those who chose to fly to the event.
The Charlotte Observer reports that Scout leaders coordinated for weeks in advance with the airport and airlines, but bad weather and high volume conspired against them.
American Airlines operates a hub out of Charlotte and reported that 70 percent of its flights were held Friday to try to accommodate passengers stuck in security lines.
Judge tosses charges against 2 arrested in monument protest
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – A North Carolina judge has dismissed charges against two students accused of disorderly conduct and defacing a public monument after placing Ku Klux Klan hoods on statues at a Confederate monument.
N.C. State students Enzo Niebuhr and Jody Anderson were arrested Easter Sunday during a protest at the North Carolina Women of the Confederacy monument in Raleigh.
Newsoutlets report that a judge dismissed the charges Friday after a hearing in which the students’ lawyer argued that their actions were protected speech.
The officer who arrested them testified that the students used profanity and that placing hoods on the statues was like a hate crime.