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October 23, 2019
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October 23, 2019
AP-NC Newswatch




Latest North Carolina news, sports, business and entertainment at 11:20 a.m. EDT



Trump claim brings new pain to relatives of lynching victims
MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) – President Donald Trump’s claim that the impeachment inquiry is a lynching has struck a painful chord for black people whose relatives died in racist lynchings.
Ohio resident Malinda Edwards says Trump is ignorant, insensitive or racist. The Ku Klux Klan lynched her father, a 24-year-old black man, Willie Edwards Jr. in Alabama in 1957. No one ever went to prison.
A cousin of Mississippi lynching victim Emmett Till, Deborah Watts, calls the president’s tweet “insensitive and offensive.”
Facing an impeachment inquiry that he and supporters claim is illegal, Trump tweeted Tuesday that the process is a lynching. Some Republicans agree, but the relatives of actual lynching victims don’t.
Janet Langhart Cohen says Trump knows how to hurt and divide. She says one of her distant cousins was lynched in Kentucky.



NC highway trooper seriously injured in traffic stop crash
(Information from: WRAL-TV, http://www.wral.com)
KITTRELL, N.C. (AP) – North Carolina Highway Patrol says a trooper is in serious condition after being hit by a driver who’s now charged with driving while intoxicated.
The Highway Patrol said in a news release that the trooper had pulled a driver over in Vance County Tuesday night. He was standing by his vehicle when he was struck by another vehicle that had left the roadway.
WRAL-TV reports that the first driver who had been pulled over called 911. The injured trooper was then flown by helicopter to a hospital.
The agency said Wednesday morning that Trooper Craig I. Hundley, a 12-year veteran, was in serious condition.
The Patrol said the driver of the car that hit the trooper has been charged with driving while intoxicated and felony hit-and-run among other charges.



Man who killed prison staff says he wanted to escape or die
MANTEO, N.C. (AP) – The man found guilty of murder in the deaths of four North Carolina prison workers says he was disappointed when an officer fired at him but missed as he tried to escape after the attacks.
The Virginian-Pilot reports that Mikel Brady testified in court Tuesday that he wanted his freedom either by escaping prison or dying.
Brady took the stand in Dare County court for the sentencing phase of his trial. Jurors will decide whether to sentence him to life in prison or the death penalty.
Brady was convicted Monday of four counts of first-degree murder in the stabbing and bludgeoning deaths of two prison guards, a maintenance worker and a sewing plant manager.
The 2017 attack at Pasquotank Correctional Institution was the state’s deadliest attempted prison breakout.



North Carolina governor announces council for film, TV
(Information from: The StarNews, http://starnewsonline.com)
WILMINGTON, N.C. (AP) – North Carolina’s governor has announced a new council to advise him on strategies to bring more film and television production to the state.
The StarNews of Wilmington reports Gov. Roy Cooper announced the creation of the Governor’s Advisory Council on Film, Television and Digital Streaming on Tuesday at the EUE/Screen Gems Studios lot in Wilmington.
The secretary of the state Department of Natural and Cultural Resources, Susi Hamilton, will lead the council.
Cooper made the announcement on a sound stage for Hulu’s upcoming series “Reprisal,” which is wrapping up production on its first season. In the audience was “Dawson’s Creek” creator Kevin Williamson, who is back in town to produce a horror film starring Oscar winner Russell Crowe.



Prosecutors: Victims lost $1M in gold, romance scheme
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) – Federal prosecutors say a man from Ghana living in North Carolina pleaded guilty to a scam targeting elderly people with promises of romance and wealth.
The Charlotte-based U.S. Attorney’s Office said in a news release that Suleman Alhassan pleaded guilty Tuesday to wire and mail fraud conspiracy. No sentencing date was set.
The news release said he and others used online dating websites to target fraud victims and develop fake romantic relationships. They told victims they owned large amounts of gold and needed money to ship the gold from Africa to the U.S.
Prosecutors say the victims were promised a share of the profits from gold sales, but people lost more than $1 million through the scheme.
A defense attorney didn’t immediately respond to an email seeking comment Tuesday.



Managed care shift uncertain for Medicaid in NC since veto
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – A massive overhaul of how North Carolina government administers the state Medicaid program likely won’t take off soon unless legislators and Gov. Roy Cooper’s administration agree on final funding for those changes.
The House Health Committee meets Wednesday to get an update from state health officials and insurers awarded contracts to offer treatment through managed care.
The first batch of plan enrollees was supposed to benefit starting Nov. 1, but that isn’t happening after Cooper vetoed a measure in August that contained funds to cover the transition and language needed to set coverage rates. The veto is connected to the absence of expanding Medicaid coverage to hundreds of thousands of additional adults. Republicans are largely opposed to such expansion.
Now managed care is set to go online in February.



‘Dawson’s Creek’ creator producing Russell Crowe horror film
(Information from: The StarNews, http://starnewsonline.com)
WILMINGTON, N.C. (AP) – The creator of the television series “Dawson’s Creek” is returning to North Carolina for a horror movie starring Oscar winner Russell Crowe.
The StarNews of Wilmington reports that Kevin Williamson confirmed his plans to produce the movie Tuesday on the EUE/Screen Gems Studios lot. The working title of the Miramax film is “The Georgetown Project.”
The project is scheduled to begin filming early next month in Wilmington.
Williamson is a North Carolina native known for the television series “The Vampire Diaries,” which aired on The CW for eight seasons. He’s also the creator of CBS All Access’ fairy tale horror anthology “Tell Me a Story.”
“Dawson’s Creek” aired on The WB from 1998 to 2003. Its stars included James Van Der Beek, Katie Holmes, Michelle Williams and Joshua Jackson.



Great Smoky Mountains park ends backcountry campfire ban
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Great Smoky Mountains National Park has lifted a ban on backcountry campfires.
Parks officials say in a news release that they ended the ban Tuesday after it was put in place Sept. 26. Officials say that recent rain and cooler temperatures in the last couple of weeks have lowered drought risks and fire danger in the park.
Much of the park remains in the moderate drought category. Officials are reminding visitors to confine fires to designated campfire rings and grills and extinguish fires by mixing water with embers.
Officials also say many of the springs in higher elevations are running significantly slower than usual and several campsites are without water. Backpackers are encouraged to carry extra water for sites not along major water sources.



AP-WF-10-23-19 1520GMT