Latest North Carolina news, sports, business and entertainment at 6:20 a.m. EST
Daughter of late redistricting guru reveals more of his work
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – Thousands of formerly confidential documents and emails held by a late Republican redistricting consultant have been made public in North Carolina. The documents belonging to Thomas Hofeller were posted on a website by his daughter over the weekend. Stephanie Hofeller says she found the files while visiting her parents’ NortháCarolina home in 2018 shortly after her father’s death. All of the documents made their way to plaintiffs involved in a lawsuit accusing Republicans of partisan gerrymandering when redrawing state legislative districts. A small number were used by the lawyers, while the rest had been deemed confidential until recently.
4 suffer minor injuries in North Carolina plane crash
RUTHERFORDTON, N.C. (AP) – Authorities say four people have been taken to a hospital with minor injuries after a small plane crashed in western North Carolina. Local media outlets reported the plane went down around 5 p.m. Sunday. Rutherford County Emergency Management Director Edward Hamrick told TV station WHNS the four-seat aircraft was flying out of Henderson County as part of an exhibition flight for children who were on board. The FAA will investigate.
Mexican agency assists N. Carolina police in kidnapping case
WINSTON SALEM, N.C. (AP) – A police department in North Carolina says it has requested help from the Mexican Consulate in the effort to find a man who investigators think was kidnapped during a home invasion. Winston-Salem police Capt. Steven Tollie said at a news conference that 21-year-old Diego Daniel Quintero Fregozo wasálast seen Dec. 16 being forcefully removed from a home that is suspected to have been involved in illegal drug activity. Police officials said three others, including a 15-year-old, were tied up and assaulted. Tollie told news outlets on Monday the department is working with Mexican officials to locate a family member of Fregozo.
Good Samaritan stops man accused of trying to kidnap girl
GREENSBORO, N.C. (AP) – A good Samaritan has stopped a man who police say attempted to kidnap an 8-year-old girl inside a North Carolina restaurant. News outlets report 55-year-old Timothy Jon Fry tried to grab and take the girl as she came out of the restaurant’s bathroom last month in Greensboro. Police say another customer confronted Fry and he let go of the girl and left the restaurant. The customer took pictures of Fry and his truck as he drove away. Police say those photos helped them identify the suspect and arrest him. It’s unclear whether Fry had an attorney who could comment on his behalf.
BULLET THROUGH WALL
North Carolina teen struck by bullet through apartment wall
ASHEVILLE, N.C. (AP) – Police in North Carolina say a 19-year-old woman is in critical condition after she was struck in the head by a bullet fired from a neighboring apartment. Asheville police say the gun was fired on Saturday at the Hillcrest Apartments. Investigators confirm the bullet ripped through the victim’s wall from an adjacent unit and struck her as she was in an upstairs bedroom. Lt. Sean Ardemaátold news outlets the woman was “alert and talking” as she was taken to a hospital, though she’s listed in critical condition. The officer said the woman didn’t appear to be a “target” for the shooting. The investigation is ongoing.
Gas leak contained at East Carolina student center
GREENVILLE, N.C. (AP) – A gas leak at a student center prompted officials to issue a warning to stay away from East Carolina University. WITN reports that housekeepers went into Mendenhall Student Center on Monday and noticed the leak. ECU police say the housekeepers called police, who then called emergency personnel and the local utility. Authorities say the leak, which originated in an area undergoing renovations, was brought under control. Officials say no injuries were reported.
Lawsuit over Asheville hotel set for Supreme Court hearing
ASHEVILLE, N.C. (AP) – A costly three-year legal battle over a proposed hotel in downtown Asheville is set for a hearing before the North Carolina Supreme Court. The Citizen-Times reports arguments will be heard Monday in Raleigh in the case over the city’s denial of the project, a 185-room Embassy Suites hotel and parking deck. City council members cited concerns about parking, traffic and a high concentration of hotels when they voted against the project in 2017. Hotels have become an increasingly fraught issue in the popular tourist destination, which implemented a one-year moratorium on hotel projects in September.
LIBRARY LATE FEES
Wake County library system does away with late fees
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – One of North Carolina’s most populous counties is doing away with late fees at its library system. The News & Observer reported over the weekend that Wake County Public Libraries wiped out late fees as of Jan. 2 for nearly 300,000 people and won’t issue any more in the future. Ann Burlingame is assistant director of the library system that has nearly two dozen branches. She says the system is trying to get resources into the hands of people who need them the most and saw waiving fees as one way of doing that.