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January 14, 2020
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Latest North Carolina news, sports, business and entertainment at 6:20 a.m. EST



Students back in court over Confederate statue case
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – A national civil rights organization has filed an appeal on behalf of University of North Carolina students who want to intervene in the settlement that gives $2.5 million and a statue to a Confederate dissidents’ group. The Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law filed the appeal on behalf of five students and a faculty member who want to intervene in the deal between the UNC Board of Governors and the North Carolina Division of Sons of Confederate Veterans regarding the statue of the Confederate soldier known as “Silent Sam.” An attorney for the Confederate group says he hasn’t seen the appeal and can’t comment.



Impasse continues over state budget, pay after brief session
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – North Carolina Republicans in the General Assembly have fallen short trying to overturn Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper’s vetoes on teacher pay and the budget during a one-day session.áThe Senate failed on Tuesday to override Cooper’s veto of a measure that would have enacted pay raises for teachers, teacher assistants and other staff at levels contained in the larger two-year budget Cooper also vetoed last June.áA budget stalemate has dragged on ever since, save for several “mini-budgets” that have been approved. Now the impasse will extend at least until late April, when the General Assembly is next scheduled to meet.



Lawsuit: Ex-Volvo worker fired because he wasn’t Swedish
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) – A Romanian-born former employee at Volvo has filed a lawsuit that accuses the company of turning him down for a promotion and ultimately firing him because he isn’t Swedish. The Charlotte Observer reports Luke Diventi is suing Volvo Group North America LLC for job discrimination. Diventi worked for the Swedish-based company at its U.S. headquarters in Greensboro, North Carolina, for seven years. He says in his lawsuit that the only suggestion for improvement was to “become more Swedish in his interactions with coworkers.” Attorneys for both sides didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment by the newspaper.



Targeting rich neighborhoods, man stole 1,300 people’s mail
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – Federal prosecutors in North Carolina say a man has been sentenced to more than 3 years in prison for a methodical scheme to steal checks and credit cards from people’s mailboxes while they slept. Erik Magana was sentenced to 42 months in prison Tuesday for the scheme that defrauded banks of more than $77,000. They say he stole mail from at least 1,300 people from 2016 until late 2018. Authorities say he hoarded numerous pieces of mail that filled every room of his apartment. Officials say they found items ranging from theater tickets to passports inside the stolen mailáthat never got to the intended recipients.



North Carolina county approves Second Amendment resolution
LEXINGTON, N.C. (AP) – Commissioners in a North Carolina county have unanimously passed a resolution supporting gun rights. News outlets report the vote took place in Davidson County on Tuesday night. There was a standing-room-only crowd as more than a dozen people urged the commission to approve the resolution. It says the county supports the right to keep and bear arms and will not use county resources to infringe upon those rights. Several other counties in North Carolina have approved similar measures. The resolution is largely symbolic. The supremacy clause of the U.S. Constitution says federal law takes precedence over state or local laws.



Body of missing fisherman found on North Carolina coast
SWAN QUARTER, N.C. (AP) – Authorities say the body of a missing fisherman has been found on the North Carolina coast. News sources report the Hyde County Sheriff’s office says the body of Kenyon Davis was recovered from Pamlico Sound on Friday. Two others were rescued after the Papa’s Girl sank, but one of the men died. A fourth man is still missing.



Beach ranger: North Carolina surfer suffers shark bite
RODANTHE, N.C. (AP) – A North Carolina man taking advantage of unseasonably warm weather was bitten by a shark while surfing off the coast Monday afternoon. Boone Vandzura, chief ranger with Cape Hatteras National Seashore, says a 26-year-old was taken to the Outer Banks Hospital around 2:30 p.m. with injuries that weren’t considered life-threatening. Justin Copeland told The Virginian-Pilot the bite victim was his cousin, Samuel Horne. Vandzura said Horne was paddling in the surf near Sudie Payne Road in Rodanthe when he was bitten on the foot. Copeland added that water temperatures felt like they were in the 60s on Monday.



Police: Homeless man killed sleeping under truck in rain
HIGH POINT, N.C. (AP) – Police in North Carolina say a homeless man sleeping under a truck was killed when the vehicle ran over him in a grocery store parking lot. High Point police identified the victim as 38-year-old Michael Landon Jacobs. The department said in a statement that Jacobs was sheltering under the truck to escape heavy rains Monday morning. A witness reported the accident and said the person behind the wheel had driven away. The statement says police found Jacobs lying under blankets in a “sleeping position” with a severe head injury. He was pronounced dead at the scene. Police located the driver and said they don’t expect to file charges.