Latest North Carolina news, sports, business and entertainment at 11:20 a.m. EDT
NORTH CAROLINA-BALLOT BATTLE
Future of N. Carolina amendment questions on ballot in court
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – A judge is ready to listen to arguments about how many constitutional amendments should be on North Carolina ballots this fall.
The move comes after Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper and interest groups sued to block some of the questions. Attorneys are expected in a Wake County courtroom Tuesday. Cooper, the state NAACP and Clean Air Carolina have requested the removal of referendums they say contain false and misleading questions written by the Republican-controlled General Assembly.
Cooper wants two of the six amendments removed. The other groups want four removed. Legislative leaders believe all six should be voted on.
Some of the challenged amendments would erode executive branch powers and shift them to the legislature. There’s also a voter identification amendment and one to reduce the state’s income tax rate cap.
Judge refuses to reopen North Dakota pipeline security suit
BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) – A North Dakota judge will not reopen a lawsuit filed against a private security firm hired by the Dakota Access oil pipeline developer during protests over the $3.8 billion project.
North Dakota’s Private Investigative and Security Board says North Carolina-based TigerSwan needed a license to operate in the state. TigerSwan says the services it provided to Energy Transfer Partners, of Texas, didn’t require a license.
The board wanted Judge John Grinsteiner to ban TigerSwan from operating in North Dakota and levy fines. He refused, and on Monday rejected the board’s request to reconsider.
The board says it will appeal to the state Supreme Court and if necessary pursue fines through an administrative process.
TigerSwan’s attorney says an appeal would be “a waste of time and money.”
PREGNANT WOMAN KILLED
Pregnant 18-year-old shot, killed in North Carolina
HIGH POINT, N.C. (AP) – Police say an 18-year-old pregnant woman was shot and killed at a North Carolina home.
News outlets cite a High Point police release that says responding officers found 32-year-old Corey S. Ray shot in the buttocks and 18-year-old Anastaista Ray suffering from a gunshot wound to the head Monday night.
Witnesses told police they saw an SUV drive by the residence and fire multiple shots. Officers found around 20 shell casings in the road.
Both victims were hospitalized. Investigators were told shortly after midnight that Anastaista Ray and her unborn child had died. Corey Ray is listed as stable, but his exact condition is unknown.
No motive or suspects have been identified.
Anastaista Ray’s mother, Talisha Ray, tells news outlets her daughter was due Sept. 26.
NASCAR chairman arrested for DWI, oxycodone possession
SAG HARBOR, N.Y. (AP) – NASCAR chairman Brian France has been arrested in New York’s Hamptons for driving while intoxicated and criminal possession of oxycodone.
France was arrested at 7:30 p.m. Sunday and held overnight. He was arraigned Monday at Sag Harbor Village Justice Court and released.
There was no immediate information on an attorney who could comment on France’s behalf.
NASCAR says it takes France’s arrest “as a serious matter and will issue a statement after we have all of the facts.”
Police say the 56-year-old France was stopped after his 2017 Lexus blew through at a stop sign.
They say officers saw indications France was intoxicated and found the pills during a subsequent search.
TMZ first reported the arrest.
France has been CEO of the family-founded racing organization since 2003.
ATLANTIC COAST PIPELINE
Appeals court tosses key permits for Atlantic Coast pipeline
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) – A federal appeals court has thrown out two key permits for the Atlantic Coast pipeline.
Environmental groups say the ruling Monday by a three-judge panel of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals means construction should be halted on the 600-mile natural gas pipeline.
The judges said a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service permit was “arbitrary and capricious” because it provided no specific limits for the allowable impact on five threatened or endangered species.
They also vacated a right-of-way permit from the U.S. National Park Service because it allows the pipeline to pass underneath the Blue Ridge Parkway without explaining how the project would not be inconsistent with the scenic parkway, part of the National Park System.
Lead developer Dominion Energy did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Girl bitten by shark off North Carolina beach
(Information from: The Charlotte Observer, http://www.charlotteobserver.com)
BALD HEAD ISLAND, N.C. (AP) – Authorities say a shark bit a girl’s calf as she swam off North Carolina’s southeast coast.
The Charlotte Observer reports it happened Sunday morning off a beach on the east side of Bald Head Island.
The Brunswick County Sheriff’s Office released a report that states the shark bit the girl’s right calf as she swam, but she was on a sandbar when she was first heard screaming. The girl’s father ferried her to the beach on a surf board and a surfing instructor nearby witnessed the scene and called 911. She was taken to a hospital in Wilmington.
The Bald Head Island Department of Public Safety said in a statement the girl was “bitten by something believed to be a juvenile shark,” but the wound wasn’t life-threatening.
Panel summarizing constitutional amendments makes progress
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – A panel tasked with writing summaries for the public describing six proposed amendments to North Carolina’s constitution on November ballots made progress while meeting the first time at full strength.
The Constitutional Amendments Publication Commission approved language Monday to describe two proposed amendments that would enshrine the right to hunt and fish and expand crime victims’ rights. Work on the other four amendments was delayed until lawsuits filed Monday challenging whether those questions should be voted on this fall are resolved.
Secretary of State Elaine Marshall and Attorney General Josh Stein attended last week’s first meeting but couldn’t officially conduct business because Legislative Building Administrator Paul Coble was absent. Coble wanted to wait until the General Assembly overrode Gov. Roy Cooper’s veto of legislation narrowing the panel’s work.
Police: Man suspected of breaking into business fatally shot
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) – Police say it appears that a 20-year-old man broke into a store in North Carolina and was fatally shot by the owner of the business.
News outlets report the owner of the American Beauty Garden Center called 911 to say he was responding to an alarm Monday morning, around the same time as officers responded to a call from an alarm company.
A Charlotte-Mecklenburg police statement says the owner called back and said that he’d shot someone. Officers located 20-year-old Justin Tyler Anderson behind the business. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
Based upon the initial investigation, it appears Anderson broke into the business by smashing the front glass door. When the owner arrived at the scene, police say Anderson ran out the front door and was shot by the owner. An investigation is ongoing.