AP-NC Newswatch

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June 10, 2020
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June 10, 2020
AP-NC Newswatch



Latest North Carolina news, sports, business and entertainment at 6:20 a.m. EDT



N.C. city passes resolution to remove Confederate monuments
ASHEVILLE, N.C. (AP) – News outlets report a city in North Carolina unanimously passed a resolution to begin a removal process for its confederate monuments. WLOS-TV reports the joint action by the Asheville City Council and Buncombe County Tuesday would establish a task force to recommend steps to remove or repurpose the monuments at the county courthouse and in Pack Square Park. The figures eyed for removal include a 50-foot monument of Confederate military officer Gov. Zebulon Baird Vance and granite markers that memorializes Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee and Confederate Col. John Connally. The resolution will go to the Buncombe County Board of Commissioners for final approval.



N. Carolina officer ‘assaulted in broad daylight’ at protest
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) – A Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police officer who has met with and walked with demonstrators a number of times was involved in a scuffle Monday afternoon with protesters one day after he’d had another tense interaction. Video shows CMPD Captain Brad Koch surrounded by chanting protesters in front of the local government center and a white male protester approaches and shoves him. After being pushed, Koch took the man to the ground as more protestors were seen piling on. He was the only officer in the immediate vicinity. áNo injuries were reported, but CMPD said Koch was “assaulted in broad daylight.” 



Artists paint “Black Lives Matter” mural on Charlotte street
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) – A main thoroughfare in Charlotte was painted with bright colors Tuesday morning as dozens of volunteers and artists traced 16 large letters spelling out “Black Lives Matter.” Charlotte resident D’ann Redd never thought she’d see something like the mural on South Tryon Street in her southern city. Other cities including Washington and Raleigh have similar murals painted in recent days by artists and volunteers. Charlotte follows Washington D.C. and other American cities calling for an end to police brutality racial injustice following the death of George Floyd, who was pinned to the pavement by a white Minneapolis police officer who put a knee on his neck .



Cooper unveils criminal justice panel to address racial bias
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper has announced a panel that will recommend how to alter police, prosecutor and judicial practices to end racial disparities in light of George Floyd’s death. The North Carolina Task Force for Racial Equity in Criminal Justice unveiled by Cooper on Tuesday will be led by Attorney General Josh Stein and Supreme Court Justice Anita Earls. The panel is supposed to focus on the use of force, community policing, alternatives to arrests and pretrial release. Some Senate Republicans criticized Cooper’s decision to create the panel, saying he’ll be able to avoid taking positions on tough issues in an election year.



North Carolina speedway ordered shut because of large crowds
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper’s administration has ordered closed a small stock-car track that’s allowed large crowds to gather repeatedly for weekend races well above COVID-19 limits for mass gatherings. Cooper’s health secretary says Ace Speedway in Alamance County is an “imminent hazard” for the virus’ spread and can’t reopen unless it creates a safety plan to keep fans away. Media outlets have reported crowds at the speedway exceeding 2,000 people. The action came after the local sheriff announced on Monday he wouldn’t issue a citation for the speedway. Disclosure of the legal action came as North Carolina reported another record high of virus-related hospitalizations.



Searchers recover body of missing North Carolina firefighter
GREENVILLE, N.C. (AP) – Searchers have recovered the body of a missing North Carolina firefighter who disappeared in a river while swimming with co-workers. News outlets report the body of 24-year-old Greenville firefighter Gary Cox was was recovered from the Tar River after a search resumed for him on Tuesday. Authorities say Cox went boating with fellow firefighters on Sunday when they stopped to go swimming and he disappeared. Greenville Fire/Rescue personnel held a procession through downtown with police officers and firefighters lining the route to pay their respects.



US military now rethinking links to Confederate army symbols
WASHINGTON (AP) – The military is rethinking its traditional embrace or tolerance of Confederate Army symbols. This includes whether to rename Army bases like North Carolina’s Fort Bragg that honor Confederate officers who led the fight against the Union and directly or implicitly defended the institution of slavery. The issue has arisen periodically but is gaining new attention as the nation wrestles with questions of race after the death of George Floyd in the hands of Minneapolis police. A spokesman for Defense Secretary Mark Esper says Esper is open to a “bipartisan discussion” of the issue. The Marines are banning public displays of the Confederate Army battle flag, and the Navy’s top admiral says he will follow their example.



City mulls shifting $1M from police to anti-poverty efforts
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (AP) – Leaders in the North Carolina city of Winston-Salem say they will consider moving $1 million from its police budget to pay for more efforts against poverty. The Winston-Salem Journal reported Monday that the discussion among city leaders follows demands across the country to cut spending for police following the death of a black man in police custody in Minneapolis. The city has an anticipated police budget of nearly $80 million for the 2020-2021 fiscal year. The $1 million would come from vacant police officer positions that city officials do not expect to be filled in the coming year.



AP-WF-06-10-20 1021GMT