Latest North Carolina news, sports, business and entertainment
ELECTION 2020-EARLY VOTE
Early vote total exceeds 2016; GOP chips at Dems’ advantage
The number of people casting an early ballot in the presidential election now surpasses those who voted early during all of 2016. That’s more than 58 million people voting with eight days to go before Election Day. Democrats have been dominating early voting, but Republicans are slowly narrowing the gap. That’s because in-person early voting has kicked off in a number of states and President Donald Trump has convinced many of his supporters they should not vote with mail ballots. One out of every 4 of the voters is either new or infrequent, a sign of a potential record-setting turnout.
Strong year for North Carolina pecans
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) – After several years of uncooperative weather, North Carolina pecan farmers say 2020 will bring a bumper crop. The Charlotte Observer reports that key reasons are plentiful rain and sunshine this year as well as the lack of any major storms. The state’s prime pecan seasons starts early next month and runs through the end of the year. North Carolina is a top pecan-producing state and grows about 4 million to 5 million pounds a year, according to agricultural officials.
Police: 4 men shot in Raleigh
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – Police in North Carolina said a man was killed and three others were shot near a bar. Raleigh Police Sunday evening that Justin Carlton Jones, 25, was killed in an early morning shooting. They said two men had been charged with assault with a dangerous weapon in connection to the incident. The two men are Jamaal McKinney and Jeffrey Steven Lynch.
Servicewomen killed in Alabama plane crash identified
FOLEY, Ala. (AP) – Authorities have identified the two service members who were killed when their plane crashed in a residential Alabama neighborhood. U.S. Coast Guard Ensign Morgan Garrett and U.S. Navy Lt. Rhiannon Ross were on a routine training flight Friday out of Naval Air Station Whiting Field in Florida when their plane crashed in Foley, Alabama. The T-6B Texan II aircraft crashed around 5 p.m. Friday. No one was injured on the ground. Garrett was a student aviator for the Coast Guard. She was identified by the superintendent of the U.S. Coast Guard Academy. Ross was later identified by the Navy.
ELECTION 2020-SENATE-NORTH CAROLINA
Cunningham keeps low in NC Senate race marked by his affair
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – North Carolina Democratic Senate candidate Cal Cunningham is bypassing uncomfortable questions about his extramarital activities in the final days of his race with GOP Sen. Thom Tillis. Cunningham acknowledged three weeks ago that he exchanged sexually suggestive texts with a woman who is not his wife. The Associated Press later reported they had an intimate encounter as recent as July. He’s mostly stuck to controlled virtual calls with interest groups and small, unannounced in-person appearances. Tillis and his allies have blasted Cunningham’s reticence. The U.S. Senate race is now the most expensive in history, with its outcome possibly deciding control of the chamber.
AP-US-VIRUS OUTBREAK-CHURCH CLOSING
North Carolina church ordered to close due to virus outbreak
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) – A North Carolina health official has ordered a large church to close its doors temporarily because of concerns it is helping to spread the coronavirus by disregarding social distancing measures. Mecklenburg County Health Director Gibbie Harris ordered the United House of Prayer for All People to close all of its buildings Saturday. She said the church has not cooperated with efforts to stem the virus’s spread, the Charlotte Observer reported. Harris said at least three deaths and more than 121 confirmed cases of the virus have been linked to the church, which held a weeklong church event earlier this month.
Pence to keep up travel despite contact with infected aides
WASHINGTON (AP) – The White House says Vice President Mike Pence plans to maintain an aggressive campaign schedule this week despite his exposure to a top aide who tested positive for the coronavirus. The vice president’s office says that under Centers for Disease Control and Prevention criteria, Pence is considered a “close contact” of his chief of staff, Marc Short, but will not quarantine. The vice president’s office says Pence does not have to quarantine because he is considered an essential worker. Pence’s office says that the vice president and his wife, Karen, tested negative on Sunday.
Officials: 4 killed, 2 injured in North Carolina house fire
BUXTON, N.C. (AP) – Authorities say four people were killed and at least two others injured in a house fire on North Carolina’s Outer Banks. The Virginian-Pilot reports that the four people who died in Friday morning’s fire in Buxton were a Coast Guard member’s family. Officials say the fire damaged multiple homes and displaced three other Coast Guard members and their families. Two people were taken to Outer Banks Hospital. Dare County officials didn’t immediately release the names of the victims.