AP-NC Newswatch

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November 16, 2021
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November 16, 2021
AP-NC Newswatch


Latest North Carolina News:


NC Republicans unveil final budget with pay raises, tax cuts
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – Republicans at the North Carolina legislature have rolled out their final two-year budget bill. House and Senate GOP leaders unveiled the plan on Monday, with a goal of the General Assembly giving it final approval by later in the week. They are hopeful that sweeteners on employee pay raises, infrastructure and tax cuts for individuals will attract enough Democratic support so the long-delayed plan can become law, with or without Gov. Roy Cooper’s signature. Cooper offered a lot of input in the final plan and left the door open to signing it. North Carolina is now the only state in the nation without an enacted budget.



Summer trial set for N. Carolina ballot probe defendant
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – A North Carolina judge has set a trial date next summer for a political operative accused of ballot fraud involving a 2018 congressional election whose results ultimately got thrown out. Leslie McCrae Dowless appeared in Wake County court with his lawyer on Monday to address 13 criminal counts filed against him related to activities from the 2016 and 2018 elections. Dowless declined to accept a plea agreement offered by District Attorney Lorrin Freeman. A judge set the trial for next August. He’s already scheduled to begin serving a six-month federal prison term in a few weeks after he pleaded guilty to Social Security fraud.



NC House Democrats Adcock, Hunt aim to switch to Senate
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – Two North Carolina House Democrats have announced they are seeking seats in the state Senate in 2022. Rep. Gale Adcock of Cary says she’ll run for a seat in western Wake County where current Sen. Wiley Nickel lives. Nickel already has said he’s running for Congress next year. And Rep. Rachel Hunt of Charlotte also announced Monday that she is running for a Senate district in southeastern Mecklenburg County. The senator living in that district is Sen. Jeff Jackson, who is seeking the Democratic nomination for U.S. Senate. Hunt is the daughter of former four-term Gov. Jim Hunt.



Sheriff: N. Carolina man faces assault, trafficking charges
STATESVILLE, N.C. (AP) – A North Carolina sheriff says a man is facing multiple charges in connection with reports of a sexual assault on two teenagers. The Statesville Record & Landmark reports Iredell County Sheriff Darren Campbell says 30-year-old William Joshua Byard of Stony Point is charged with six counts of felony sexual activity by a substitute parent, two counts of human trafficking and one count each of statutory rape of a minor 15 years old or less, kidnapping and stalking. Warrants were served on Byard on Nov. 10 at the Iredell County jail, where he was being held on unrelated charges.



Eight wounded in weekend shootings in North Carolina city
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (AP) – Police say eight people were wounded by gunfire in a North Carolina city over the weekend, including three people who were shot while they were in their vehicles. The Winston-Salem Journal reports police said four people were wounded early Saturday after gunfire erupted at a party. A 38-year-old man whom police have not identified was shot in the head Saturday night when someone shot into a home. Police also said a woman was shot multiple times after someone opened fire on her vehicle and she crashed into an unoccupied apartment building.



Wrong-way crash kills N. Carolina woman; 2nd woman charged
GREENSBORO, N.C. (AP) – The North Carolina State Highway Patrol says a woman was killed when she drove the wrong way on an expressway and hit another car head-on. News outlets reported the patrol says 32-year-old De Osha Ajante Welch of Thomasville was driving her vehicle southbound in the northbound lanes of U.S. 29/Business Interstate 85 early Sunday between High Point and Jamestown when she struck vehicle driven by 35-year-old Dericka Copez Pratt of Greensboro. Welch died at the scene of the wreck. The patrol says Pratt, who suffered minor injuries, was charged with driving while impaired.



Company fined $39k in trench collapse that killed worker
TAYLORSVILLE, N.C. (AP) – A construction company has been fined $39,200 by the North Carolina Department of Labor for a trench collapse that killed a worker in May. Shane Anthony Sharpe, of Taylorsville, was killed in the collapse of a 10-foot deep trench at an Alexander County shopping center. Crews were working on a drainage line. The collapse occurred in a parking lot outside Big D’s Diner & Country Store on Highway 64/90. After a six-month investigation, the Department of Labor levied $39,200 in penalties against the contractor on the job, Barnes Backhoe & Grading Inc. Attempts to reach the company were unsuccessful.



One teen killed, four others injured in North Carolina crash
MORRISVILLE, N.C. (AP) – Authorities say a North Carolina teenager has died in an early morning car crash that seriously injured four other teens. Officials say a 17-year-old girl was driving on Morrisville Parkway at about 1 a.m. Sunday when she lost control of the vehicle and crossed a median. Two passengers were thrown from the car as it rolled, including Jonathan Pooley, 18, who was pronounced dead at the scene. The second teen ejected from the car was listed in critical condition Sunday. WRAL-TV reports that the other two passengers, also teenagers, were “significantly” hurt. Investigators said the driver was the only person in the car wearing a seatbelt and did not have significant injuries.