AP-NC Newswatch

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November 22, 2021
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November 22, 2021
AP-NC Newswatch


Latest North Carolina News:


‘Tiger King’ Joe Exotic moved to North Carolina facility
BUTNER, N.C. (AP) – A defense attorney says the former Oklahoma zookeeper known as “Tiger King” Joe Exotic has been transferred to a medical facility in North Carolina for federal inmates after a cancer diagnosis. Defense lawyer John Phillips says Joe Exotic, whose real name is Joseph Maldonado-Passage, was taken from a federal medical center in Fort Worth, Texas, to a federal medical center in Butner, North Carolina, last week. Maldonado-Passage is prominently featured in the Netflix documentary “Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness.” In July, a federal appeals court ruled that Maldonado-Passage should get a shorter prison sentence for his role in a murder-for-hire plot and violating federal wildlife laws.



Sheriff: Child killed in North Carolina mobile home fire
KINSTON, N.C. (AP) – Authorities say a child has died in a fire that broke out in a mobile home in North Carolina. A news release posted on the Lenoir County Sheriff Office’s Facebook page says emergency medical workers treated three other people at the scene of the fire in Kinston early Sunday. Officials didn’t immediately release the name and age of the child who died in the fire. WRAL-TV reports that the mobile home was engulfed in flames when firefighters arrived around 1:30 a.m. Lenoir County officials are investigating the fire with assistance from the State Bureau of Investigation and the Office of the State Fire Marshal.



Man charged in crash that killed police officer
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – A North Carolina grand jury has indicted a man on charges stemming from a car crash that killed a police officer last month. Wake County District Attorney Lorrin Freeman told The News & Observer on Saturday that 40-year-old Dedric Romero Privette will be held on a $2 million secured bond after his indictment. Officials said Knightdale police officer Ryan Hayworth died at a Raleigh hospital after Privette slammed his 2011 Mercedes-Benz into two stopped police cars on Interstate 540 on the morning of Oct. 17. Online court records show Privette was indicted on charges including driving while impaired, felony death by vehicle and aggressive driving.



Lenoir-Rhyne football player fatally shot in Hickory
HICKORY, N.C. (AP) – A college football player was shot and killed this weekend outside of an apartment complex in North Carolina, officials said. According to WBTV-TV, Omari Drovon Alexander, 19, was shot multiple times early Saturday as he sat in the driver’s seat of a black 2015 Chevrolet Camaro in Hickory. Officers found him around 12:50 a.m. Saturday with the engine still running in the parking lot of an apartment complex. Alexander was a tight end for the Lenoir-Rhyne University football team. According to the university’s website, he was from Charlotte and went to high school at Mallard Creek.



Woman found dead in cell is jail’s fourth death in 2021
ASHVILLE, N.C. (AP) – Authorities are investigating the death of a prisoner at a North Carolina jail. The Asheville Citizen Times reports that 57-year-old Faith Denise Cox is the fourth inmate who has died this year at the Buncombe County Detention Facility. According to a Buncombe County Sheriff’s Office news release, Cox was found dead on the floor in her cell early Friday while officers were conducting supervision rounds. The release said she apparently died of natural causes. An autopsy was planned. The North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation will investigate her death.



Man fatally shot by police after call from N. Carolina home
GREENSBORO, N.C. (AP) – Authorities say a police officer in North Carolina shot and killed a man after responding to a caller’s report that somebody was trying to enter a home. Greensboro police said in a news release that 29-year-old Joseph Thomas Lee Lopez died in the shooting. The name of the officer who fatally shot Lopez on Friday night wasn’t immediately released. The News & Record reports that officers were responding to “a wanted person call” at a residence when they encountered Lopez in a shed behind the caller’s home. The North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation is investigating the shooting.



Prosecutor: No charges for officer in fatal court shooting
ROXBORO, N.C. (AP) – A North Carolina prosecutor has concluded that a police officer was justified in using deadly force when he shot and killed a defendant who was scuffling with an armed bailiff in a courtroom. Wake County District Attorney Lorrin Freeman said in a news release that his office won’t bring any criminal charges against the Roxboro police officer, J.G. “Trey” Wright III. Freeman’s office concluded that Wright reasonably believed that he and others were in danger when he shot 35-year-old Christopher Thomas Vaughan in the Person County courtroom on Sept. 10.