Latest North Carolina News:
NC Gov. Cooper unveiling second-year budget recommendations
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – The North Carolina government budget process is starting up again as Gov. Roy Cooper unveils his recommendations for the next fiscal year. The Democratic governor scheduled a Wednesday news conference to discuss adjustments he’d like the General Assembly to make to the second year of a two-year budget that was just approved in November. The legislative session begins next week. áCooper agreed to sign the two-year plan although it contained many Republican priorities on tax cuts and policy changes that he opposed. The legislative and executive branches agree the state should have $6 billion more revenue than anticipated thanks to a strong economy.
FATAL STORE SHOOTING
Man shot, killed while entering North Carolina store
HIGH POINT, N.C. (AP) – Police say a man was shot and killed as he entered a store in North Carolina and a suspect has been charged. The High Point Enterprise says High Point police officers responded to the shooting at a Walmart at around 2:10 p.m. on Tuesday and found a man with several gunshot wounds. The man was taken to a local hospital where he died. Capt. D.E. Griffiths said the man was going into the store through a main entrance when he was shot. Around 6 p.m., police said in a news release that 20-year-old Zyicoren A. Little was arrested and charged with first-degree murder.
BEACH HOUSE COLLAPSES-WARNING
2 North Carolina beach houses collapse into Atlantic surf
RODANTHE, N.C. (AP) – The National Park Service says two unoccupied beach houses have fallen into the waves along North Carolina’s coast. The unoccupied homes were located along Ocean Drive in the Outer Banks community of Rodanthe. The park service confirmed the collapses Tuesday and has closed off the areas around the fallen structures. Debris from the first fallen house has spreading widely. Officials from the Cape Hatteras National Seashore say they’ll be working closely with the homeowner to coordinate cleanup activities. This is the third time a Rodanthe home has fallen into the surf this year.
SUPREME COURT-CIVIL RIGHTS LEADER
Rev. Barber: Conviction after NC protest ‘badge of honor’
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – A civil rights leader says he won’t stop raising his voice for the poor, uninsured and downtrodden, although his trespassing conviction for a demonstration at North Carolina’s Legislative Building has been allowed to stand. The Rev. William Barber II of Goldsboro spoke on Tuesday outside the building where he was arrested in 2017. The state Supreme Court refused last week to hear Barber’s appeal after the Court of Appeals in December upheld his misdemeanor conviction for second-degree trespassing following a jury trial. He says he wears the conviction “as a badge of honor” and that people have the right to bring grievances to lawmakers.
Crews battle 500-acre wildfire in North Carolina preserve
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – State officials say firefighters are trying to contain a wildfire that covered more than 500 acres in southeastern North Carolina on Tuesday and forced the shutdown of a highway. A news release from the N.C. Department of Agriculture of Consumer Services said the Driving Creek Fire is 20% contained as personnel from the N.C. Forest Service and the Nature Conservancy respond. Out of concerns for safety, officials have closed N.C. Highway 211 from the N.C. 214 intersection in Bolton to the U.S. Highway 17 intersection in Supply until further notice, the news release said. Residents and travelers have been advised to find alternate routes.
MALL SHOOTING-NORTH CAROLINA
Police: 1 wounded in shooting inside North Carolina mall
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (AP) – Police say one person was shot and wounded at a North Carolina mall Tuesday, prompting an evacuation. News outlets reported Winston-Salem police were dispatched to Hanes Mall after receiving a report of shots fired inside. Officers said the shooting victim suffered injuries that were not life-threatening. There was no word on whether a suspect had been taken into custody, and a police spokeswoman didn’t immediately respond to an email seeking comment. The mall was the site of another altercation in July 2020, when police say two groups of men got into an argument before one man fired toward the other group. Investigators said people from the other group returned fire before both groups fled the scene. No injuries were reported.
SCHOOL BUS-GUN SHOTS
Driver steers school bus into ditch to avoid gunshots
DURHAM, N.C. (AP) – Police say a North Carolina school bus driver steered his vehicle into a ditch to avoid gunfire and no one on the bus was hurt. Durham police say witnesses told officers that gunfire was exchanged between two vehicles on East Club Boulevard on Monday afternoon and the bus driver took evasive action to avoid the shooting. Police found numerous shell casings at the scene, but didn’t find any shooting victims. Police say the school bus, which was not damaged, was not the intended target of the gunfire. News outlets report that Durham schools spokesman Chip Sudderth says the school bus was carrying 18 students from City of Medicine Academy and Durham School of the Arts.
AMAZON DRIVER-FATAL WRECK
Amazon driver gets 10 years for fatal crash while on meth
YORK, S.C. (AP) – Prosecutors say a North Carolina man delivering packages as a contractor for Amazon has been sentenced to 10 years in prison after pleading guilty to causing a fatal crash in South Carolina while high on methamphetamine. The Herald newspaper in Rock Hill reports 30-year-old Semahj Rittenburg of Charlotte pleaded guilty Monday to felony driving under the influence causing death. State troopers say Rittenburg was delivering packages for Amazon after dark in November 2020 when the van he was driving crossed state Highway 49 near Lake Wylie and slammed head on into a Volkswagen. The other driver was killed. Prosecutors say Rittenburg’s blood tested positive for methamphetamine.