AP Newswatch

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February 28, 2018
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February 28, 2018
AP Newswatch


Latest North Carolina news, sports, business and entertainment at 6:20 a.m. EST
Billy Graham will lie in honor Wednesday at US Capitol
WASHINGTON (AP) – The Rev. Billy Graham will lie in honor at the U.S. Capitol in one of the nation’s highest distinctions.
Graham’s body will arrive at the Capitol on Wednesday morning, and his family will attend a private ceremony with members of Congress. The public will be invited into the Capitol Rotunda from 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. He will lie in honor in the Rotunda for one day.
Graham, known as “America’s Pastor,” will be the first private citizen to receive the honor since civil rights hero Rosa Parks in 2005.
The Rotunda is where the country pays tribute to its most important and influential citizens, including a dozen former presidents.
Graham died last week at age 99 in his North Carolina home. His funeral will be held Friday in Charlotte.



North Carolina legislative, Congress candidate filing ending
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – Candidate filing for this year’s congressional and legislative elections has attracted lots of newcomers to North Carolina politics, as well as former lawmakers seeking to return to the halls of power.
The 16-day filing period ends at midday Wednesday at the state elections board in Raleigh and in all 100 counties.
Those who don’t have party primaries May 8 will get a head start on the November general election. Unopposed candidates aren’t guaranteed a fall victory yet, since independents could collect enough signatures to get on the ballot.
High-profile incumbents like U.S. Reps. Robert Pittenger and Walter Jones Jr. already are seeing their primary races heating up.
Former state House Majority Leader Toby Fitch and ex-Sen. Bob Rucho also are running for the legislature again after time away.



Elections board wants more money, new laws to help security
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – North Carolina election administrators are asking state lawmakers for additional money and changes in the law to improve the security of registration and balloting from external and internal threats.
State elections board Executive Director Kim Strach wrote Tuesday to General Assembly elections oversight committee leaders.
Strach’s requests follow warnings by federal officials nationwide about Russian hackers during the 2016 elections. Two local election workers also pleaded guilty last year following separate investigations.
Strach wants to hire a chief information security officer, modernize the statewide registration and elections computer system and help counties upgrade voting equipment.
Proposed law changes are designed to tighten equipment security and make it illegal for non-election officials to copy voter registration forms, which contains personal information. Election workers also would be subject to criminal background checks.



The Latest: Bill Clinton says he is grateful for Graham
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) – Former President Bill Clinton says he came to pay his respects to the late Rev. Billy Graham more like a regular mourner than a man who once led the free world.
Clinton was escorted Tuesday by Graham’s son Franklin to view the casket in the parlor of Graham’s boyhood home.
The two spoke for about 15 minutes before appearing to share a prayer over the closed casket.
Clinton says Graham changed his life when he saw his crusade in Arkansas at a football stadium when he was 11. He says Graham was the same man on that football field as he was during one-on-one visits in the White House.
Former President George W. Bush paid his respects at Graham’s casket Monday.



Arrest made in North Carolina shooting captured on Facebook
WINGATE, N.C. (AP) – North Carolina authorities have charged a man with a shooting death that was captured live on Facebook.
According to jail records, 65-year-old Douglas Cleveland Colson was arrested Tuesday on a charge of first-degree murder.
Union County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Tony Underwood confirmed Colson was charged with the death of Prentis Robinson, but referred other questions to the Wingate Police Department.
According to video posted by The Charlotte Observer, Robinson was walking down a street and broadcasting himself live on Facebook with a selfie stick Monday when the shooting happened. At one point, he was heard saying “You on live,” apparently telling another person the conversation was being recorded. The person is seen with a long black object and then shots ring out.



Police officer charged with 28 sex charges in North Carolina
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) – Authorities say an officer who flies helicopters for police in North Carolina’s largest city has been charged with 28 counts of sex crimes.
Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Deputy Chief Katrina Graue said the victim told investigators that 54-year-old Matthew Porter sexually assaulted her for three years from 2010 to 2013, starting when she was a preteen.
Graue said at a news conference that the victim was a family friend and the assaults did not happen on duty.
Porter is charged with eight counts of first-degree sex offense and 20 counts of indecent liberties. Graue did not say If Porter had a lawyer and a message left at a phone listing for him was not returned.
Graue said Porter was hired by Charlotte police in 1995 and started flying helicopters two years later.



North Carolina governor’s Cabinet gets double-digit raises
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper’s Cabinet members have received additional raises since getting appointed last year above and beyond the $1,000 increases lawmakers approved for state employees last summer.
The state personnel office provided salary data Tuesday showing nine of the 10 Cabinet members getting 10 percent increases on Jan. 1. Transportation Secretary Jim Trogdon got an 11 percent raise, bringing his salary to almost $218,000 – the Cabinet’s highest.
In addition, Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mandy Cohen saw her salary rise 22 percent last July 1. She’s now paid $192,500.
State law sets Cooper’s $144,399 salary, but he decides on Cabinet pay. Cooper spokeswoman Noelle Talley says the raises are about retaining and encouraging department leadership who take on tremendous responsibilities.
Charlotte’s WBTV first reported the increases.

AP-WF-02-28-18 1120GMT