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News & Sports For July 7th

Breaking News:Missing Girl Found In Charlotte
As 3WC reported earlier this week, police have been searching for a missing Ashe County teen after she disappeared over the weekend in Wilkesboro. She was found last night at the home of a man in Matthews North Carolina, uninjured and there of her own accord. Police were able to locate 17-yr-old Amanda Mallette due in part to a caller who saw the missing posters as he came into Wilkes County and informed officials where the girl was and who she was with. Charlotte police were contacted and they met Amanda, determining that she had been staying with the man willingly. Amanda’s father was called and told of his daughter’s whereabouts and drove down to Charlotte to pick her up.


Man Assaulted And Robbed At His Home
Sheriff’s deputies were called out to a North Wilkesboro man’s home on Tuesday, after he was assaulted and left for dead. The man’s son called deputies after walking in to find his father lying on the bed with multiple injuries. The house had also been ransacked and an estimated $2700 worth of material taken, along with the man’s Plymouth Voyager. Authorities were able to track down the thief in Winston Salem, after he used the man’s credit cards. 23-yr-old Justin Haynes was arrested and charged in the assault with a deadly weapon, armed robbery and felony larceny. In addition, officials are still searching for others who were also involved. The 83-yr-old victim was taken to the hospital and later transferred to Forsyth Medical Center, where he’s currently recovering. Sheriff’s deputies are asking that anyone with information regarding the case please contact them at 667-8900.

Marijuana Traced And Burned In Ronda
Sheriff’s deputies were tipped off on Monday about some marijuana being grown on Clingman Road in Ronda. After investigating they found 42 plants along the field, across from a nearby park. All the plants were pulled up and destroyed, ranging in size from two to seven inches high. It’s unknown at this time who planted the marijuana but the investigation is ongoing.

Wreck Totals Two And Driver Later Arrested
Two cars were totaled after a wreck on 421 Monday night. A Wilkesboro man was driving down the highway when another vehicle attempted to cut in front, pulling out of the local Shell Station. The two cars slammed into each other, with estimated damages placed at $8000. The second driver then jumped out of his car and took off running down the highway, only to be caught by Wilkesboro police later on that night. Carlos Rodriguez-Torres was arrested and charged with DWI and hit & run.

Wilkes Board Of Elections Meets
The Wilkes County Board of Elections held a meeting Wednesday morning to renew their municipal agreement with all the towns in the area. Representatives from each town in Wilkes signs an agreement, allowing the board to help them run elections throughout the year and those documents were renewed during the meeting on Wednesday. In addition, more candidates have put their names in for the election as Manuel Wood submitted to be a candidate for town commissioner of Ronda. So far only five total candidates have put their names in the hat for positions in the county, but as we get closer to the deadline you can expect that to change. The deadline for filing in this year’s election is August 5th at 12 noon. You can also go online to check out who has already entered the races at Just scroll down the left side of the page and click on the elections icon.

Games Stolen While Owner Fishes
A Roaring River man called sheriff’s deputies on Tuesday after returning from a fishing trip to find that someone had broke into his trailer. A window had been busted out and the thieves climbed through, stealing the man’s Playstation II game system. However no other damage was done to the property and nothing else was stolen from the home. There are no suspects but deputies are continuing the investigation.

Orientation Date Set For West Freshmen
Even though we’re not even halfway through with the month of July, it’s time for some kids to start thinking about the upcoming school year. West Wilkes High School has announced the date for this year’s freshman orientation. That will take place Thursday, August 11th starting at 6pm. The event will last for an hour and will be held in the gym. Parents of the incoming students are also requested to attend. To get more information about the orientation, you can call the school at 973-4503.

Focus On Charity
For every normal ordinary charity out to help people, there are usually three or four just looking to make a quick buck. But how can you tell the difference? There are several ways that fake charities can hook you in a scam, and we'll be discussing them today during Focus on the Foothills. David Dalrymple with the Better Business Bureau will be Brian's guest during the program today. They'll be discussing what makes a charity legit and how you can donate money with confidence, knowing that it won’t be lining someone’s pockets. That’s coming up later today after the midday stock report at 1:05pm.

Came In For A Look Around
Sheriff’s deputies were called out to a residence on the Damascus Church Road earlier this week after reports came in of a break-in. The home’s back door frame had been broken and someone had been through the house, but didn’t take anything. Nothing was stolen and also nothing else was damaged in the residence. Deputies are continuing the investigation.

Stuff The Bus Continuing
The annual Stuff the Bus program is continuing around Wilkes County. Several locations have been set up around the area to take donations. Each year, Communities in Schools attempts to help needy kids around Wilkes, by providing them with the supplies they lack for class. If you want to donate supplies, there are buses at several locations including Wal-Mart, CVS, Eckerd, Staples and also between the First Baptist and First United Methodist Churches in North Wilkesboro. You can also drop off items at Dollar General, Super 10 and the Communities in Schools office. All different types of school supplies are needed, everything from paper to pens to calculators. For more information you can call Amie Blevins at Communities in Schools. Her number is 651-7830 extension #23. And once again that program kicks off in two days on July 1st.

Ran Off With The Generator
A North Wilkesboro couple returned home earlier this week to find that someone had broke into a building on their property. Two rocking chairs had been broken and a generator was missing from the storage area. In addition, the thieves had written obscene phrases on the couples’ trash cans. Just over a hundred dollars worth of damage was done to the property and the investigation is ongoing.

State News

Bank Of America To Close Several Carolina Branches
Bad news today for some Bank of America employees, as the company announced plans to shut down 12 branches in North Carolina. Most of the banks affected are in Charlotte, including both stand alone and offices inside other stores. The move was part of a larger shut down of 100 locations across the nation, which company officials say is necessary as they examine their branch network. Mainly any employees affected will possibly just be relocated, as the company is also planning to build 100 new branches across the U.S. later this year. Any customers that would be affected by the move will be receiving a letter in the mail.

Illegal Workers Arrested At Air Force Base
A raid at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base uncovered several dozen illegal immigrants working at the site. On Wednesday, 49 people were arrested at the base in Goldsboro, all charged with violating the nation’s immigration policy. Federal agents said that the group was able to slip through immigration by using counterfeit documents. The group members had access to several sensitive areas at the base. As part of a construction crew, they worked on local homes, the infrastructure of the base itself and possibly some of the security systems. All are currently in an INS office in Cary, awaiting a federal court date.

Raw Sewage Spills In Wilmington
Officials in the Wilmington area have learned that a sewage problem is larger than they expected. Over the July 4th holiday, gallons of raw sewage spilled out into Hewletts Creek after a sewer line ruptured. All fishing & swimming has been banned in an area stretching from Wrightsville Beach to the Intracoastal Waterway near Peden Point and now comes news that cleanup might take longer than expected. Originally officials estimated the spill at one million gallons, but that number has since more than doubled. After examining records and taking samples, it’s now been placed at three million gallons, with officials concerned that the bacteria has merged with the sediment of the local waterways. What that means for locals is that all waterways are off limits until further tests can be done.

Harris Teeter To Buy Some Winn Dixie Stores
Good news today for some Winn Dixie employees, as Harris Teeter announced plans this week to buy nine of the company’s stores in North Carolina. In exchange for $16.75 million, Harris Teeter takes over each store’s lease and bought out the inventory. Overall 326 stores over a four state area are being closed by Winn Dixie if buyers can’t be found, causing a job loss for 22,000 people. In related news, the North Wilkesboro store has yet to receive an official bid, according to company officials.

US Air To Cut Out Pretzels

Still trying to find more ways of saving money, US Airways announced this week that they’ll be cutting back on some of their in flight services. As of September, the airline will no longer give out bags of pretzels to customers during the flight, a plan that will put an extra one million a year into the company’s pocket. Instead hungry passengers can buy a three ounce bag of trail mix for one dollar on domestic flights, while sandwiches are sold now on all flights over 2 ½ hours for at least $5 each. US Airways did say however that free juice and soda will still be served. Company officials said the change was made so that they could compete with lower-priced airlines.

Sports Headlines

Duke Recruiting Class Ranked Number One
It looks like this might be the year of the Blue Devils, if preseason predictions turn out to be right. Scouts from across the nation have come out and said that this year’s recruiting class for Duke is the strongest in the nation, with several players that some analysts believe could have gone in the NBA draft. Power forward Josh McRoberts was rated as the number one player in the nation, with point guard Greg Paulus right behind at number eighteen. Practice begins for the upcoming season on October 15th.

Blue Devil Possibly Pulling Double Duty
A member of the Duke basketball team will be pulling double duty this fall if some staff members have their way. Point guard Greg Paulus was also New York state’s all time passing leader in football when he finished high school this past year, wrapping up his senior season with 11,763 yards to go along with 152 touchdowns. The 6’1 Paulus is hoping to focus on basketball and fight for a starting job, but several members of Duke’s football team are trying to get him to pull double duty. As for Paulus himself, he says he’s just at the university to play basketball.

Tarheels To Face Davidson In Hoops
While a complete schedule hasn’t been announced yet, the UNC Tarheels at least know one of their opponents for next season. Davidson head coach Bob McKillop announced this week that the two schools had agreed to face each other in Chapel Hill on January 3rd 2006. The Heels aren’t the only big name school on the Davidson schedule however, as they have away games set up against Duke on Nov. 19th, Saint Joseph’s on Nov. 26th and UNC Charlotte on Nov. 30th.

Minor League Scoreboard
Around the minor league last night, it was Hickory beating Columbus 6-3. Crawdads first baseman Mike Carlin went four for four at the plate, hitting his tenth home run in the process while starter Julio Guerrero got his seventh win of the season. Guerrero went six innings, giving up three runs on eight hits. Up the road in Winston, the Warthogs took over first place in their division after a 6-5 win over Potomac. Winston took the lead for good in the eighth inning, driving in three runs while holding off a Potomac attack. Winston reliever Juan Ovalles got his third win of the season, striking out three in two innings of work.


Around the Nextel Cup circuit, Carl Edwards bounced back and recorded the quickest time of any driver in the first day of testing for next month’s Brickyard 400. Edwards had a speed of 179.165 around the track, beating Jimmy Spencer, Ricky Rudd and Edwards own teammate, Kurt Busch, who finished second.


News & Sports For July 6th

News & Sports For Wednesday July 6th 2005

Teen Missing In Wilkesboro Area
The search is continuing today for an Ashe County teen who was last seen in the Wilkesboro area. 17-yr-old Amanda Mallette was supposedly dropped off at McDonalds by a family friend and was last seen near Wal-Mart in Wilkesboro. That was on Saturday and one day later, the girl’s father filed a missing person’s report. It’s believed that the girl used a pay phone at Wal-Mart to call someone, although authorities are unclear as to what happened after that. The girl’s mother, who is divorced from the father, said she received a call late Saturday night from someone whose name she can’t remember, saying that the girl was headed to the beach and wouldn’t be back for two months. 17-yr-old Amanda was last seen wearing a white tank top and blue jeans. If you have any information regarding the case, please contact Wilkesboro police at 667-7277.

Be Careful Who Has Your Information
A Wilkesboro woman called sheriff’s deputies to her apartment over the holiday, after learning why it’s not such a good idea to hand out keys to just anyone. The woman had just gotten back from a trip to visit her mother and had given out apartment keys to both her boyfriend and her neighbor. Days after she left however, the woman got a phone call saying a party was going on in her apartment and it sounded like things were getting crazy. When the woman returned, she found over $900 worth of items stolen from the place. Also it looked like someone had been living in the apartment. There are suspects in the case and the investigation is ongoing.

News From The Commissioners Meeting
Wilkes County Commissioners held their monthly meeting last night and 3WC’s own Ken Byrd opened up the proceedings, first with the invocation and then with his rendition of “The Ragged Old Flag”. Afterwards, several items were presented to the commissioners. The Animal Control Ordinance, which had been considered but put aside during the last meeting, passed with a unanimous vote. Under the new plan, complaints of animal cruelty can simply be called in & spoken instead of being put down in writing. Also, all dogs in the county would be required to have ID, some type of rabies tag, owner identification or microchip certifying who they belong to. Finally all dogs that have been labeled as dangerous in the past must be registered with the county’s Animal Control office and tracked, along with all trained guard dogs to prevent any incidents should the dog get loose. Concerns were once again raised about the preparations for this to take effect, as Wilkes doesn’t yet have any procedures in place. But animal control agreed to work on getting things set up in time for the September deadline when this would take effect. Jody Brady gave the annual forestry service report and listed the three main concerns he planned to target in the next year. Working on maintaining water quality, also replanting trees after lumber companies have been through and dealing with the growing urban population were the three main issues cited.

Always Keep Your Doors Locked
A Wilkesboro man found out why it’s a good idea to keep your car doors locked over the weekend. A small handgun had been stored in the man’s truck, but he hadn’t kept the doors locked, leaving it open for anyone to steal. And that’s apparently what happened as he returned this past weekend to find it missing. Nothing else was taken from inside the truck and no damage was done to the vehicle itself. Wilkesboro police are investigating the case.

Ebenezer To Hold Benefit Tournament
The Ebenezer Christian Childrens Home is gearing up for their annual benefit golf tournament. This year the tournament will be at Oakwoods Country Club on Saturday August 13th. There will be morning and afternoon flights. The format for the tournament is 4-man's captains choice and there will be over $50,000 in prizes up for grabs. Entry fee is $75 per person and if you pay by August 1st you will automatically be eligible for a 3 day- two night vacation. To sign up or for a brochure you may call the Home at 667-5683, that's 667-LOVE.

Gas Thieves Hit Another Wilkes Business
With the temperature rising and gas prices following suit, it’s no surprise that some people are trying to get away with not paying at the pump. The Fast Track on Hwy 421 West in Wilkesboro was the latest business to fall victim to the practice, as a man pulled up in a Jeep Cherokee and started filling up. After he was done, the man got into his vehicle and took off down the road. Employees inside the building were able to get a description of both the man and his car, along with the vehicle’s license plate number. Deputies are continuing the investigation.

Vandals Break Into Former School
Wilkesboro police were called out to the former Woodward Middle School on Monday, after a burglar alarm on the building was triggered. A window on the property’s north side had been shattered and a nearby door was propped open with a rock. When deputies investigated, they found several teenagers around the building, who swore they didn’t go inside or have anything to do with the vandalism. Deputies also found a BB gun hidden in the grass near the school. Total damage done was estimated at $200. Names of the boys were taken and the investigation continues.

Wilkes To Honor Veterans This Saturday
This coming Saturday people in Wilkes will gather together in honor of some of the county’s veterans. The Veteran’s Brick Walk will be unveiled in a special ceremony this coming Saturday July 9th at the Wilkes Heritage Museum. For anyone who bought a brick before the May 30th deadline, that veteran will be honored during the ceremony. There will also be a car show during the event, tours of the Old Wilkes Jail and Robert Cleveland Log Home and a special concert put on by the NC Army National Guard Band. Once again that will take place Saturday July 9th at the Old Wilkes Courthouse. The car show starts at 2pm and the ceremony itself begins at 5:30 that night.

Focus On Charitable Donations
It seems like not a day goes by that we don’t hear from some new charity, asking for a donation. But how can you tell the good charities from the scams? And also how do all these charities get your information to call or send you something in the mail? David Dalrymple with the Better Business Buraey will be Brian's guest during Focus on the Foothills, as they’ll be talking about some of the ‘warning signs’ you can look for and how you can tell a fake charity from one who’s actually trying to help the community. That’s tomorrow at 1:05pm right after the midday stock report.

Guns Stolen From Millers Creek Home
A Millers Creek man called sheriff’s deputies earlier this week after returning home to find the doors to his house standing wide open. Also someone had opened the windows in the residence, before walking out with two of the man’s guns. Both guns, a 16 gauge single shot and a .22 caliber rifle had been stored inside. Despite the theft, there was no sign of a break-in and also nothing else taken from the home. Deputies are continuing the investigation.

State News

4th Of July Leads To Charlotte Riot
Two days later police in Charlotte are still trying to sort out what happened during a celebration Monday night in the city. Officers were called in from across the county as chaos and a near riot broke out among some 2000 who were gathered to watch the fireworks. The incident happened after the show ended, as the people made their way out of the intersection between Trade and Tryon Street. Someone then tossed fireworks into the crowd, causing a panic that saw traffic blocked and dumpsters tossed into the street. These same unidentified people also tossed firecrackers at police as the chaos continued. No one was injured as almost 20 people were arrested in the wake of the panic. It took officials until 1am to get things back under control.

Flooding In Caldwell Leads To Repair Work
The holiday didn’t turn out so well for people in Caldwell County, as work crews are still cleaning up from this weekend’s storms. Roads along Highway 90 were flooded on Sunday night and the DOT still cleaning up in the storm’s wake. At one campground in the area, people got a surprise as a wall of water tore through the area, coming down off the mountain. Fifty campers had to be evacuated from the area and some were left behind, stranded on a bridge. Thankfully however the water subsided and no one was hurt. Still trees, limbs and water damage from the storm present DOT workers with a pretty heavy workload for the rest of the week.

Kernersville Park Gets Attention
As we celebrate America’s independence this week, one park in Kernersville is gathering national attention, but not due to any events being held there. Fourth of July Park is becoming noticed due to its’ unique name, given out almost 20 years ago when city officials took the area used for firework celebrations and turned it into a park. Now the park has also been renovated after the local Parks and Recreation Department spent a million dollars on repairs, making the area open to the public seven days a week.

Highway Patrol Cracks Down
Over 3700 citations were issued by Highway Patrol officers over the holiday weekend, according to officials on Tuesday. 700 tickets were issued for exceeding speeds of 75 mph in the five counties officers had designated as the deadliest last week. That included Johnston County, Robeson, Wake, Iredell and Cumberland. Overall speeding was the number one violation over the holiday but officers also handed out 735 equipment violations including 466 for not wearing a seatbelt.

Arsonist Burns Boy Scout Home
An Alamance County building that has served as a home for boy scouts over the past few decades is in ruins today after someone tried to burn it to the ground. During the holiday, someone set fire to a group of canoes outside the Alamance County troop’s building and the fire quickly spread to the structure itself. As the town had recently withdrawn fire insurance on the building, it’s up to the members to raise more than $30,000 to rebuild it. Law enforcement in the area are still investigating the case but so far there haven’t been any arrests. The troop is however accepting donations and you can send something to Boy Scout Troop 65, Kennette Drive, Graham North Carolina 27253.

Sports Headlines

Fastpitch Baseball Camp Coming Up
For any kids 13 and under who want to develop their baseball skills, a camp will be going on starting July 9th at the West Wilkes Middle School. There are only a few slots left for the camp, as you have to pre-register. Camp instructors will teach players how to work on their defensive skills, like how to field balls, hit their cut off man and turn a double play, while also working on their hitting technique and baserunning. Registration is $15 and to sign up, you can call Coach Summer Vogel at 927-3870 or send an email to

Minor League Scoreboard
Around the minor leagues, it was Hickory falling to Columbus 12-6. Crawdad reliever Dustin Craig got the loss, giving up five earned runs in less than an inning of work. It was a different story up the road in Winston however, as the Warthogs beat Kinston 8-7, wrapping up a three game sweep of the Indians. Rafael Flores got his third win of the season, giving up one run in two innings of relief. Ehren Wassermann locked up his 18th save of the year.

American Legion Action
And news today from around the American Legion fields, as one team was disqualified from competition. Hours before their game with Shelby was supposed to start, the Huntersville team was disqualified after only eight players showed up for the game. Lacking enough players, the team saw their post season come to an end without even playing one game. Burke County took Huntersville’s place, just a few days after being eliminated by Hickory in a play-in game.

Chris Paul Signs Contract
In the NBA, rookie Chris Paul officially joined the league yesterday, signing a contract with the New Orleans Hornets. Paul’s deal was for three years, with options for two more on the table. While terms were not discussed, it’s believed he’ll be making $10 million in the first three years, a number that could double if the options are picked up. Paul will now head to Las Vegas, where he’ll be starting for the Hornets’ summer league squad, playing five games over the next week.

Carl Edwards will have a decision to make at the end of this year, if he wants to run in both the Busch and Nextel Cup series next season. This year pulling double duty has had some mixed results for Edwards, who currently sits in fourth place in the Busch standings. But after a string of wins and top five finishes in the Nextel Cup, he’s slipped to 12th place having come up short the past two weeks. Edwards finished 38th at Sonoma and then 33rd at Daytona last week. Also with possible rule changes coming that would penalize drivers for running both circuits, a decision on Edwards’ future will have to be made before the season starts up in February.


News & Sports For July 5th

Teen Missing In Wilkesboro Area
The search is continuing today for an Ashe County teen who was last seen in the Wilkesboro area. 17-yr-old Amanda Mallette was supposedly dropped off at McDonalds by a family friend and was last seen near Wal-Mart in Wilkesboro. That was on Saturday and one day later, the girl’s father filed a missing person’s report. It’s believed that the girl used a pay phone at Wal-Mart to call someone, although authorities are unclear as to what happened after that. The girl’s mother, who is divorced from the father, said she received a call late Saturday night from someone whose name she can’t remember, saying that the girl was headed to the beach and wouldn’t be back for two months. 17-yr-old Amanda was last seen wearing a white tank top and blue jeans. If you have any information regarding the case, please contact Wilkesboro police at 667-7277.

Jobless Rate Stayed Constant In May
The latest employment figures were released over the weekend and Wilkes stayed constant during the month of May. The county’s jobless rate of 5.6% remained the same, according to the state employment security commission. That’s still fairly ahead of the statewide average, which has fallen to 5.1%.

Stolen Check Turns Up In Wilkesboro
Wilkesboro police are investigating how a stolen check managed to turn up in the area over the weekend. A check was turned in to officers from the Run-In on Oakwoods Road, after it turned out to have been stolen back in June. The check had been taken from a car in Hickory, but made it’s way into Wilkes, where it was used over the weekend. There is a suspect in the case, as a Granite Falls teenager signed her name to the check, despite it not being her account. The investigation is ongoing.

Be Careful Where You Leave Your Car
Be careful where you leave your car. A Wilkesboro man learned why that’s important over the weekend after returning to find it had been decorated in his absence. The man had parked his car in front of his apartment before leaving for a concert with friends. When he got back, he found that some type of substance had been poured all over it, smeared on the top and middle of the car’s hood. There are no suspects but the investigation is ongoing.

Blood Supply Drained With Drive Tomorrow
Heading into the first week of July, Wilkes County is facing a blood shortage, with almost all types in less than a day’s supply. Especially needed are Type O and Type B, which are in critical condition. Over the next two weeks there will be several blood drives going on around the county. To set up an appointment for one or to volunteer, you can call the Red Cross at 838-4563.

Items Stolen From Britthaven Nursing Home
Sheriff’s deputies were called out to Britthaven Nursing Home over the weekend after an air conditioner was stolen from one of the residents. There are no suspects and no signs of a break-in, but one of the air conditioners was just missing from the window. Deputies are continuing the investigation.

Money Stolen From Traphill Home
A Traphill woman called sheriff’s deputies over the weekend after discovering that someone had stolen some money from her home. There were no signs of a break-in and nothing else taken from the residence, except for $15 worth of quarters taken from the woman’s bedroom. There is however a suspect in the case and deputies are continuing the investigation.

Workshop Coming Up Next Week On Alzheimer’s
When you hear the word Alzheimers, what do you think of? How can you tell if someone is suffering from the disease? What are the signs to look for? Next week Villages of Wilkes is helping to sponsor a workshop on the disease, where family members can learn all the information they need to help prepare. That workshop will take place at 7pm on July 14th, at the Peace Haven Baptist Church Family Life Center. For more information you can call Donna Shumate at Villages of Wilkes. Her number is 667-2020.

Local Woman Falls Victim To Fraud
A Wilkesboro woman called police over the weekend after falling victim to credit card fraud. She discovered the problem after her card was rejected for being over the limit. Having not used it in a while, the woman accessed her account and found that just over $400 had been spent on it in the past week. There is a suspect in the case and officers are continuing the investigation.

Tag Stolen From Purlear Woman’s Car
A Purlear woman noticed something strange when she returned home from a trip to the store over the weekend. Her license plate was missing, The woman had just bought the vehicle and a temporary tag had been placed on the car, which had been in place when she left for town earlier in the day. Returning home, she saw that the tag had been ripped off while she was in the store. There are no suspects but the investigation is ongoing.

State News

Home Of Deputies Shot At
Officials in Catawba County are investigating today after the homes of two sheriff’s deputies were shot at. The incidents happened over the weekend, while the deputies were away. Deputy Brian Kelly came out Sunday morning to find the holes, most likely caused by a shotgun, all over his property. Neighbors later told officials that they thought the sounds were simply fireworks being shot off. Two windows were shattered at the man’s house and holes covered the siding along the front side of the home. Just up the road in Conover, shots were fired at another deputy’s home, as well as his patrol car. Bullets tore into the man’s front porch and three hit the patrol car. The SBI has taken over the case and officials say there are suspects.

Alligator Attacks Swimmer In Wilmington
It’s always a good idea to read the signs before going swimming. A man in Wilmington learned that lesson the hard way this weekend, after being attacked by a 10-ft alligator. The 40-yr-old had decided to go swimming in Greenfield Lake, despite signs posted in the area that say not to get in the water due to alligators inside. He ignored repeated cries from people nearby and within minutes one of the local alligators clamped down on his right arm. After the gator let go, locals managed to drag the man to shore, after which he was taken to a local hospital for treatment.

Jobs Leaving Guilford County
The 4th of July didn’t bring good news for people in Guilford County, as 70 people were informed over the weekend that they’ll be losing their jobs this year. DaimlerChrysler Commericial Buses announced plans to close down production of the SLF model and with the change also comes some layoffs. Employees at the company’s Guilford County plant were told that 70 of them would be let go over the next few months, with the cuts mainly coming in manufacturing and administration. All affected employees will be informed of the move later this week.

Former Green Beret Sued By NC Man
A U.S. soldier currently in an Afghan prison now finds himself facing a lawsuit from a North Carolina man. Green Beret Jonathan Idema is serving a five year term in Afghanistan after being found guilty of abusing prisoners at a makeshift prison. Now he’s being sued by a NC man who claims the soldier owes him part of a $650,000 settlement. Idema had received the money after winning a lawsuit against his property managers, who had sold equipment from a business he owned while Idema was in a U.S. jail back in the 1990s. Bill Hagler said he helped Idema win the suit, but never received payment.

Weekend Rains Cause Evacuations
Rains that poured over North Carolina this weekend caused the evacuation of an assisted living center in Kannapolis. Sunday night 60 residents and employees from the Kannapolis Village Assisted Living Center were moved out, after high water threatened to flood the area. Later on that night, the Cabarrus County Water Rescue Team was called out to retrieve people from a nearby mobile home park, who had been trapped by the high water. All total the Rescue Team managed to retrieve 73 people from the area

Man Burns House And Tries To Shoot Firefighters
Firefighters in Rowan County found themselves under attack this weekend after responding to a call in the Gold Hill community. A 57-yr-old man had set his house on fire and started shooting at firemen as they tried to put it out. Jimmy Handley held off officials for almost two hours, holding a gun and watching as the house burned down. He refused to talk to officials or allow the fire to be put out. Instead after the house had burned down, he took the gun and shot himself. No one else was hurt in the incident. Handley has been identified as a war veteran and it’s believed he was suffering from some type of post traumatic stress disorder.

Sports Headlines

High School Guard Commits To Deacons
Wake Forest landed another recruit for the 2006 basketball season, as a point guard from Central Cabarrus signed on with the Deacons. Ishmael Smith, a 5-11 guard that some say could be better than Chris Paul, turned down offers from South Carolina and Clemson to commit to Wake. During his junior season, Ishmael averaged 25 points and 10 assists for Central Cabarrus and will look to add his skills to the Deacons’ up tempo attack.

Wake Suspends Two Football Players
While the news is good on the basketball court, Wake Forest also announced this weekend that two starters from their football team have been suspended for the first game of the season. Running back Chris Barclay and cornerback Riley Swanson were suspended from all team activities after violating athletics department policy, although it wasn’t explained what exactly they did. Both players will now miss the first game against Vanderbuilt, along with the first week of practice. Wake opens up their football season on September 1st.

Possible Front Runner For Olympic Coaching Job
Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski tossed his hat into the ring, to be considered as the coach for the 2008 Olympic men’s basketball team. While Coach K said he hasn’t been asked yet, he called the position a great honor and one he would love to have. US team director Jerry Colangelo said that Krzyzewski was one of 12 candidates that were being considered and a decision would be announced in the next few months.

Minor League Scoreboard
In Hickory last night, the Crawdads pulled out the 3-2 win against Columbus in front of a season high crowd of 5134. Hickory starter Kyle Pearson went 5 1/3, giving up two runs on four hits. Derek Drage got the win after shutting out Columbus over 3 and 2/3 innings of relief. Up the road in Winston, it was the Warthogs beating Kinston 9-5. Warthogs’ starter Gio Gonzalez got his first win of the year, striking out six in five innings of work.

Durham Bulls Get Callup
Up the road in Durham, two members of the minor league Bulls saw a dream come true this weekend, as they got called up to the majors. The Tampa Bay Devil Rays called up outfielder Joey Gathright and left handed pitcher Joe Beimel, looking to plug holes in their team. The team is hoping Gathright will add some pop to the lineup, as he was batting .305 for the Bulls, while Beimel will be plugged into the bullpen, after posting a 4.06 ERA in Triple A.


News & Sports For June 30th

News & Sports For Thursday June 30th 2005

Focus On Love Packages
How many Bibles are lying around your house, stacked up in a bookshelf or on a table? What about used devotionals from like several months ago, the ones you just haven’t had time to cart off to the dump? Well there is an organization that can use those old Bibles and devotionals to help spread the gospel. Love Packages, out of Illinois takes those materials and gives them out to people in other countries who don't normally have access to the gospel message. Today the organization's founder, Steve Schmitt will be Brian's guest for Focus on the Foothills. And you can hear that program later today after the midday stock report at 1:05pm.

Wilkes Residents Fall Victim To Fraud
Two more residents of Wilkes County have fallen victim to fraud over the last week. One woman called Wilkesboro police earlier this week after discovering that someone had been using her check card. Over the past month, the card has been used eight times in places that she had never been. But this wasn’t a case of theft, as the woman still had the card in her possession. Just up the road in Purlear, a woman called sheriff’s deputies after discovering that someone had charged items on her credit card 15 times in the past day. She went to get the card, only to find it missing, Apparently sometime during the last week, she misplaced the card and it got into someone else’s hands, who ran up charges until the card was maxed out. There are however suspects in the case and both investigations are continuing.

Gas Pump Damaged At Local Store
Sheriff’s deputies were called out to Fosters’ Grocery in Ronda this week, after someone damaged one of the fuel pumps at the store. An estimated $100 worth of damage was done, as witnesses said the driver pulled up, backed into the pumps and then drove away. Witnesses also said that the man was armed, as a small pistol could be seen in the vehicle as he drove off. No serious damage was done to the gas pumps and descriptions of both the man and his vehicle were turned over to deputies. That investigation is ongoing.

Deadline Today For Crop Reports
Today is the deadline for all local farmers to turn in their crop reports. Reports have to be turned in to the Wilkes Farm Service Agency, by explaining where your plot of land is and what was planted on it this season. The reasoning behind the deadline is to protect local farmers in case of a hurricane or other disaster, so that your information will already be on file in case you qualify for federal aid. One other thing to consider is that if farmers fail to turn in their reports, the agency will charge a late fee. For anyone who still needs to get that taken care of, you can call to set up an appointment at 838-3622.

Break-in With No Evidence
How do you break into a house without leaving behind any evidence? That’s what a homeowner in Moravian Falls is asking today, after returning to find over $5000 worth of materials missing. There was no sign of a break-in, no doors unlocked and virtually no way a thief could have got inside. Still, somehow a person did come in and took $4000 in cash, a watch, a laptop computer and also a ring from the home. There is a suspect in the case and deputies are continuing the investigation.

Fly-In This Saturday
A special event will be taking place this coming Saturday at the Wilkes County Airport. The 14th annual Fly-in will be held, with classic planes, cars and fire trucks on display. The event, put on by the Mountain View Ruitan Club, will go on from 9am til 3pm with plane rides and games for any kids who want to come out. In addition, the Carolina Historic Aviation Museum will have displays on hand. Once again all of that starts at 9am Saturday morning at the Wilkes Airport.

Renters Take Everything But The Walls
A Pineville man called sheriff’s deputies on Tuesday after discovering that a house he had rented out was almost completely bare of everything. The renter had recently settled his bill and left almost a week ago, but the man hadn’t had a chance until now to check the home out. The carpet had been ripped up and taken from most of the place, also the cookstove, several screens, a piano and other items as well. All total an estimated $9195 worth of merchandise was stolen from the home and just over a thousand dollars worth of damage. The name of the renter along with the place he worked was turned over to sheriff’s deputies and the investigation continues.

Man Arrested At Traffic Checkpoint
Sheriff’s deputies were performing a traffic check at the intersection of Old 16 and Vannoy Road on Tuesday when they saw a car speed up and then come to a dead stop. The driver just sat in his car, some 200 feet from the checkpoint, refusing to move. After deputies requested him to pull up he refused but instead drove the car onto the shoulder of the road and then stopped again. The vehicle had no registration plates and there was a strong smell of alcohol coming from inside. After the driver failed a sobriety test, deputies arrested 59-yr-old Albert Ray Barker and charged him with DWI and not having registration for his car.

State News

Ten Commandments Raise Questions In NC
Questions are being raised in Nash County tonight, after the Supreme Court’s ruling earlier this week. The local courthouse in Nash has a copy of the Ten Commandments on display, one that’s stood inside for almost 100 years. Now local officials are wondering if they’ll be ordered to remove it. The display has already come under fire once, as it was covered during a recent murder trial. The defendant’s lawyers had argued that it was unconstitutional to have the words “thou shall not kill” over the jury box while they were debating the man’s guilt. County officials said they had no plans to remove the Commandments unless forced to, but the county attorney is still taking a look at the Supreme Court ruling, to make sure they’re not guilty of a potential violation.

Durham Man Arrested After Signing His Name
Durham police arrested a man on Monday in a case of identity theft after he signed his own name to a credit card purchase. The man had stolen a card three months ago from another person in the Raleigh area, using it all this time to run up over 33 purchases. The man was finally discovered after he used the card to get a room at a Durham hotel, signing his own name on the receipt. As it was different from the one on the card, a red flag was put up and police were notified. 29-yr-old Henrick Kutwa is facing 33 counts of financial identity fraud.

Easley Signs New Bill Into Law
Gov. Easley signed a bill this week that gives law enforcement officers more powers in the hunt for pedophiles on the Internet. The Child Exploitation Prevention Act makes it a felony crime to solicit anyone over the internet who is identifying themselves as a child. The bill also allows the SBI to investigate the technology and methods used by pedophiles to develop patterns of behavior that could be used to track them down. Before this bill went into effect, anyone caught online could only be charged with a misdemeanor.

Police Asking For Help In Search
Police in the Charlotte area are asking for people across North Carolina to help in the search for a man missing since Monday night. The man, Cordelro Renrecko Peoples disappeared around 8:30pm on Monday and hasn’t returned. His family is concerned not just for his disappearance but also because Peoples has a kidney problem that requires medicine. Medicine still sitting at his home on Beacon Hill Lane. The man is described as being 5’1 ft. and weighing 95 lbs., with brown eyes and black hair. Anyone with information about Cordelro Peoples is asked to call 911.

Raleigh Police Fired After Investigation
Two Raleigh policemen have been fired today after an investigation that found they had violated department procedure. Two other members of the department have resigned and two have been suspended. The officers involved told internal affairs that they routinely ignored calls, doctoring computer reporting and lying to others when asked if they had responded. So far, all the calls ignored have been minor occurrences, such as reports of trees lying in the road or complaints of loud music. The officers blamed their actions on the fact they were overworked and had to pick and choose which calls to answer. The department released a statement saying they had been tipped off by other officers and took the appropriate steps.

Sports Headlines

Fastpitch Baseball Camp Coming Up
For any kids 13 and under who want to develop their baseball skills, a camp will be going on starting July 9th at the West Wilkes Middle School. There are only a few slots left for the camp, as you have to pre-register. Camp instructors will teach players how to work on their defensive skills, like how to field balls, hit their cut off man and turn a double play, while also working on their hitting technique and baserunning. Registration is $15 and to sign up, you can call Coach Summer Vogel at 927-3870 or send an email to

Last Day To Sign Up For Volleyball
The deadline is today for anyone who wants to join the local volleyball league, as a second round of tournaments start in July. It’s open for anyone to take part, from middle school students all the way up to adults in separate 3 on 3 divisions.
There is a fee to register, as it costs $30 to sign up your team to play. Once again today is the last day to sign up for July’s tournament and to do that you can either call 957-7363 or shoot an email to

American Legion Notes
Some news and notes from around the local American Legion fields. With their win over Wilkes on Tuesday, Rowan County not only advanced to the second round, but also walked away with home field advantage. And one other team moved on to the second round, as Stanly County beat Mooresville 11-0, taking the series three games to one.

ACC-Big Ten Schedule Released

And for anyone who’s counting down the days until college basketball returns, the schedule has been released for this fall’s ACC-Big Ten Challenge. The event starts Nov. 28th as Virginia Tech and Ohio State match up, then one day later five games are up on the schedule, including a rematch of this year’s NCAA championship. Illinois and North Carolina will battle it out Nov. 29th, along with Wake Forest & Wisconsin, Clemson at Penn State, Purdue at Florida State and Miami, who takes on Michigan. The challenge wraps up on Nov. 30th, with Duke going against Indiana, Northwestern taking on Virginia, Maryland against Minnesota and NC State facing off against Iowa.

NASCAR News & Notes
In Nascar, a major sponsor has signed on for the fall race in Charlotte. Starting next season, the race at Lowes Motor Speedway will be known as the Bank of America 500, a title which is going to stick around for at least the next five years. And in other NASCAR news, Brian France spoke out this week during a teleconference about the diversity we’ll be seeing within NASCAR in the next few seasons. France said that doors were being opened, especially with Indy Racing rookie Danica Patrick doing so well in her first season on the track. He hinted that there could be an influx of Hispanic, African-American and female drivers making their way onto the track in the next few years.


News & Sports For June 28th

News & Sports For Tuesday June 28th 2005

Lowes Creates New Committee To Help Wilkes
Lowes Company announced on Monday that a new committee has been created to help needs in the Wilkes County area. The Wilkes County Hometown Grants Advisory Committee will help make recommendations and determine where best to give $250,000 in grants. Those grants will go out to local charitable organizations, as part of the Lowes’ Charitable and Educational Foundation. Local community leaders will be added to the committee in coming months, which is going to be chaired by Wilkesboro store manager Chuck Elledge. After the group makes recommendations, the proposal will be turned over for a final vote by the Foundation’s Board of Directors.

Deputies Catch Burglar In The Act
Sheriff’s deputies were called out to a North Wilkesboro residence on Sunday, responding to reports of a burglary. When deputies arrived on the scene they found the suspect coming out of the basement empty handed. When he saw deputies the man took off running, only to be tracked down minutes later. After a brief fight, 38-yr-old Jeffrey Clinton Wagoner was arrested and charged with 1st degree burglary, property damage and resisting arrest.

Pepsi Machines Vandalized At Local Store
The BP store on Statesville Road was the latest place to be hit by vandals this week. Someone tried to rip apart the drink machines, apparently hoping to gain access to the money section inside. However despite causing over $100 worth of damage to the machine, the would be thieves gave up and went home. There are no suspects in the case however deputies are continuing the investigation.

Reminder: Horses Need West Nile Vaccine
As 3WC reported yesterday, we’re in the middle of mosquito season here in North Carolina. But that doesn’t just mean bad news for humans, the bugs can cause problems for our animals as well. For horse owners here in the county, if you haven’t already, it’s time to get your animal vaccinated. Eastern Equine Encephalomyelitis and the West Nile Virus are two diseases that have become a recurring problem for horse owners here in the state. Now in order to keep the horse vaccinated, owners have to give it two shots, each taken 30 days apart. These shots must be done by a local vet and won’t take effect until both have been injected. To get some more information about the diseases or where you can get a vaccine, you can contact Wilkes Animal Control at 903-7688.

Case Of ID Theft Discovered At Wal-Mart
Wilkesboro police were called out to Wal-Mart earlier this week, after a store manager uncovered a case of ID theft. Over the last few months, a man had been coming into the store and buying items, then getting cash back after writing a check. However this was news to the owner of the checks, who is some 40 years older than the man who’s been passing checks. It turns out that wasn’t the only thing fake, as the home phone number given out by the man turned out to be that of Tyson Foods. A description of the man was turned over to police and the investigation is ongoing.

Car Vandalized While Owner Shops
A Union Grove woman called sheriff’s deputies after coming back to her car to find the tires had been slashed. In addition, a man was crouched down near one of the tires and she was able to get a good look at him before he ran off. Nothing else was damaged on the vehicle and nothing was stolen from inside. Estimated damages were placed right at $175. The suspect is a former friend of the woman and his name, along with a description and address was turned over to sheriff’s deputies. The investigation is continuing.

Samaritan’s Kitchen Update
Samaritan’s Kitchen has been expanding their operations in the last few months, to the point where they now deliver meals to over 450 different families across Wilkes County. That’s just over 1600 meals that need to be prepared, loaded up and delivered each week. With that progress comes a greater need for volunteers, as the organization finds itself falling short in most categories. The man need is for drivers to transport the meals on Saturdays, however cooks, assembly line workers, greeters and other volunteers are needed as well. If you’re interested in volunteering or just want some more information, you can drop by the Kitchen anytime from 8am til 2pm during the week. They’re located just down the road on Woodland Blvd from the Wilkesboro Post Office. You can also give them a call at 838-5331.

Another Man Assaulted In His Car
For the second time in less than a week, a man was assaulted while in his car. A local man was driving down Woodland Blvd when someone jumped in front of his vehicle, yelling about a speed limit. The man ran over to the driver’s side window and grabbed at the driver’s arm, telling him he didn’t belong on that street. No one in the area could recall seeing anyone who matched the description provided. Wilkesboro police are continuing the investigation.

Make Sure Your Keys Are Put Up
Sheriff’s deputies were called out to a North Wilkesboro residence over the weekend, after the homeowner returned to find someone pulling out of his driveway. Over a thousand dollars worth of damage had been done to the car that had been parked at the home, with sugar in the gas tank, busted speakers and the face plate stolen from his radio. Keys were also stolen that allowed the thief access to the man’s home, however it didn’t appear that anything had been disturbed inside. The thief was identified by the homeowner, who provided both a name and also a description for deputies. Warrants are pending in the case.

Just Came In For A Look
A Millers Creek man came home to find that someone had paid him a visit while he was out of town. The door to the house had been kicked in and a nearby window was shattered. However nothing was taken from the residence itself and no other damage could be found. The house is a half mile from the main road, so the vandals went to a lot of trouble to damage a door. Current estimates place the damage at $2000 and deputies are continuing the investigation.

State News

Landmark Burned During Monday Fire
Monday morning, fire ignited inside one of the state’s historic landmarks, burning a good portion of it to the ground. The Hotel Astor, which has stood for over eighty years in Wilmington, sustained major damage during the blaze, which officials believe could have been intentionally caused. The fire ignited just before 5am, according to local officials and it took firefighters several hours to put it all out. Based on the evidence, both SBI and ATF investigators have been assigned to the case.

First Murder In Three Years Rocks Spencer
Officials in the town of Spencer North Carolina have to do something this week for the first time in almost three years. Investigate a murder. A 53-yr-old man was found dead in his home Sunday morning. Police also found the man’s wife and son outside, covered from head to toe with scratches, bite marks and cuts. They told officials that the man had assaulted them both before heading into the house and grabbing a weapon. Police wouldn’t explain how the man died, but whatever they found at the scene was enough to throw out the idea of suicide and instead label the death as a murder. That investigation is ongoing.

Money Figures Just Don’t Add Up
Questions are being raised today at the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics after the president’s salary was made public. Gerald Boarman, the school’s president makes $195,000 a year, that’s more than nine of the chancellors who run public universities here in North Carolina. Boarman hasn’t commented as to if he thinks it’s fair, saying that he believes all of this infighting could hurt the reputation of the school. It’s unknown what if any changes will be made.

Medic Wants License Back After Dead Man Wakes Up
Earlier this year, a man in Franklin County was declared dead after an accident, only to wake up before the autopsy was going to be performed. Now one of the paramedics that was at the scene is asking for his license back. Randy Kearney had his license taken away after state officials said that he didn’t do his job properly. Kearney had checked for a pulse on the man and told other paramedics according to a written statement that he thought the man was dead. Based on that statement the man was put into a body bag and carted off to the morgue. Kearney’s attorneys now say that their client was only acting as a first responder on the scene that night and that state officials don’t have the right to take away his license.

Drug Program May Go Under The Knife
As state lawmakers continue to search for ways to solve the financial problem they created, yet another government program may be cut or at least have its’ funding trimmed. Here in North Carolina, nonviolent drug offenders have the option of going through a yearlong treatment plan instead of prison. Both judges and prosecutors alike testified to the program’s success, saying that a felon who has taken part in it is significantly less likely to be arrested again. Under the proposed budget, currently in the state Senate, almost all of the plan’s funding has been cut. Lawmakers say that they believe it can run efficiently with only federal money and little state support.

Sports Headlines

Wilkes Teams Come Up Just Short In Cup Hunt
Around the local scene, high schools may have let out for the summer, but the final awards were just recently handed out by the state high school athletics association. Each year all schools with an athletic program in North Carolina try to win the Wachovia Cup. Votes are given to different schools based on the win-loss records of their programs, along with any conference or state titles they may have won during the year. While none of the Wilkes schools came close to winning the Cup itself, some did come close to taking the Conference Cup in their respective divisions. Wilkes Central finished in a tie for second place in the Mountain Valley 2A, coming up even with Hibriten. Forbush walked away with this year’s trophy, while West Wilkes came in sixth and North Wilkes finished in last place. Over in the Northwest 1A, Starmount took the conference title, with East Wilkes coming in sixth.

UNC & Wake Vying For Linebacker
In college football, a North Carolina prospect has become the focus of a recruiting battle between UNC Chapel Hill and Wake Forest. Matt Woodlief, a star linebacker at Bandys High School, is being recruited by both schools for their 2006 class but for different reasons. Wake Forest wants the 5-11 235 lb. Woodlief to come in as a linebacker, partly due to the punishing hits he’s become known for delivering on the field. The Tarheels on the other hand want him to come in as their fullback, a position which he gained 332 yards in limited action this past year. Woodlief however has yet to make up his mind, saying that wherever he goes, all he wants is lots of playing time and a chance at a good educations.

Wake Forest Player Travels To Asia

In college basketball, while most kids are either in summer school or doing a part time job, one local player is heading off to another country. Trent Strickland, a rising senior at Wake Forest, is getting ready to leave on a two week tour of East Asia. Strickland is going as part of the Athletes in Action sports ministry, which has set up the opportunity for college players to work out against squads from other countries, including China’s Olympic team, while also preaching the gospel. Strickland said that he’s excited to go, because he wants to put God first in his life and hopes this will help his spiritual growth.

NASCAR Drivers Have Issues With Tires
In NASCAR, with the playoff soon approaching tempers are heating up and accusations are being thrown out. The latest ones are against tires used by Ford and Dodge vehicles. Teams are being accused of using special valves on the tires that would release excess air pressure, keeping it constant during the race. Drivers would be affected by this due to the fact a car handles differently depending on the tire pressure. So far no violations have been found, although a recent testing did find that Dodge and Ford are ahead of GM in the tire race, with the two companies offering a better analysis program.


News & Sports For June 27th

News & Sports For Monday June 27th 2005

Wilkesboro Hosts Dance Championship
This past weekend, people from over 20 states made their way into Wilkesboro to take part in the annual Dance Machine Performing Arts Championships. 1600 competitors took part in this year’s event, which had an overall attendance of 4000 people. The competition started on Thursday in the Walker Center at Wilkes Community College and went throughout the weekend, wrapping up Sunday afternoon. Original plans called for the championships to be held this year in High Point, but organizers changed their mind after a poll showed competitors wants to come back to Wilkesboro. Local estimates suggest that the event put in just under a million dollars to the regional economy.

Armed Robbery At Pleasant Hill Residence
Sheriff’s deputies were called out over the weekend to a residence in Pleasant Hill, after a local woman was robbed. Another woman came to the house demanding money and after being turned down, pulled out a hunting knife. Only finding two dollars and some change inside, she took off out the door. Later on the suspect’s father came over and returned the woman’s money, apologizing for his daughter’s actions. The robber was later found at her family’s residence, rambling and not making any sense. She was taken to Wilkes Regional where she was committed.

Vehicle Stolen By Tow Truck
A Jonesville man called sheriff’s deputies late last week after returning home to find his car had been stolen. Now deputies are trying to determine how that exactly happened, as the vehicle’s engine was blown and it was up on blocks. No one in the area could recall hearing or seeing anyone near the property. Also along with the vehicle itself, the man had boxed up portions of his clothes and other items due to the fact he was planning to move. There are no suspects however deputies are continuing the investigation.

Four Days Away From Crop Deadline
Local farmers have less than five days left until the second of this year’s crop report deadlines, coming up this Thursday June 30th. To meet the deadline, all you have to do is go out to the Wilkes Farm Service Agency, show where your plot of land is and what you planted this season. Something else to consider is that if any farmers fail to turn in their reports, they will be charged a late fee by the agency. For any farmers who still need to get that taken care of, you can go by the Farm Service Agency today. To set up an appointment or for more information, their number is 838-3622.

Man Assaulted On Highway
A Wilkesboro man called sheriff’s deputies late last week after being assaulted while on the highway. The man had pulled off on the shoulder of 421 for a minute when something hit him in the head. Just a few seconds later, three men came up and pulled him out of the car, beating him for several minutes before just as quickly leaving. They didn’t ask for money, didn’t steal the car and didn’t say a word, just beat the man and left. Descriptions of the men were turned over to sheriff’s deputies and the investigation is ongoing.

Just Stopped By To Have A Look
Sheriff’s deputies were called out to a residence on Harrold Mountain Road late last week, after thieves shattered glass in the back door and went inside. However after the homeowner checked things out, nothing was missing from the place. Also there was no damage to the area and nothing to indicate someone had been inside, except for the shattered glass and open door. Deputies are continuing the investigation.

Video Game Bandits Raid Wilkesboro Home
Never leave doors unlocked at your home. A Wilkesboro woman learned that the hard way over the weekend, after thieves walked right in and started shopping. Included in the theft was a dell computer, an X-Box game system, the woman’s telephone and her answering machine, along with several hundred dollars in cash. There are no suspects but deputies are continuing the investigation.

Be Prepared For Mosquitoes
As we head into the month of July, mosquitoes are back in the county and there are some things you need to be aware of. The Centers for Disease Control have sent out an update, warning about possible viruses carried by the bugs. La Crosse is the most common mosquito-bred illness in the state. Unlike the sport of the same name, this can be a slow moving virus most often seen in children and seniors. Symptoms include fever, headache, nausea and vomiting. Also the West Nile virus is the most well known disease caused by the insects. Strangely enough, 80% of people who contract West Nile in North Carolina won’t even know it for possibly several weeks. Symptoms are mostly the same as La Crosse, except you can also develop a skin rash and in rare occasions be temporarily paralyzed. Finally Eastern Equine Encephalomyelitis is the most dangerous, but also the most rare. Symptoms appear to be a serious case of the flu, with a high fever and headache. Now to prevent against any of these while on your Independence Day vacation, doctors suggest putting on some mosquito repellent. DEET is the most recommended, but people can also use oil of eucalyptus or picaridin for the same results.

Roaring River Home Falls Victim To Thieves
Thieves broke into a Roaring River woman’s home late last week, causing over $500 in damage in the process. A sliding glass door at the home was shattered and thieves walked out with a tv, some jewelry and other items totaling an estimated $2700. That investigation is ongoing.

Check Road Conditions Before Leaving
With the July 4th weekend coming up, it’s important to know what the road conditions are like across Wilkes. Where the DOT is working, what sections of highway have been closed off, things like that. You can access that by visiting the state DOT website at Also you can check out information on proposed road projects and how the holiday might affect both their schedule and your traffic conditions at There you will find information on public meetings, schedules, and area maps.

State News

Jobs Coming To Danville
Good news for people in Danville today, as 120 new jobs will be coming into the area this year. EIT, an electronic design and manufacturing service, is planning to build a manufacturing plant in the area, one that would serve as a central location for the company’s major markets. Construction is expected to begin within the month and hiring will go on later this year.

National Guard Soldiers Return Home
The city of Raleigh turned out to hold a welcome home celebration Saturday for members of the National Guard. The 30th Heavy Separate Brigade actually returned home almost six months ago, but their tour of duty was officially over on Saturday, and state officials came out to join in the celebration. Gov. Easley was on hand, as the troops returned to him the US flag he had given to the unit when they shipped out. Hootie & the Blowfish performed along with the brigade’s own band, called the Hickabillies. Members of the troop said they were glad to be home and just hoped that they were able to help the Iraqis return to normal life.

Major Drug Bust In Lincolnton
Over one thousand pounds of marijuana was seized in Lincoln County over the weekend, thanks in part to a tip from the Maiden Police Department. Members of the department, along with other officers from the Lincoln County Narcotics Task Force raided two homes in the area, finding 1114 pounds of marijuana and arresting three men. The drugs have an estimated street value of one million dollars and mark the largest bust in the area’s history.

Applications Show Widespread Damage From Storm
Last year North Carolina felt the force of Hurricanes Frances and Ivan, but the full extent of the damage wasn’t known until this weekend, when state officials got the last applications in for disaster assistance. All total, North Carolina received 4627 applications requesting aid money for damages to homes, roads or other items caused by last year’s storms. June 17th was this year’s deadline to request aid, which will come from a $247 million recovery package approved earlier this year by the legislature. The first checks will be sent out in August and continue on over a period of 18 months.

Portions Of Parkway Still Closed
Bad news today for anyone looking to take a trip on the Parkway this 4th of July weekend. You may have to take a detour or two along the way. Portions of the Parkway stretching from Mount Mitchell to NC Hwy 80 have been shut down and won’t reopen until the middle of next month. The eleven mile section of road had to be closed after rainfall in the area caused portions of the roadbed to wash away. Now work crews are trying to not only repair the road but also strengthen it so that this doesn’t happen again. Depending on the weather, work could last until August.

Sports Headlines

Wilkes Makes Playoffs, Falls To Rowan
Overcoming the odds, Wilkes County’s American Legion team made it into the playoffs, finishing just ahead of South Rowan thanks in part to a somewhat controversial ruling. Taking on Rowan County Saturday night in the first game of the series, Wilkes lost 11-6. The 6-15 Patriots had a chance to take the lead several times, but missed opportunities and errors sent Wilkes home with the loss. The best of five series will move back to Rowan County tonight with a gametime set for 7pm.

Tarheels Land Another Football Recruit
In college football news, UNC landed yet another prospect as Mount Tabor’s Ryan Taylor committed to the school. Taylor, a 6-4 215 lb. wide receiver who’s also a rising senior this year, turned down offers from Wake Forest and Vanderbilt to join the Heels. He’ll face a change of position in college however, as Tarheel coaches already said they plan to turn him into a H-back, a mix of fullback and tight end.

College Ends Early For Gardner-Webb Pitcher
For one college student, class ended a year earlier than planned, as Gardner-Webb’s Zach Ward was selected earlier this month by the Cincinnati Reds. After a few weeks of negotiating Ward officially signed with the team this weekend, leaving behind Boiling Springs for his new temporary home with the Billings Mustangs of the Pioneer League. Ward said he hopes to make his way quickly through the minors so that he can play with one of his heroes, outfielder Ken Griffey Jr.

Minor League Scoreboard
Around the minor leagues, the Hickory Crawdads rode an offensive explosion to take the 11-3 win over Asheville on Sunday. Crawdads starter Yoann Torrealba gave up three runs in six innings of work to pick up his second win of the season, while catcher Neal Walker helped carry the load with two home runs. And up the road in Winston, the Warthogs beat Wilmington 6-2. Warthogs starter Lance Broadway went five innings in his first game as a professional, giving up two runs while striking out three. Also Warthog Robert Valido kept his hitting streak alive as he extends it to 18 games.

Stewart Wins At Sonoma
In NASCAR, Tony Stewart took the checkered flag Sunday afternoon in the Dodge/Save Mart 350. Ricky Rudd came in second, Kurt Busch was third, Rusty Wallace was fourth and Dale Jarrett rounded out the top five. Greg Biffle took the lead in points despite a 14th place finish, as former leader Jimmie Johnson ended up 36th. Biffle now holds a 22 point lead in the standings.


News & Sports For June 24th

News & Sports For Friday June 24th 2005

Heat Relief Still Available For Wilkes Seniors
Yesterday the temperature reached 90 degrees in Wilkesboro and with more hot weather on the way, many people can find themselves in a life threatening situation. For any seniors who don’t have an air conditioner or anything else to keep cool, the Wilkes Senior Citizens Council is handing out fans to anyone who meets their requirements. In order to get one, you must be at least 60 years old, live in Wilkes and be served by Duke Power. In addition, your home situation must present a threat to your life without the fans. Applications are being taken from 8:30am til 5pm at the Wilkes Senior Citizens Council office, located at 910 C Street in Wilkesboro. For more information you can contact them at 651-7811.

Two Totaled In Wreck On 421
Two cars were totaled after a wreck on 421 Wednesday morning. The incident happened as a Millers Creek man was trying to turn off 421 onto a side road before his light turned red. A driver coming from the other direction couldn’t slow down in time and slammed into the man’s car. As he tried to avoid the crash, that second driver swerved to the right, hitting a third vehicle that had been stopped waiting for his light to turn. All total an estimated $14,500 worth of damage was done, as the first two vehicles were totaled in the accident. Thankfully however no one was injured.

Drink Machines Damaged At Local Store
Sheriff’s deputies were called out to the Run-in on Elkin Highway in North Wilkesboro recently, after vandals caused over $500 worth of damage. There was no sign of an attempted break-in and also no damage done to the building itself. However some type of substance was poured into the money slots of the drink machines outside. Nothing was taken from the machines and it doesn’t appear that the vandals tried to gain access to the money inside. Deputies are continuing the investigation.

Blood Drive Later Today
Later today a blood drive will be going on at the Lowes Foods up from Wal-Mart in Wilkesboro. While there have been several drives going on in recent weeks, the need is still critical for donors to come out and give. Once again that drive will go on later today at the Lowes Foods in Wilkesboro, up from Wal-Mart at the Winkler Mill location from 10am til 2:30pm. To schedule an appointment, you can call the Red Cross at 838-4563.

Gas Thieves Hit Another Wilkes Business
Yet another Wilkes business fell victim to gas thieves this week. This time it was Neighbors Store on Hwy 268, as a vehicle pulled in, pumped $20 worth of gas and took off. A description of the vehicle and its’ driver was turned over to sheriff’s deputies, although there was some confusion as to if it was an actual case of theft, with employees not sure if the person paid or not. Deputies are continuing the investigation.

Be Careful Where You Leave Your Keys
Never leave your keys inside your car. A North Wilkesboro man found that out the hard way this week, after thieves got in and took the vehicle for a joyride. This happened Tuesday night, but then hours later the vehicle was returned without any damage done to it in the process. The only catch was now the man’s mountain bike was missing. A local teen was caught later on Wednesday riding the bike and admitted to sheriff’s deputies that he had stolen it. The teen said he was looking for money to steal, but after seeing the key decided to take the car for a drive. The teen, whose name was withheld due to his age, was arrested and charged with breaking & entering, along with larceny of a motor vehicle.

Local Store Falls Prey To Vandals
Deputies were called out to the Artic Grill Wednesday morning, after vandals had apparently stopped by for a late night visit. The electrical wire around the building’s sign had been pulled down by a vehicle described to deputies as a tractor that had driven by hauling cars. All total an estimated $300 worth of damage was done in the incident and deputies are continuing the investigation.

Craving For Pizza Gets Out Of Hand
Two cars wrecked at Papa Johns Pizza Wednesday night, as Wilkesboro police were called out to the scene. The first driver had been trying to circle the building and accidentally entered into a one way area going the wrong direction. She slammed into the second car, just pulling out of the drive-through. The first vehicle was totaled, with damages in the crash estimated at just over $2000. No one was injured in the accident.

State News

Prisoner Tries To Escape Off Balcony
A simple traffic citation led to a Mecklenburg County man throwing himself off the courthouse balcony on Wednesday. The man, 29-yr-old Samuel Vance, had a court hearing to deal with a traffic ticket he had received for driving without a license. While in the courtroom, Mecklenburg deputies attempted to arrest Vance on an outstanding warrant in his name from Lee County, stemming from assault charges. When Vance saw the deputies coming he took off, running out of the room and onto a walking bridge nearby. When he saw someone step onto the bridge from the other side, Vance jumped off and dived over 15 feet to the ground. He wasn’t seriously injured but was taken to Carolinas Medical Center for treatment, after which he’ll begin a jail sentence on the assault charges. Vance said he jumped because he simply didn’t want to go back to prison.

More Jobs On The Way Across The State
Some more good news today on the job market, as Blue Cross and Blue Shield announced they’ll be expanding operations in the next few months. With the expansion comes 100 new jobs across North Carolina, many of which should be added by the end of this year. Most of the jobs will be in the company’s new 29,000 sq. foot complex in Durham that’s currently under construction. Hiring is expected to begin in the next few months.

Hydraulic Fluid Turns Up At Another Hospital
It turns out that the Duke Health System wasn’t the only place hydraulic fluid was swapped for surgical cleaners. Baptist Medical Center announced this week that barrels were delivered supposedly containing a cleaning fluid for surgical instruments. Instead, it turned out to be hydraulic fluid. Workers checked the contents of the barrels however and discovered the mistake before anyone was exposed. It’s still unclear exactly how this batch of hydraulic fluid got exchanged with the cleaners.

Search Continues For Raleigh Suspect
And the search continues today for a man in the Raleigh area, after he led police on a high speed chase through two different towns. 25-yr-old Jermaine Holloway had been pulled over by law enforcement just before 1:30 Thursday morning on a routine traffic stop. After running his information it was discovered that there was an outstanding warrant against Holloway, but before authorities could arrest him, he drove off. After more than 30 minutes of chasing Holloway through Cary and nearby Raleigh, officials finally lost him near a local apartment building, where the man jumped out of the car and took off running. After two hours, officials called off the search but plan to continue later today.

End Possibly In Sight To Superintendent Race
Nearly seven months after voters went to the polls, a winner could soon be declared in the state race for superintendent of public schools. Back in November, Democrat June Atkinson beat Republican Bill Fletcher for the post, but constant challenges by Fletcher have kept her from assuming the position. Atkinson beat Fletcher by over eight thousand votes, a total the Republican says is inaccurate because he believes eleven thousand ballots should be thrown out. Following North Carolina law, a special committee of 10 lawmakers from here in the state have been appointed to begin deciding a winner. They’ll review written arguments from both candidates and take a look at the evidence to determine who has the most legal votes. All of this is expected to take place within the next month, after which a recommendation will be made to the General Assembly, who will then vote for the winner. All of this falls under the guidelines dictated by the state constitution.

Union Warship Found In Roanoke River
Researchers at East Carolina University recently confirmed that a wreckage at the bottom of the Roanoke River is in fact that of the USS Otsego, a Union warship sunk over a 140 years ago. Members of ECU’s Maritime Studies Program have been able to map the wreckage and pinpoint its’ location, 110 miles east of Raleigh near Jamesville. The 220 ft. vessel was one of 22 warships built to sever Conference supply lines, but it sank in December of 1864 when it hit 20 southern mines that had been laid out in the river. It’s unknown what if anything can be salvaged from the wreck, which has broken apart into rotten timber and twisted steel.

Sports Headlines

Confusion Ties Up Post 31 Future
The scores have come in and now the Wilkes Patriots get to pack up and wait. South Rowan did lose their game against Rowan County, falling 13-1 in a game called after seven innings. And while that does give Wilkes the edge by half a game in the overall standings, their records are dead even in the conference. What that means is tiebreaker rules go into effect, but in this case, most of them can’t be used either. The first rule has a winning team judged on head to head competition, but since Wilkes and South Rowan split their games this year, that’s thrown out. The second decider is how they did against higher seeded teams, also thrown out. Wilkes got swept by Mocksville, but then came back to split their series with Stanley County, while South did the opposite. Basically now it all depends on how Kannapolis did in their game late last night. The runs allowed rule is what officials are going by now, meaning that if Kannapolis wins but ends up with more runs given up than second place Rowan, Wilkes is in. However that’s the only scenario that works for the Patriots. Even if Kannapolis loses, Wilkes is out, due to the seeding. The only way for the Patriots to get into the playoffs now is to hope Kannapolis not only wins, but gives up a ton of runs doing so. We hope to have a score and a final decision to tell you about tonight on the 7pm News Update.

Volleyball League Reminder
The deadline’s coming up for anyone who wants to join a summer volleyball league this July. Anyone can take part, from middle school even up to adults in separate 3 on 3 leagues. There is a fee to register, as it costs $30 to sign up your team to play. The last day to sign up for July’s tournament is next Thursday June 30th and for more information you can call 957-7363 or send an email to

UNC Coach Gives His Take On NBA Age Rules

Around the college scene, UNC Tarheels coach Roy Williams gave his opinions to the media on Thursday when asked how the new age limit in the NBA would affect his recruiting. Williams called the limit, which prevents all players younger than 19 from entering the league, “just window dressing” and said it would be better to have nothing at all than what’s in place now. He said however the rule wouldn’t change the way he recruited, because he’s going out for the best players, regardless of how long they plan to stay in school. Williams also said that he hopes the Bobcats pick a few of his players in the upcoming draft so he can take a day off and come to their games next season.

Wake Forest Lands Football Recruit
In college football, Wake Forest landed a recruit this week, as Dennis Godfrey, a 6-3 250 lb. tight end from Lee County committed to the Deacons. Godfrey, a rising senior at Lee County High, is known both for his blocking ability as well as being able to catch the ball. Godfrey refused other offers from UNC, East Carolina and NC State to commit to Wake Forest.

Minor League Scoreboard
Taking a look at the minor leagues last night, the Hickory Crawdads beat Greensboro 8-1. The Crawdads got six strong innings from starter Julio Guerrero, as he only gave up one run on six hits to get his first win of the season. Hickory goes on the road tonight to start a three game series with the Asheville Tourists.


News & Sports For June 23rd

News & Sports For Thursday June 23rd 2005

Rent To Own
Sheriff’s deputies were called out to a house in Purlear earlier this week after renters ran off with almost everything inside. The property owner called deputies after the renters had paid off their bill and left, as he found several thousand dollars worth of material had disappeared with them. Included in the theft was an antique desk from the 1930s, a riding lawn mower, two book shelves and several other items as well. A description of the suspects along with the location of their workplace was turned over to deputies and the investigation continues.

Blood Drive Later Today
As we reach the middle of summer, we’re also approaching one of the most critical times to give blood. The blood supply here in Wilkes is still at extremely low levels, as most people have been either driven off by the rain or gone on vacation and unable to give. There will be a drive going on later today at the Pilgrim Baptist Church from 2:30-7pm if you want to give the gift of life. Just a quick reminder if you do plan to go out, there are some requirements. You must be at least 17 yrs old and weigh no less than 110 lbs to donate. If you want to set up an appointment, you can call the local Red Cross at 838-4563.

Wreck On 421 Totals Two
When your light turns yellow, it might be a good idea to slow down. A Ferguson woman found this out the hard way earlier this week, after being involved in a two car accident. The wreck happened on 421, as the woman tried to speed through the intersection before her light turned red. She didn’t make it in time however and slammed directly into a vehicle coming from the other side. That second car spun out and hit a DOT sign near the 16 North ramp, finally coming to a stop several feet down the road. Both vehicles were totaled as damages were estimated at $20,000. Thankfully however no one was injured in the crash.

Fire Still Under Investigation
Fire marshals were unable to determine what caused a Hays man’s home to burn down earlier this week. The fire happened on Hollow Tree Lane, as Mountain View firefighters were called out to the scene. However before they arrived, the fire had nearly burned the building to the ground. The homeowner is currently away serving time in a Catawba County jail and his home has been abandoned ever since he left. It’s still unclear what ignited the fire, as the home had burned down to the foundation.

Local Woman Alerts Deputies To Fraud
Sheriff’s deputies were called to a Hays woman’s house earlier this week, after she reported a case of attempted fraud. The woman had been contacted by someone with a Hispanic accent, who informed her she had just won a sweepstakes in South Carolina. He then went on to tell her that in order to claim the prize, she needed to send a $5000 to his address. But instead of the company’s name, he gave his own, along with other information detailing how she could reach him with the money. After she refused two other people were put on the line, one who attempted a southern accent and tried to convince her the sweepstakes was real. The information has been passed on and investigators are checking out the address given.

Focus On The Cross
Throughout the western part of the state, there are several programs helping kids stay active, while also getting them involved in their community and also sharing with them the Word Of God. One of those is the Carolina Cross Connection. Melissa Lineberger will be talking about the Connection during today's Focus on the Foothills broadcast. That’s after the midday stock report at 1:05pm.

Just Drove Off With The Mower
A North Wilkesboro man returned home on Tuesday to find that someone had paid him a visit while he was gone. However nothing was stolen from the home and no damage was done. The only thing missing was the man’s riding lawn mower that had been sitting outside. Neighbors couldn’t recall seeing or hearing anyone outside the home and there are no suspects at this time however deputies are continuing the investigation.

State News

Advisories Issued For Lake Cornelius
Officials in Mecklenburg County have issued a warning today, advising people to stay out of the water at Lake Cornelius. Tuesday afternoon, debris from recent storms clogged up a sewer line and caused over 300 gallons of sewage to spill into the lake. The line was quickly repaired and work is underway to clean up the area, but at this time it’s still not safe for anyone to get into the water.

East Carolina University Falls Victim To Fraud
The SBI has been called in to help East Carolina University discover who managed to breach their computer network’s security program. The hackers somehow gained access to the program and used it to obtain the personal information of 250 students. The intrusion was limited to the department of physician assistant studies, meaning that only students from that section of the school were affected. Officials discovered the breach after complaints kept coming in of slow computer speed in the department. While the server was being repaired, specialists found the intrusion. All students whose personal information was exposed are receiving a letter in the mail explaining what happened and what steps they need to take in order to prevent ID theft from occurring. As to who’s responsible, that investigation is still ongoing, say university officials.

Land Dispute May Cause Tweetsie To Relocate
One of the area’s most famous entertainment parks may be picking up and moving to a new location soon. Tweetsie Railroad has hired the services of two firms to help resolve some real estate issues the park finds itself facing. Tweetsie is located on three parcels of land, leased from two separate owners. Now issues have arisen regarding how much the lease payments should be among other things and the park may find itself being evicted in 2006 when the lease expires. With that in mind, Tweetsie officials are examining other places where the park could relocate. Any official decision however won’t be made until at least the end of this year.

Items Stolen From Hickory Library
Why steal something you could see for free? That’s what officials in Hickory are asking today, after over $20,000 worth of material was stolen from the Patrick beaver Memorial Library. It’s unclear exactly when or how the thefts occurred, as all items inside have special tags that set off the security system if removed from the building. Included in the stolen items are several World Book Encyclopedias, books and DVDs from the library collection. Library officials are considering installing video cameras to prevent something like this from ever happening again.

Wildlife Commission Offers Free Fishing
On the 4th of July this year, the state Wildlife Commission is offering a gift to any fishermen in North Carolina. From 12:01am until 11:59pm that day, all public inland waterways in the state are open for fishing, free of charge. That means you don’t have to buy a trout license or anything else before grabbing a pole and heading out to the water. However some rules will still be in effect, such as limits on size and how many fish you can catch. For more information you can call the Wildlife Commission at (919) 733-3633 or visit their website at

Scenic Byway Opened Near Morganton
Officials with the state Board of Transportation took part in a ceremony yesterday to officially open North Carolina’s newest scenic byway. The Posgah Loop Scenic Byway, stretching 47 miles around the Pisgah National Forest, is the 49th such designation across the state and the first with sections open to only 4-wheel drive vehicles. Along the Loop you can see portions of the Linville Gorge, Table Rock, Lake James and of course the Pisgah National Forest. The road also ties in with the route taken by Revolutionary soldiers and early pioneers through the western part of the state.

Sports Headlines

Post 31 Regular Season Ends With Loss
Tuesday night the Wilkes Post 31 Patriots saw their regular season come to an end and possibly their playoff hopes as well, with a 7-2 loss against Mocksville. With the loss, Wilkes drops to 4-11 overall, tied for the eighth spot with South Rowan. All that will change one way or another later today, as South Rowan was scheduled to play Rowan County. If South loses, the Patriots are in the playoffs. If South wins however, the season is over for Wilkes.

High School Senior Withdraws From Draft
Around the college scene, in a rare occurrence one high school player from North Carolina decided to take his name out of this year’s NBA draft and go to school. Just don’t expect him to stick around more than one year. Brandon Rush, who graduated this year from Mount Zion Christian Academy, announced that he was withdrawing from this year’s draft and planning on going to college. But instead of a degree, Rush plans to only stick around in the college scene one year, enough time he said to showcase his game and prove that he can play at a higher level. He withdrew after teams repeatedly told him he wasn’t going to be picked any higher than the second round. Now Rush will decide between Illinois and Oklahoma for his choice of college.

Randolph Commits To Draft
In other college basketball news, the Duke Blue Devils unexpectedly lost a player as Shavlik Randolph announced he was staying in the NBA draft. Randolph, a 6-10 junior only averaged 6 points at Duke and isn’t even on any of the mock drafts across the nation. Scouts and coaches, including Bernie Bickerstaff of the Charlotte Bobcats, have repeatedly told him that another year of fine tuning his game in college would help him greatly but he refused to pull out. There have been concerns about his lack of strength and quickness, although Randolph says he’s received a lot of positive feedback from teams and came to the decision after a lot of prayer.

UNC Football Team Adds Another
Turning to college football, the UNC Tarheels just continue to add pieces to what’s becoming a very strong recruiting class for next year. Logan Buchanan, a rising senior at Davie High School, committed to play for the Heels in 2006. Buchanan was part of a Davie defense that shut down opponents last year, holding them to just under 10 points a game. Buchanan will join five others as part of Carolina’s 2006 class, receiving the offer after a summer camp last week. He said there were other schools interested, but only Coach Bunting came out and made an offer, one he didn’t want to miss by turning down. Buchanan can officially become a member of the Tarheels next February by signing a letter of intent.

Bobcats Make First Move Of The Offseason
And in the NBA, the Charlotte Bobcats didn’t wait until the finals were over to make their first move. Qualifying offers will be sent to Keith Bogans, Gerald Wallace, Matt Carroll and Jason Kapono as the team looks to keep most of its’ young core roster together. Those offers will become official on Friday and in addition, the team has called back former UNC talent Sean May for a second workout this weekend.


News & Sports For June 22nd

News & Sports For Wednesday June 22nd 2005

Breaking Story As Local Store To Close
Wilkes County stands to possibly lose some jobs in the coming weeks after Winn Dixie announced plans to shut down all stores north of Georgia. The Wilkes County store, located on the 421 bypass, would be included in that plan, however it’s not guaranteed that all these stores will close. Instead, Winn-Dixie plans to sell them off if any buyers are interested. Still, if no buyers can be found, the local stores will begin closing down in the next few months, as produce is sold off and employees are laid off. A timetable for any would be buyers to put in a bid has not been set but the company did say they hope to move on this quickly as they move out of Chapter 11 Bankruptcy. Winn-Dixie officials said the move was needed as they have taken a severe hit due in part to Wal-Mart’s decision to begin offering groceries at their stores. Unable to compete with cheaper prices, the store chain is reorganizing to strengthen its’ business and regain lost profits.

News From Commissioners Meeting
Last night Wilkes County Commissioners met and approved a new budget for the upcoming year, one that will put many residents’ minds at ease. Concern had been raised in recent weeks over the possibility of a property tax increase, but there was no mention of that in the final budget voted on and approved Tuesday night. The new budget, which passed by a unanimous vote, will be $66.6 million for the next fiscal year. That includes extended services such as providing sewer services to the town of Ronda and allocating $135,000 for a new visitors center on US 421. But the main focus was on property taxes, which currently holds at 61 cents for every $100 of property owned. That plan will stay in place for the upcoming fiscal year, according to the budget voted on Tuesday. In other news from the meeting yesterday, a proposal was put forward to alter the county’s animal control laws. Under the new plan, complaints of animal cruelty can simply be called in & spoken instead of being put down in writing. Also, all dogs in the county would be required to have ID, some type of rabies tag, owner identification or microchip certifying who they belong to. Finally all dogs that have been labeled as dangerous in the past must be registered with the county’s Animal Control office and tracked, along with all trained guard dogs to prevent any incidents should the dog get loose. While the plan did pass 4-1, it must be voted on again to go into effect, as the vote wasn’t unanimous. Faye Byrd was the dissenting vote, as she believed the idea required further study. The proposal will be put up for vote again at the next meeting.

Farmers Subject To Fee After Deadline
Next Thursday, June 30th is the deadline for all farmers to turn in their final crop reports to the Farm Service Agency. But what farmers may not be aware of is that there’s a penalty attached if you don’t get the report turned in by the deadline. A fee will be tacked on to every farm that fails to get a report in for their corn, soybeans and other crops. You can call the agency for more information at 838-3622.

Never Speed Off After Giving Out Information
A routine traffic check on the Austin Traphill Road soon turned into a chase as deputies tracked down a suspect. A man pulled up and handed over his license but after smelling marijuana inside the vehicle, deputies asked him to park the car on the side of the road. The man refused and sped off down the road. Deputies followed him at speeds exceeding 85 mph at times, eventually losing him on a nearby road. However they still had his license and went to the man’s home, where his mother agreed to let them search. Several grams of marijuana, along with rolling papers and other drug paraphernalia were found inside. Warrants were taken out and 51-yr-old David Randall Newman has been charged with drug possession, possession of drug paraphernalia, speeding to escape arrest and resisting a public officer.

Vehicle Covered With Unknown Material
Wilkesboro police were called out to the Wal-Mart parking lot recently after a local man discovered that while he was inside, someone had been vandalizing his car. The left side of the vehicle was covered with some type of sticky substance that couldn’t be identified, although officers believe it to be some type of glue. There were no witnesses to the crime and no suspects, however the investigation is ongoing.

Remember What You Give The Law
A license check Monday night In Traphill led deputies to a fugitive from another state. As deputies were performing the license check on the Austin Traphill Road, a vehicle came through with expired tags, registered in Oklahoma. After the driver agreed to let them search, deputies found rolling papers and marijuana seeds inside the car. Despite having given over their licenses, one of the men in the car tried to give deputies a fake name. 21-yr-old Michael Lee Watkins and 39-yr-old Tammy Johnson were both charged with drug possession and possession of drug paraphernalia. Additional charges are pending in the case.

Music Lovers Break Into Man’s Car
A North Wilkesboro man called sheriff’s deputies earlier this week after thieves stole over $1000 worth of music from his car. The man had kept the vehicle unlocked while he was at work, then came outside to find his CD cases and over 200 CDs were gone from the vehicle. Nothing else was taken from the car and there was no damage done. Deputies are continuing the investigation.

Red Means Stop Green Means Go
Running a red light proved to be a problem for a Wilkesboro man on Monday, as he ended totaling his car. The man had tried to run a light at the intersection of Curtis Bridge Road and River Street, instead colliding with a second vehicle, driven by a Moravian Falls woman. Both vehicles were totaled in the crash, with damages placed at just over $2500. 71-yr-old Thomas Mathis Buford was also charged with DWI and running a red light.

Rabies Becoming A Concern This Year
As we head into the summer months, rabies is once again becoming a problem both in Wilkes and across the state. With a shortage of the rabies vaccine, officials are predicting this could potentially be a problem much like this past winter’s flu scare. The easiest way to solve the problem is to go and have your pet vaccinated, which at the local clinics costs $10. Keep in mind if that seems like a lot, humans can also contract the virus and it costs around $2500 to treat an infected person. If you’re not sure, call your vet and check that your animals all have up to date vaccinations. If you have any questions, you can call Animal Control at 903-7688 or the Wilkes Health Department at 651-7450.

Drugs Stolen From State Road Home
Deputies were called out to a State Road residence on Monday, in response to a case of theft. Someone gained access to a local woman’s home, went into her medicine cabinet and took almost a hundred pills from different bottles. There was no sign of a break-in and nothing else was stolen from the home. Deputies have a suspect in the case and the investigation is ongoing.

State News

Medical Center Pays Out Over A Million In Back Wages
The U.S. Labor Department recently finished an investigation into the New Hanover Regional Medical Center, checking out reports of financial mismanagement. They discovered that the center had shortchanged employees on their time cards, not crediting them for any overtime they worked. As a result, New Hanover had to pay out over $1.33 million dollars in lost wages to everyone that was affected by the practice, a list of over 3400 people. New Hanover officials said that it was a simple accident, as the time clocks had malfunctioned and started cutting off minutes from people in the hospital.

Job Market In Mecklenburg Gets A Boost
Good news today for people in Mecklenburg County, as a new manufacturing hub will be coming to the area in the next few months. Prairie Packaging announced their plans this week to build a manufacturing and distribution hub in Huntersville, to serve the entire east coast. With the new building also comes jobs, as 242 new positions will be created in several different areas including machine operators, electricians and other mechanical positions. The company made the announcement after receiving a Job Development Grant from the state, money set aside to help bring in new businesses. A timetable has not yet been set as to when hiring will begin.

Newton Sheriff’s Department Under Investigation

The Catawba County sheriff’s department finds itself at the center of an investigation today, as state officials attempt to determine how a significant amount of money went missing. The department first called in the SBI in May after some money went missing from the local offices. No other information regarding the missing cash has been released, as department officials said they wouldn’t comment until the investigation was over.

Broyhill Workers Receiving Federal Aid
Over 600 people will lose their jobs when Broyhill Furniture begins laying off workers this coming August. The federal government has stepped in however, as the U.S. Department of Labor announced this week that all of Broyhill’s terminated employees will be eligible for benefits until they can find work. Benefits will be drawn out as part of the Trade Adjustment Assistance program, which was created to help laid-off workers receive training and a steady income if their jobs fell victim to the expanding global market. Workers at eight separate plants in the Lenoir area are eligible for the program, but have to go by the local Employment Security Commission office to sign up.

Court Of Appeals Orders New Trials
The convictions of two murderers here in the state have been overturned by the Court of Appeals, after judges found several errors in how the men’s trials had been conducted. Vincent Lebron Ledford had been accused of killing a McDowell County man back in 2002 after the man was caught having an affair with Ledford’s wife. A jury found him guilty, but the court records show the judge in the case never told the jury they could find him not guilty by way of self-defense. Due to that oversight, the Appeals Court has ordered a new trial in the case. Also the court ruled that Demond Antonio Wells should get a new trial. Wells had been charged and found guilty in the shooting of a man outside a recording studio in New Hanover County. However because he presented no evidence in the case to defend himself, Wells was supposed to be given the final closing argument. Instead that went to the prosecutor. And as such Wells is also to be given a new trial.

Sports Headlines

North Carolina Players Invited To Trials
And around the college scene, some athletes from here in North Carolina have received invitations to try out for the Under 21 men’s national team. Included on the list was Justin Gray of Wake Forest, Curtis Withers from UNC Charlotte and J.J. Redick from Duke. All total 21 players got invitations for the tryouts, which take place in late July. Out of those 21, 12 will be picked to represent the US in next year’s World Championships.

Wake Forest Lands New Recruit
In other college basketball news, Wake Forest fans have a reason to celebrate today, as the team landed yet another commitment for the 2006 squad. Anthony Gurley, a 6-3 point guard from Massachusetts, committed to play for the Deacons. Gurley, a rising high school senior, led his team to the state championship last year while averaging 23 points and 8 rebounds. Heading into his senior season, Gurley already holds the school record at North Newton High with 1300 points. Gurley turned down offers from NC State, Miami, Iowa State and Boston College to play for Wake Forest. He’ll join two others in the class of 2006, 6-8 forward Jamie Skeen from Huntersville and L.D. Williams, the 6-5 guard from Yadkinville.

Minor League Scoreboard
In the minor leagues last night, it was the Winston Salem Warthogs beating the Fredrick Keys 7-5. Warthogs’ starter Lance Broadway gave up three runs in his professional debut, striking out four in 4 2/3 innings of work while getting a no decision. Broadway was the number one draft pick for the Chicago White Sox this year, coming out of Texas Christian University. Robert Valido kept his hitting streak going, which now stands at 17 games while Leo Daigle brought his RBI total up to a league leading 84. Up the road in Hickory, the offensive explosion continued as the Crawdads beat Greensboro 9-1. Hickory starter Yoann Torrealba had six strong innings of work, shutting out the Bats while striking out seven to get his first win of the year.

More Injury Problems For McCants
The hits just keep on coming for Rashad McCants, as he had to pull out of yet another workout with an injury, this time a bad hamstring. McCants was working out for the Charlotte Bobcats along with several other local players, including NC State’s Julius Hodge and his former UNC teammate Raymond Felton. McCants had gotten rave reviews from Bobcats’ coach Bernie Bickerstaff, who said that he could possibly be one of the best offensive players in this year’s draft. Other coaches and scouts are also making the comparison to last year’s star talent Ben Gordon, who has similar talents. Still, this latest injury comes at the worst possibly time for McCants, as the NBA draft is next Tuesday and depending on how bad the hamstring pull is, he may have to withdraw from several other scheduled workouts this week.


News& Sports For June 21st

News & Sports For Tuesday June 21st 2005

EPA Releases Wilkes Drinking Water Report
On Monday, the EPA released this year’s drinking water report for the town of Wilkesboro, giving an idea of how clean the water is. Overall the news was good, as there were no violations or contaminations reported over the past year. However one area of concern for Wilkes is the fact the Yadkin River was also cited as being highly susceptible to contamination, meaning that while nothing has been reported yet, current use of the river and the area around it could potentially pose a threat down the road. The report is released every year to help monitor the effect of businesses and other things on the environment.

Drugs Found At Millers Creek Home
Sheriff’s deputies searched a Millers Creek house on Friday, after receiving a tip that drugs were being sold from the residence. The people inside refused to open the door, so deputies were forced to break it down and begin their search. Inside the house they found several grams of meth and marijuana, along with drug paraphernalia. 47-yr-old Susan Warden Godwin was arrested and charged with possession of drugs with the intent to sell & distribute, possession of drug paraphernalia and maintaining a home for the sale of drugs.

Be Careful Who You Let Inside
Be careful who you let inside your home. A North Wilkesboro man learned why that’s a good idea this week after falling victim to thieves at his house. The man had just returned home, taking time to empty out his wallet and other items on the table when someone he knew came to the door and asked to use the bathroom. The homeowner agreed and minutes later after the second man left, he noticed that both his wallet and other items were no longer on the table. Included in the theft was the man’s black wallet and all the items inside, along with $80 in cash. Deputies have charged 23-yr-old Justin Charles Haynes with the theft.

Salmonella On The Rise Across North Carolina
Yesterday 3WC News told you about a recall of certain shredded cheese packages here in North Carolina, as portions of the product had tested positive for salmonella. Now comes word from the Wilkes Health Department that on the whole, cases of salmonella are on the rise across the state. Already this year, the state’s Public Health Department has detected more cases than in the past three years combined. Here in Wilkes, there has been a slight increase as well. Right now, we’ve had 6 cases reported so far this year, up slightly from 2004 where we only had 14 cases reported period. Now there are however several quick and easy ways of making sure you don’t fall victim to the bacteria. First, don’t eat any raw eggs or anything that contains raw eggs. Also be sure not only to buy clean eggs, but also keep them refrigerated. Just take a look before buying to make sure there are no cracks, as bacteria can spread quickly once you get them out of the store and into your vehicle. And most important, always wash your hands and any equipment you’re using before and after you cook with eggs. For more information you can call the local Health Department at 651-7450.

Domino Effect Causes Wreck On Hwy 18
A simple case of follow the leader was to blame for a wreck that happened Sunday on Hwy 18. Three cars were involved in the accident, which caused an estimated $4800 worth of damage as one of the vehicles had to be towed away. A Purlear woman had apparently stopped at a median in the road and was attempting a U-turn, but the vehicles behind her couldn’t slow down in time. The third vehicle slammed into the second, creating a domino effect as two of out the three were totaled. The third driver, 22-yr-old Jose Garcia, was charged with failure to reduce speed and not having an operators’ license.

Local Business Falls Victim To Break-in
Thieves broke into a Wilkesboro business over the weekend, walking out with virtually everything but the kitchen sink. Someone pried open one of the doors to Queen’s Garage, removing the padlock and walking right in. Included in the theft were several air ratchets, drills, socket sets and other tools with a total value estimated at just over $2700. Deputies are continuing the investigation.

Stuff The Bus Program Begins July 1st
The annual Stuff The Bus program will get underway this year on July 1st, helping to provide needy kids with the supplies they need for school. There are several locations around the Wilkes County area for you to drop off supplies this year. There will be buses at Wal-Mart, CVS, Eckerd, Staples and also between the First Baptist and First United Methodist Churches in North Wilkesboro. You can also drop off supplies at Dollar General, Super 10 and the Communities in Schools office. All different types of school supplies are needed, everything from paper to pens to calculators. For more information you can call Amie Blevins at Communities in Schools. Her number is 651-7830 extension #23. And once again that program kicks off next Friday July 1st.

Hays Home Shot Up By Vandals
A Hays man returned home over the weekend to find that someone had been by while he was gone. Portions of his house were riddled with holes from a BB gun, causing over $200 worth of damage. There is a suspect in the case, as neighbors witnessed a local teen shooting off his gun in the area, although no one actually saw him fire at the home. The investigation is ongoing.

Gas Thieves Hit Several Wilkes Businesses

As the price for gas continues to climb, some people in Wilkes are deciding not to pay at the pump. Two businesses in the county were the latest victims of gas thieves over the weekend. A truck pulled up to the Fast Track in Millers Creek Sunday afternoon, the driver got out, pumped in $20 worth of gas and then took off down the road. Down the road in Hays, the same thing happened at the Grocery Bag as a vehicle pulled up and pumped just over $20 before taking off. Employees at both stores were able to get the vehicle’s license plate and turned it over to deputies, along with a description of both the driver and vehicle. The investigation is ongoing.

Just Rode Off With The Evidence
Sheriff’s deputies were called out to a residence in Union Grove over the weekend, after a local man returned to find himself the victim of a break-in. Thieves had apparently come up to the man’s home and stolen his dirtbike, also taking with them the man’s helmet as well. There was no sign of a break-in and also no damage done to the property. Deputies are continuing the investigation.

State News

People Get Sick At Greensboro Food Lion
Early Monday morning, a Greensboro store’s cleanup crew accidentally put four people in the hospital. The crew working at a Greensboro Food Lion had been using a gas-powered pressure washer to clean up the store, however due to the building’s poor ventilation, the fumes didn’t leave. After a few minutes, they overwhelmed several other people inside, who had to be taken to the hospital and treated for carbon monoxide poisoning. Three of the people were later released, while the fourth remained in the hospital for treatment of an unknown condition. No other information was released to the public.

Arrest Made In Chicken Parts Case
Officials in the Mount Holly area closed the books on a case of chicken theft this week. Over a month ago, a trailer went missing from Colonial Freight with almost 2000 cases of Gold Kist chicken parts as cargo. Over the weekend, police arrested and charged Walter Hicks Petty after receiving phone calls from Petty’s neighbors informing them that the man was selling frozen chicken out of a trailer at his home. Despite the evidence, Petty says he’s not guilty of the theft, as another man dropped off the trailer at his home.

North Carolina Teaching Rules Under Question
The standards for prospective teachers in North Carolina may be getting a little tougher, if officials with the State Board of Education have their way. Currently North Carolina is one of four states across the nation that doesn’t require fingerprint data from teaching prospects as part of a criminal background check. The fingerprints are run against an FBI database that would put up a flag if there was any criminal activity in the applicant’s past. North Carolina’s policy instead leaves it up to individual school districts, to decide how strict or loose they want to be when performing background checks. This has led to concerns that any teacher with a criminal past would be able to locate a job in a state where their history wouldn’t be discovered, potentially leading to more law violations down the road. Several officials with the State Board of Education are now calling for the rules to be changed here in North Carolina, although that won’t happen for at least a few months if then.

Former Deserter Apologizes
Former Army deserter Charles Robert Jenkins is finishing up his visit to North Carolina, but before leaving, he held a press conference on Monday to apologize for his actions almost fifty years ago. The 65-yr-old Jenkins said he was sorry for letting his fellow soldiers down along with the government and everyone else that had trusted in him. Jenkins was referring to his desertion in 1965, when he sneaked across the DMZ and into North Korea. After that, he spent the next four decades teaching English and taking part in propaganda films for the communist country. Released last year by North Korea, Jenkins was extradited to the US from his home in Japan. Later court-martialed and sentenced to 25 days in jail, he served his time and spent a week in North Carolina, visiting family members before heading back to his home. Jenkins also talked about North Korean leader Kim Jong II, saying that he was an evil man who only cares about his personal luxury.

Escapee Caught In Gaston County
A man who had escaped from the Gaston County jail is back in custody today, after being turned in by a relative. 28-yr-old Clinton Rucker was set to be released in three months before escaping Saturday night. He managed to gain access to a minivan at the jail and took off after hours. After a relative called in local officials and alerted them to where he was, Rucker gave himself up. Now he’ll face additional charges of stealing a car and escaping from jail, to go along with the three months left on his original sentence.

Sports Headlines

American Legion Baseball Tonight
The Wilkes Post 31 Patriots will be back in action tonight as they get set for their final home game of the regular season. The Patriots will take on Mocksville, as they’ll lock up a spot in the playoffs with a win. A loss however could mean the end of their season so everything is on the line tonight and we’ll be bringing you all the action right here on 3WC. Ken Byrd will be at the field for the first pitch at 7pm and we’ll go on the air tonight at 6:45 with the pregame show.

Appalachian To Make Changes For Football
Around the college scene, some changes are in store for Appalachian State’s football schedule, as all the games will be moved this year to 3:30pm. The four home games, Sept. 17th against Coastal Carolina, Oct. 15th vs. Georgia Southern, Oct. 29th against Chattanooga and finally Nov. 12th vs. Western Carolina have all been bumped to the later time, giving people more time to make it out to ‘The Rock’ and hopefully cut down on some traffic jams and other problems.

Minor League Scoreboard
In the minor leagues last night, it was Winston Salem losing against Fredrick 10-6. The Keys roughed up Warthogs’ starter Wes Whisler, as he gave up five runs in five innings of work. Over his past four starts, Whisler’s ERA has ballooned to 17.06. One bright spot for the Warthogs was Robert Valido as he extended his hitting streak to 16 games. His teammate Leo Daigle is starting a streak of his own as well, having hit in 11 straight games.

Health Questions Hurt McCants
In the NBA, we’re a week away from the college draft and while the stock of some players has risen, others are in free fall. Rashad McCants seemed to be a lock as a first round pick not even a month ago, but recent workouts have called into question his health once again. During workouts with the Magic and several other teams, McCants couldn’t finish the drills because he kept getting sick. While most teams say they’ll be making judgements on his entire career and not just his current status, McCants has quietly slipped from being a potential lottery pick to a late first rounder or possibly even dropping into the second round. McCants is scheduled to work out with the Bobcats this week.