Spate of shootings raises fears of a violent summer
CHICAGO (AP) — A spate of shootings around the country has law enforcement worried that this summer could be a violent one. The shootings are happening in a turbulent brew of a pandemic that has left many without jobs, racial unrest and a rancorous election season. Added to this mix are many new gun purchases, judging by historic numbers of background checks. Gun-rights advocates say the times show that Americans need to be prepared to defend themselves. Gun-control advocates say the surge in firearm sales could lead to more violence. One silver lining: This year is on pace to have half as many mass shootings as the record-breaking 2019.
Runoff decides Republican nominee for N.C. Congress seat
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Voters in western North Carolina are choosing the Republican nominee for a congressional seat held by Mark Meadows, before he became President Donald Trump’s chief of staff. Lynda Bennett and Madison Cawthorn are on Tuesday’s ballot in the 11th Congressional District runoff. They were the top two vote-getters in a 12-candidate primary in March. Bennett received Trump’s endorsement this month. Meadows announced in December he wouldn’t seek reelection and backed Bennett. In August, Cawthorn turns 25 — the constitutional minimum for the House. Poll workers wore face coverings and offered other protections for in-person voters in light of COVID-19. Mail-in absentee balloting has been robust.
VIRUS OUTBREAK-NORTH CAROLINA
N.C. health chief laments virus trends as order soon expires
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina’s health chief says the state’s COVID-19 case trends have worsened since the economy has reopened in recent weeks. But Health and Human Services Secretary Mandy Cohen wouldn’t say on Monday whether they would prevent more shuttered businesses from reopening when Gov. Roy Cooper’s executive order expires this week. The number of virus-related hospitalizations remains near a record high for the pandemic, and the number of deaths has exceeded 1,200. The state prison system says about 60 offenders held in Stanly County have tested positive. And state courts will extend a prohibition on jury trials through at least the end of July.
North Carolina DOT Secretary Boyette confirmed by Senate
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — The North Carolina Senate has confirmed the appointment of Gov. Roy Cooper’s transportation secretary. The Senate voted unanimously late Monday for Eric Boyette, whom Cooper chose for the DOT post in February as the successor to Secretary Jim Trogdon. Boyette had already been through the confirmation process in 2017, when Cooper named him the secretary of the Department of Information Technology. Boyette had already been through the confirmation process in 2017, when Cooper named him the secretary of the Department of Information Technology. The General Assembly approved a 2016 law subjecting the governor’s choices to run his top agencies to Senate confirmation votes.
Planning for summer beach days? Docs share virus safety tips
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) — Americans have never been more ready to get out of the house and bask in the sun. Warm weather beach destinations are the most popular vacation searches, with Florida, Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, and San Diego among the top considerations. Tripadvisor says 50% of travelers are looking to book a one- to five-day trip this month, suggesting massive pent-up demand for sand and surf. But the craving for a beach getaway coincides with recent spikes in coronavirus cases in beach havens like Florida, Texas and the Carolinas. Experts say a beach trip is low-risk as long as you follow some basic precautions.
N.C. man arrested amid effort to move Confederate monuments
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina State Capitol Police have arrested a man they say is suspected of starting a riot days earlier that led to a pair of damaged Confederate monuments on the old Capitol grounds. Police said Conrad Paul James was charged with inciting a riot, first-degree trespass, resisting an officer and injury to personal property, for events covering two nights. Police said he was arrested Sunday night. Police said James was jailed in Wake County on a $55,000 secured bond. A jail official didn’t have any information late Monday about whether James has an attorney.
3 dead, 6 wounded in shooting at North Carolina block party
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Police say a third person has died from wounds suffered when gunshots rang out at an impromptu celebration in North Carolina. On Monday afternoon, police said a third victim had been pronounced dead, 39-year-old Jamaa Keon Cassell. Earlier, police said one person was found dead at the scene and another pronounced dead shortly afterward. Police say the shooting happened early Monday at an impromptu block party in Charlotte that was a continuation of Juneteenth celebrations. About 400 people were gathered when someone in the crowd was struck during a hit-and-run accident, prompting the arrival of an ambulance and first responders. Police heard shots fired when they arrived.
Mail-in deluge tests elections in Kentucky, New York
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Overwhelmed Kentucky and New York officials face a deluge of mail-in votes that are likely to delay results for days after Tuesday’s congressional primaries. There’s a lot of interest in two contests in particular. One involves former Marine combat pilot Amy McGrath’s fight for the Democratic nomination to challenge Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, the Kentucky Republican, this November. The other involves House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Eliot Engel of New York. The Democrat is seeking a 17th House term. McGrath and Engel are facing African American challengers fueled by voter fury over racism and recent police killings of blacks.
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