North Carolina News – August 7

North Carolina News – August 7


Calls for justice in Black suspect’s death in North Carolina

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (AP) — Demonstrators held a vigil in North Carolina to call for justice in the case of a Black man who died days after his arrest. The Winston-Salem Journal reports more than 70 participants used their phones as flashlights and sang songs during the vigil for John Neville in Winston-Salem Wednesday night. The vigil came hours after jail videos were released that showed Neville struggling with guards and yelling he couldn’t breathe as they restrained him in December. Neville’s son also spoke at the vigil. His father died at a hospital of a brain injury on Dec. 4, three days after his arrest on a warrant accusing him of assaulting a woman.


North Carolina high school sports group delays fall sports

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (AP) — The North Carolina High School Athletic Association has announced the fall sports season will be delayed again for its member schools. The association made the announcement on Thursday, a day after Gov. Roy Cooper extended the state’s current COVID-19 restrictions until at least Sept. 11. The association’s commissioner says the health and safety of coaches and other essential staff will be a priority as they make decisions about the season. The association had previously delayed the start of fall sports from Aug. 1 to Sept. 1. The group says they hope to announce a calendar for the sports season prior to Aug. 17.


Father: Son was drunk and didn’t mean to shoot woman, girl

LINCOLNTON, N.C. (AP) — Police in North Carolina say they plan to charge a man with attempted murder after he shot his 7-year-old daughter and girlfriend. But the man’s father said his son was drunk and doesn’t deserve the charges. Paul Lamkin Sr. told Charlotte’s Fox 46 on Thursday that his son did not intentionally shoot his girlfriend and daughter in Lincoln County. He said his son got in an argument with his girlfriend and pulled out his gun to shoot in the air. But he said the bullets ricocheted into the home, hitting the two victims. Lamkin Jr. then ran into the woods and fell into a quarry. All three are recovering in a hospital.


Gov. Cooper: Trump’s coronavirus strategy ‘nonexistent’

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper believes President Donald Trump does not have a clear plan to address the coronavirus pandemic. In an interview with The Associated Press, Cooper described his efforts to ensure the Republican National Convention was held safely and explained why he supports former Vice President Joe Biden. Cooper is running for reelection against Lt. Gov. Dan Forest and criticized him for not taking safety precautions and wearing masks at political events. Cooper said he doesn’t plan to resume in-person campaign events between now and the November general election. Forest declined an interview request, and his campaign dismissed concerns about safety at his events.


Hurricane Alpha? Amped up season forecast, names may run out

Hurricane season has already been busy this year, but forecasters say it should get even nastier soon. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Thursday increased its forecast for the number of named storms, hurricanes and major hurricanes this year to far above normal. Colorado State University, which pioneered hurricane season forecasting, is calling for twice the number of named storms and hurricanes this year — 24 of them. That means the season likely will run out of traditional names and start to use Greek letters. There already have been nine named storms. And on average 90% of hurricane activity happens after Aug. 6.


TVA rescinds decision to outsource technology jobs

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The Tennessee Valley Authority says it will rescind a decision to lay off its in-house technology workers. The authority had been planning on replacing those workers with contractors who rely heavily on foreign workers under the H1-B visa program for highly skilled workers. Yet President Donald Trump fired the TVA chairman, Skip Thompson, on Monday and threatened to remove other board members if they continued to hire foreign labor. By Thursday, interim TVA Board Chair John Ryder and TVA President and CEO Jeff Lyash had met with White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows and White House Counsel Pat Cipollone to discuss preservation of U.S. jobs.


Man pleads guilty to threatening to shoot Black renters

WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal prosecutors say a North Carolina man has pleaded guilty to violating the Fair Housing Act for threatening to shoot a Black family in 2014 for renting a home. A news release says 34-year-old Douglas Matthew Gurkins pleaded guilty on Thursday in federal court in the Eastern District of North Carolina. According to court documents, Gurkins drove to the family’s home, yelled racial slurs at them and told them they didn’t belong in the home. According to the documents, Gurkins threatened to shoot the mother and four children and any other Black people who entered the property. The family moved out days later.


Feds: Man pleads guilty to threatening to burn Black church

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) — A North Carolina man has pleaded guilty to threatening to burn down a Black church in Virginia days after one of the church’s leaders took part in a vigil for George Floyd. The U.S. Attorney’s Office said 63-year-old John Malcolm Bareswill entered the plea Wednesday, nearly two months after he was arrested on charges related to his alleged threat. Authorities say Bareswill also made racist remarks when he called the Baptist church in Virginia Beach to make the threats in June. The release says he could be sentenced to up to 10 years in prison in November. It is not immediately clear if Bareswill had a lawyer who could comment.

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