BC-NC-VIRUS OUTBREAK-NORTH CAROLINA
Coronavirus cases in North Carolina top 217,000
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — The state of North Carolina now has at least 217,496 people who have tested positive for the coronavirus. State health officials also say that 3,634 have died. The Raleigh News & Observer reports that the numbers were released on Saturday. The N.C. Department of Health and Human Services reported 610 new COVID cases. That’s a drop from 2,202 the day before and the lowest single-day total since mid-August. But the state still reported that about 6.6% of tests were positive. That’s more than the state’s goal of 5% or lower. At least 907 people were reported hospitalized as of Sunday. That’s down from 921 the day before.
Victim still in critical condition after road-rage shooting
FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. (AP) — Police in North Carolina say that a person remains in critical condition after being shot during a road rage incident. The Fayetteville Observer reported Sunday that the incident occurred Friday in Fayetteville. Fayetteville police say that they are searching for a suspect. Police said he was driving a black Dodge Ram pickup. The man also had a long beard and appeared to be in his late 30’s or early 40’s.
Police: Person struck by bullet at Halloween theme park
GREENSBORO, N.C. (AP) — A person has been shot at a Halloween theme park in North Carolina. The Greensboro News & Record reports that the incident occurred at the Woods of Terror early Sunday morning. The Guilford County Sheriff’s Office said the victim was taken to a local hospital with injuries that were not life-threatening. The investigation is ongoing. Woods of Terror owner Eddie McLaurin said in a statement that it appeared that two gunshots were fired into the air and that one of the bullets came down on a customer. McLaurin said staff members tended to the victim. The person appeared to have a minor gunshot wound to the cheek.
ELECTION 2020-SENATE-NORTH CAROLINA
Spokesman says Tillis is improving after COVID diagnosis
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — A spokesman for U.S. Sen. Thom Tillis of North Carolina says that the senator is improving after experiencing mild symptoms following a positive COVID-19 test. Tillis spokesman Adam Webb issued a statement Sunday night saying that the senator is continuing to self-isolate at home but that he’s feeling better after experiencing mild symptoms the previous day. Tillis announced Friday night that he had tested positive. Tillis is among several people to be diagnosed with the virus after attending the Supreme Court nomination ceremony in the White House Rose Garden for Amy Coney Barrett. Tillis was wearing a mask at the ceremony and has supported mask use.
Many bars go slowly on re-opening, see struggles ahead
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Even though bars were allowed to reopen at limited capacity when North Carolina moved into the third phase of its reopening plan, some are taking it slow. In the Triangle area, many bar owners told The News & Observer they were planning to sit out this opening weekend, either to work on their reopening plan or because current restrictions make reopening infeasible. Phase 3 allows private bars to open at 30 percent of their outdoor capacity. Indoor bar areas must remain closed.
OFFSHORE DRILLING-SEISMIC TESTING
Seismic search for oil in Atlantic Ocean looks dead for now
CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) — Seismic exploration for oil and gas off the south Atlantic coast is unlikely to proceed this year because permits expire Nov. 30. Federal officials and company representatives both told a federal judge in South Carolina last week that there’s little point in continuing a lawsuit because the permits can’t be renewed. The testing shoots blasts of air, using the vibrations to map where oil and gas might be present below the ocean floor. Environmentalists sued in federal court in Charleston seeking to block the exploration because the work has been shown to harm marine animals like the endangered North Atlantic right whale. President Donald Trump recently banned oil drilling off the coasts of Florida, Georgia and South Carolina, reversing previous support.
5-year-old critically hurt in North Carolina hit-and-run
UNION COUNTY, N.C. (AP) — Authorities in North Carolina say a suspect has turned himself in after a hit-and-run critically injured a young girl who was playing at a soccer field. The incident happened Saturday afternoon in Union County, outside Charlotte. Deputies told local media the driver jumped a curb and hit three people, including a 5-year-old girl who was taken to a hospital in critical conditions. Authorities were initially searching for a vehicle, but Union County Chief Communications Officer Tony Underwood told TV station WSOC the suspect later turned himself in. The suspect was a juvenile and wasn’t immediately identified. He faces several charges.
N. Carolina Senate race upended by sexting, virus diagnosis
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina’s intensely competitive and expensive U.S. Senate race has been upended by personal and health disruptions that sent sharp tremors and uncertainty through the campaigns and an electorate already casting ballots. Democratic candidate Cal Cunningham has acknowledged sending sexually suggestive text messages to a California strategist who is not his wife. Cunningham apologized in a statement but said he would not drop out of the race. Cunningham’s acknowledgment came hours after Republican opponent Sen. Thom Tillis confirmed on Friday he tested positive for COVID-19. Tillis has halted in-person campaign events and several staff are headed into quarantine. He has said he has “mild symptoms.”
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