FATAL BOAT CRASH
Woman dies after boat hits hidden sand shoal
HATTERAS, N.C. (AP) — Officials in North Carolina say a Virginia woman was killed when she was thrown from a boat and run over after it hit a hidden sand shoal off the Outer Banks. News outlets report that the rented 21-foot Carolina skiff was traveling southwest across Hatteras Inlet when it ran aground on a sand shoal near the Ocracoke ferry terminal on Ocracoke Island. The North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission says the woman, who was ejected from the boat and then run over, died from her injuries. Officials identified the woman killed as 29-year-old Brandi Lash, 29, of Round Hill, Virginia. The crash is still under investigation but authorities believe inexperience and hazardous waters were contributing factors.
TROPICAL WEATHER-RIP CURRENTS
Hurricane Larry brings threat of dangerous rip currents
MOREHEAD CITY, N.C. (AP) — The National Weather Service is warning that swells from Hurricane Larry will create dangerous rip current conditions. News outlets report that the storm isn’t expected to make landfall in the United States, but it will be powerful enough to be felt along the East Coast. The weather service says Outer Banks beaches from Pea Island down to Cape Lookout will experience a high rip current risk. That means powerful and numerous rip currents are expected and everyone should stay out of the water. Moderate rip currents are expected from Duck through Nags Head and from Shackleford Banks through North Topsail Beach. That means only experienced swimmers who know how to escape a rip current should enter the water.
Authorities: Prison inmate in NC dies of apparent suicide
LAURINBURG, Va. (AP) — Authorities in North Carolina are investigating after they say that a prison inmate died from an apparent suicide. The North Carolina Department of Public Safety said in a news release that the man died Sunday at Scotland Correctional Institution in Laurinburg. The man who died was identified as Tyler Lanier, 26. Authorities said he was found unresponsive in his cell around 9:30 p.m. First responders from the prison and local paramedics performed lifesaving measures, the news release said. But Lanier was pronounced dead at about 10:00 p.m. NCDPS said that it’s conducting an investigation and that local law enforcement is investigating as well. The department said that Lanier was serving a 12-year sentence for robbery with a dangerous weapon.
COVID GRANT-HISPANIC COMMUNITIES
Nonprofit to boost COVID resources in Hispanic communities
ASHEVILLE, N.C. (AP) — A nonprofit will bring more COVID-19-related resources to western North Carolina’s Spanish-speaking immigrant communities. The Asheville Citizen-Times reported Monday that Hola Carolina has received a $308,000 grant. The grant was awarded by the Winston-Salem-based Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust. The goal of the grant is to improve the dissemination of information about COVID-19 and to expand access to virus-related health resources. The area’s immigrant communities have been been gravely and disproportionately impacted by the pandemic. The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services says that 8% of North Carolinians who have died from COVID-19 have been Hispanic.
MOUNTAIN VALLEY PIPELINE
Mountain Valley seeks to unmask critical Facebook group
ROANOKE, Va. (AP) — The Mountain Valley Pipeline is trying to find it who some of its very public online critics are. The Roanoke Times reported Saturday that the company has filed a subpoena in federal court to try to find out who is behind a Facebook group called Appalachians Against Pipelines. The group established a Facebook page in 2018. That’s about the time that tree-sitters began to try to block construction of the natural gas project. Mountain Valley is asking Facebook to reveal the names and telephone numbers of those who established and maintain the page. The group says the subpoena is an an effort to intimidate and silence it. Mountain Valley declined to comment.
Authorities ID man who drowned in Falls Lake on Saturday
WAKE FOREST, N.C. (AP) — Authorities in North Carolina have recovered the body of a 28-year-old man from a lake in Wake Forest. WRAL reports that the Wake County Sheriff’s Office identified the man on Sunday as Kenneth Jerome Harris from Raleigh. Deputies had been called to Falls Lake at the Holly Point Campground following a report of a drowning on Saturday night. Authorities said Harris was hanging out with a group of friends when he jumped into the water voluntarily. Authorities said he could not swim. Deputies said the drowning was ruled accidental. It was the third drowning at Falls Lake this year. Wake County Sheriff Gerald Baker said people need to more cautious at the lake, which can have dangerous currents.
Court rules Catholic school wrongfully fired gay substitute
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — A federal judge has ruled that a gay substitute teacher was wrongfully fired by a Roman Catholic school after he announced in 2014 that he was going to marry his longtime partner. U.S. District Judge Max Cogburn ruled Friday that Charlotte Catholic High School and the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Charlotte violated Lonnie Billard’s federal protections against sex discrimination. The ruling says Billard posted about his upcoming wedding in October 2014, and was informed by an assistant principal several weeks later that he no longer had a job with the school. The defendants said they fired Billard not because he was gay, but because he engaged in advocacy.
Greensboro police investigate fatal hit-and-run crash
GREENSBORO, N.C. (AP) — Police in Greensboro are investigating an early-morning hit-and-run crash that left a pedestrian dead. The Greensboro Police Department said in a news release that officers responded to a call about the crash in a commercial area southwest of downtown around 3:30 a.m. Sunday. The pedestrian was pronounced dead at the scene. Police are searching for a Black Lexus sedan that’s believed to have damage to its left side.
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