North Carolina News – September 29

North Carolina News – September 29


North Carolina couple convicted for multiple tax violations

GREENSBORO, N.C. (AP) — The U.S. Department of Justice says a North Carolina couple has been convicted of getting around paying employment and income taxes for almost a decade to pay for boarding their dog, a country club membership and visits to a spiritual adviser. The U.S. Attorney’s Office for North Carolina’s Middle District says in a news release that James and Susan Rice were convicted on conspiracy, tax evasion and employment tax fraud. The Rices face prison time as well as monetary penalties and will be sentenced at a date to be determined. The verdict was returned on Sept. 20. 


Ex-manager of Highland Games charged with attempted murder

NEWLAND, N.C. (AP) — Authorities say the former office manager of the Grandfather Mountain Highland Games has been arrested by North Carolina law enforcement and faces charges of attempted murder and possessing a weapon of mass destruction charges. Avery County Sheriff Kevin Frye says 43-year-old Thomas Dewey Taylor is being held in the county jail. News outlets reported Taylor was charged Monday night by the N.C. State Bureau of Investigation. Stephen Quillin, president of the Grandfather Mountain Highland Games, says Taylor’s arrest was connected to an incident at the office in Linville, and added that Taylor was dismissed as office manager for the organization in August. 


Two charged after North Carolina woman found dead in home

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (AP) — A North Carolina police department says two people have been charged  in the death of a woman whose body was found inside her home. Winston-Salem police said in a news release on Monday that officers responded to a home that morning to check on 45-year-old Michele Ruth Lowder after she failed to show up for work. When officers arrived, they found Lowder dead inside. Police arrested 18-year-old Tyree Lashauna Mosby, who is wanted in Pennsylvania on an attempted murder charge. Officers also arrested 19-year-old Alexis Olacia Knox, who was identified as an acquaintance of Mosby’s. Both are jailed without bond. 


Maine supreme court upholds murder conviction of NC man

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — The Maine supreme court has upheld the murder conviction and life prison sentence of one of three people convicted in a deadly home invasion. Christopher Murray, of Red Springs, North Carolina, contended the judge erred in instructing the jury and in limiting expert witness testimony. But the Maine Supreme Judicial Court ruled unanimously Tuesday that the judge did not abuse his discretion. Murray was one of three people who were charged in a home invasion in Millinocket in 2017. A husband and wife were both shot in the head, but the wife survived and testified.


Ex-police officer accused of stealing guns from department

NORTH TOPSAIL BEACH, N.C. (AP) — A former North Carolina police officer has been accused of stealing guns from the police department where he worked. In a news release issued Tuesday, the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation says former North Topsail Beach police officer Mark William Ray Jr. is charged  with 15 counts of obtaining property by false pretense, embezzlement, and felony conversion. The SBI says the North Topsail Beach police chief asked the agency in March to investigate suspected thefts of several firearms being held as evidence at the police department. Agents determined that the guns were sold or pawned at local pawn shops.


Cooper: I’ll seek public school spending surge in NC budget

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper says he’ll aim to get Republican lawmakers to fund North Carolina public education improvements a judge says the state must start implementing. He made the comments Tuesday about a decades-old school funding case called “Leandro.” He also spoke as a critical phase of state budget talks will soon begin. Senate leader Phil Berger and House Speaker Tim Moore are expected this week to send to Cooper an initial joint offer on state government spending for the next two years. Earlier Republican budget proposals fell well short of what Cooper and the judge say are needed to spend on education.


Elizabeth City police chief next NC public safety secretary

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — The police chief in a northeastern North Carolina city is Gov. Roy Cooper’s next public safety secretary. Cooper on Tuesday appointed Elizabeth City Public Safety Director Eddie Buffaloe to become his secretary of the state Department of Public Safety. Buffaloe is also the current president of the North Carolina Association of Chiefs of Police. Buffaloe is subject to state Senate confirmation. He succeeds Erik Hooks, who was nominated by President Joe Biden to become deputy administrator at the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Buffaloe and his officers helped keep the peace following a fatal shooting this spring involving the local Pasquotank County sheriff’s office.


Hurricane Sam bringing a rough surf weekend to US East Coast

MIAMI (AP) — It’s going to be a rough weekend in the water for beachgoers along the U.S. east coast. The National Hurricane Center predicts life-threatening surf and rip currents as Hurricane Sam turns northward. Forecasters expect the Category 4 hurricane to remain at sea, but with top winds of 130 mph, it’s already sending dangerous ocean swells to islands hundreds of miles away. Sam was centered about 455 miles east of the northern Leeward Islands on Wednesday. Forecasters say large swells will spread to the Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, Hispaniola, the Bahamas, and Bermuda by Thursday or Friday, then crash against U.S. east coast beaches this weekend. 

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