North Carolina News – January 28

North Carolina News – January 28


Former Rep. Walker staying in North Carolina Senate race

GREENSBORO, N.C. (AP) — Former North Carolina Rep. Mark Walker is staying in the Republican race for U.S. Senate. He made the announcement Thursday at a event with supporters in Greensboro. Walker got in the race nearly 14 months ago, but he’s fallen behind top rivals Ted Budd and Pat McCrory in fundraising, and Budd got former President Donald Trump’s endorsement for the seat. Walker’s campaign has said he was offered the ex-president’s endorsement if he ran instead for a House seat in central North Carolina. The primary date is May 17. The GOP primary winner likely will take on Democratic frontrunner Cheri Beasley in the general election. 


Winter storm to bring blizzard conditions to US East Coast

BOSTON (AP) — The Northeast and mid-Atlantic regions of the United States are preparing for a powerful winter storm that’s expected to produce blizzard conditions. Heavy snow and strong winds are forecast to begin in parts of the Carolinas and Appalachia on Friday evening. The National Weather Service says the system will intensify as a nor’easter off the East Coast and bring similar conditions farther north on Saturday. The weather service says localized snowfall totals of up to 20 inches are possible. Officials also say wind-blown snow could make travel “nearly impossible.” Colder forecast temperatures after the storm mean dangerous wind chills are possible Saturday night.


‘Tiger King’ Joe Exotic set for resentencing in Oklahoma

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — “Tiger King” Joe Exotic is headed to a federal courtroom Friday for a resentencing hearing. His real name is Joseph Maldonado-Passage, and he’s now in federal prison after a jury convicted him in a murder-for-hire plot involving his chief rival, Carole Baskin. Maldonado-Passage was originally sentenced to 22 years in prison, but an appeals court ruled last year that the proper sentencing range was 17 1/2 years to 22 years in prison. His attorneys are asking a judge for a downward departure in the hopes that he could be released from prison.


Auditor: Mayor acted inappropriately in real estate purchase

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — A report from the state auditor’s office says the mayor of a North Carolina coastal town acted inappropriately when her real estate company purchased the town’s former police station site in 2018. News outlets report State Auditor Beth Wood’s office outlines how Ocean Isle Beach Mayor Debbie Smith, Town Administrator Daisy Ivey and the Ocean Isle Beach Board of Commissioners each are accused of acting inappropriately during the sale process. The findings of the investigation were referred to District Attorney Jon David to determine if there is sufficient evidence to pursue criminal charges. Smith says the sale discussion has been in the works for more than 10 years and the process was conducted in public.


Sheriff: Man stealing catalytic converter fatally crushed

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — A North Carolina sheriff’s office says a man trying to steal a catalytic converter from a disabled car was killed when the jack he used to get under the vehicle failed and pinned him underneath. The Wake County Sheriff’s Office says deputies responding to a call on Monday morning found the body of a man under a car. The victim was identified as 50-year-old Joshua Larry Diehl. Investigators said Diehl was attempting to steal the catalytic converter when the jack he was using failed. It’s not known how long Diehl may have been under the vehicle before his body was discovered. 


North Carolina man sentenced to prison for daughter’s death

WILLIAMSTON, N.C. (AP) — A North Carolina district attorney says a man has pleaded guilty to the 2017 murder of his 10-month-old daughter and will serve at least 23 years in prison. News outlets report Martin County District Attorney Seth Edwards said Ricky Roberson, 53, was sentenced to between 23 and 32 1/2 years in prison after pleading guilty to second-degree murder and first-degree sex offense. Edwards said Roberson called 911 on Jan. 29,  2017 to report that his child was unresponsive inside a home in Williamston. Emergency responders found that the 10-month-old had been dead for some time. Investigators interviewed the mother, who said that she allowed the daughter to spend time with the father, who lived in another home.


Man charged in shooting death of North Carolina teenager

KINSTON, N.C. (AP) — A North Carolina police department says a man has been charged in the fatal shooting of a 14-year-old. Two others were wounded. News outlets report Kinston police charged 24-year-old Malik Dyshaun Bryant with an open count of murder and two counts of attempted first-degree murder. Bryant is being held in the Lenoir County Detention Center without bond. It’s not known if Bryant has an attorney. Police responded to a call at approximately 8:45 p.m. on Wednesday and found three shooting victims. The other victims were identified as a 13-year-old male and a 17-year-old male. Both were taken to a local hospital and were listed in critical condition.


Missing North Carolina mother, child found after 5 years

FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. (AP) — The U.S. Marshals Service says a mother and child missing for more than five years have been found safe in North Carolina. Fayetteville police said Miracle Smith was 1 year old when she and her mother, Amber Renaye Weber, disappeared in December 2016, a news release said. Officers searched for clues about the disappearance and eventually turned to for help. The investigation gained momentum when investigators determined that the missing child and mother were located in Bunnlevel. They were believed to be associated with a man who was ultimately charged by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives for possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.