North Carolina News – June 18, 2022

Officials: 4 escape from Virginia prison satellite camp

HOPEWELL, Va. (AP) — Federal officials say four inmates have escaped from a federal prison’s satellite camp in Virginia. The Federal Bureau of Prisons says inmates Corey Branch, Tavares Lajuane Graham, Lamonte Rashawn Willis and Kareem Allen Shaw were discovered missing from the Federal Correctional Complex Petersburg’s satellite camp in Hopewell, Virginia, around 1:45 a.m. Saturday. Officials say the minimum security facility houses 185 male offenders, but they did not release any details about how the inmates escaped. Officials say the U.S. Marshals Service, the FBI and other law enforcement agencies were notified and an internal investigation has been initiated.


Housing market slows retreat from rising seas, bigger storms

Hot real estate markets have made some homeowners wary of participating in voluntary flood buyout programs. And that is impacting efforts to move people away from flooding from rising seas and more frequent storms. Flood buyout programs typically purchase flood-prone homes, raze them and turn the property into green space. They can help prevent flood-related deaths and health problems. Buyouts are also considered cheaper for taxpayers compared to rebuilding flooded houses with government payouts and federal flood insurance. Some cities have seen waning interest in the programs in the wake of rising home prices. People who take buyouts usually want to relocate to similar homes in the same community. But some worry that buyout dollars won’t be enough to buy the homes they want.


Freedom riders’ 1947 convictions vacated in North Carolina

HILLSBOROUGH, N.C. (AP) — Legendary civil rights leader Bayard Rustin and three other men had their convictions vacated posthumously. They were sentenced to work on a chain gang in North Carolina after launching the first of the “freedom rides” to challenge Jim Crow laws, which mandated segregation on buses. Friday’s ceremony vacating their convictions took place at the Orange County Courthouse in Hillsborough. Rustin was a pioneer of the civil rights movement and an adviser to the late Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. He was instrumental in organizing the 1963 March on Washington.


NC Supreme Court reinstates conviction in co-worker’s death

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — The North Carolina Supreme Court has reinstated a man’s murder and robbery convictions in the death of his co-worker. The justices ruled 5-2 on Friday to reverse another appeals court’s ruling that had declared the circumstantial evidence at the 2019 trial of David Myron Dover for the death of Arthur “Buddy” Davis to be too weak for guilty verdicts. Their boss had found Davis stabbed to death in his Kannapolis home in 2016. Chief Justice Paul Newby wrote that substantial evidence supports the reasonable inference that Dover killed Davis and took $3,000 from him. But a dissenting justice wrote the evidence only led to “suspicion or conjecture.”


NC justices: Young offenders are parole-eligible at 40 years

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — A sharply divided North Carolina Supreme Court has ruled juvenile offenders sentenced to long prison terms for deadly and violent crimes must be eligible for parole after 40 years behind bars. The Democratic majority held the prevailing opinions Friday in a pair of cases involving youths who committed murder, rape, or both. It agreed that sentences that required the offenders to serve 45 or 50 years before a possible release were the equivalents of having no chance at all and are thus constitutional. The court’s three Republicans joined in dissenting opinions, accusing their colleagues of judicial activism and limiting the sentences that judges can hand down.


Former Kentucky basketball player, analyst Mike Pratt dies

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Kentucky Athletics Hall of Famer Mike Pratt has died. Pratt helped lead the Wildcats to three SEC championships and two Elite Eight appearances during his college career. And he was a courtside fixture since the 2001-02 season as the UK Sports Network’s radio color analyst alongside play-by-play announcer Tom Leach. The 6-foot-4 forward from Ohio played at Kentucky from 1967-70 and averaged 16.8 and 8.9 rebounds in 81 career games. He finished at Kentucky with 1,359 points and 718 rebounds. Kentucky Athletics Director Mitch Barnhart and basketball coach John Calipari said he would be missed. A statement from the school said Pratt died Thursday at the age of 73.


81 sea turtle nests on Hatteras seashore; up from 2021

MANTEO, N.C. (AP) — Officials on the North Carolina coast say there are more sea turtle nests on a portion of North Carolina’s Outer Banks this season than at the same time last year. The announcement from Cape Hatteras National Seashore came as it observed World Sea Turtle Day. An update says there have been 81 nests laid so far this season, including a Leatherback nest, which officials said was the first since 2012. There were 70 nests at the same time last year. The National Park Service says healthy sea turtle populations are important indicators of healthy ocean habitats.


No charges for North Carolina police officers in shooting

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — A North Carolina district attorney says she won’t press charges against Raleigh police officers who killed a knife-wielding man after a wreck on Interstate 440. Wake County District Attorney Lorrin Freeman decided their fatal shooting was justifiable. The decision frustrates the man’s widow and activists who want officers to get more training to de-escalate such cases. Daniel Turcios was shot on January 11 after wrecking the family car. He then refused to follow police commands as Spanish-speaking bystanders tried to calm him down. His widow, Rosa Jerez, said police didn’t give her a chance to prevent the shooting.