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Arrest Made In First Princeton Homicide In More Than 20 Years
A Princeton woman is facing second-degree murder charges following the stabbing death of her boyfriend.

The homicide was reported around 1:40am Sunday at the Dellwood apartment complex at 510 South Pearl Street.

Princeton Police Chief T. Sutton said officers were called to assist EMS following a report a man was lying on his back in the parking lot.

Medical workers determined 25 year-old Julius Devon Crenshaw, of 410 West Railroad Street, Princeton was deceased at the scene.

Chief Sutton said Crenshaw sustained a fatal knife wound to his neck.

After talking with witnesses, Crenshaw’s girlfriend, 27 year-old Crystal Turner, was arrested at the scene. The knife, believed to have been used in the fatal stabbing, was found on the trunk lid of her car near the entrance to her apartment.

Sutton said witnesses told police the couple was involved in a verbal, then physical, altercation during which Turner allegedly stabbed Crenshaw in the neck.

Turner was booked into the Johnston County Jail on second-degree murder charges. She is currently being held without privilege of bail.

The incident marks the first homicide in Princeton in more than 20 years.

Chief Sutton said the murder occurred as 9 officers from his department were about to end a DWI checkpoint. The officers were able to arrive on the scene within moments.    

Moped Driver Killed In Clayton-Area Crash

A Raleigh man died after his moped collided with a car on East Garner Road at Pine Hollow Drive near Clayton.

The fatal accident happened around 11:30pm Friday.

Hector Matos, 52, died from his injuries.

Troopers believe Matos was operating his moped when he veered across the centerline and collided head-on with an approaching car.

The driver of the car was not injured. No charges were filed. Photo courtesy JoCoFire.com 


Johnston County Schools Graduation Rate Increases, Remains Above State Average

Good news from Johnston County Schools for the 2013-2014 year. Their graduation rate of 85.4% is a 2.9% increase from the 2012-2013 school year.  This rate is also above the state average of 83.8%.

In addition to the 4-year cohort graduation rate, JCS also reports a 5-year cohort graduation rate.  The five-year cohort graduation rate for 2014 is 85.9% compared to the state average of 84.9%.

Hard Work and Effort

Dr. Rodney Peterson, Chief Academic Officer for Johnston County Schools stated “The JCS Board of Education and Administration have made the graduation rate a priority throughout our school system. "

“With the assistance of our At-Rick Counselors, Graduation Coaches, teachers, and staff, our graduation rate of 85.4% is a testament to the hard work and effort that have gone into this endeavor," Dr. Peterson said.  “JCS students should also be commended as their graduation rates have increased despite more challenging standards and assessments and increased graduation requirements.”

Johnston County School Students are required to earn a minimum of 28 course credits to meet the graduation requirement, in comparison to the state, which requires 22 course credits.  In addition, students today are expected to complete mathematics through Math III, or the equivalent of Algebra II, as a minimum.


Taxpayers Spend $150K Per High School Diploma
Are We Getting Our Money’s Worth?
Raleigh – A new analysis by the Civitas Institute indicates North Carolina spends about $150,000 for each high school diploma it hands out.

And that amount doesn’t even include capital costs. Some may say the expense is worthwhile, but this new study also shows there’s very little connection between spending and student achievement.

“We looked at the total expenditures, adjusted for inflation and then factored in the percentage of students who actually graduate from high school,” said Civitas Senior Policy Analyst Dr. Robert Luebke. “After all, today a high school diploma is the goal of K-12 education. We found the average cost of each diploma to be about $150,000. And that doesn’t include capital and other maintenance costs, expenses that in some cases can push up the cost an additional 20 percent.

“Our analysis also found little connection between spending and educational achievement,” he added. “For example, only two of the 20 highest-spending Local Education Associations exceeded state averages on some key measures of student progress. We hope this study prompts debate on how to make our schools more efficient and how to improve student performance.”


Student Charged With Assaulting Assistant Principal

A Cleveland High student was arrested on campus Friday after she allegedly assaulted an assistant principal.

That assistant principal, Anthony Whitaker, told a school resource officer he was breaking up an altercation between two female students when one of the students struck him in the chest with a closed fist, according to Johnston County Sheriff’s Office spokesperson Tammy Amaon.  Whitaker was not injured, Amaon said.

Diamond Tomorow Washington, 17, of Long Needle Drive, Clayton was charged with assault on a school employee. She was later released from custody after posting a $500 bond at the Johnston County Jail.


Man Accused Of Stealing Disabled Sister’s Identity
Following a three month investigation, a Clayton man was arrested Friday for allegedly using the identity of his disabled sister to open three credit card accounts.

Joshua Jeffrey Lanier, 23, of Rock Pillar Road, Clayton was charged with felony identity theft by the Johnston County Sheriff’s Office.

According to officials, Lanier opened three credit card accounts and charged $865, $835, and $816.

Lanier was booked into the Johnston County Jail under a $25,000 bond.


Bouton Completes Basic Training
Air Force Airman 1st Class Frederick K. Bouton has graduated from basic military training at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, San Antonio, Texas.

The airman completed an intensive, eight-week program that included training in military discipline and studies, Air Force core values, physical fitness, and basic warfare principles and skills.

Airmen who complete basic training earn four credits toward an associate in applied science degree through the Community College of the Air Force.
Bouton is the son of Vicki K. Bouton of Wendell.

He is a 2010 graduate of Smithfield-Selma High School


Ackley Named Law Enforcement Officer Of The Month
Each month, Johnston County District Attorney Susan Doyle recognizes a law enforcement officer for their hard work and dedication to the citizens of Johnston County.

Doyle presented the October 2014 Johnston County Officer of the Month Award to Randy Ackley, a detective with the Johnston County Sheriff’s Office. 

“Detective Ackley’s investigative skills are superior because of his dedication to victims of crime along with his perseverance to see a case through to the end,” Doyle said. “My staff commends Detective Ackley for always completing his investigations in a timely manner, his willingness to drive to pick up a witness for court if necessary, his commitment to staying late or coming in early to get extra work done and consistently having a positive attitude.   Detective Ackley is a true professional and values the team approach between law enforcement and the District Attorney’s Office.”

Ackley has worked with the Johnston County Sheriff’s Office for five years.  He began his career as a patrol deputy and was promoted to detective in 2012.  He is currently a detective in the major crimes division.  Ackley resides in the Clayton area with his wife and two children.

 

McIntyre Recognized As Least Partisan Member of Congress
Washington, D.C. – Congressman Mike McIntyre has recently been named the least partisan Member of Congress by the Washingtonian Magazine.

The distinction reflects Congressman McIntyre’s strong legacy of bipartisanship and ability to work across the aisle to address our nation’s challenges.

Congressman McIntyre, a member of the fiscally conservative Blue Dog Democrats, was also ranked as one of the most moderate Members of the 113th Congress by the National Journal.

McIntyre is retiring from Congress this year. He represents the Seventh Congressional District in North Carolina, which includes Johnston County. 

 

Granville County Loopers Tie Up 3rd Straight N.C. State Fair Tobacco-Stringing Title
RaleighFor the third year in a row, the Granville County Loopers took top honors in the N.C. State Fair Tobacco Stringing Contest. The team of Joy and Eugene Blackwell of Oxford and Ruth Coats of Garner won $250 and a plaque. They beat out 16 other teams to make a claim as a tobacco-tying dynasty.

Second-place honors and $150 went to the Looping Fools, made up of Sandy Jones of Maple Hill and Michael and Annie Sunday of Holly Ridge.

Third place and $100 went to Rachel’s Team, made up of Patricia Johnson of Troutman, Rebecca Johnson of Harmony and Debbie Barber of Benson.

Judging was based on a combination of stringing time and stick quality, including bundle size, evenness of leaf heads in bundles, 36-38 bundles on a stick, tightness of bundles, the evenness of bundle heights on the stick, neatness and holding ability.

The Granville County Loopers strung a full stick of tobacco in 1 minute, 7 and a half seconds, and earned top marks in five of the seven categories judged. The Looping Fools strung a full stick in 59.9 seconds, and got top marks in four of the seven categories. Rachel’s Team finished its stick in 1 minute, 18 and a half seconds, and received top marks in four categories.

The finished sticks of tobacco from the competition, plus others tied Friday afternoon, went into the tobacco barn to be flue-cured during the fair. Once the tobacco is cured, the tobacco will come off the sticks and be put on burlap sheets to be part of the mock tobacco auction at 2 p.m. Friday, Oct. 24, in the Expo Center. The contest was sponsored by the John Deere Ice Cream Boys.

 

Driver Rescued From Fiery Crash
Emergency workers rescued a driver trapped inside his burning car Thursday night on Highway 70 Business near South Rodgers Drive in West Smithfield.

Sherwood Anthony Bailey, 55, of Robin Lane, Clayton was traveling eastbound when he ran off the roadway and traveling 161 feet before colliding with a group of mailboxes then another 678 feet before striking and breaking into a utility pole. Bailey’s 2000 Toyota SUV then overturned and caught on fire.

A Johnston Ambulance Service crew happened upon the crash and assisted the patient until the Smithfield Fire Department and Johnston County EMS arrived on the scene. 

The fire was extinguished and fire crews used the jaws of life to cut the driver from the wreckage.

Police said they believe Bailey suffered a medical condition prior to the accident. He will not face any charges.

Bailey was taken to WakeMed for treatment of non-life threatening injuries. Photos courtesy JoCoFire.com

 

Selma Police: Driver Was Traveling 82MPH At Time Of Deadly Crash
Selma Police Charged Emerion Dixon On Thursday With Death By Motor Vehicle

After consulting with the NC Highway Patrol and Johnston County District Attorney’s Office this week, Selma Police Chief R.A. Cooper said officers charged a 22 year-old man with death by motor vehicle in connection with a July 19th crash on US70.

Dana Edwards Dale, 46, of Bugshop Road, Princeton was traveling westbound in her car when she attempted to turn across two eastbound travel lanes into the parking lot of Kentucky Fried Chicken.  Her 1999 Mercury was struck in the passenger side by a 1997 Jeep driven by Emerion Jevante Dixon, 22, of East Jones Street, Selma.

Dale, the only occupant in her car, died from her injuries.

After the crash, Dixon reportedly told Selma Police he started into the nearby intersection of US70 and Ricks Road/Industrial Park Drive as the traffic light was turning yellow. He reportedly told police, ““As I went under the light, it was red. I realized that I was going to hit her and let off the brakes and let it happen.”         

Dixon also told them he was traveling between 30 and 35mph at the time of the crash. The speed limit was 45mph.

Chief Cooper said a Highway Patrol Accident Reconstruction Team determined Dixon (pictured lower left) was traveling at 82mph at the time of the crash, well above the posted speed limit. Dale was traveling at about 10mph when her car was struck.  Police said the interviewed three witnesses to the crash.  

Cooper said that any driver, like Dale, turning across traffic in the middle of the day would never anticipate a vehicle would be approaching them at such a high rate of speed. 

On Thursday, Dixon was charged with death by motor vehicle. As of Friday, he was still in the Johnston County Jail being held under a $40,250 secured bond.


Selma Man Critically Injured In Alcohol-Related Crash

A 46 year-old man was critically injured in an accident Thursday night in Downtown Selma.  It happened around 10pm on North Raiford Street near East Anderson Street.

According to Selma Police, Gary Allen Phillips of Bailey Boykin Road, Selma was at the Station Bar and was obviously intoxicated. Several people reportedly told Phillips not to drive and even offered him a ride home.

However, Phillips reportedly left the club driving his scooter.

A few blocks away, Phillips, while traveling at an estimated 35mph, veered off the street and into the back of a parked SUV.  Police said Phillips sustained a serious head injury. He was transported by Selma EMS to WakeMed for treatment of critical injuries.

Police suspect alcohol was a contributing factor in the crash and his injuries were likely made worse because he wasn’t wearing a helmet.  Officers said they found a bottle of vodka in Phillips possession. They also spoke with at least two witnesses to the crash.

Damage to the parked SUV owned by Virginio Velasco of Smithfield was placed at $1,800. Damage to the scooter was estimated at $3,000.

The accident remains under investigation by Selma Police.

6 Convicted On Sex Crimes In Sampson County
One Suspect Posed As Face Painting Artist To Lure Victim
 
Six people were convicted on sex offenses in Sampson County Court this week. 

Samuel Roberson (right) was sentenced to 25 to 35 years in the NC Department of Corrections for sex offense of a child.  Roberson had three prior sex-related convictions prior to this incident. Prosecutors said he would serve as a “face painting artist” at various events and would identify potential child victims during the events. The victim was identified at a flea market in a neighboring county, however the sex offense occurred in Sampson County.

George VanderMerwe (left) was sentenced to serve 50 to 90 in prison for raping a child and for the sexual exploitation of a minor.  Authorities said he had over 1400 items of child-related pornography when he was arrested.

Johnny Linquist was sentenced to 10 to 23 months in prison for taking indecent liberties with a minor.

Richard Cashwell was sentenced to 44 to 113 months active time in prison for second-degree sexual offense. 

All four men were ordered by a judge to register as sex offenders upon their release from prison and enroll in satellite based monintoring when they are released from prison.  All the cases were investigation by the Sampson County Sheriff’s Office and prosecuted  by Sampson County District Attorney Ernie Lee.  

"I am very pleased that these individuals have been sentenced to substantial active sentences. This will serve to protect other potential victims. I appreciate the hard work of the Sheriff’s Office in investigating these cases.", stated District Attorney Ernie Lee.

Sheriff Jimmy Thornton also echoed his satisfaction with the convictions. "Hopefully, these convictions will bring some comfort to the victims of these horrendous crimes. I am thankful that we have a District Attorney’s Office that is aggressive in pursuing convictions. My investigators and the District Attorney’s staff have worked closely together to ensure that justice was served. I’m thankful that we were able to get these folks off the street in order to keep them from victimizing someone else,” stated Thornton.
Two other persons were convicted on sex offense charges in Sampson County this week based on investigations by the Newton Grove and Clinton Police Departments.

Dewayne Watkins (right) was sentenced to serve up to 213 months in prison for second-degree sex offense and taking indecent liberties with a minor following an investigation and charges from Clinton Police. 

Christopher Caceres (left) was sentenced to serve up to 106 months for second-degree sex offense following his arrest by Newton Grove Police. Both Waktins and Caceres must register as sex offenders when released from prison. Wakins must also enroll in satellite based monitoring. 

 
JCSO: Heroin Found In Suspects Shoe, Car Seat
A Vance County man ended up in the Johnston County Jail Thursday afternoon after Johnston County deputies reportedly found heroin concealed inside his shoe and in a car seat.

Aaron Lee Haines, 25, of Henderson was arrested at a SAFE Team license checkpoint around 12:45pm on the 1300 block of Pierce Road.

Deputies said Haines had a suspended license and they noticed a syringe on the back seat of his car. Following a search, 30 baggies of suspected heroin were found in his shoe and 2 baggies were allegedly found in a car seat.

The 32 baggies of heroin weighed approximately 9 grams.

Haines was arrested on six drug charges, five of those being felonies. He was incarcerated in the Johnston County Jail under a $150,000 bond.  


JoCo Marines Thank Business For Flying The American Flag
Thanks for flying the US flag! 

The Johnston County Marine Corps League Carry-On Detachment #1236 this week presented the October Good Business Award to Sheetz convenience store on Highway 210 at NC50 at McGee’s Crossroads.

The Johnston County Marines, among many other community service programs they provide, award local businesses across Johnston County on a monthly basis the Good Business Award in appreciation for their patriotism for flying Old Glory prominently and displaying the American flag with respect.

Pictured from left to right: Marine “Willie” Williams, Adjutant/Paymaster Ken Parker, Commandant Devell Durham, and Past Commandant Timothy Daniel present the Good Business Award to a store representative. Contributed photo   


Police Impound DWI Suspects Car
Smithfield Police arrested a Wake County woman for driving while impaired midday Thursday.

Around 12:49pm, Lt. R.K. Powell said officers received several reports of a car driving erratically on North Brightleaf Boulevard.  The vehicle was located by officers and after observing the erratic driving stopped the car in the 1200 block of North Brightleaf Boulevard.

Police said the driver, Jeanette Chrise Egerer, 54, of Leonard Street, Raleigh registered 0.27 on the Breathalyzer more than three times above the legal limit of 0.08.  Police also impounded the 1992 Toyota she was operating.

Egerer was given a $1,500 bond and a court date of December 2nd, according to a police report.


Thief Breaks Into Smithfield Wal-Mart

Officials at Wal-Mart in Smithfield said someone broke into the business while they were open. 

Between 1am and 5am Wednesday, someone cut a hole in the chain link fence at the Garden Center. Once inside they removed a Snapper push mower valued at $268.

According to a Smithfield Police, the case has been closed due to a lack of leads.


Customer Accused Of Shoplifting Greeting Card, Other Items
A Wake County man was arrested for allegedly shoplifting $94.79 in merchandise from Wal-Mart on Highway 42 in Cleveland Thursday afternoon.

An employee allegedly observed William Jesse Gregory, 20, of Jordan Woods Drive, Raleigh place items in his pocket.

Among the items were electronics, a tape measurer, and a greeting card.  

Deputies arrived on the scene and arrested Gregory on a misdemeanor count of shoplifting by concealment of goods. He was released on a $500 bond.

 

Gasoline Drops To $2.69 Gallon
A Johnston County convenience store started selling gasoline on Thursday for $2.69 a gallon.

Barefoot’s Country Store, located on Highway 701 South of Four Oaks, dropped prices after the price on an overnight fuel shipment was a lot less than expected, according to Kevin Barefoot, who owns and operates the store with his wife, Lori.

The $2.69 price is 47 cents below the national retail average Thursday of $3.16 a gallon.  Diesel prices across the nation were at $3.66 a gallon.

Nationwide, gas prices have fallen 15 cents a gallon in October, the lowest in four years.

Barefoot said his last three fuel shipments have all been lower and he is passing along the savings to his customers.

Over the past three days, Barefoot has seen the price he pays decline 21 cents a gallon.
Reaction to the lower prices has been positive.

”We’ve been pretty busy today,” Barefoot told WTSB News. “And hopefully it may drop again. You take it one day at a time. It can go back up as fast as it goes down.  A tropical storm could make it go crazy in a matter of hours.”

Barefoot said the sharp drop in fuel prices has been a surprise, as many store operators have seen wholesale prices they pay decline 6 to 7 cents per day each day this week.

Gas prices are down 13% since the end of June as more Americans are taking to the roads.  On an average day, 8.8 million barrels of oil are consumed in the United States. 

Many experts say don’t get too accustomed to the low prices. Two years ago, prices plummeted 28% in 83 days then rebounded just as quickly.    

 
Groundbreaking Held For New Princeton Gym

(Top right) From left are Chad Stewart, County Commissioner; Tony Braswell, Vice Chair - County Commissioner; Mike Rose, Princeton Town Council; Mike Wooten, Board of Education; Larry Strickland, Chairman Board of Education; Rick Hester, County Manager; Kirk Denning, Principal of Princeton High School; Dr. Ed Croom, Superintendent; Fred Bartholomew, Former Board of Education Member and Former Principal of Princeton High School; Ted Godwin, County Commissioner; Senator Brent Jackson, North Carolina General Assembly.

(Lower right) From left are Princeton High School student ambassadors Megan Evans, Tyler Ricks, R.J. Heller, Austin Chanmanivone, Austin Sullivan, and Cameron Parker.


About 50 people attended the Johnston County Schools groundbreaking ceremony to show their support for the new Princeton School gymnasium on Tuesday.

The event was held  at the construction site of the new facility, located behind the school just off Bartholomew Avenue in Princeton. 

“The existing gym was built in 1957 and has been an integral part of the Princeton community,” said Johnston County Schools Superintendent Dr. Ed Croom. “The new gym will touch the lives of current and future students through the educational learning opportunities provided through this multipurpose facility.”

Dr. Croom provided opening remarks at the event, and Dorothy Johnson, Vice Chair for the Johnston County Board of Education, led the invocation. Other special speakers included Board of Education Chairman Larry Strickland, Board of Education member Mike Wooten, Princeton Mayor Don Rains, and Johnston County Board of Commissioners Vice Chairman Tony Braswell.

Also helping to commemorate the event were Johnston County Board of Education members Keith Branch, Dr. Peggy Smith, Donna White, and Butler Hall; Chad Stewart, County Commissioner; Mike Rose, Princeton Town Council; Rick Hester, County Manager; Kirk Denning, Principal of Princeton High School; Fred Bartholomew, Former Board of Education Member and Former Principal of Princeton High School; Ted Godwin, County Commissioner; Senator Brent Jackson, North Carolina General Assembly; Princeton High School Student Ambassadors; and several other members of the Princeton community.

The new 22,224 square-foot facility is expected to be completed in time for the start of next school year’s basketball season. The gymnasium project is budgeted for $4.2 million that has been allocated from the 2013 Bond Referendum monies.

Johnston Early College Joins NC 100% Graduation Club

Assistant Superintendent for JCS Student Services Dr. Oliver Johnson (left), N.C. State Superintendent June Atkinson (center) and Johnston County Early College Academy Principal Brandon Garland (right) attend the Graduation Achievement Award Recognition and Luncheon in Durham where Johnston County Early College Academy was recognized for a 100-percent graduation rate.

State Superintendent June Atkinson recently recognized Johnston County Early College Academy for having a graduation rate of 100. Johnston County Early College Academy was one of 43 high schools from across the state honored for a perfect rate.

Assistant Superintendent for JCS Student Services Dr. Oliver Johnson and Johnston County Early College Academy Principal Brandon Garland attended the Graduation Achievement Award Recognition and Luncheon in Durham on Oct. 3 where they were presented a plaque for the accomplishment.

According to Principal Brandon Garland, the school is extremely proud of the efforts of the students and faculty.

“The Class of 2014 set a standard of high achievement and success at Johnston County Early College Academy,” said Garland. “Through their hard work and the combined efforts of the faculty of Johnston County Early College Academy and Johnston Community College all of these students graduated with diplomas and associates degrees. Their success will serve as an inspiration and a goal for all of our students.”

In May, 38 students graduated from Johnston County Early College Academy, located on the campus of Johnston Community College in Smithfield. A joint effort of Johnston County Schools and the community college, JCECA offers students the opportunity to graduate with a high school diploma while simultaneously earn a two-year associate’s degree.

In addition to celebrating the schools with 100-percent graduation rates, Atkinson also applauded the state’s overall rate. 

“Our statewide graduation rate has climbed from 68 percent in 2006 to reach a record high of 83.9 percent in 2013-14,” said Atkinson. “This progress is the direct result of the work done in many of these districts and schools to ensure that nearly every student who enters high school leaves with a diploma. I applaud the superintendents, principals and teachers for their commitment to their students’ success. Our ultimate goal is to reach a statewide rate of 100 percent in the near future and their work brings us even closer to making that goal a reality.”

Also recognized at the event was Johnston County Middle College High School for achieving 95 percent or greater 4-year cohort graduation rate.

         
65 Year-Old Man Accused Of Assaulting Deputy

A Clayton man was arrested Thursday morning for allegedly assaulting a deputy who had been called to a residence for a welfare check.

Around midnight Wednesday, an officer was sent to an address on Red Star Lane near Clayton.  After arriving, a man reportedly came out the front door and got to within a foot of where the officer was standing and began cursing.  The suspect, William Clifton Faison, 65, then reportedly shoved the deputy with his hands.

Faison was immediately handcuffed and transported to the Johnston County Jail where he was charged with assault on a government official and given a $3,500 bond. The deputy was not injured. 

Sheriff’s office spokesperson Tammy Amaon said Faison was under the influence of alcohol at the time of the incident. 

Children’s Author Visits McGee's Crossroads Elementary

Author Louise Majeski (back row) presents copies of her book to McGee’s Crossroads Elementary students. On the front row (from left) are Miguel Casas (holding Amanda the Panda), Yoselyn Apolinar, Erick Guillen, and Destiny Pavon.

Former Johnston County Schools employee, Louise Majeski, has fulfilled her life-long dream of becoming a children's author.  

Majeski loves all children but has a special place in her heart for students with limited English. During her visit to McGee’s Crossroads Elementary she stressed to the students the importance of reading, writing and spelling proficiently in school and dreaming about their future.  

“You need to read and find an interest in a topic that is special to you.” Majeski said. “Practicing reading will make you a better reader and student.”

She read her book “Amanda the Panda” to the students, and the students all were surprised when they received their own signed copy.

 

DMV To Offer Driver License Renewals At North Carolina State Fair
The North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicles will join the family fun, excitement and entertainment at the 2014 North Carolina State Fair from Thursday, October 16 – Sunday, October 26. An NCDMV mobile unit will be open for business from 9 a.m. – 10 p.m. each day, providing information. The unit will be located adjacent to Dorton Arena, near the Hillsborough Street side of the fairgrounds.

The Division will offer all customers the opportunity to renew their driver licenses, as long as a written or road test is not required. Driver Services will be conducted from 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Driver licenses are issued through age 65 for eight years and are priced at $4 per year. Drivers 65 and older are issued licenses for five years.

Duplicate driver licenses and ID cards for children and adults can be ordered at the mobile unit for $10 each. The unit will also provide state transportation maps, driver handbooks and brochures.

Carreiro Promoted At Marine Air Station In Japan
Marine Lt. Col. Michael J. Carreiro has been appointed to the office of executive officer for Marine Corps Air Station, Iwakuni, Japan. Before being appointed to his current position, Carreiro was the personnel officer for the Air Station. He has served in the military for 26 years.
Carreiro is the son of J. Michael Carreiro III and Frances M. Carreiro of Tiverton, R.I. He is also the husband of Myia Carreiro and son-in-law of Chadwick and Sarah Allen of Selma, N.C.
He is a 1988 graduate of Tiverton High School, Tiverton, R.I. He earned a bachelor's degree in 1996 from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, N.C. and a master's degree in 2007 from the Naval War College, Newport, R.I.   

 

Campbell Announces New Strength & Conditioning Center
Buies Creek – Campbell University Athletics has announced a new, state-of-the-art strength and conditioning facility addition at Barker-Lane Stadium.

The nearly 6,000 square foot facility, home of the Camels’ football and women’s lacrosse programs, will feature 900 square feet of sport turf, 12 state-of-the-art custom Hammer Strength combo racks with inlaid Olympic lifting platforms, six glute hamstring developers and four  Hammer Strength plate loaded machines.

The training facility will also include two Pit Shark belt squat machines, custom iron grip dumbbells, custom plyometric jumping boxes and a comprehensive nutrition and hydration station.

The new strength and conditioning center will house both Campbell’s football and women’s lacrosse programs, freeing space for the Camels’ other 19 NCAA Division I sports teams to train in the existing John W. Pope Jr. Convocation Center weight room.

Construction of the facility began in September, and is expected to conclude in January 2015.

Campbell Vice President Jim Roberts said, “This facility was envisioned from the day we first talked about football on this campus.”

Campbell Athletics Director Bob Roller said, “The construction of this facility has been a priority for us for the past few years and we cannot thank the Campbell alums and donors enough for stepping forward and making this a reality. 

“Anytime you’re building a football program, the heart of what you are doing is strength and conditioning,” said Football Head Coach Mike Minter. “We’re excited to go to work in this new facility. It will help take our program to the next level.”

 

JCC Brings Health Education To Cleveland Center

Nursing assistant students Hannah Bullins, left, and Brittani Cline practice taking blood pressure.

Johnston Community College is bringing health education classes to its Cleveland Center.

In an effort to meet the demand for more certified nursing assistants and phlebotomists, the College spent the summer upgrading the location as a certified training site.

Because of the new location, JCC is able to offer nine additional nursing assistant classes this upcoming year.

“We were seeing an increased need for additional health education classes so we are very excited to offer nursing assistant and phlebotomy training at our Cleveland Center,” says Linda Smith, dean of health, wellness, and human services at JCC. “This is a very convenient location for our students and our instructors, and it’s also allowing us to serve more individuals for health-care related jobs in the area.”

“Employers in the county are very happy we’ve done this because they need additional staff,” adds Connie Grady, director of health education and nursing assistant programs.

Thanks to donations from Johnston Health and Johnston Medical and Surgical Supply Company, JCC spent the summer equipping the location with appropriate lab space.

Current student Marcus Reynolds said a friend recommended nursing assistant classes at JCC and he says the Cleveland location is convenient since he lives in Clayton.

“I’ve learned a ton, and I feel confident in my skills,” Reynolds says. “I feel like I’ve been well prepared.”

Nicole Ryals agreed. “The class is seven minutes from my house,” she said. “The people here are awesome, and the teachers are great. They take extra time out to make sure you know what you need to know.”

Spring registration for health education classes will be Nov. 19 and Dec. 4 at the Public Safety Services Building on the main campus in Smithfield. Registration for classes at the Cleveland Center will be held Dec. 2 from 4 to 6 p.m. at the Cleveland Center.


School Employee Charged With Indecent Liberties
A contract employee who worked at a Fort Bragg school located in Harnett County is facing criminal charges for an illegal relationship with a young child.

George James Dunham, 38, of Erwin is charged with two felony counts of taking indecent liberties with a child. He was held in the Harnett County jail on a $30,000 bond.

Mr. Dunham lists Gordon Elementary School as his employer. The school is located in the Linden Oaks military residence area near Spout Springs. It is not associated with the Harnett County School System.

Harnett County Sheriff’s Major Jeff Huber said Mr. Dunham attacked a child at a location on the 2000 block of Josey Williams Road. The report of the incident filed with the Harnett County Sheriff’s Office indicates Mr. Dunham lives at 2260 Josey Williams Road.

Major Huber would only say that Mr. Dunham was acquainted with the child involved in the case.

Gordon Elementary School Principal Joel Grim did not release Mr. Dunham’s name, but confirmed that a contract custodial worker at his school was charged with taking indecent liberties.

Mr. Grim said the crime did not involve any military children. He would not release further information except to say the Department of Defense Education and Activities, or DODEA, is cooperating with the Harnett County Sheriff’s Office in the investigation. 

DODEA is a civilian agency of the U.S. Department of Defense that manages all schools for military children and oversees schools at American military bases throughout the world.

Mr. Grim said he has notified DODEA about the case. Courtesy The Daily Record


Cardiologist Expands Into Johnston County
Dr. Pankaj Parikh, M.D. has expanded his cardiology practice, Carolina Heart Center, into Johnston County.

Dr. Parikh is a board certified cardiologist who has twenty years of experience in the Raleigh area.

He has hospital admitting privileges at Wake Med and Rex Hospitals. His local office is at 45 Shotwell Road, Clayton.

Dr. Parikh is experienced in all areas of cardiology prevention and treatment.

He believes “a man above 40 and a woman above 45 will be wise to get a baseline heart checkup. This is especially important if one of the following is present: family history of heart disease before age 60, diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity, smoking, or high cholesterol.”
For more information or for an appointment contact 919-881-7770 or go to carolinaheartcenter.com.


Poll: Immigration Top Issue For NC Latinos

A new statewide poll commissioned by the Nation Council of La Raza Action Fund (NCLR Action Fund) and carried out by Latino Decisions, shows Latinos are generally dissatisfied with both parties, and feel both have done little outreach to the community.

More than half of respondents (54 percent) say that they have not seen any outreach efforts from campaigns or political parties asking them to register or vote this election cycle. Despite that, nearly 80 percent of participants said that they are likely to vote on Election Day.

Over the last decade and a half, the number of Latino residents in North Carolina has increased dramatically to nearly nine percent of state’s population. Latinos currently account for about two percent of North Carolina’s electorate, which could factor in to the very tight race for Senate.

“In a state like North Carolina, Latinos can make the difference in particularly tight races like the one for Senate,” said Matthew McClellan, Executive Director of the NCLR Action Fund. “With Senate candidates polling almost neck and neck statewide, Latinos are in a position to heavily influence the outcome of that race in November.”

Only 16 percent of respondents say the Republican Party is doing a good job reaching out to Latinos compared to more than 50 percent who say that the GOP either doesn’t care about Latinos or is openly hostile. Democrats, however, are faring only marginally better in this state. Thirty-one percent of those polled say Democrats are doing a good job with outreach efforts, compared to 33 percent who say they are not.

Forty percent of Latinos polled support incumbent Senator Kay Hagan, while just 15 percent support Republican challenger Thom Tillis. That leaves another 45 percent of Hispanic voters undecided.

McClellan said, “Our polling shows that Latinos aren’t tied to either party.”

Thirty-three percent of respondents ranked immigration reform as their top priority issue this election cycle, followed by the economy at 28 percent and health care at 22 percent. The poll also showed that the majority of respondents were significantly more likely to vote for candidates that support raising the minimum wage and expanding Medicaid. In contrast, almost half of voters said that Republicans’ attempts to end the deferred action program for undocumented immigrant youth would make them less likely to vote for a GOP congressional candidate.

“Although they could be a deciding factor in our state's highly contested races, it appears that politicians continue to take the North Carolina's Latino electorate for granted.  Latino voters are tired of inaction on the issues that matter most to them, and have a long memory. Candidates can no longer afford to continue to ignore this growing community and expect to be elected in North Carolina,” said Jess George, Executive Director of the North Carolina based Latin American Coalition.


Teen Charged In Garner Crime Spree

A Garner teen has been arrested and charged with multiple crimes.

Kaylah Tynee Wilson, 18, of East Garner Road, was arrested Monday at her home.

Garner Police said Wilson went to several businesses and schools under the pretense of volunteering or completing an internship. Once admitted to the building, Wilson would allegedly steal credit cards, cash, and cell phones from purses. 

The incidents happened at two schools and two businesses in Garner on September 29 and October 10. 

Wilson was charged with 7 counts of larceny, 3 counts of financial card fraud, 3 counts of fraud, 1 count of identity theft, and one count of obtaining property by false pretenses.   


Police: Driver On The Way To Buy Beer Charged With DWI
Selma Police arrested a 34 year-old man for driving while impaired following a traffic stop Friday on Elizabeth Street.

Police said they received a call from an off-duty officer reporting a reckless driver.  Officers said they located the vehicle and conducted a traffic stop.

The driver, Nathan Allen Moore of Highway 96 North, Selma allegedly told officers he was headed to the store to buy beer, according to a police report.

Moore registered 0.13 on the Breathalyzer, above the legal limit of 0.08.  He was released on a $1,500 bond. 

 

Driver Cited In Smithfield Crash
A Guilford County woman was cited for causing a two vehicle accident Tuesday afternoon on Buffalo Road at Booker Dairy Road in Smithfield.

Smithfield Police said a 2011 Ford SUV driven by Shannon Brewer Walters, 30, of McLeansville, NC failed to stop for a stoplight at the intersection and collided with a 2000 Ford truck operated by Obdulio Pacheco, 69, of River Oak Drive, Selma.

Both drivers complained of injuries after the accident. Pacheco was transported by Johnston County EMS to Johnston Medical Center in Smithfield. Walters was not transported.

Police charged Walters with a stoplight violation.

Damage to both vehicles was estimated at $8,000. Photo courtesy Robin Stallings


SJHS FFA Participates In Ag Fest
The South Johnston High School FFA chapter recently joined nearly 800 FFA students from across North Carolina for Ag Fest and Fall Fest at the University of Mount Olive (UMO). 

Students had the opportunity to learn about the agriculture degree programs at UMO as well as other academic offerings, tour the campus, and mingle with fellow FFA members from other schools.

Participants also received an Ag Fest t-shirt, were treated to dinner, and attended the University’s Fall Fest Concert featuring country music star Dustin Lynch.

Dr. Sandy Maddox, director of the Agribusiness Center at UMO said, “We couldn’t have asked for Ag Fest to be any better.  It gave students a snapshot of what our campus is like.  It can well be said, that the event was a huge success.”

 

Chromebooks Prize Patrol Visits DLC Classrooms

Participating in the Chromebook presentation at Cleveland High School (from left) are Amy Stanley, JCS Digital learning Team; John Wood, Journalism teacher at Cleveland High; Jamie Lanier, JCS Digital Learning Team; and Anthony Whitaker, Assistant Principal at Cleveland High.

Nearly 200 Chromebooks have been awarded to schools throughout Johnston County thanks to a digital learning grant opportunity.

This is the second year of the Digital Learning Coach (DLC) program, an initiative that identifies classroom teachers who are eager to learn more about digital integration ideas and commit time to professional development.  

Each school is allotted one or more teacher representatives who are selected through an application process.  These teachers meet with the Digital Learning team monthly in face to face or virtual meetings, to share best practices for technology integration and develop leadership skills. Between the two cohorts, there are currently 108 DLCs involved in this program.

This year the Johnston County School’s Digital Learning team is able to provide additional support to those who are in the program by offering a grant opportunity.  Each DLC was invited to apply for a small set of Chromebooks to be used exclusively in achieving outlined classroom goals for integration and technology implementation.  

The team is in the process of delivering the 175 Chromebook devices to the selected applicants over the next few days.  John Wood and Melissa Noel at Cleveland High were the first to receive their devices.

Additional recipients include: Tyler Daughtry at North Johnston Middle, Kaye Pearce and Samantha Lam at Smithfield-Selma High, Kimberly Ellison at Powhatan Elementary, Laura Tart and Angey Nicol at Glendale Kenly Elementary, Bridget Mozingo at Corinth Holders Elementary, Michael Price and Sylvia Bartlett at Princeton Middle High School, Katie Speer and Stacy Holloman at Micro-Pine Level Elementary, Dawn Blankenship at Early College High, Denyse Oeltjenbruns and Sarah Carroll at West View Elementary, Tamara Poland at Archer Lodge Middle, Allison Price and Natalee Whitaker at Cleveland Middle, Usha Subramaniam and Crystal Hardison at Clayton Middle, Kaitlin Olive and Tracy Caulder at East Clayton Elementary, Kelly Davis at Polenta Elementary, Cathryn Medlin at South Johnston High, Pam Phillips at South Campus High, Amanda Gosek at Selma Elementary, Sonya Kiser at North Johnston High, Cristy Jack at West Smithfield Elementary, Sharon Glenn at Smithfield Middle, Kristi Hales at Middle College, Natalie Hulbert at Cleveland Elementary, Ida Robbins and Jaclyn Thompson-Dawes at Four Oaks Middle, and Elizabeth Raynor at Four Oaks Elementary.


Deodorant, Cologne Among Items Taken During Break-In
Smithfield Police said a break-in occurred Monday on East Woodall Street.  While the homeowner was away from their residence for a short period of time, between 8am and 10am, someone forcibly entered the home and took $1,270 in property.

Among the items missing were deodorant, cologne, jewelry, a purse, and 20 of the victims shirts.

Smithfield Police have closed their investigation into the incident, according to a police report.


Pikeville Woman Found Murdered In Home
A tip about a body in a residence in Pikeville Monday night has lead to the arrest of a Wayne County man on murder charges.

Around 9pm, Wayne County deputies received a report from a concerned citizen a body was inside a home on Leavie Drive in Pikeville. Detectives executed a search warrant to the home and discovered 49 year-old Donna Diane Simpson dead in a back bedroom.

Deputies said they located Clifton Wayne Griffin who lived at the same address. He was later charged with murder. He is being held in the Wayne County Detention Center without bond.

Investigators have not said how Simpson died or her relationship to Griffin.  An autopsy is being performed by the NC Medical Examiners Office to determine an official cause of death.   


Mother, Daughter Charged In Check Scam

A mother and her daughter are facing 10 felony charges each after authorities said they used checks belonging to a deceased relative to buy merchandise.

Denise Dawson Beasley, 46, (top right) of T-Bar Road, Benson and her daughter, Megan Christina Beasley, 22, (bottom right) of US301 South, Four Oaks were arrested Sunday on charges that included obtaining property by false pretenses, forgery, and felony conspiracy.

Over a three day period in April, Johnston County sheriff’s detectives allege the women used checks belonging to Denise Beasley’s deceased mother to make various clothing purchases at Goodwill Community Foundation. 

Authorities allege the suspects presented the checks as if they were the deceased woman. 

Investigators said the women made away with about $400 in items.

Sheriff’s officials said the mother and daughter were identified from video surveillance images at the business. Both Denise and Megan Beasley were booked into the Johnston County Jail under a $150,000 bond each.   


85 Grams Of Marijuana Seized At SAFE Team Checkpoint

Johnston County SAFE Team deputies said they seized 85 grams of marijuana from a vehicle at a license checkpoint near Four Oaks on Monday.

Deputies were conducting the checkpoint in the 2700 block of Black Creek Road when a vehicle driven by 20 year-old Zachary Mann King of South Main Street, Four Oaks stopped. 

Officers said they detected an odor of marijuana coming from the vehicle. During a search of the car, marijuana was reportedly found on a seat and in a backpack. Drug paraphernalia was also found, officials said.

King was charged with felony possession of marijuana, felony possession with intent to sell or deliver marijuana, and misdemeanor possession of drug paraphernalia.  He was given a $15,250 bond on the charges.  


Edwards Family IGA Stores Mark 65th Anniversary
If you are shopping for groceries in a locally owned Edwards IGA store, be sure to wish them a “Happy 65th Anniversary.”

The Edwards family stores have been in business for 65 years.

Joe Edwards operated the first store in 1948 in Princeton. Other stores to follow were located in Kenly, Selma, Four Oaks, LaGrange, Rockingham, Benson, Pikeville, and Smithfield. Melvin Edwards was the CEO of the organization.

Today, three stores remain under the Edwards family organization. These stores are Smithfield, Four Oaks, and Rockingham.

Owners/operators are Bruce Edwards, Bill Joe Edwards, Melvin Edwards, and Russell Edwards.

Bill Joe Edwards told WTSB news that the Edwards IGA success and longevity have come because of “good Christian morals, fairness, and having good employees.”


Business Closes For Renovations
Chick fil-A of Smithfield, located at 1300 North Bright Leaf Boulevard in Smithfield, across from Wal-Mart, has closed for renovations.

The owner-operator Keith Dimsdale tells WTSB News that the store will be closed until early November.

When it reopens, Dimsdale says, it will have a new look both inside and outside. The inside will have new colors and all new seating.

“We’re real excited about the new look, and we look forward to seeing our customers again in early November,” he added.


JoCo Teen Drivers Very Active This Fall
Need Community Help To Win Contest

The JoCo Teen Drivers are back in full swing at the start of the 2014-15 school year. Starting in September a group of teen leaders met at the Johnston Medical Mall auditorium for training. At the training were representatives from all Johnston County high schools, law enforcement, Sheriff Steve Bizzell, and county leaders including Rick Hester, Johnston County Manager.

Students discussed ways they could motivate their peers to use safer driving practices. They also discussed and planned initiatives they will lead each month at their perspective high schools.

The news media was present to showcase how Johnston County teens are leading the state in making an impact in decreasing traffic fatalities and accidents.

A kick-off luncheon was held on Monday with a speaker from the NC Highway Patrol.

Other events taking place include on Saturday, October 18th a Street Safe Event at West Johnston High School and October 15-24 a Celebrate My Drive contest. Because Johnston County administrators and students are committed to keeping teens safe on our roads, they are asking everyone to go to www.celebratemydrive.com once a day, every day from October 15 through October 24.

The more safe driving commitments the community makes, the better the chance to win a $100,000 grant and a private concert by The Band Perry. In addition, October 20-24 is National Teen Safe Drivers Week. To learn more about JoCo Teen Drivers go to www.jocoteendrivers.com.


Time To Pay More Attention To Deer On The Roadways
2013 Marked 4th-straight year of more than 20,000 animal-related crashes in N.C.

The arrival of the fall season not only means dropping temperatures and leaves, but also an increase in the chances of a collision with a deer across North Carolina. Between 2011 and 2013, nearly half of the more than 61,000 animal-related crashes took place in October through December.  About 90 percent of those involved deer.

A N.C. Department of Transportation study shows that in 2013, there were 20,308 animal-related crashes, a slight increase over the 2012 figure, but still well below the numbers reported in 2010 and 2011.

Over the past three years, animal-related crashes claimed 18 lives, injured more than 3,400 drivers and passengers, and caused more than $149 million in damages.

“Drivers need to be careful on the roads all the time, but even more so over the next few months,” said NCDOT Director of Mobility and Safety Kevin Lacy.  “Increased deer activity and decreasing daylight hours mean vigilance by motorists needs to increase for their own safety and the safety of others.”

For the 11th year in a row, Wake County led all counties in the number of animal-related crashes with 1,135, a slight increase over 2012 figures. That is primarily due to the combination of decreasing amounts of wooded area in the county and the increasing number of drivers and road mile usage.

Guilford County had more than 500 fewer animal-related crashes (620) and was the runner-up for a second year in a row.  Duplin and Pitt counties tied for third with 539 animal-related crashes, followed by Randolph (499) and Johnston (492) counties. Rounding out the top 10 were Columbus, Rockingham, Mecklenburg and Pender counties.

Counties in the far western section of the state, where there are considerably fewer drivers and road mileage, once again reported the lowest number of crashes. Swain County had the fewest number of animal-related crashes with 5, falling just below Graham (9) and Jackson (11) counties.

Deer are on the roadways more during the fall into winter months due to the hunting and mating seasons. They also travel more at dawn and as it grows dark in the evenings, with the largest number of crashes coming between 5 and 8 a.m., and 6 and 10 p.m. (WTSB File Photo - 2011 car and deer collision on I-40 in Johnston County.)

Flash Poll: Rabin Leads Langley
Incumbent Republican Senator Ron Rabin (pictured) leads Democrat challenger Joe Langley by 12 points in the state Senate District 12 race, according to a new Flash Poll released Friday by the Civitas Institute.

In the flash poll, 300 registered voters from the district in Harnett, Johnston and Lee counties were interviewed Oct. 7-8. The survey had a margin of error of 5.8 percent.
In the poll, 54 percent said they planned to vote for Rabin; 42 percent picked Langley. Four percent were undecided.

Asked their opinion of Rabin, 29% had an unfavorable opinion, 27% favorable, 34% were neutral, and 9% had no opinion.  Langley had a 20% favorable rating, 17% unfavorable, 41% were neutral, and 22% had no opinion.
Asked if they approved of the job Barack Obama is doing as president, 30 percent approved, 65 percent disapproved, and 5 percent were not sure.

Fifty-three percent approved of the job Pat McCrory is doing as governor, while 41 percent disapproved and 6 percent were not sure.

Fifty-one percent favored Republic Thom Tillis in the U.S. Senate race, 38 percent preferred Democratic Sen. Kay Hagan, and 8 percent named Libertarian Sean Haugh, with 3 percent undecided.

The Civitas Institute – “North Carolina’s Conservative Voice” – is a policy institute based in Raleigh.