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Bladen County Sheriff’s Office seeking information in deadly shooting

The Bladen County Sheriff’s Office is asking for anyone with information regarding the identities of the suspects in a shooting that left one immigrant dead on Friday night. The shooting occurred on Oakview Trail near Elizabethtown. Leonardo Zongua, 33, was shot and killed during the robbery attempt. Chief Deputy Larry Guyton said the purse of the victim’s wife was stolen during the incident and she told investigators it had her paperwork in it. Bladen County Sheriff’s Office Chief Deputy Larry Guyton said, “We do believe they (the suspects) are local.” The suspects are described as a group of 4 to 6 black males who appeared to be in their late …..

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Town of Clarkton requests Sheriff’s Office assistance

By: Erin Smith The town of Clarkton recently sent a request to the Bladen County Sheriff’s Office for two deputies to be assigned to patrol the town. Bladen County Chief Deputy Larry Guyton said the Sheriff’s Office has submitted a cost estimate for the Clarkton Town Board to consider.  Chief Deputy Guyton said, “Basically, the deputies would be hired by the Sheriff’s Office and be assigned to Clarkton and their salaries, equipment and stuff would be reimbursed by the town. My understanding right now we have given them an estimate of what that would cost. We’re just waiting to hear back from them whether they decide to do it or …..

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Sheriff’s Office to open substation at Oakdale Homes

By: Erin Smith The Housing Authority in Clarkton has offered an office space at Oakdale Homes to the Bladen County Sheriff’s Office to be utilized as a substation, according to Bladen County Chief Deputy Larry Guyton. He said the offer came prior to last week’s shooting at the apartment complex and is a separate from a request from the Clarkton Town Board for two deputies to patrol the town. He said the office at Oakdale Homes will provide officers with a space where they can go and write a report, use the telephone, have access to internet, or if they need to interview someone rather than traveling to the Sheriff’s …..

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Answers still sought in Bladen County 2015 disappearance

By: Erin Smith The family of a Bladen County woman who has been missing since 2015 is still seeking clues as to her whereabouts. Bladen County Chief Deputy Larry Guyton said the Sheriff’s Office does have a person of interest in the case and investigators continue to pursue tips received from the public. “It’s still an open case,” said Chief Deputy Guyton. The family made a plea on Monday using Facebook, asking for leads in the case. On Tuesday morning, Chief Deputy Guyton said someone had been in contact with the Sheriff’s Office with new information. “A lady called in this morning and gave us some information on it,” said Chief …..

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Man arrested in Clarkton shooting makes first court appearance

The man charged in the shooting death of Lonnie Level Smith of Clarkton made his first appearance in court Monday before Judge William Fairley. Harold Eugene Swindell, 47, of Clarkton, is charged with first degree murder and felony possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. He is currently being held without bond. If convicted of first degree murder, Swindell could be facing the death penalty. No bond was set. Judge Fairley told Mr. Swindell he will be submitting his application for an attorney to the Indigent Defenders’ Office in Durham. The Indigent Defenders’ Office will appoint an attorney to represent Swindell. A probable cause hearing is scheduled for June …..

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Swindell turns himself in on murder charge in Clarkton shooting

The man accused of shooting to death Lonnie Level Smith on Wednesday at a Clarkton housing community turned himself in to authorities Saturday morning, Bladen County Sheriff James McVicker said. Harold Eugene Swindell, 47, of South Page Road in Clarkton, is charged with first degree murder and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. He turned himself in about 10 a.m. Saturday at the Bladen County jail in Elizabethtown, McVicker said. He is expected to have a first appearance hearing Monday in Bladen County District Court. Smith, 38, of Jasmine Lane of Clarkton, was shot and killed during an altercation in the parking lot at Oakdale Homes in Clarkton …..

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Migrant worker shot dead Friday night during home robbery

A migrant worker was shot and killed during a struggle Friday night during a home robbery on Oakview Trail in Elizabethtown, Bladen County Sheriff James McVicker said. Oakview Trail is about three miles north of downtown Elizabethtown off Willard Tatum Road on the way to White Lake via U.S. 701. Leonardo Zongua, 33, was shot at least twice during the robbery, McVicker said. He was taken to Bladen County Hospital where he was pronounced dead. The incident began about 9:30 p.m. Friday when six people were outside of their rented mobile home and were approached by “several black males described as being in their late teens to early 20s,” McVicker …..

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Crime Report

Elizabethtown PD still following leads in murder

The Elizabethtown Police Department are still following leads in the murder investigation of an immigrant that took place in June at 902 Church Street in Elizabethtown. According to investigators, the murder was the result of a home invasion-type robbery. “By no means is this case closed,” said Lt. D. Cheshire. He said there are several persons of interest and leads that are still being investigated. The NC State Bureau of Investigation is also assisting the department in the case. Lt. Cheshire said authorities believe the individual or individuals responsible for the crime were familiar with the area. The victim, Blandio Nolasco Morales, 24 years of age, was a farm laborer. …..

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Bladen County Warrants Obtained in Clarkton Shooting

Sheriff James A. McVicker announced this afternoon that warrants have been obtained on Harold Eugene Swindell, 47 of 245 South Page Road, Clarkton for the murder of Lonnie Level Smith, 38 of 225 Jasmine Lane, Clarkton. “My Investigators have been working this case since yesterday afternoon and today were able to obtain enough probable cause to obtain a warrant for First Degree Murder and Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon on Swindell,” said McVicker. “We have reason to believe Swindell is still in the state and we are asking anyone with any information on his location to please contact us at 910-862- 6960.” McVicker said Swindell should be …..

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Bladen County Sheriff's Department

Shooting Update 2: Investigation continuing in Clarkton shooting

An investigation into the Clarkton shooting death of Lonnie Smith is continuing and no arrests have been made as of Thursday morning. According to Bladen County Chief Deputy Larry Guyton, investigators are still continuing to question suspects. Chief Deputy Guyton, told Bladen Online the shooting occurred at about 6:05 p.m. at Oakdale Homes in Clarkton. Two individuals were detained for questioning at that time.  The father of the victim, Bernard Kemp, told Bladen Online at the hospital his son, Lonnie Smith of Jasmine Lane in Clarkton, was shot multiple times and had died as a result of his injuries. Ms. Augusta Smith is the mother of the 37 year old deceased man …..

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Bladen County Opiate Related Deaths go from 0-5

In the past ten years opioid addictions have turned into a crisis. North Carolina Governor, Roy Cooper reported on new data released on May 16th, showing a sobering local impact of the opioid crisis. In 2015, there were more than 1,100 opioid-related deaths, a 73 percent increase from 2005 according to the newly released data. Bladen County Opiate related deaths went from 0 in 2005 to 5 Opiate Related deaths in 2015. “Opioid addiction is devastating families across the nation,” said Governor Cooper. “This is a uniquely challenging crisis for our communities and will require a new level of collaboration between law enforcement, treatment-providers, and those in recovery. I am …..

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Bladen County man dies from gun shot wounds

UPDATE: Bladen County Chief Deputy Larry Guyton first reported the shooting on Wednesday evening. The shooting occurred at Oakdale Homes. One person was shot on Wednesday afternoon in Clarkton and two people have been detained for questioning, according to Guyton’s report. Chief Deputy Guyton told BladenOnline that the victim, a male, was in serious condition when he was transported by Bladen County EMS to Cape Fear Valley-Bladen Hospital. While at the hospital in Bladen County, Mr. Bernard Kemp, introduced as the father of the victim, told a BladenOnline.com reporter his oldest son [Mr. Lonnie Smith] had been shot multiple times. Mr. Kemp said the hospital staff informed him his son died. The hospital …..

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Bladen County Sheriff's Department

Shooting In Clarkton

UPDATE: Bladen County Chief Deputy Larry Guyton first reported the shooting on Wednesday evening. The shooting occurred at Oakdale Homes. One person was shot on Wednesday afternoon in Clarkton and two people have been detained for questioning, according to Guyton’s report. Chief Deputy Guyton told BladenOnline that the victim, a male, was in serious condition when he was transported by Bladen County EMS to Cape Fear Valley-Bladen Hospital. While at the hospital in Bladen County, Mr. Bernard Kemp, introduced as the father of the victim, told BladenOnline.com reporter his oldest son [Mr. Lonnie Smith] had been shot multiple times. Mr. Kemp said the hospital staff informed him his son died. The hospital parking …..

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Bladen County employees receive critical incident training

Bladen County employees were presented training by the Bladen County Sheriff’s Office for Critical Incidents last week. This training fosters work place safety and awareness concepts. Bladen County Sheriff Jim McVicker wanted this training completed to enhance employee safety at work and at home, according to Sgt. Gary Turlington of the BCSO Training Division. Additionally, through employee awareness the community is better prepared by having these leaders trained in Crisis Response ideology. Bladen County Manager Greg Martin’s office fully supported the training session, stated Sgt. Turlington. “Safety is a lifestyle and mindset. It doesn’t favor the untrained and unprepared,” said Sgt. Turlington. According to Turlington, there were six classes delivered …..

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Council man sentenced for sex offense with minor

A Council man plead guilty to statutory sex offense against a minor Monday in Bladen County Superior Court and was sentenced up to 21 years  in prison, according to the District Attorney’s Office. John Wayne Parks, 58, of Railroad Street, was sentenced to between 166 months and 260 months in the N.C. Department of Corrections under the agreement with the state. Parks was arrested in March 2015 following an investigation by the Bladen County Sheriff’s Office. The case began in December 2014 when a 14-year-old victim told authorities that she had been inappropriately touched in her genital area by Parks while the two were on a hunting trip in Bladen …..

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Former teacher makes first appearance on charges

A former West Bladen High School teacher made her first appearance in court on Monday afternoon.  Bladen County Clerk of Superior Court Nikki Dennis presided over the proceedings. Shanna May Harrelson, 38, of Clarkton, was asked if she had seen the charges against her and she replied no. Dennis explained to Harrelson she could have either a court appointed attorney or she could hire an attorney of her choice. Dennis allowed Harrelson to complete the affidavit for a court appointed attorney and Andrew Wall was appointed to serve as her attorney. Assistant District Attorney Alisha Benjamin read the charges against Harrelson in court. The charges are as follows: disseminating obscene …..

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Crime Report

Man Pleads Guilty to Armed Robbery of Riegelwood Federal Credit Union

GREENVILLE –United States Attorney John Stuart Bruce announced that today in federal court before United States Magistrate Judge Kimberly A. Swank, BORENZO CORTEZ PATRICK pled guilty to Armed Bank Robbery and to Brandishing a Firearm in Furtherance of a Crime of Violence. During the defendant’s guilty plea hearing, the Government summarized the evidence supporting the defendant’s guilty plea. The evidence established that on December 22, 2016, at approximately 8:16 a.m., PATRICK robbed the Riegelwood Federal Credit Union (RFCU), located at 2065 Andrew Jackson Highway, Leland, NC, at gunpoint. During the robbery, PATRICK conducted a violent armed takeover of the credit union, and was carrying an AK-47 style assault rifle. Though …..

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Bladen County Teacher charged with sex crime

  • 05/12/2017
  • Crime
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A West Bladen High School science teacher was charged Friday with sexual activity involving a student, Bladen County Sheriff James McVicker said. Shanna May Harrelson, 38, of 3082 US 701 South in Clarkton, was arrested on charges of disseminating obscene material to a minor, crimes against nature and committing a sex act with a student, according to the Sheriff’s Office. Harrelson was placed under a $55,000 secured bond and is expected to have a first appearance hearing in Bladen County District Court on Monday. Harrelson was suspended without pay Friday by Bladen County Schools, it was announced. Harrelson had been suspended with pay April 26, the school system said in …..

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Bladen County Teacher charged with sex crime

A West Bladen High School science teacher was charged Friday with sexual activity involving a student, Bladen County Sheriff James McVicker said. Shanna May Harrelson, 38, of 3082 US 701 South in Clarkton, was arrested on charges of disseminating obscene material to a minor, crimes against nature and committing a sex act with a student, according to the Sheriff’s Office. Harrelson was placed under a $55,000 secured bond and is expected to have a first appearance hearing in Bladen County District Court on Monday. Harrelson was suspended without pay Friday by Bladen County Schools, it was announced. Harrelson had been suspended with pay April 26, the school system said in …..

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Crime: Counterfeit bill passed in Elizabethtown

A man passed a counterfeit bill in Elizabethtown, according to the Elizabethtown Police Department. On Monday, May 1, at about 9:57 p.m. a man walked into the Pizza Hut and asked for change for a $100. According to Lt. Cheshire, the clerk gave the man five $20 bills in exchange for the $100 bill. Shortly after the man left, it was discovered the $100 bill was counterfeit. Lt. Cheshire said the investigation into the incident is ongoing. Share:

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Department of Public Safety names three new prison administrators

RALEIGH – The Division of Adult Correction and Juvenile Justice has named new administrators at three state prisons. Ken Beaver will serve as the administrator at Alexander Correctional Institution in Taylorsville. Beaver is a long-time assistant superintendent for custody and operations at Lanesboro Correctional Institution in Polkton, who served under the past four Lanesboro administrators.  He replaces Susan White, who retired. Beaver began his career in 1991 as a correctional officer at Piedmont Correctional Institution in Salisbury. He advanced to the rank of captain there before transferring to Lanesboro as an assistant superintendent.   He serves as a DPS general instructor and is a graduate of the NCDPS Correctional Leadership …..

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Arrest Made in Armed Robbery

Bladen County Sheriff James A. McVicker announced the arrest Thursday, May 4, of Abdul Jabbar Tucker, 32, of 368 Lawrence Brown Road, Bladenboro. Tucker was charged with Robbery With a Dangerous Weapon. Deputies began an investigation when the victims, Karkie Lamont Henry, 36 of 854 Clyde Hatcher Road, Council and Celestal Antonise Miles, 36, of 403 South Canal Street, Rowland, NC went to the Handee Hugo’s store on North Main Street in Bladenboro and reported they had been robbed at the home of Tucker. The victims said they were at the residence visiting when Tucker produced a handgun and forced them to turn over $1,900.00 in cash. Investigators arrested Tucker …..

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Sheriff’s Office Seeking Information on Missing Bladenboro man

Sheriff James A. McVicker is seeking help from the public to locate Sanford Hardin Jr., 39, of 189 Hester Mill Road, Bladenboro. Hardin was last seen April 6, 2017. Hardin is an Indian male, 5 foot 9 inches tall, and weighs 160 pounds with black hair, brown eyes and a beard. Hardin’s last known location was near mile marker No. 3, on Interstate 95, just north of the North Carolina, South Carolina border. Hardin was operating a Black 2011 Toyota Tundra pickup, with North Carolina registration CAE-5269. He was pulling a 1985 Mako Model 238 boat with registration number NC-5073EC. The boat has the name Megan Marie written on the …..

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Bladen County Sheriff's Department

Undercover Work Yields Arrests

Bladen County Sheriff James A. McVicker announced several arrests that have occurred recently based on undercover work by the Narcotics Division and other arrests made in conjunction with North Carolina Probation and Parole officers. *Anthony Porter, 47, of 1677 Maysville Lane, Tar Heel was arrested following a search of his residence by Sheriff’s Deputies and Probation Officers. The search revealed an indoor marijuana grow operation. Porter was charged with Manufacturing Marijuana and Possession of a Firearm by Felon and Probation Violation. Porter’s bond was set at $2 million. This was his 109th criminal charge since the age of 16. *A recent undercover narcotics buy operation resulted in the arrest of …..

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Inmate Dies in Apparent Suicide

BURGAW: Inmate Dennis Dickerson (#0940575) died this morning at Pender Correctional Institution after an apparent suicide. Dickerson was found unresponsive in his cell at about 6:07 a.m. Prison medical staff and local paramedics responded and worked to resuscitate the inmate, but were unsuccessful. Dickerson was serving a 6-year, 10-month sentence after convictions as a habitual felon and for possession of a firearm by a felon. He was scheduled to be released on July 15, 2022. Share:

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Funeral set for Sgt. Meggan Callahan

A North Carolina Corrections Officers will be laid to rest this week. Sgt. Meggan Lee Callahan’s funeral service will be held at Edenton United Methodist Church according to a N.C. Department of Public Safety news release.  The funeral will be held on Thursday, May 4th at 225 Virginia Road in Edenton. An inmate serving a life sentence for a first degree murder conviction 13 years ago was charged Friday with the killing of Bertie Correctional Institution Sgt. Meggan Lee Callahan, according to a N.C. Department of Public Safety news release. READ MORE Share:

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Fayetteville Man Sentenced for Drug and Firearm Offenses

RALEIGH – The United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of North Carolina announced that in federal court today, Chief United States District Judge James C. Dever, III, sentenced Darius Jerome Bradley, 28, of Fayetteville, NC to 204 months of imprisonment followed by 5 years of supervised release. Bradley was named in a three-count indictment filed on August 2, 2016. On October 25, 2016, Bradley pled guilty to possession with intent to distribute a quantity of marijuana and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime. On January 10, 2016, officers with the Fayetteville Police Department (FPD) responded to an anonymous call from a concerned citizen …..

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Bladen County Sheriff’s Office needs help identifying suspect

By: Erin Smith The Bladen County Sheriff’s Office is asking for the public’s help in identifying the suspect in the Tar Heel Dollar General robbery. Chief Deputy Larry Guyton said the incident happened just prior to the store’s closing on Saturday.  Two clerks were working in the store at the time of the incident but no one was injured. According to Guyton, the suspect walked into the store at about 10 p.m. and walked around but did not make any purchases. The suspect then approached the clerk and produced a gun and left with a small amount of money. “A nearby resident saw a black male running down Main Street …..

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SAMPSON COUNTY DRUG TRAFFICKER SENTENCED FOR COCAINE, METHAMPHETAMINE, AND MARIJUANA CONSPIRACY AND MONEY LAUNDERING CONSPIRACY; TEXAS MAN SENTENCED FOR MONEY LAUNDERING CONSPIRACY

RALEIGH – The United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of North Carolina announced that in federal court on April 26, 2017, United States District Judge Terrence W. Boyle sentenced MARTIN ACOSTA, from Sampson County, North Carolina, to 420 months in prison and 5 years of supervised release for conspiracy to distribute and possess with the intent to distribute five kilograms or more of cocaine, five hundred grams or more of methamphetamine, and one hundred kilograms or more of marijuana, as well as conspiracy to launder monetary instruments. ACOSTA pled guilty to these charges on August 1, 2016. Judge Boyle also sentenced codefendant NOE BARREIRO, from McAllen, Texas, to …..

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Elizabethtown Police respond to report of suspicious person on Glenwood Drive

By: Erin Smith The Elizabethtown Police Department responded to a report of a suspicious person early Monday morning in the vicinity of 503 Glenwood Drive, according to Lt. Mark McMichael.  Officers were performing a traffic check near Glenwood Drive at about midnight when the call was received. Lt. McMichael said the officers located the reporting party in the middle of the street and learned the property owner’s wife had said someone was shaking the front door as if they were trying to get into the home. The individual is described as a male wearing a brown jacket with a hood. “The person the officers made contact with shot into the …..

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Crime Report

Sheriff’s Office seeking suspect in Tar Heel robbery

By: Erin Smith The Bladen County Sheriff’s Office is searching for a person of interest in the robbery of the Tar Heel Dollar General. According to Bladen County Chief Deputy Larry Guyton, the incident happened shortly before the store closed.  He said two clerks were working in the store at the time and no one was injured. Guyton said a black male entered the store just before 10 p.m. and walked around the store but made no purchases. He said the man then approached the clerk at the front of the store and produced a hand gun. Guyton said the man left the store with a small amount of money. …..

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Crime: North Carolina to Participate in Learning Lab to Fight Opioid Addiction

State One of Eight Selected by NGA to Develop Opioid Treatment for Inmates North Carolina is one of only eight states nationwide selected to participate in a learning lab to find better ways to fight opioid addiction among prison inmates, Governor Roy Cooper announced today. The National Governors Association selected North Carolina to participate in the effort along with Alaska, Indiana, Kansas, Minnesota, New Jersey, Virginia and Washington. Through the learning lab, North Carolina and the other participating states will develop and execute six-month strategic action plans to treat the epidemic of opioid addiction in prisons. The plans will include steps for creating policy and aligning programs across relevant agencies …..

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Tar Heel Dollar General robbed Saturday night

By: Erin Smith The Dollar General store located at Dollar General at 14430 NC 87 Hwy W in Tar Heel was robbed on Saturday night at about 10 p.m. according to Tar Heel Mayor Roy Dew. Dew said the robbery occurred as the employees were closing for the evening. The local store was back up with normal business hours on Sunday. Check back with BladenOnline.com for more details as they become available. Update: Sheriff’s Office seeking suspect in Tar Heel robbery. READ MORE Share:

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Inmate charged with murder in Bertie Correctional sergeant’s death

WINDSOR – An inmate serving a life sentence for a first degree murder conviction 13 years ago was charged Friday with the killing of Bertie Correctional Institution Sgt. Meggan Lee Callahan, according to a N.C. Department of Publc Safety news release. Craig Wissink was charged with murder after the death of the 26-year-old officer after the attack, which took place about 5:30 p.m. Wednesday afternoon. Callahan died about an hour after the assault, according to the state agency. The news release said that Callahan got a fire extinguisher in an attempt to put out a fire at the facility Wednesday afternoon. Wissink immediately attacked Callahan and managed to use the …..

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North Carolina flags were ordered lowered to half-staff in honor of fallen Corrections officer

Flags at the Bladen County Fallen Officers memorial were flying at half-staff on Thursday in honor of a fallen Corrections officer. Governor Cooper has ordered that state flags are to fly at half-staff in honor and remembrance of Sgt. Megan Lee Callahan. Flags are to remain at half-staff until sunset on Friday, April 28, 2017. Sgt. Callahan served as a Corrections officer at the Bertie Correctional Institution where she was attacked by an inmate at about 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday. According to the Raleigh News and Observer, inmate Craig Wissink is suspected of the attack on Sgt. Callahan. The officer had been employed with the North Carolina Department of Corrections since 2012. …..

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Bertie correctional sergeant dies after assault by inmate

WINDSOR – A sergeant at Bertie Correctional Institution has died following an assault by an inmate about 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, according to a N.C. Department of Public Safety news release. Sgt. Megan Lee Callahan, 29, died about 6:20 p.m. despite life saving measures conducted by Bertie Correctional Institution medical staff and local first responders, the release said. Craig Wissink, who is serving a life sentence for a first degree murder conviction in 2004 in Cumberland County, is being investigated in connection with the Callahan’s death. “I am deeply saddened and send my heartfelt sympathies to Sgt. Callahan’s family,” Public Safety Secretary Erik Hooks said. “We will do all we can …..

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New Executive Director of Governor’s Crime Commission Named

RALEIGH – Department of Public Safety Secretary Erik Hooks has named Caroline C. Valand as the next executive director of the Governor’s Crime Commission.  She begins her new duties May 1. “Caroline is a strategic thinker and consensus builder and will work well managing the Governor’s Crime Commission staff,” said Hooks.  “She has worked with CEOs and elected officials, and we look forward to her high-energy, results-oriented leadership.” Most recently, Valand served as chief of staff to the president and CEO of 3D Systems in Rock Hill where she oversaw the planning and execution of administrative and operational activities of the company. Prior to that time, Valand served as chief of staff …..

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BladenOnline.com Roundtable Discussions Series on Opioid Epidemic: HB 243

 BladenOnline.com‘s roundtable discussions on the opioid epidemic in North Carolina and Bladen County continues this week with a look at NC House Bill 243 known as the “The STOP Act.” NC Rep. Brenden Jones was a co-sponsor of the bill. His comments regarding the bill are below: “Over the last several years, there has been an ongoing opioid abuse problem across the country.  In North Carolina, we have 4 of the top 25 cities in the country for opioid abuse rate.*  This is a crisis that is causing people to lose their lives, displacing families, and wreaking havoc on many neighborhoods. What HB243 does is attempt to address this problem …..

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Crash at NC 41 West and Marsh Road temporarily closes road

By Erin Smith A crash on Monday morning at the intersection of NC 41 West and Marsh Road resulted in the temporary closing of NC 41 West.  The road has since re-opened to traffic. According to the North Carolina State Highway Patrol Troopers on the scene, four people were transported to Cape Fear Valley-Bladen Healthcare with minor injuries. According to Troopers, the driver of a small pickup truck was traveling eastbound on NC 41 when the truck hydroplaned on the roadway and turned sideways into the path of a car. The names of the drivers and passengers were not immediately available. Charges are pending against the driver of the pickup …..

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One felon reported voting in Bladen County 2016 elections

SBE: SBE Releases Post-Election Report for 2016 General Election RALEIGH, N.C. – The N.C. State Board of Elections on Friday released a report detailing findings of post-election audits and investigations into irregularities following the 2016 elections.  The Post-Election Audit Report: General Election 2016 was prepared in response to inquiries from members of Congress, state lawmakers, media organizations and the general public. The following is a statement from Kim Westbrook Strach, executive director of the State Board of Elections: “This report reflects our agency’s commitment to transparency in its effort to investigate election irregularities and fraud, as required by state law. It also provides necessary context to a complicated issue. Our …..

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Crime: Elizabethtown couple arrested on drugs charges after search of home

On Friday, April 21, 2017, at approximately 7 a.m. Bladen County Probation and Parole Officers requested the assistance of the Elizabethtown Police Department and Bladen County Sheriff’s Department to conduct a search of a residence at 412 South Lower Street after receiving complaints of possible drug activity at the residence. Arlene Rhoda and Tracy Custis both who are currently on active probation, were arrested after investigators discovered and seized 125.8 grams of Marijuana under a bed in the residence and another 5.6 grams in a vehicle located on the property along with $448 in currency.  Rhoda and Custis were charged with Possession with the Intent to Sell/Deliver Marijuana, Maintaining a …..

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Crime: SBI Reviews Cold Cases with New Technology

RALEIGH – The SBI is inspecting unsolved murder case files using new technology and old warhorses to garner evidence for potential convictions. A grant from the Governor’s Crime Commission is allowing the SBI to contract with 10 retired SBI agents and several law school students to examine cold homicide cases. “Retesting evidence using the latest DNA or forensic technology may yield new information that could result in arrests,” said SBI’s attorney, Angel Gray, who is overseeing the cold case project. “The lack of evidence to convict a suspect is one of the most common reasons that cases remain unsolved.” The SBI retirees, all former homicide investigators, would like to hear …..

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Crime: Department of Public Safety Appoints New Directors of Prisons, Community Corrections

RALEIGH – Secretary Erik A. Hooks of the Department of Public Safety today named two senior administrators to new leadership roles as Director of Prisons and Director of Community Corrections. Kenneth Lassiter will serve as Director of Prisons, while Tracy Lee will become the Director of Community Corrections. Both appointments are effective May 1. Lassiter will replace George Solomon, who is retiring after 33 years of service. Lassiter will oversee 55 state prisons that house more than 36,500 inmates. The state prison system has a budget of approximately $1.2 billion and more than 17,000 employees. Lassiter is a 28-year corrections veteran who has served for the past three years as …..

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Crime: Elizabethtown man arrested on indecent liberties charges

On April 20, 2017, at approximately 6 a.m. Agent Shawn Ellerby of the State Bureau of Investigations and Detective Sergeant Jeffrey Guyton of the Elizabethtown Police Department initiated an arrest of William Bryan Clark at 305 Glenwood Drive, Elizabethtown, NC. William Clark was charged with two counts of indecent liberties with a child. This arrest came as a result of an ongoing investigation by agent Shawn Ellerby and the State Bureau of Investigation’s Computer Crime Unit with assistance from Elizabethtown Police Department’s criminal investigators Jeffrey Guyton and Willie Thompson. William Bryan Clark is currently being held in Bladen County Jail under a $100,000.00 secured bond. Share:

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New staff needed to for new detention center in Bladen County

The Bladen County Board of Commissioners heard about staffing needs from the Sheriff at the meeting on Tuesday, April 18th. “I’m here tonight to propose three new detention officers for the new detention center and two new Deputy Sheriffs to work in the new law enforcement center,” Bladen County Sheriff McVicker stated. Sheriff McVicker gave commissioners examples of staffing need to operate other law enforcement centers and detention centers across the state similar to the new facility in Bladen County. Cogdell asked if five new staff members would be enough. McVicker explained he was trying to ask for the bare minimal for now. Our jail inspector, Mr. Charles Brown, will …..

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FedEx deliveries may be delayed due to wreck

Thursday afternoon rain came with little warning in some parts of Bladen County. The rain along with speed was a factor in a single vehicle wreck involving a FedEx truck according to Highway Patrol officer Jason Weissinger. According to the trooper’s report FedEx driver, Raymond Thomas from Pembroke was traveling south on NC Hwy 131 and crossed the centerline, ran out of road to the left and struck a ditch causing the delivery truck to overturn. Thomas was charged with exceeding a safe speed due to rain, according to Weissinger. No injuries were reported. The truck did have packages on board. As our staff was leaving more FedEx truck drivers were …..

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Reducing the use of segregation allows prisons to provide new programs and treatment

RALEIGH – As part of its overall effort to assign new missions to prison facilities across the state, the North Carolina Department of Public Safety is working to reduce the use of segregation — also known as solitary confinement or restrictive housing— and to improve mental health and reentry services for inmates.  NCDPS has accepted a report by the Vera Institute of Justice that analyzes the state’s use of segregation and provides recommendations for further reducing its use. NCDPS is incorporating the report’s findings and recommendations into its continuing re-missioning work. “In addition to making many recommendations that will help us continue reducing segregation’s use, Vera’s year-long review also validated …..

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UPDATE: Missing Charlotte 11-year-old found safe in Washington, DC

An Amber Alert for a missing 11-year-old girl from Charlotte has been cancelled after she was found safe. Arieyana Simone Forney was found after the Washington, DC  Police located the car and it crashed. According to reports, one man has been arrested in the incident. The Amber Alert was issued after Charlotte Police were called to home on Glenncannon Drive where Forney’s grandparents were found murdered. Police and firefighters were called to the residence at about 11 a.m. and found the bodies inside and learned Forney was missing. According to reports, Police have not stated how the individuals died. Share:

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Statewide Amber Alert issued for missing 11-year-old child

UPDATE: Missing Charlotte 11-year-old found safe in Washington, DC http://bit.ly/2otayfn A statewide Amber Alert was issued by Charlotte Police on Sunday afternoon for a missing 11-year-old girl. Arieyana Simone Forney was discovered to be missing after police were called to a home on Glenncannon Drive in Charlotte and discovered the bodies of two adults there. Police told Time Warner Cable News of Charlotte that Forney resided in the home with the two victims. While Police are calling the incident a homicide, officials did tell Time Warner Cable News there were no signs of trauma on the bodies. Arieyana Simone Forney is a 11-year-old Black female, approximately 5 feet 3 inches tall, …..

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Bladen vehicle stolen, and located

A big thank you to law enforcement went out after a vehicle was stolen in Bladen County. According to Eric Davis of Bladenboro, his vehicle was stolen on Wednesday, March 29th in Bladen County. Davis said he contacted law enforcement immediately. The vehicle was recovered without damages a hour and half later thanks to team work between law enforcement divisions. “I want to say thank you to the Bladen County Sheriff’s Department and the Highway Patrol in Bladen and Columbus Counties for their work in recovering my vehicle,” Davis said. Share:

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Bladen among counties involved in $11 million insurance scam settlement

North Carolina Insurance Commissioner Mike Causey announced Wednesday the conviction of two retired insurance agents, Milton Hooks, 72, of Rocky Mount and James Mangum, 69, of Tarboro on six counts each of obtaining property by false pretense. The case was the result of an extensive seven-year investigation in 14 counties, including Bladen, conducted by the NC Department of Insurance’s Criminal Investigation Division. Hooks and Mangum targeted senior citizens in a regional scam that involved the reallocation of money people had in savings and insurance policies. “Preying on our senior citizens is wrong,” said Causey. “I am pleased NCDOI criminal investigators were able to recover nearly $11 million in this important …..

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Charlotte man sentenced after high speed chase in August

A Charlotte man who led authorities on a high speed chase in August plead guilty Wednesday in Bladen County Superior Court to assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill and fleeing to elude arrest. Gebreal Moss, 23, was sentenced to between 36 and 56 months in state custody, according to the Bladen County District Attorney’s office. Members of the Bladen County Sheriff’s Office and Elizabethtown Police Department had set up a license check station at the foot of the Cape Fear River Bridge near the entrance to Tory Hole Park after midnight on Aug. 7, according to a report. As Moss’ 2006 Honda Civic approached the station, it …..

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Horne sentenced for theft, stolen item had tracking device attached

An Elizabethtown man was sentenced up to 32 months in prison Wednesday in Bladen County Superior Court after pleading guilty to taking items that were found using a tracking device attached to one of the items. Adam Horne, 32, was sentenced to between 19 and 32 months in state custody on felony charges of breaking and entering and obtaining property by false pretense, according to the Bladen County District Attorney’s office. The case stemmed from a break-in reported Nov. 28, 2015, at a building along Greene Industrial Park Road. A motorcycle, leaf blower and generator had been stolen, according to a court summary. The owner of the building told Bladen …..

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Elizabethtown man pleads guilty in Superior Court to drug-related charges

Antonio Lamel Murchison of Elizabethtown pled guilty in Bladen County Superior Court on Monday, March 27, to several drug-related charges. He received a sentence of 36 months of supervised probation. Murchison pled guilty to conspiring to sell cocaine, possession and attempted sell and delivery of marijuana, and attempted trafficking in MDA/MDMA. He was arrested on July 3, 2015, by the Elizabethtown Police Department following a traffic stop. Murchison was driving when his vehicle was stopped in late June 2015. Also arrested were Saquon Reginald Covington who was arrested during the stop on June 30, 2015;Trent Martin, who was arrested on July 18, 2015; and Channing Kelly who as arrested in …..

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Elizabethtown man enters a guilty plea to attempted murder charge

An Elizabethtown man has pled guilty to attempted murder in the shooting of his brother. Tony Elmore Lewis, 55, was sentenced to 125 months to 162 months active. The shooting took place in August 2013 at 92 Curtis Lewis Road, near Dublin. When Bladen County Sheriff’s deputies arrived on the scene, they found Terry DeVane Lewis laying on the ground with a gunshot wound to his abdomen. According to the report, Lewis’ brother, Tony Elmore Lewis was inside the home with several weapons and refused to surrender to authorities. The Robeson County Sheriff’s Office tactical team negotiated with Tony Lewis for several hours before he eventually surrendered. Share:

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Sheriff Warns of Possible Scam

Sheriff James A. McVicker wishes to warn citizens to be on the alert for a group working the Bladen and Columbus county areas looking to scam homeowners or possibly doing surveillance to return later and break into homes. “We have received phone calls from several concerned citizens in the last few days of two separate groups of people coming to homes and offering to do home repair, set up mobile homes and underpin them and also selling seafood,” said McVicker. “We believe this group is the same group that has recently been involved in numerous breaking and entering’s in Columbus county. In those instances they approach home owners and offer …..

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Child in critical condition following a Tuesday crash on US 701

A crash on US 701 North on Tuesday evening left a 6-year-old child in critical condition, according to the North Carolina Highway Patrol. The crash ocurred near the intersection of US 701 North and NC 53 West. According to First Sgt. Matt Hardee, Sabrina Lowery of Tar Heel was traveling northbound on US 701 near the intersection of NC 53 West when her vehicle struck the guardrail on the left. After striking the guardrail on the left, Lowery’s vehicle then crossed the highway, and went over the guardrail on right. “Her 6-year-old son was in the car with her,” said Sgt. Hardee.  The child was ejected from the vehicle and …..

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Bladen County, Alert Neighbor Foils Break In

  Sheriff James A. McVicker said today that an alert neighbor who saw suspicious activity in their neighborhood and reported it to 911 was instrumental in stopping a breaking and entering in progress at a home in the 8000 block of NC 87 west of Dublin.   “Our 911 Center received a call from a resident who said there were people going through the neighborhood knocking on doors and asking for someone by name,” said McVicker.  “The caller did not know of anyone by that name in the neighborhood and just felt something was not right with the pair.”   McVicker said a deputy was dispatched to the area and …..

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Bladen County drug bust in Elizabethtown

The Elizabethtown Police Department and the Bladen County Sheriff’s Department have been working together to crack down on crime. Today, March 17, 2017 was no exception. Sometime around 7 a.m the Elizabethtown Police Department with assistance from the Bladen County Sheriff’s Office executed a narcotics search warrant at Lewis Village Apartments located at 204 Wright Street Apartment 31 in Elizabethtown, NC. The search warrant was the result of several months of ongoing investigations by Detective Sergeant Willie Thompson into suspected narcotic activity in that area. Upon securing and searching the scene officers were able to locate and seize a Felony amount of Marijuana, handgun, and $4,362.88 cash. As a result of …..

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Gray convicted of murder, sentenced to life in prison

The second man charged in the shooting death of a Bladen County man more than two years ago was found guilty Thursday in Bladen County Superior Court and sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole. Ernest Raysean Gray, 26, of Clarkton, was convicted of first degree murder and discharging a weapon into an occupied property. The jury of eight women and four men deliberated about three hours before reaching their decision. Twasjay Roddreek Brown, 23, of Elizabethtown, was found guilty and sentenced to life in prison in February in Bladen County Superior Court. The men were found guilty in the murder of 23-year-old Malcolm Jerome Brown in …..

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There is No Such Thing as a Lucky Charm if You Drink and Drive

RALEIGH – St. Patrick’s Day has become one of the nation’s biggest times to celebrate and party. But unfortunately, too many people are taking to the roads after drinking alcohol, making the holiday also one of our most dangerous. The North Carolina Governor’s Highway Safety Program and the Department of Transportation are launching the annual St. Patrick’s Day Booze It & Lose It campaign, which runs from March 16 to 19. The campaign reminds drivers that there is no luck involved, if you drink and drive, you could pay serious consequences. During the 2016 St. Patrick’s Day holiday period (6 p.m. March 16 to 5:59 a.m. March 18), nine people …..

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Two arrested and charged with breaking and entering

  • 03/16/2017
  • Crime
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Two Bladen County residents were arrested by the Bladen County Sheriff’s Office and charged with breaking and entering on Tuesday night. Kevin Acosta, 28, was arrested and charged with felony conspiracy, felony breaking and entering, larceny after breaking and entering, and felony possession of stolen goods/property. Nataly Sanz, 19, was arrested and charged with felony conspiracy, felony breaking and entering and felony possession of stolen goods/property. Share:

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Elizabethtown PD obtains new radars

The Elizabethtown Police Department has obtained five new radar guns at no cost to the town through the Governor’s Highway Safety Program. Lt. Mark McMichael said the way the program works is the department can earn points towards certain approved items through doing such things as traffic checks and other types of activities such as Booze It and Lose It. Lt. McMichael said that by going out and doing these things, the department receives credit towards the program. He said the program has a list of items the program has approved for traffic safety the department can utilize the points to obtain. Lt. McMichael said a radar gun can cost …..

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Sheriff Warns of Driveway Scam

Sheriff James A. McVicker is warning residents of a possible scam that has started in this area. “On Wednesday, March 8th, a group of men driving a gray pickup and a large white truck with gravel approached a residence and told the older man there that they had some gravel left over from a job nearby and offered to give it to him to help the community, McVicker said. “After they started spreading the gravel they presented him with a bill for $4,000.00. He told them he did not have that and they finally said they would do it for $500.00 or he could make payments. The man called his …..

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E’town PD needs help identifying suspect

The Elizabethtown Police Department is asking for the public’s help in identifying a suspect. On Wednesday, March 1, 2017, a black male entered the Tractor Supply Store in Elizabethtown and stole a pressure washer valued at $640. If you can identify the person in the photos or have any information regarding the incident, you are asked to please call the Elizabethtown Police Department at 910-862-3125. Share:

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U.S. Marshals Warn of Scam

The U.S. Marshals Service is warning the public today of a telephone scam involving a fraudulent caller contacting members of the public and alleging they, or their family members, have an active federal arrest warrant and demanding payment of fines. Recently, there were reported attempts of a fraudulent caller who identified himself as a Deputy United States Marshal. This phony law enforcement officer informed the potential victims that warrants were being issued for them or their family member due to being absent from a federal grand jury they were previously summoned to appear before. The potential victims were then informed they could avoid arrest by paying a fine by electronic …..

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Crime Report

Bladen County man facing solicitation charge in Cumberland County

A Bladen County man was one of ten men arrested in Cumberland County during a sting operation on Friday and is facing charges of solicitation of prostitution. Thomas Ashley McKoy of Clarkton was arrested when the sting operation was conducted near the Coliseum Inn, according to the Fayetteville Observer. The arrests are touted as a tool for reducing human trafficking. According to the Fayetteville Observer participating agencies included the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office, the Fayetteville Police Department, the Hope Mills Police Department and the Army’s Criminal Investigation Command. McKoy, 64, faces one misdemeanor count of soliciting for prostitution. Also arrested during the sting were: *Steven Hatley of Fayetteville; *Brian Paige of …..

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Crime Report

Man robs Bladenboro home

A man dressed in a black or dark blue hoodie walked into a home on Ash Street in Bladenboro on Sunday afternoon and robbed it, according to Police Chief Chris Hunt. The man called out the homeowner’s name and then proceeded to rob the home. “The wife was home and heard a noise in the kitchen and thought it was her husband,” said Chief Hunt. He said the wife walked into the kitchen and only saw the man from behind. Chief Hunt said the man was able to get out of the house with some change and a purse. Anybody with any information about the incident is asked to call the Bladenboro Police Department …..

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Brown convicted of murder, sentenced to life in prison

Twasjay Roddreek Brown was found guilty of first degree murder and sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole Friday in Bladen County Superior Court. Brown, 23, of Elizabethtown, also was found guilty of discharging a weapon into occupied property and possession of a firearm by a felon in the shooting death of Malcolm Jerome Melvin, 23, in October 2014, according to the District Attorney’s office. Brown was one of two men charged in Melvin’s murder that happened Oct. 28, 2014 at a mobile home on Sammy Lane in a park off N.C. 242 south of Elizabethtown, officials said. Melvin’s girlfriend and a child were in the home …..

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Tuesday crash sends victims to hospital

A crash on Tuesday evening at the intersection of NC 410 and Pleasant Grove Church Road resulted in charges against both drivers. The crash, which ocurred at about 8:30 p.m., sent the occupants of both vehicles to the hospital for treatment of their injuries, according to the North Carolina Highway Patrol. According to the Highway Patrol, David Shelton Blackmon of Bladenboro was driving west on Pleasant Grove Church Road and Amy Lynn Dicicco of Dublin was driving north on NC 410. Blackmon failed to stop for the stop sign at the intersection of NC 410 and Pleasant Grove Church Road while he was attempting to make a left turn onto …..

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Cary Man Charged With Transmitting a Threat in Interstate Commerce to Injure Another Person

RALEIGH – The United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of North Carolina announces that a Criminal Complaint was filed against GARRETT GRIMSLEY, age 27, of Cary, charging him with Transmitting a Threat in Interstate Commerce to Injure the Person of Another. GRIMSLEY appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge Robert T. Numbers, II today for his initial appearance. According to the affidavit filed with the Criminal Complaint, on February 19, 2017, GRIMSLEY posted an online public message stating “don’t go to Cary tomorrow.” In a subsequent private message conversation, GRIMSLEY told a cooperating witness: “For too long the kuffar [non-Muslims] have spit in our faces and trampled our rights. This …..

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Bladen County Sheriff's Department

Deputy’s son stopped by someone impersonating an officer

Someone impersonating a law enforcement officer stopped a vehicle operated by a Bladen County Sheriff’s Deputy’s son this weekend near Ammon. According to reports,  the man told the victim that he was a law enforcement officer but did not have any credentials. The incident is alleged to have happened on Gum Springs Road. According to reports, the man is described as being in his mid-40s with some facial hair and driving a gray older model Crown Victoria with a blue light on the dash. The victim was unable to get a tag number.   Share:

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Shooting at UNCW, False alert

According to UNCWilmington Facebook page there was an erroneous alert issued earlier today about shots fired on the campus. The post on the school’s official Facebook page said, “An all-clear text message has been issued to faculty, staff and students via UNCWAlert, but in case it has not yet reached you, please be assured that there were no shots fired on our campus this morning.” The post also said, “We are looking into how the erroneous alert was issued and we apologize for this unfortunate error and the undue alarm it caused.” Share:

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Joint Investigation Recovers Stolen Weapons

Sheriff James A. McVicker announced today the seizure of ten weapons from known gang members in both Bladen and Robeson counties. “The Bladen County Narcotics Unit has worked several weeks now with the Wilmington office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation to recover weapons from known gang members,” said McVicker. My investigators developed a cooperating witness who helped identify a group of young men who were dealing in stolen and illegal weapons. Through this individual we were able to recover five rifles, three shotguns and two handguns. Some of these weapons were stolen and some used in the commission of crimes.” McVicker said the investigation is continuing and he believes …..

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Fight in Bladen County Jail leaves one injured

Contributed photos A fight that broke out in the Bladen County Jail on Tuesday, February 13, 2017, resulted in one person being transported to the hospital for treatment. Bladen County Sheriff’s Office Chief Deputy Larry Guyton said that at about 12:30 a.m. Jamie Harold Nance, 33, of Bladenboro, was arrested for communicating threats, harassing phone calls, domestic criminal trespass, violating a domestic violence protective order and he also had a warrant for his arrest for failing to appear in court in Robeson County. “He was booked into the jail and placed in a group cell,” said Guyton. He said Nance was sharing a cell with two other men — Marcus …..

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Columbus County Sheriff’s Office needs your help locating missing teens

On Monday, February 13, 2017, at around 3:15 pm, William Indiana Jones and James Dean Jones were outside of their residence on Pinewood Lane in Whiteville walking their dogs. Their father went outside around 4 pm to check on his sons and could not locate them. They were last seen near Soles Road and Hallsboro Road, South in Whiteville. William is a 16 year old white, male approximately 5’10” and weighs 165 pounds. James is a 15 year old white, male approximately 5’08” and weighs 145 pounds. Both William and James have blonde hair and blue eyes. The boys were last seen wearing summer clothing attire. The pit bull mix …..

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Bladen County experiences first traffic fatality of the year

Bladen County has experienced its first motor vehicle fatality of 2017 when the driver of a motorcycle was killed in a crash on Sunday afternoon.  Daniel Christopher Walters, 46, of Mears Road, Clarkton, lost his life when his 2002 Harley Davidson crossed the center line and struck a transfer truck head-on, according to the North Carolina Highway Patrol. The crash ocurred on US 701 near Taylor Manufacturing at about 4:22 p.m. according to the North Carolina Highway Patrol. James Ladell Baker of Dunn was driving a Waccamaw Transport truck south on US 701 and Walters was traveling north on US 701 on his Harley Davidson motorcycle. Walters crossed the center …..

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Hog truck and log truck collision causes road closure

Photos by: Kendall Heath The sun was shining most of the day Wednesday, February 8th, but it didn’t stop an accident from happening in White Oak, North Carolina. According to officials on the scene, a hog truck collided with a log truck head on causing the road to be shut down on both ends of Gum Springs Road in White Oak. There were no injuries reported. Ammon fire department and the highway patrol we’re both assisting with the wreckage. Share:

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One arrested on drug related charges

One Bladen County resident was arrested and is facing charges of drug trafficking. Tanisha Simpkins, 35, was arrested on Saturday and charged with trafficking in opium or heroin, possession with intent to manufacture, sell deliver schedule II controlled substance, and conspiring to sell/deliver heroin. Share:

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Commissioners hear about alleged mistreatment

Donald Melvin addressed the Bladen County Board of Commissioners on Monday night regarding two different incidents during which he was incarcerated. These incidents ocurred in 2008 and 2014. He shared some documents with the Commissioners outlining the two incidents, but he did not specify what redress he was seeking from the board. Melvin offered the board some background on himself. He has owned Tar Heel Outdoors since 1978 and at one time had a weekly feature that appeared in the Fayetteville Observer titled, “Tar Heel Outdoors with Don Melvin.” He has served as Vice-President of an eastern outdoors landscape firm, held a  job as a long distance truck driver, and has …..

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Bladen County Sheriff's Department

Search Warrant Leads to Felony Arrests

Sheriff James A. McVicker today announced the arrest yesterday of Akeem Juwan Westmoreland, 32 and Briana Amira Parker, 17 of 303 Pecan Street, Apt.9E, Bladenboro for Felony Possession of Cocaine and Simple Possession of Marijuana. The arrests were the result of a search warrant executed in conjunction with North Carolina Probation and Parole officers. In addition to the Cocaine and Marijuana charges, Westmoreland had an outstanding Assault With a Deadly Weapon warrant served. He is currently in Bladen County Jail under a $30,000.00 secured bond. Parker was also charged with a Felony Probation Violation and is under a $35,000.00 secured bond. “It is good to be able to work jointly …..

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West Bladen High School Logo

Precautions taken at West Bladen High School

By: Valerie Newton On Tuesday, January 24 West Bladen High School was notified of comments made against the school on social media that could potentially be perceived as threatening or dangerous. School administration immediately reported the comments made against the school to the Sheriff’s office, which is investigating. Communicating threats by any means to any person or group of persons, designed to cause harm to another person or persons, is a Bladen County Schools Code of Conduct Level IV violation according to North Carolina General Statute 115C-391 resulting in Long Term Suspension or Expulsion and is considered a Felony punishable by law according to North Carolina General Statute 14-277.5. As …..

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Bladen County Sheriff's Department

Sheriff’s Office Investigates Three School Threats

Sheriff James A. McVicker announced today his office had investigated three separate incidents of threats made against schools in Bladen County, two through Social Media accounts and one word of mouth. “Last Wednesday night, January 18th, we received information that several students from West Bladen High School had received Instagram messages to stay away from school because of an act of violence that would be committed the next morning,” said McVicker. “Once we received this information we worked with Dr. Robert Taylor and the faculty at West Bladen to insure the absolute safety off all students and staff. We had several officers at the school before it opened and we …..

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Bladen County Sheriff's Department

Sheriff’s Office Investigates Two School Threats

Sheriff James A. McVicker announced today his office had investigated two separate incidents of threats made against schools in Bladen County, one through Social Media accounts and one word of mouth. “Last Wednesday night, January 18th, we received information that several students from West Bladen High School had received Instagram messages to stay away from school because of an act of violence that would be committed the next morning,” said McVicker. “Once we received this information we worked with Dr. Robert Taylor and the faculty at West Bladen to insure the absolute safety off all students and staff. We had several officers at the school before it opened and we …..

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Second arrest made in Bladenboro break-in

By Erin Smith A second arrest has been in the investigation into the break-in that occurred shortly after midnight Saturday. Brandon Jackson, 23, of Robeson County was arrested on Friday morning, according to Bladenboro Police Chief Chris Hunt. Jackson is facing charges of breaking and entering, larceny after breaking and entering, possession of burglary tools, damage to property, and damage to a coin/currency machine.  Chief Hunt said that Jackson was also on probation during the commission of this burglary. Arrested earlier in the week was Madison Cheshire, 20. She is facing charges of breaking and entering a coin/currency machine and two counts of injury to personal property. At around midnight …..

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Arrest Made Breaking and Entering Case in Bladen County

Sheriff James A. McVicker today announced the arrest Thursday of Christopher Blake Carroll, 25, of 1350 Suggs Taylor Road, Elizabethtown for the December 28 th breaking and entering of a residence in the 7000 block of Burney Road, White Oak. Carroll stole several weapons from this residence and investigators have been able to recover one of those weapons and have leads on the location of the others. Carroll was charged with Felony Probation Violation, Obtaining Property By False Pretense, Felonious Breaking and Entering, Felonious Larceny After Breaking and Entering, Felonious Possession of Stolen Goods, 3 counts of Felonious Larceny of a Firearm and 3 counts of Felonious Possession of a …..

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One arrested in weekend coin machine break-in

One person has been arrested in connection to the weekend break-ins that occurred at the Bladenboro Car Wash and the laundry mat. Bladenboro Police Chief Chris Hunt said the investigation into what occurred is still ongoing. Madison Cheshire, 20,  has been charged with injury to personal property, failure to appear on a misdemeanor and breaking into a coin/currency machine. At about midnight on Saturday night, a vehicle occupied by a male and a female drove into the car wash in Bladenboro and the male used a sledgehammer to break open a coin box there. The vehicle then traveled to the laundry mat where the pair damaged coin boxes there as …..

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U.S. Attorney Statement on National Human Trafficking Awareness Day

By: Deirdre M. Daly U.S. Attorney for the District of Connecticut The President has designated January as National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month, and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Connecticut continues to prioritize human trafficking offenses, which are among the most heinous crimes the Office prosecutes. Federal prosecutors focus their resources on prosecuting the sex trafficking of minors, but also investigates cases involving the sex trafficking of particularly vulnerable adults and labor trafficking. In November 2015, we announced the formation of the Connecticut Human Trafficking Task Force. The Task Force is composed of special agents from Homeland Security Investigations, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the U.S. …..

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Sheriff’s Office holds vendor demonstration for county administrators and school superintendent’s office

The Bladen County Sheriff’s Office hosted a vendor demonstration Tuesday, January 10, to educate County administrators and the school superintendent’s office about the possibility of enhancing county and school building security by making the windows and doors of our buildings less permeable to intrusion. “Sheriff Jim McVicker and his staff are always trying to find more affordable means to provide enhanced security and infrastructure improvements. Something as simple as a polymer window coating can significantly deter and resist intrusion to better protect our school children and our county/town employees in our county,” said Sgt. Gary Turlington. The demonstration consisted of a classroom presentation and a practical demonstration on an actual …..

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Bladen County Sheriff's Department

Armed Robbery Suspects Apprehended

Sheriff James A. McVicker said today that arrests had been made on a home invasion/armed robbery that happened over the weekend. The home of Randolph Smith, age 57 and Morris Rico Smith, 41, nephew of Randolph Smith, was the scene of a home invasion and robbery Friday night (January 6th). The Smiths live at 303 Sandpit Road Elizabethtown. According to the victim statements, two men confronted Morris Smith outside the residence and forced him inside at gunpoint where they stole $60.00 in cash and a small amount of marijuana from him. Smith was struck several times in the head with a handgun during the robbery. The Smiths called 911 and …..

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Tillis/Coons Op-Ed: “America’s Criminal Justice System Is Broken”

WASHINGTON, D.C. –Today, Senators Thom Tillis (R-NC) and Chris Coons (D-DE), both members of the Senate Judiciary Committee, authored an op-ed on CNN.com about the urgent need for bipartisan criminal justice reform. Read the full op-ed below: CNN: America’s criminal justice system is broken By Chris Coons and Thom Tillis As a Democrat from Delaware and a Republican from North Carolina, we disagree on plenty of policy issues. You might think that would be especially true of an issue as historically divisive and politically challenging as crime and punishment. That’s not the case. We share a strong belief that America’s criminal justice system is broken, focusing far too much on …..

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FedEx Email Scam could contain potential virus threat

If you are receiving email alerts from FedEx, be aware it could contain a potential virus threat. According to FedEx.com, there are fraudulent emails being sent to unsuspecting businesses and citizens announcing that FedEx has either attempted to deliver or has delivered a package and they need to download an attached document.  According to FedEx.com, the attachment could contain a virus and advises recipients to delete the email without opening the attachment. FedEx also says there is another version of the email that prompts the recipient to contact their office and gives a telephone to call. Once the caller makes contact, the scam artist will attempt to defraud the caller. …..

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Ohio man charged with possession of Marijuana

White Lake police have charged Shawn David Myers 33, of Tiltonsville, OH with possession of marijuana and possession of marijuana paraphernalia. White Lake police officers responded to a medical call at Brisson’s Cottages Tuesday, January 3, 2017 while officers were assisting EMS workers they smelled the odor of marijuana in the area, officers were not able to determine the location of the marijuana at that time.   After receiving multiple complaints from concerned citizens over the next day about the offender approaching them asking if they wanted to smoke marijuana with him and the offender entering local business with a strong odor of marijuana emitting from his person the White …..

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Call of shots fired leads to drug arrest over New Years weekend

Officers Joshua Pittman and Melanie Avant of the Elizabethtown Police Department along with Bladen County Sheriff’s Deputies were dispatched to 2808 West Broad Street on January 01, 2017 at 3:55 a.m. in reference to a shots fired call. Upon their arrival they made contact with the residents Brandon and Allison Jones. Both Mr. and Mrs. Jones advised that they were having a New Year’s Eve party and that an argument had broken out between them and some guests. The conflict escalated and became physical, according to Lt. D. Cheshire. During the altercation a handgun was discharged several times inside and outside of the residence in an attempt to break up …..

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One man arrested and charged after struggle with deputies

The Bladen County Sheriff’s Office arrested one man during which a struggle ensued leaving deputies and the man with minor injuries.  “We received information that a wanted individual was being brought through our county by a family member en-route to Sanford,” said Chief Deputy Larry Guyton. Deputies obtained a description of the vehicle and waited for it in Clarkton. “When they saw the vehicle, they did a felony vehicle stop and got Divine Walden, age 22, of 818 Farmers Union Road, Clarkton, out of the vehicle. When they placed him under arrest he began to fight the deputies,” said Guyton. After a brief struggle Walden was handcuffed and subdued. Walden …..

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Bladen County Sheriff’s Office need help locating missing person

Sheriff James A. McVicker is requesting the public’s assistance in locating a missing person. The family of Dean Anthony Clark Jr., reported him missing on December 30, 2016. Clark has not been seen or heard from since early November 2016. According to the father, Dean Clark Sr., he was in weekly phone contact with his son but has not been able to locate him since November. Clark was last known to be living in the Council area of Bladen County but should be considered homeless. He is known to frequent Clarkton, Whiteville and Lumberton. Clark is a black male, 32 years of age, medium complexion, black hair, brown eyes, with some …..

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Marshall sentenced for shooting at law enforcement officers

An Elizabethtown man who exchanged gunfire with two law enforcement officers in February was sentenced up to 19 years in prison Monday after pleading guilty to two counts of attempted murder and one count of assault on a law enforcement officer. Dennis Windell Marshall, 30, entered an Alford plea in Bladen County Superior Court under an agreement with the state. An Alford plea allows a defendant to plead guilty because it’s in their best interest, but not admit guilt to the charges. Judge Mary Ann Tally accepted the agreement for Marshall to serve no less than 180 months with a maximum of 228 months in custody. The incident began at …..

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Reward now offered for information in disappearance of Cole Thomas

UPDATE: A $10,000 REWARD IS NOW BEING OFFERED BY THE FAMILY FOR THE DIRECT LOCATION OF COLE THOMAS. UPDATE: On Friday, November 25, 2016 at approximately 3:00 AM, a Missing Person was reported to the Benson Police Department. Two acquaintances of the subject, whom they identified as Christopher Cole Thomas, stated to officers that they had been traveling on Interstate 40, heading to Durham, and had exited off the interstate and had come into Benson. As they were traveling through a residential area, North Elm Street and East Morgan Street, the driver, Thomas, suddenly stopped the vehicle and jumped out, and ran away. The passengers attempted to find him, but …..

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