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As we prepare to say farewell to 2015, we decided to take a look back at our most viewed stories of the year.

These stories are the ones you, our readers, found most interesting during the year. Many of your favorite stories dealt with crime and the courts and a few dealt with our schools and a car crash.

Our number one most viewed story of the year by far was Be Ware! Kirby Van Is Not Trying To Sell Vacuums. The story describes several encounters many of you reported having with a vehicle sporting Kirby Vacuum logos. Many of the reports described visits that occurred well past 9 p.m. in the evening.

2. Murder Victim Identified, Elizabethtown Man Charged. John Robert Cole was stabbed and beaten to death in his home on Broad Street and his stepson Jonathan Parker was charged in the incident.

3. Four Involved In Dublin Shooting Make First Court Appearance. All four suspects involved in the November shooting death of Darrell Dionte Council near Dublin were arrested and faced the judge to hear the charges against them.

4. Shooting Victim Identified, ‘Person of Interest’ Sought. A shooting at the intersection of Center Road and Twisted Hickory Road left one man dead and authorities searching for a “person of interest.” Darrell Dionte Council was shot and killed as he sat in his car at a stop sign at the intersection.

5. Three arrested in armed robbery of Dublin Dollar General.  Three men were arrested after they robbed the Dublin Dollar General. Arrested were Naquan Alphonso Matthews, 20, of Blue Moon Drive; Everette Nyquan Ward, 25, of South Cypress Street; and Carlton Terrell Smith Jr., 23, of Della Street.

6. Sheriff Announces Largest Heroin Seizure in Bladen County.  Narcotics Investigators with the Bladen County Sheriff’s Office seized 1,450 bindles of heroin late on November 11. The seizure was the result of a traffic stop on NC 211 between Bladenboro and Clarkton. Arrested were Ronald Campbell, 38 of 110 North Mitchell Ford Road, Clarkton and Tanisha Simpkins, 34, of 7391 NC 211 West Bladenboro.

7. Man Sentenced for Shooting Into Vehicle of Former Supervisor. Dymaree Thompson, 21, a former employee of Smithfield Foods was sentenced for shooting into the vehicle of a former supervisor as the supervisor left work. He received a sentence of  51 months and a maximum of 74 months in prison for discharging a weapon into a dwelling or moving vehicle under a plea agreement with the state.

8. Elizabethtown Police Seek Public’s Help in Search for Missing Teen.  The Elizabethtown Police Department sought the public’s help in their search for a missing teen. The teen, Nykia McDowell, has been missing since September.

9.  Attorney says arrest claims of Dublin Commissioner Jeffery Smith are false. Attorney Cynthia Singletary, who represents Dublin Commissioner Jeffrey Smith, said claims that Smith was arrested in connection to a video gaming raid in Sampson County were false.

10. Search for wanted man continues on Monday afternoon. The search for a man wanted on charges from New York continued. The Elizabethtown Police Department, Bladen County Sheriff’s Office, the North Carolina Highway Patrol along with the SABLE helicopter from New Hanover County and the Bladen County Sheriff’s Office helicopter were all searching the woods surrounding the area of Dyson and Horne Streets near Elizabethtown. It was learned later that the suspect had left the area.

11. Superintendent expected to propose closing 3 Bladen schools.  Bladen County Schools Superintendent Robert Taylor was expected to propose consolidation of three schools at the September Board of Education meeting. The plan was met with strong opposition.

12. Car, tractor-trailer collide on N.C. 211. A collision between a car and a tractor-trailer sent two folks to the hospital in February.

13. $1 million bond set for teen charged with murder. One suspect in the murder of Darrell Dionte Council had her bond set at $1 million. Shanika Nicole Mitchell, 17, had her bond set on Monday, Dec. 7.

14. Butters Quick Shop Armed Robbery ArrestsTwo individuals were arrested and charged in the armed robbery of the Butters Quick Shop in July. Arrested was Robert Anthony Davis, age 22 of 380 Bryant Swamp Road, Bladenboro, and Gerrod Basil Ellison, age 24 of 18302 NC Hwy 87 East, Riegelwood. 

15. Johnson pleads guilty to child sex offense charges. Mitchell Dean Johnson entered a guilty plea to child sex abuse charges at his December court appearance.


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