ARMY GENERAL-SEX CHARGES
Accuser takes stand in general's sex assault case
FORT BRAGG, N.C. (AP) - The captain whose sexual assault accusations triggered the court-martial of an Army general has taken the witness stand, appearing on the verge of tears.
When asked by a prosecutor Friday to identify her abuser, her eyes darted quickly in the direction of Brig. Gen. Jeffrey A. Sinclair. She extended her arm, and pointed at the married man with whom she admits violating military law by having a three-year-long affair.
The Associated Press generally does not identify those who say they were sexually assaulted.
The trial begins as the Pentagon is under intense scrutiny over revelations of rampant rape and sexual misconduct within the ranks. Fifty-one-year-old Sinclair is believed to be the highest ranking U.S. military officer to ever face court martial on sexual assault charges.
ARMY SERGEANT ARREST
SC sergeant arrested on NC sex charges
FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. (AP) - A sergeant based in South Carolina has been arrested and charged with sexually assaulting adult and child victims in North Carolina.
U.S. Marshals arrested 34-year-old Oscar Rodriguez in Puerto Rico early Friday. Rodriguez is awaiting extradition to Harnett County.
Rodriguez was a staff sergeant based at Fort Jackson in Columbia, S.C.
He is accused of forcibly entering the bedrooms of two Harnett County victims and engaging in multiple sexual assaults between last summer and New Year's Eve.
The Army has charged Rodriguez with desertion.
He is being charged with three counts of indecent liberties with a child, two counts of second-degree rape, two counts of second-degree sex offense, one count of sexual battery, two counts of crimes against nature and four counts of first-degree burglary.
Hundreds of thousands in dark in NC
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - An estimated 350,000 North Carolina power customers are in the dark as another winter storm hits the state.
Officials of both Duke Power and the state's electric cooperatives hope most power can be restored by later Friday as the storm moves out of the state. Snow, sleet and freezing rain forced many schools to close or delay classes.
Duke Energy says about 300,000 customers were without power at midmorning with the biggest problems around Greensboro, Burlington and Asheboro.
About 50,000 co-op customers are without power largely in the Statesville, Salisbury and Chapel Hill areas.
The forecast calls for as much as 4 inches of snow near Boone with an inch between Winston-Salem and Chapel Hill. Up to an inch of sleet is expected around Hickory with freezing rain in Charlotte.
York pastor accused of sexually abusing teen
YORK, S.C. (AP) - A York pastor and sex offender convicted in North Carolina is accused of sexually abusing a teenage church member.
Investigators have warrants charging 38-year-old Cory Dean Moses with first-degree assault and battery.
Moses was a pastor of New Mount Zion Church and at Redeemed Christian Ministry. Authorities say the abuse began when the teen was 14 years old and continued until she was 19.
Moses left those churches earlier this year. He lives in Charlotte, N.C., and police are bringing him to South Carolina. A working phone number for him could not be found.
In 2003, Moses was convicted of indecent liberties in Gastonia, N.C., for sexually abusing two teenage girls. That offense placed him on the North Carolina Sex Offender Registry, and he served nearly two years in prison.
Fallen trees force NC Zoo to close for weekend
ASHEBORO, N.C. (AP) - Trees toppled by a winter storm and the threat of more frozen precipitation have forced the North Carolina Zoo to keep its doors closed through the weekend.
Zoo Director Dr. David Jones said concern for employee safety will prevent staff from removing fallen tree until Sunday. After that, Jones said it will take at least two days, and perhaps longer, to clear service roads, walkways and animal exhibits of the debris.
General Curator Ken Reininger reported no animal-related problems from the weather.
Staffers were told to leave work by 2 p.m. Friday due to dangerous conditions in the park and the potential for additional tree damage over the next day.
In January, bitter cold closed the zoo for four days. Last month, a snowstorm closed the zoo for six days.
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