VIRUS OUTBREAK-NORTH CAROLINA
North Caroline records eighth case of coronavirus
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina health officials are reporting an eighth case of the new coronavirus in the state. The N.C. Department of Health and Human Services reported Wednesday night that the latest patient is from Wake County, where five other residents tested positive. In other developments, the Atlantic Coast Conference announced its men's basketball tournament would be played without fans in attendance beginning Thursday. The University of North Carolina system announced said Wednesday that each of its 17 schools will move from face-to-face instruction to “alternative course delivery” no later than March 20 and will continue indefinitely.
After police shoot him, North Carolina man faces charges
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — A North Carolina man who was shot and wounded by police in a confrontation that sparked protests has been charged with two firearms-related counts and resisting officers. Body camera footage released Wednesday afternoon shows him running toward an officer during a foot chase with a black object that police identified as a gun. Police can be heard on the video asking him to drop a gun multiple times. Police Chief Cassandra Deck-Brown had directed her department to ask a judge to release the footage. The judge approved the request.
ELECTION 2020-LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR
With primary concession, Holley wins Democratic Lt Gov nod
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina voters are poised to make history in November electing an African American as the state’s next lieutenant governor now that a legislator won the Democratic nomination. State Rep. Yvonne Holley of Raleigh secured last week's primary victory after the second-place candidate announced she wouldn't seek a runoff. The other candidate in the general election is also black with Republican nominee Mark Robinson's own primary victory. Only one black politician has ever been elected to a Council of State office in North Carolina history in previous State Auditor Ralph Campbell. Now it appears there will be only one sizable primary runoff in May.
CHRIS PAUL-GRANDFATHER'S DEATH
Witness recants testimony from murder case against 5 teens
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — A key witness has recanted testimony that helped convict five teens of murder in the killing of NBA star Chris Paul's grandfather. News outlets report Jessicah Black now says she lied at their trial when she testified that she drove the teens to the scene of the robbery that led to Nathaniel Jones' heart attack in 2002. Black recanted her testimony in a deposition played Monday before The North Carolina Innocence Inquiry Commission. Nathaniel Jones died after being tied up and beaten outside his Winston-Salem home. Paul, his grandson, was a standout high-school basketball player who now plays for the Oklahoma City Thunder.
BRIDGE CLOSED-TRUCKS CRASH
Tractor-trailers crash, close Alligator River bridge
COLUMBIA, N.C. (AP) — The North Carolina State Highway Patrol says two tractor-trailers collided on the Alligator River bridge, shutting down the two-lane bridge for more than three hours. News sources report one of the tractor-trailers drifted over the center line on the two-lane bridge around 8:30 a.m. on Wednesday and hit the oncoming truck. The patrol says both truckers were taken to the hospital for treatment. The bridge carries U.S. Highway 64 over the river between Dare and Tyrrell counties and without it, drivers would have to detour to the north to get to the Outer Banks. The bridge was reopened around noon.
4 airlifted after explosion at animal rendering plant
ROSE HILL, N.C. (AP) — Four people have been airlifted to a hospital following an explosion at an animal rendering plant in North Carolina. Valley Proteins owner and chairman Michael Smith told The Associated Press by phone that the explosion occurred about 10:45 a.m. Wednesday at its facility in Rose Hill. The town is about 90 minutes south of Raleigh. Smith said five people were injured total. He said they were employees of an outside contractor. He said he believes they were performing some welding at the time. Smith said an investigation is underway but “our primary concern is the medical treatment of these workers."
Watkins elevated to lead N Carolina state employees' group
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — The longtime lobbyist for the State Employees Association of North Carolina is now its executive director. The leading state employees' group announced on Wednesday the elevation of Ardis Watkins, who is also the association's first female executive director. She succeeds Robert Broome, who resigned recently after about two years at the job with the 47,000-member association. The association is a Service Employees International Union local but lacks power other governmental unions may have because collective bargaining between North Carolina state government and workers are prohibited. Watkins joined the association in 2001 and has been its chief lobbyist at the Legislative Building.
STATE HEALTH PLAN-AWARDS
Winners for NC gov't employee health insurance plan named