College grad with autism sets goals for future
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — When James Glenn Baker was first diagnosed as being "mentally retarded," his parents were told he was uneducable. About two decades later, Baker -- who often goes by Glenn --...
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — A North Carolina man who awoke to a stun gun and baseball bat beating in 2016 has testified that his attackers took his $42,000 prosthetic leg as a trophy instead of cutting...
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — A new DNA test will take place in the case of a Gaston County man convicted of killing a North Carolina college student in 2008.
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — A North Carolina mom is suing an elementary school where she says her 6-year-old was injured by another student during recess.
Email scam impersonates church pastors in North Carolina
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — Police in North Carolina are investigating an alleged scam that used email to impersonate pastors.
Venture Church pastor Chris Mintz tells the Gaston Gazette that...
NC National Guardsmen to return home from overseas
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — More than 100 North Carolina National Guardsmen are returning home after serving in Kuwait, Iraq and Syria.
The National Guard said in a news release that members of the 878th Engineer Company will return home Friday at Bethlehem Church in Gastonia.
Seamstress, Gaston College create prototype military uniform
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — A Bessemer City seamstress has teamed with Gaston College to design a prototype flame-retardant U.S. Army uniform.
Known as "The Squirrel Lady" around town — due to her affinity for the woodland creatures, which she raises in her backyard — Linda Thompson threaded her beginnings as a seamstress in her teens. She considers herself "just a country girl hillbilly" who started sewing by hand and made her first housecoat when she was 15 years old.
Police: She gave birth to 1st 2019 baby in car used for meth
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — A woman who made news for giving birth to a North Carolina county's first baby of 2019 in a moving car is accused of running a methamphetamine trafficking operation out of that same vehicle.
Smoke alarm saves 3 children in North Carolina fire
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — Officials say a working smoke alarm helped saved three children found alone at a North Carolina home that caught fire.
Fire officials say a 14-year-old, a child a little younger, and an infant were at the Gastonia home when a fire started on a stovetop early Wednesday morning. News outlets report the children escaped without injury, but a dog in the home died as a result of the blaze.
North Carolina mayor continues father’s R&B legacy
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — Many know Walker Reid III as the mayor of Gastonia, but he's also a member of one of the most well-known R&B bands in the area. In what spare time he has, Reid is the manager and a singer of Image which for the third year, will take part in the Gtownsound Rhythm & Blues Concert.
The concert will bring together The Fabulous Flares, The Counts, and Image, performing in front of Gtownsound.
North Carolina inmate charged with punching deputy at jail
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — An inmate at a North Carolina jail is accused of punching a deputy sheriff and damaging a correctional officer's property in separate incidents.
Citing an arrest warrant, the Gaston Gazette reports 22-year-old Michael Caleb Pace hit a deputy who was trying to "control a disruptive inmate" Sunday at the Gaston County jail. The deputy was hit in his cheek and forehead.
Shoplifting ends with suspect running over customer
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina police are investigating after a man accused of shoplifting ran over another customer.
The Gaston Gazette reports that the situation unfolded at a Dollar Tree store in Gastonia on Wednesday when a cashier noticed a man with items hidden under his shirt. Cashier Joyce Boyce said the man was trying to leave in his car when he backed over another customer.
Man found shot in mall lot after possible road rage nearby
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina police are investigating after a man was found with a gunshot wound in a mall parking lot as shoppers were coming back with holiday returns.
Gastonia Police Department spokeswoman Donna Lahser said in a news release that a shooting was reported around 1:30 p.m. Wednesday at the parking lot of Eastridge Mall.
North Carolina pastor accused of child sex offenses
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — Authorities have accused a North Carolina pastor of multiple child sex offenses which investigators say occurred on church grounds and at private residences.
News outlets report Gaston County police said 61-year-old Jerry Lewis Friday is charged with multiple counts of indecent liberties with a child and misdemeanor sexual battery. Friday is also accused of giving pornography to a minor.
Sharing name with horse shot to death, Moonpie sends treats
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — The makers of Moonpie have sent condolences to a North Carolina man who lost his horse of the same name in a shooting.
BOYS PREP BASKETBALL=
Academic Magnet 58, Garrett Academy of Technology 44
Anderson Christian 58, Richard Winn Academy 31
Andrew Jackson 77, Indian Land 67
Augusta Christian, Ga. 62, Fox Creek 53
Beaufort Academy 74, Low Country Prep 24
Bishop England 74, Baptist Hill 29
Calhoun County 71, Swansea 39
Cape Fear Academy, N.C. 70, Conway Christian School 15
BOYS PREP BASKETBALL=
A.C. Flora 57, Cardinal Newman 55
Academic Magnet 60, Military Magnet Academy 47
Asheville School, N.C. 72, Spartanburg Day 58
Augusta Christian, Ga. 69, Fox Creek 65
Beaufort 58, Battery Creek 43
Berkeley 80, R.B. Stall 69
Blacksburg 72, Chesnee 57
Bluffton 63, South Effingham, Ga. 48
Brookland-Cayce 76, Columbia 48
Calvary Day, Ga. 50, Hilton Head Christian Academy 39
Autopsy: Missing North Carolina boy drowned accidentally
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — A 6-year-old boy who went missing after running off in a North Carolina park died of accidental drowning, according to an autopsy released Thursday.
A state medical examiner's report found the cause of death for Maddox Ritch was consistent with drowning, according to a Gastonia Police Department news release. The department quoted the autopsy as saying the evidence "gives no indication ... other than an accidental drowning."
Man just out of prison arrested after fatal shooting
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — Police in North Carolina say they have apprehended a man recently released from prison and who was wanted in a shooting death during a car theft on Thanksgiving.
Gastonia police said on their Facebook page 19-year-old Jeremy Austin Smith was taken into custody Wednesday afternoon.
Reward offered after North Carolina horse shot and killed
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — The owners of a North Carolina horse that was gunned down in her paddock are offering a reward to help find who did it.
News outlets report that a 4-year-old quarter horse named "Moonpie" was shot multiple times in on a farm last weekend.
Her owners have set up social media accounts to solicit information about who killed the horse.
Police: 1 dead in wrong-way crash on Interstate 85
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — The North Carolina Highway Patrol says one person is dead after a crash involving a wrong-way driver on Interstate 85.
News outlets report troopers said a driver entered the southbound lanes of the interstate and headed north before hitting another car around 5 p.m. Thursday.
Trooper Ray Pierce said Gaston Emergency Medical Services had at least two other patients, including at least one with life-threatening injuries.
North Carolina toddler found safe after search
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — Police say that a North Carolina toddler whose abduction triggered an Amber Alert has been found and reunited with her mother.
The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department issued a news release Sunday saying they assisted the U.S. Marshals Service as marshals apprehended a suspect in the Gastonia abduction. The news release said the Gastonia girl was being reunited with her mother. They said the suspect was arrested after a car crash in Charlotte.
Warrant: Registered sex offender used pool to attract kids
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — Authorities say a registered sex offender lured children to his North Carolina home with a basketball court, trampoline, pool and "other toys."
News outlets report 37-year-old Eric Svenson Spurling had a 2002 child molestation conviction in the state of Washington, and was again convicted nine years later for communicating with a minor for an immoral purpose. As a result, he wasn't allowed to be alone with children.
Wendy’s worker who put ‘Chubby’ on customer receipt fired
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — A franchise owner of a North Carolina Wendy's says an employee who called a customer "Chubby" on an order has been fired.
News outlets report the Carolina Restaurant Group issued a statement Tuesday that says they apologized to customer Jimmy Shue and terminated the employee, whose identity hasn't been released. Shue says he went to the Gastonia restaurant this month and ordered two sandwiches, providing the cashier with his name "clear as day."
Funeral held for missing North Carolina boy found dead
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — A funeral has been held in North Carolina for a missing 6-year-old boy who was found dead late last month.
The Charlotte Observer reports Maddox Ritch's Friday funeral came about a week after police found his body in a creek.
Police: Missing boy was at North Carolina park before death
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — Police in North Carolina have confirmed that a missing boy whose body was found by searchers had actually been at a park where his father said he ran off and disappeared.
Gastonia police said on their Facebook page Wednesday that public support and multiple investigations helped police build a timeline to confirm that Maddox Ritch was at Rankin Lake Park in Gastonia as his father, Ian Ritch, said at a news conference last week.
Authorities confirm that body found was missing 6-year-old
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — Authorities are confirming that the body found last week in a North Carolina creek was a 6-year-old boy who went missing days earlier.
Gastonia police announced in a statement Monday that the Mecklenburg County Medical Examiner's Office confirmed the body found last week was Maddox Ritch. Police say it's not clear when autopsy results will be complete.
Police Chief Robert Helton says "work continues to answer every question we can about his tragic death."
North Carolina native opens new skin care business
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — Despite being one of the most important organs of the human body, the skin is arguably one of the least respected.
Between taking all-around abuse from ultraviolet rays, to being subjected to hard physical labor via the hands and feet, the average person's skin absorbs more than its share of abuse.
Shawna Banks is well aware of that. But she still finds herself fighting the impression many people have that skin care can or should be an afterthought.
Funeral services set for 6-year-old who disappeared at park
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — Funeral services have been set for a 6-year-old North Carolina boy who went missing at a park and was found dead after an extensive search.
According to an obituary , a visitation for Maddox Ritch will be held Thursday at a funeral home in Huntersville, followed by a funeral service the next day. The burial will be private.
After 6-year-old’s body found, search for clues continues
The death of an autistic child who had been missing for days until his body was found has authorities in North Carolina searching for clues as to how he died.
FBI Agent Jason Kaplan said investigators still want to hear from people who were in the Gastonia park last weekend when Maddox Ritch ran away from his father.
"In law enforcement, we will not take anything for granted," Kaplan said Thursday, fighting his emotions, at a news conference where officials announced that a body had been found.
Police chief ‘heartbroken’ after body discovered in creek
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — The chief of a North Carolina police department said Thursday he was "heartbroken" over the discovery of a body believed to be that of a missing 6-year-old boy.
Gastonia Police Chief Robert Helton fought back tears and a breaking voice during a news conference in which it was announced officials believed the body searchers found was that of Maddox Ritch.
The Latest: Police chief: ‘I’m heartbroken’ after body found
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — The Latest on the search for a missing North Carolina boy (all times local):
The chief of a North Carolina police department said he was "heartbroken" over the discovery of a body believed to be that of a missing 6-year-old boy.
Father says search for missing son has been “torture”
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — The father of a 6-year-old boy who disappeared from a North Carolina park over the weekend said Wednesday that the search for his son has been "torture."
Ian Ritch joined Gastonia police and FBI agents for a news conference, taking questions from reporters just hours after appearing on ABC's "Good Morning America" to talk about Maddox Ritch, the boy who disappeared Saturday as he walked with his father at Rankin Lake Park.
The Latest: Father says search for missing son is “torture”
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — The Latest on the search for a missing 6-year-old North Carolina boy (all times local):
The father of a missing 6-year-old North Carolina boy said the search for his son has been "torture." He said he just wants his little boy back home.
FBI joins search for boy missing from North Carolina park
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — The FBI has joined the search for a 6-year-old boy who disappeared from a North Carolina park.
News outlets report authorities say no one has seen Maddox Ritch since he disappeared from Rankin Lake Park in Gastonia on Saturday. The Gaston Gazette reports the boy wandered off while walking around the lake with his family.
According to investigators, Maddox is autistic and is non-verbal.
North Carolina teacher steps into classroom for 50th year
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — For the past 50 years, her passion for teaching has been rivaled only by an enduring devotion to her students.
North Carolina woman accused of scamming women in her care
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — Police in North Carolina have accused a woman of scamming an elderly neighbor in her care out of $85,000 to fund a drug habit.
The Gaston Gazette reports Gastonia police said they stopped a car driven by 37-year-old Tammy Lynne Erickson Monday and found cocaine and heroin inside a cardboard box.
Police: Man killed trying to cross tracks, beat train
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — Police in North Carolina say a man was killed when he tried to cross railroad tracks to beat an oncoming train.
Gastonia police told news outlets 57-year-old Morgan Ray London was pronounced dead at a local hospital after Wednesday's accident, which occurred around 9 a.m.
A police spokesman said the train sounded its whistle and horn to warn the man, and officers quoted eyewitnesses who said the crossing gates were down when London tried to cross the tracks.
Vegan, bold lipsticks made in North Carolina
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — Gabrielle Bristol is not afraid of adding a little bit of color to her everyday makeup routine.
The Gastonia woman enjoys experimenting with different color lipsticks. From deep blues to an army color green, she does not shy away from wearing a bold lip color.
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — A woman has been shot and wounded after a North Carolina police officer fired at a man who refused to drop a gun.
News outlets reported Gastonia officers were called to a home around 11:30 p.m. Sunday.
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — A wreck involving a truck carrying partially decomposed animal carcasses left a smelly mess on a North Carolina highway.
The Gaston Gazette reported the wreck happened around 10:15 a.m. Monday on U.S. 74 in Gastonia.
The newspaper reported an 18-wheeler from Valley Proteins Inc. in Gastonia collided with a stopped car and dumped part of its cargo on the highway.
BOONVILLE, N.C. (AP) — A North Carolina company says it will close a textile plant later this month, eliminating 63 jobs.
The Winston-Salem Journal reported Parkdale Mills said it will close the yarn-making plant in Boonville by June 29.
1 person dead in house fire in North Carolina
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — One person has died in a house fire in North Carolina.
News outlets reported the fire was reported around 9:45 a.m. Tuesday in Gaston County.
Gaston County Emergency Medical Services confirmed one person had died in the fire. That person's name has not been released.
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — Authorities say one person is dead and two injured after two men fired shots inside two different North Carolina gas stations.
Gastonia Police said the shootings Saturday night were about 90 minutes apart.
Police say a clerk at the Gray Franklin Express was shot several times, then two people inside the Zula Express store about a mile (1.6 kilometers) away in Gastonia were shot around 11:15 p.m.
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — Relatives of a North Carolina man accused of driving into a restaurant, killing two loved ones, are thanking authorities and apologizing to the community.
Monty Self read a statement Wednesday to reporters in Gaston County west of Charlotte. He's the brother of Roger Self, who faces two first-degree murder counts after authorities say he rammed a sport utility vehicle into a restaurant where his family was eating.
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — Police in North Carolina found three children age 7 and younger drinking vodka while their mother was away from the home for at least seven hours, officials said.
Tyeisha Coneisha Streater, 26, is charged with misdemeanor child abuse and contributing to the delinquency of a minor, Gastonia police told news outlets.
GAFFNEY, S.C. (AP) — A South Carolina man has been sentenced to life in prison for shooting and killing two North Carolina men nearly three years ago.,
Prosecutor Barry Barnette said in a news release that 36-year-old Steven Eugene Parker of Blacksburg was convicted in Gaffney this week of killing the men and trying to burn their bodies to cover up the crime.
Two Gastonia, North Carolina, men died in the 2015 shooting. They were 35-year-old Aron Lucas Young and 43-year-old Jerry Farmer.
Assistant DA in North Carolina facing drug charges
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) — Authorities say an assistant North Carolina district attorney has been arrested on several drug charges.
News outlets report police in Waxhaw said officers stopped Gaston County Assistant District Attorney James Brandon Graham on Sunday. The Union County Sheriff's Office said Graham was stopped for speeding, having an expired tag and an inspection violation.