Charlotte Observer

Charlotte Observer
11:49 am
Tue February 4, 2014

Union Schools May Avoid Countywide Redistricting

Union County might be spared a controversial countywide school redistricting plan after all.

School board chair Richard Yercheck said Tuesday morning he expects his group will accept the county commissioners’ surprise $3 million offer to buy 49 mobile units. Commissioners on Monday said they made the offer to eliminate the need for countywide redistricting, and solve an issue that has been tearing the community apart

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Charlotte Observer
9:45 am
Tue February 4, 2014

Duke Energy Plant Reports Coal-Ash Spill

A vortex of coal ash swirls in the gray waters of the Dan River at Danville, Va. downstream from the Duke Energy Steam Station in Eden, NC.
Credit John D. Simmons / Charlotte Observer

Duke Energy said Monday that 50,000 to 82,000 tons of coal ash and up to 27 million gallons of water were released from a pond at its retired power plant in Eden into the Dan River, and were still flowing.

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Charlotte Observer
11:56 am
Thu January 23, 2014

N.C. NAACP President William Barber Defends ‘Dummy’ Remark

North Carolina NAACP President William Barber is standing by his characterization of the U.S. Senate’s only African-American Republican as a ventriloquist’s “dummy.”

Barber made the comment Sunday night in Columbia. In a talk about what he called “right-wing extremism,” he criticized African Americans who he said aren’t following the spirit of Martin Luther King. He singled out Republican U.S. Sen. Tim Scott.

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Charlotte Observer
3:52 pm
Wed January 15, 2014

Obama Focuses On Economy In NC State Speech

RALEIGH President Barack Obama is embracing a do-it-yourself approach to reviving the nation’s economy, saying Wednesday at N.C. State University that he wants to see the recovery accelerate.

“This has to be a year of action,” Obama told a crowd of students, Democratic Party officials and invited guests. “Where I can act on my own without Congress I’m going to do so. And today I’m here to act.”

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Charlotte Observer
4:09 pm
Tue January 14, 2014

Jonathon Ferrell's Family Files Suit In Shooting Death

Jonathon Ferrell
Credit Florida A&M Athletics

The family of an unarmed man fatally shot in September by a Charlotte-Mecklenburg police officer filed a lawsuit Tuesday against the officer, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Chief Rodney Monroe, and local government.

It claims that each of those named contributed to the “grossly negligent” and “reckless” acts that led to the Sept. 14 shooting death of Jonathan Ferrell, a former Florida A&M football player and recent Charlotte transplant.

At a news conference late Tuesday morning, Jonathan Ferrell’s mother Georgia Ferrell said she felt she “shouldn’t be here.”

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Charlotte Observer
9:43 am
Thu January 9, 2014

Boone Hotel Executive Charged In Best Western Deaths

The Best Western Hotel in Boone.
Credit Jeff Willhelm / Charlotte Observer

BOONE A business executive who managed the Best Western was indicted Wednesday on charges of involuntary manslaughter in the deaths last year of three hotel guests poisoned by carbon monoxide.

A grand jury returned the three counts against Damon Mallatere, president of Appalachian Hospitality Management. The jury also indicted Mallatere on one additional count of assault inflicting serious bodily injury on another hotel guest who was poisoned but survived.

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Charlotte Observer
10:16 am
Fri January 3, 2014

Doctors Allege For-Profit Owner Of Two Local Hospitals Committed Medicare Fraud, Offered Kickbacks

DR. STEVEN FOLSTAD, CEO of Mid-Atlantic Emergency Medical Associates and former medical director of emergency department at Davis Regional Medical Center in Statesville. [Right] DR. THOMAS MASON. former medical director of emergency department at Lake Norman Regional Medical Center in Mooresville. One of about 60 doctors in Mid-Atlantic Emergency Medical Associates.
Credit Charlotte Observer

Echoing other complaints across the country, two Charlotte-area emergency room doctors allege the for-profit company that owns hospitals in Mooresville and Statesville offered them illegal kickbacks to order unnecessary tests and admit more patients to increase corporate revenues.

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Charlotte Observer
9:48 am
Thu January 2, 2014

Homicide Rate Remains Low, But Some Neighborhoods Struggle

Friends and family of Cedric Miller gather during a Mothers of Murdered Offspring vigil at Frazier Park Wednesday, January 1, 2014. 43-year-old Miller was shot and killed July 14, 2013.
Credit Todd Sumlin / Charlotte Observer

Despite an uptick in 2013, the number of homicides in Charlotte-Mecklenburg remained near historic lows. But some neighborhoods continued to struggle with the violence that has plagued them for decades.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg police investigated 58 homicides in 2013, six more than in 2012. Taken together, however, the last five years reflect a sustained decrease in killings.

Four homicides occurred within a block of each other along West Boulevard, near a former housing project notorious for crime.

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Charlotte Observer
10:13 am
Tue December 17, 2013

Despite The Rumors, Graham Is Not In Imminent Danger, Spokesman Says

Billy Graham is still weaker than he was at his 95th birthday party last month, but his vital signs – including heart rate and blood pressure – remain strong and he’s in no imminent danger.

That was the report Monday from Graham spokesman Mark DeMoss, who is in contact every day with David Bruce, Graham’s personal assistant, and “the closest daily source to Mr. Graham’s condition,” as DeMoss put it.

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Charlotte Observer
11:01 am
Wed December 11, 2013

Columbia Museum Leader To Head Discovery Place

Catherine Wilson Horne, who leads the Columbia children’s museum EdVenture, was named the new president of Discovery Place on Tuesday.

Horne succeeds John Mackay, who is retiring at the end of December after 13 years of running the organization, which includes the flagship science center on Tryon Street, Charlotte Nature Museum, and Discovery Place Kids in Huntersville and Rockingham. Horne will begin in late January.

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