Charlotte Observer

Clues Sought After Stray Bullet Leaves Man Paralyzed

Jul 7, 2014

 A father of four who recently lost his job and was working at a festival to help make ends meet was struck by a stray bullet on the Fourth of July, leaving him partially paralyzed, his family said Sunday.

Brandon Yam, 47, was selling food and drinks with his wife and two of his children at a festival celebrating the opening of the Cambodian Buddhist Temple, at 219 Owen Blvd. in Charlotte.

About 9 p.m., during a fireworks show, Yam started to pack up his supplies to go home, his family said.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg police

A body thought to be that of missing teacher Bianca Tanner was found overnight in southwest Charlotte and her boyfriend has been arrested in the case, Charlotte-Mecklenburg police Chief Rodney Monroe said.

During a pre-dawn news conference Thursday, Monroe said a body was discovered after a search in a wooded area off Shopton Road near Westinghouse Boulevard.

Monroe also said Angelo Grayson Smith Jr., Tanner’s boyfriend, was arrested early Thursday and will be charged with murder in the case.

Angelo Smith Arrives In Charlotte, Held By CMPD

Jul 1, 2014

Angelo Grayson Smith Jr., the boyfriend of missing teacher Bianca Tanner and the last one to see her before she disappeared, arrived at Charlotte-Mecklenburg police headquarters early Tuesday and was questioned by detectives, authorities say.

Smith will be taken to the Mecklenburg County Jail, charged with contributing to the delinquency of a minor, according to police.

Union County Commissioners OK 15.4% Tax Hike

Jul 1, 2014

MONROE Union County commissioners approved a 15.4 percent tax increase Monday night to cover school district expenses, which will add about $200 to the bill for a typical taxpayer.

The closely divided vote on the 2014-15 budget came on the last day of the fiscal year.

“It creates a tremendous amount of heartburn, the idea that we’ve got to raise taxes on the people of Union County,” said commissioner Jonathan Thomas, who blamed an “out-of-control school board.”

The budget passed 3-2. Thomas and commissioner Todd Johnson were the “no” votes.

Robert Lahser / Charlotte Observer

A search warrant released Monday said the 3-year-old son of missing teacher Bianca Tanner told police that Tanner’s boyfriend had struck her with a belt and “hurt mommy in the face.”

Mark Hames / Charlotte Observer

Mecklenburg County commissioners are planning for a November referendum on a proposal that would raise the county’s sales tax by a quarter of a penny to pay for salary supplements for Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools employees.

Cherry Rezoning Stirs Old Fears, Mistrust

May 16, 2014
Davie Hinshaw / Charlotte Observer

The Charlotte City Council’s decision to rezone nearly 6 acres near uptown has highlighted along-runningfear among African-American residents that they will be pushed out by gentrification.

Carolina Panthers’ Greg Hardy’s Accuser Says He Threw Her On Couch ‘Covered’ With Guns

May 14, 2014
Mecklenburg County Sheriff’s Office

Carolina Panthers Pro Bowl defensive end Greg Hardy was released on bond Wednesday, but not before a Mecklenburg County judge described him as a potential threat to the girlfriend he’s accused of beating up.

Hardy, 25, an NFL Pro-Bowler last season, was arrested Tuesday on misdemeanor charges of assault on a female and communicating a threat.


The man accused of killing a Vietnam War veteran and grandfather of eight after an assault at a Rock Hill restaurant over the weekend lowered his head in court, cried and apologized to the dead man’s family, swearing he “did not mean for this to happen the way it did.”

Charlotte Douglas Doesn't Want Coal Ash Under Runway

May 9, 2014
Robert Lahser / Charlotte Observer

Charlotte Douglas International Airport doesn’t want coal ash from a Duke Energy power plant buried under a planned new runway or other airport infrastructure, dealing a potential blow to a proposal that would move millions of tons of ash from Mountain Island Lake to the airport.

Interim Aviation Director Brent Cagle said there’s uncertainty about how coal ash would work as a fill material under a runway, where it could be subjected to the pounding of hundreds of jets a day at Charlotte Douglas, the sixth-busiest airport in the world.