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Archive - Feb 27, 2012

Newton-Conover's Klutz, Wepner are state champions

February 27, 2012

Senior Addison Klutz and sophomore Franklin Wepner joined an elite list of state wrestling champions at Newton-Conover High School on Saturday.

The duo won their respective weight classes to become the 10th and 11th Red Devils, respectively, to win individual state wrestling championships.

PREP NOTEBOOK: Blue Devils win tennis opener

February 27, 2012

The Maiden boys tennis team kicked off its season on the right foot Monday, defeating Lincolnton 6-2 on the hard court.

“I thought we played pretty well today,” said Maiden coach Jon Huffman. “Lincolnton was missing its No. 4, No. 5 and No. 6 players. I wish they were at full strength so we could see how we matched up against them. I thought they played us well.”

The Blue Devils host Wilkes Central on Wednesday, a team Huffman said will present a tough test.

Cougars' Harper named new Hickory football coach

February 27, 2012

The replacement for John Worley as Hickory High School football coach is a familiar rival within the Northwestern conference.

Tom Harper, who has been the head coach at Alexander Central for the past five seasons, takes over the Red Tornadoes’ football program.

Police: Man filed false kidnapping report

February 27, 2012

A Catawba County man was charged with falsely reporting he was kidnapped.

Storme Goforth’s mother reported him missing Feb. 14.

Goforth turned up at his mother’s workplace Feb. 18 and said he had been kidnapped, according to Long View police.

Lt. R.A. Coffey said an investigation revealed that Goforth had been sleeping in an abandoned house.

“He left home on his own accord,” Coffey said.

Goforth, 22, was charged with filing a false police report, a misdemeanor.

Coffey said Goforth likely faces probation for the charge.

Attorney found dead in home

February 27, 2012

A former Catawba County government attorney and Conover City Council candidate was found dead Sunday at his home in Conover.


Lewis E. Waddell Jr., who was the subject of a recent N.C. State Bar investigation, was found dead in his home about 5:10 p.m. Sunday afternoon, according to police reports.

He was 69.


Police were called to Waddell’s residence at 410 3rd Ave. NE in Conover after a neighbor discovered his body.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

February 27, 2012

Lewis E. Waddell Jr., 69, of Conover, died Sunday, Feb. 26, 2012 at his home.  The Waddell family has entrusted the arrangements to Drum Funeral Home & Cremations in Conover.

Barbara Jane Hefner, 69, of Claremont, died Feb. 27, 2012, at Palliative CareCenter & Hospice of Catawba Valley in Newton.  The Hefner family has entrusted the funeral arrangements to Willis-Reynolds Funeral Home & Crematory in Newton.

School embezzlement trial begins

February 27, 2012

The trial of a Hickory woman accused of stealing money from an elementary school organization began Monday in court.

Holly Lafone Specht, 31, is accused of stealing money from Webb A. Murray Elementary School’s Parent Teacher Organization (PTO) when she served as the group’s treasurer during the 2008-09 school year.

Specht is charged with one count of obtaining property by false pretenses, one count of embezzlement by public officers and trustees, and four counts of forging endorsement.

Mayfield indicted in Caldwell County

February 27, 2012

Former NASCAR driver Jeremy Mayfield was indicted Monday on four counts of felony larceny in Caldwell County.

The indictments stem from a year-long investigation by the Hudson Police Department in which officers probed the theft of trailers located at the site of the former Anderson Truck Lines at 2698 Hickory Blvd.

Authorities searched Mayfield’s Catawba home on Nov. 16, 2011, using a search warrant granted to the Hudson Police Department, and seized furniture found on the premises.

Hickory student charged with rape

February 27, 2012

A Hickory High School student was charged with first-degree rape after an alleged incident outside an area church on Saturday.

A 14-year-old girl says she was raped by two teenage boys Saturday afternoon outside of Exodus Church on Highland Avenue in Hickory.

Hickory police say the girl knew both suspects, including Mikal Jerome Gray, a 17-year-old Hickory High School student.

The girl says Gray and a 15-year-old male suspect raped her after a gathering for youth at Exodus Church.

Church break-ins suspect arrested

February 27, 2012

Police arrested a Conover man that they think may be linked to the city’s recent string of church break-ins.

Conover police arrested Ryan Chrishan Johnson, 26, of 611 11th St. SW in Conover, early Saturday morning after he allegedly broke into Family Health Care Practices near the five-point intersection downtown.

Conover Police Chief Steve Brewer said CPD Officer Victor Morales spotted Johnson in an alley behind Family Health Care Practices about 3:45 a.m. Saturday, and the suspect tried to hide behind several trash cans.

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