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January 19th, 2012

No leads in gunman investigation

January 19, 2012

Video footage from campus surveillance cameras offered authorities no new information Thursday as they continue to investigate a report of a gunman at Catawba Valley Community College.

Police said a female CVCC employee reported a middle-aged white man holding a handgun in an East Campus parking lot about 9:20 a.m. Wednesday. The employee said the man was wearing a backpack and had long, curly blonde hair.

CVCC locked down its east and main campuses Wednesday as law enforcement spent nearly four hours combing the college for the suspect.

Flapping Birds, Jumping Frogs: Know When to Fold ‘em

January 19, 2012

As a toddler growing up in Chicago, Catherine LeFevers tried to understand the ancient art of origami. LeFevers grew up surrounded by art — her parents attended Art Institute of Chicago. A collection of origami books, published in 1959, was nestled among many stacks of art books.

LeFevers, 51, and a resident of Newton, still has these books.
“I was intrigued with origami but couldn’t understand it,” she said. “I did fold paper as a child.”

The O-N-E Morning Read: Thursday, Jan. 19

January 19, 2012

Crisis was averted on the campus of Catawba Valley Community College, but a lockdown and evacuation of nearly 5,000 people from the school’s two campuses caused a lot of alarm in the Hickory Metro.

The O-N-E delivered news updates online throughout Wednesday’s security threat online at www.observernewsonline.com and on Twitter @TheONENews.

Get a wrap-up of the day’s details on the Thursday edition of The O-N-E.

January 18th

Conference swim meets start on Friday

January 18, 2012

Catawba County’s swim teams are preparing to compete in their respective conference meets, which start Friday in Valdese.

The Northwestern 3A/4A meet is Friday at 4 p.m. at the Valdese Aquatic and Fitness Center.

Catawba Valley 2A squads meet at the same location Saturday at 8 a.m. for their meet.

Last year, the two meets combined to crown four champions in different schools, including the East Burke and South Caldwell boys and St. Stephens and Draughn girls.

The Lady Indians will try to defend their crown, despite losing six senior swimmers to graduation.

Indians' Nelson steps down, takes job in S.C.

January 18, 2012

Chris Nelson, head coach of the St. Stephens boys soccer program for two seasons, will step down Friday.

Nelson will become an athletic director in Colleton County, S.C.
He was offered the job Monday, accepted it and informed the players of his decision Tuesday.

“I’m resigning the teaching and coaching position at the end of this semester,” Nelson said in a phone interview.

The 27-year-old, who also assisted coach Chuck Davis with the girls soccer program at St. Stephens, directed the Indians to a 19-14-3 record during his coaching tenure at the school.

Red Devils, Tigers, Indians rank in top five

January 18, 2012

Fred T. Foard, St. Stephens and Newton-Conover’s wrestling teams remain among the top five teams in this week’s dual team coaches poll.

The Tigers (22-1) lost first place votes in the latest poll.

They trail Orange by 26 votes, a closer margin than the last poll Jan. 4.
St. Stephens remains in fifth place in the 3A ranks.

In 2A, Newton-Conover remains in second place, trailing Piedmont, while Bandys remains slightly outside the top five.

3A coaches poll
1. Orange (18) 220
2. Foard (5) 194
3. Robinson 132
4. SW Randolph 48
5. St. Stephens 24

Grant to boost low-income housing

January 18, 2012

Catawba County commissioners agreed to a grant this week that will help pay for repairs to multiple low-income households.

The Catawba County Board of Commissioners agreed to the N.C. Housing Finance Agency Urgent Repair Program Grant in the amount of $37,500.

The grant will be used to provide energy-efficiency improvements and minor structural repairs to seven low-income households in the area, according to information from the county.

Each home will receive a maximum of $5,000 in repairs.

Police chase ends in arrest

January 18, 2012

Police arrested a Newton man Monday afternoon after he assaulted his girlfriend and led authorities on a chase through the county.

Rushie Lee Kennedy, 24, of 815 East 1st St. in Newton, was charged with fleeing to elude arrest and assault on a female after a domestic issue turned into a police chase Monday afternoon.

Police say Kennedy assaulted his girlfriend at the Catawba Pines Apartments in Newton at about 2:30 p.m. Monday and fled the scene in a silver Chevy Impala.

His girlfriend called the police, who caught up to Kennedy in Newton and attempted to stop him.  

Lockdown terrifies students

January 18, 2012

Francina Owens was sitting in her driver’s education class Wednesday morning when she heard a voice on a loudspeaker.

“Security code red. The campus is on lockdown. This is not a test,” the voice said.

Owens, a Maiden resident, was one of nearly 1,000 students on Catawba Valley Community College’s East Campus when an employee spotted what appeared to be a gunman in a parking lot in front of the school.

Both the east and main campuses at CVCC were on lockdown for nearly four hours as area SWAT teams searched buildings for the suspect.

Authorities never found the reported gunman.

N.C. 16 Business bridge repairs complete

January 18, 2012

Traffic is returning to normal on N.C. 16 Business near downtown Conover — for now.

This week, the N.C. Department of Transportation (NCDOT) completed repairs to the N.C. 16 Business bridge over U.S. 70. Meanwhile, work is expected to begin soon to replace an aging N.C. 16 bridge over Interstate 40.

Repairs to the bridge over U.S. 70 were the result of a truck scraping underneath and damaging the bridge, said Rodney Gantt, a bridge maintenance engineer who works in Catawba and Lincoln counties.

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