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September 13th, 2011

Maiden man charged with sexual battery

September 14, 2011

A Maiden man has been charged with sexual battery in connection to an incident that occurred Thursday.

Floyd Benson Hicks, 61, of 4687 South Oliver’s Crossroads, Maiden, turned himself in at the Lincolnton Police Department late Monday night on a warrant issued by Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office investigators.

The 15-year-old victim, whose name was not released, said she agreed to ride with the suspect on his Harley Davidson motorcycle, and they went to the Rock Springs Campground in Denver.

No vote on dress code

September 14, 2011

Three members of the public shared their concerns about Newton-Conover City Schools’ proposed standard code of dress policy Monday night.

Then four members of the school board addressed some of those concerns and voiced their own. Board members had enough concerns that the dress code policy was not voted on.

Board member Kyle Drum made a motion to approve the policy, but no one made a second.

“So there will be no standard code of dress at the elementary schools,” said Scott Loudermelt, the board chairman. “At least not for now.”

September 12th

Baker hearing postponed

September 13, 2011

A hearing to determine the venue for Elisa Baker’s second-degree murder trial was postponed Monday so attorneys in the case can resolve “issues that have surfaced.”

Neither the state nor Elisa’s defense attorney will disclose what the “issues” are, but both sides agree the situation can be resolved on Wednesday morning.

The court was supposed to decide on Monday where Elisa’s trial will be held, but the hearing was postponed after both sides said they needed to further discuss undisclosed “issues” in the case.

Drunken feud leads to stabbing

September 12, 2011

A Claremont woman is recovering in the hospital after being stabbed in the chest by her partner.

Police say a group of friends was playing cards and drinking alcohol on Friday when an argument between Cheryl Flowers and Loretta Gibbs began.

The argument escalated, and Gibbs stabbed Flowers in the chest with a knife, said Catawba County Sheriff Coy Reid.

Flowers was taken to Catawba Valley Medical Center with serious injuries on Friday, but Reid said Monday that she is in stable condition.

Toilets, cabinets stolen from home

September 12, 2011

Owners of a vacant house found the structure flushed of its bathroom and kitchen amenities on Sunday after thieves stole toilets and cabinets.

Newton police say suspects stole toilets, a heat pump and kitchen and bathroom cabinets from the house at 1205 Old Conover-Startown recently.

“This is not the common (breaking and entering) that we have,” said Newton Police Major Kevin Yarborough, adding that the incident was a unique situation because of the items stolen.

New editor joins staff of The O-N-E

September 12, 2011

Matthew Tessnear joined The Observer News Enterprise as managing editor, Catawba County;s community newspaper announced Monday,

"We are excited to announce this new addition to our staff," said O-N-E Publisher Michael Willard. "Matthew has a solid background in journalism, and I am confident that he will help The O-N-E continue to report news that is important to the readers of our newspapers and our online publication."

Tessnear, 26, is a native of Alexis in Gaston County. He studied journalism at Gardner-Webb University and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in 2007.

September 11th

Remembering 9/11

September 11, 2011

During the hour when terrorist attacks were unfolding on U.S. soil a decade earlier, Catawba County citizens gathered in Conover on Sunday to remember Sept. 11, 2001.

“Today marks the 10th anniversary of when our world was made different in an instant,” said Conover Mayor Lee Moritz Jr. “Whatever we call 9/11 - the beginning of the war on terror - or America’s wake-up call, one fact is beyond belief: it changed us, and it changed our world.”

September 9th

Conover delivers 9/11 artifact


September 10, 2011



A group of Conover officials experienced 9/11 first hand this week through the mouth of a “hero” and “survivor” himself.


While on a trip to retrieve a piece of the Twin Towers for the city, Conover chiefs, managers and citizens toured Ground Zero with a man who lived through the terrorist attacks. Nick Pendergast, whose father was the president of the Conover Family Historical Society, was a financial consultant who worked no more than 200 yards away from Ground Zero.

Security changes for cops after 9/11

September 10, 2011

Less than two months ago, federal authorities arrested 17 men in Charlotte associated with the Middle East guerrilla group Hezbollah. The men were smuggling and selling cigarettes across state lines and sending the profits to fund terrorist groups.

It was a large-scale terrorist bust that occurred less than 60 miles from Catawba County.

Area law enforcement say such terrorist plots, as well as the attacks on 9/11, have forced officers to become savvy with a whole new type of security.

The O-N-E focuses on 9/11, now and then

September 10, 2011

Only a few hours after terrorists attacked the United States, Catawba County's community newspaper was among the first in the state and the nation to hit the streets with the news.

"We had it in the newspaper pretty quick. We may have been the first newspaper in North Carolina to print it," said Jon Alverson, former sports editor for The Observer News Enterprise. "I know we had it out before noon."

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