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July 12th, 2011

Elisa Baker’s lawyer files for venue change

July 12, 2011

The attorney for Elisa Baker wants a venue change for his client’s court proceedings. He said a change of locations is the only way that the woman accused of second-degree murder in her stepdaughter’s death can receive a fair trial.

"There exists in the county so great a prejudice against the defendant that she cannot obtain a fair and impartial trial,” according to the motion filed by Baker's attorney Scott Reilly.

July 11th

Head-on collision

July 11, 2011

Two cars collided Monday at the intersection of Rock Barn Road and Thornburg Drive in Conover after a red Cadillac attempted to make a left turn and was struck by a gold Toyota, witnesses said.

No one was seriously injured in the collision, but the driver of the red Cadillac was taken to the hospital. Witnesses said the crash caused both vehicles to lift off the ground.

Victims robbed at gunpoint for cell phones

July 11, 2011

Police are investigating robbery cases in Hickory where suspects held multiple victims at gunpoint to steal cash and cell phones.

The robberies occurred Friday and Saturday and both involve suspects pointing guns at victims and demanding money and cellular phones.

Authorities say that two victims were robbed at gunpoint early Friday within minutes of each other. The robberies occurred on the 300 and 400 blocks of Seconnd Street Place SE in succession. The victims said the suspect was wearing black clothing and a “Scream” mask, adding that the robber wielded a black and silver gun.

Thieves steal beer, candy from Catawba store

July 11, 2011

Police are searching for multiple suspects who broke into a Catawba convenience store last week and took money, beer and candy from the store’s shelves.

Authorities and business owners said suspects broke the back glass door to Abby’s Restaurant and Convenience Store in Catawba early Thursday morning before unlawfully entering the building. Once the thieves were inside, they stole money from the cash register, two 40-ounce Natural Ice beers and a case of Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups.

Catawba gets new police chief

July 11, 2011

The town of Catawba’s newest police chief said he plans on upholding the town’s reputation as a “fairly quiet” place to live.

The Catawba Town Council officially swore in police chief Mike Nash on Monday to serve more than 750 citizens that live in the town.

Nash, a Chicago native, has served with Catawba Police Department since September 2004. In August 2010, Nash was briefly promoted to sergeant before becoming the interim police chief after former chief Cecil Cook left a month later.

Citizens remember ‘family restaurant’

July 11, 2011

Area citizens are remembering a “family restaurant” Monday that has served Conover residents for decades.

Drum’s Restaurant in Conover was destroyed by a fire early Saturday morning after an electrical surge protector initially sparked a blaze inside the historic city landmark, fire officials told Drum’s owner Douglas Travis.

The restaurant was built in 1972.

“It had a little, cozy, family atmosphere,” said Conover resident Joyce Rice, adding that she ate at Drum’s two or three times a week.

“Everything about the restaurant was good — it was amazing.”

July 9th

Drum's Restaurant destroyed

July 9, 2011

Drum's Restaurant in Conover was destroyed by a fire early Saturday morning.

The fire was first reported at 1:19 a.m. Saturday, and the Conover Fire Department was dispatched to the downtown Conover restaurant by 1:30 a.m. for a working fire, said Drum's owner Douglas Travis, Jr.

Travis said no one was in the building when the fire was reported. He said he had no idea how the fire started.

The SBI Arson Team, Conover Fire Department and Conover Police Department were all investigating the fire Saturday.

July 8th

Tractor-trailer overturns

July 8, 2011

A tractor-trailer overturned at about 11:35 a.m. Thursday at the intersection of Startown Road and West Maiden Road in Maiden.

A driver for Queen Transportation said he was making a right turn onto West Maiden Road on Thursday when his tractor-trailer overturned on its right side on a grass embankment.

The driver said he did not know what happened. Maiden Police Officer Chad Long said the driver was not speeding. The tractor-trailer was delivering paper to the VonDrehle Corporation.

Mayor candidates file for office


July 8, 2011

With one week of filing remaining for some area municipalities, 17 candidates officially declared for the 2011 Catawba County municipal elections.

Two non-incumbent candidates filed for Newton’s mayoral race, which is the only election that currently has multiple people filed for one position. Newton Mayor pro Tem Anne Stedman, along with the Newton Merchant Group’s President Wes Weaver, officially filed for the mayoral election that will take place later this year. Newton’s current mayor Robert Mullinax said, earlier this year, he will not seek re-election.

Red Cross needs blood during low months


July 8, 2011

The area American Red Cross chapter urges people to donate blood during a time when supplies are traditionally low.


The Catawba Valley Chapter of the American Red Cross will team with the Texas Roadhouse in Hickory on Monday to hold a blood drive from 4-8 p.m. Monday's blood drive comes during a season when Red Cross officials say blood supplies are dangerously low.


Suzan Anderson, executive director for the Catawba Valley’s Red Cross chapter, said blood donations and supplies are typically lower in the summer months.

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