Thieves stole $20,000 in crop duster fertilizer from land in Sherrills Ford Wednesday night.
According to the Catawba County Sheriffâ€™s Office, suspects driving a blue Dodge Dakota truck stole four aluminum tanks containing crop duster fertilizer from property owned by Joel Preston Lineberger, of 1673 Rufty St. in Catawba.
The larceny occurred sometime from Wednesday night to Thursday morning.
Lineberger, who owns property at 6239 Lineberger Road in Sherrills Ford, is a pilot and owns a crop duster plane, according to a sheriff's office incident report.
Former NASCAR driver Jeremy Mayfield has hired a lawyer and will appear in court again on Jan. 3.
Mayfield is charged with possession of methamphetamine, a charge that could carry a maximum prison sentence of 12-15 months, according to Catawba County court records.
More charges are expected to surface for Mayfield, whose home and property has been searched two times within the last month for stolen property originally taken from Lincoln, Iredell and Caldwell counties.
WASHINGTON â€” The unemployment rate in the U.S. fell last month to its lowest level in more than 2-1/2 years as employers stepped up hiring in response to the slowly improving economy.
The Labor Department says the unemployment rate dropped to 8.6 percent in November from 9 percent in October. The rate hasn't been that low since March 2009, during the depths of the recession.
Employers added 120,000 jobs last month. And the previous two months were revised up to show that 72,000 more jobs added â€” the fourth straight month the government revised prior months higher.
Catawba Valley Community College received the largest financial gift in the schoolâ€™s 53-year history, and now the facilityâ€™s multi-purpose complex will be named in the donorâ€™s honor. Who made the donation and what will the schoolâ€™s one-of-a-kind facility be called? Find out in the Friday edition of The O-N-E and online at http://www.observernewsonline.com/content/biggest-gift.
A dead body was found in Lake Norman on Thursday morning, and police investigators are piecing together a puzzle to find out what happened. More details in The O-N-E.
With a 2010 state title under its belt, the Fred T. Foard wrestling team is trying to repeat its success from a season ago.
â€śOther teams may look at us differently,â€ť said Tigers coach Mike Carey. â€śI donâ€™t think we look at ourselves differently. We might have more of a sense of confidence that we can get the job done against anybody."
The Tigers are off to an early 5-1 start with their only loss coming last week against a tough 4A squad in defending state champion Parkland.
Tigers coach Mike Carey still expects improvement.
Before a business moves into a new facility and creates jobs, its building must be inspected.
The inspector â€” using rules and codes handed down by the state â€” can give that facility an OK or require changes that can delay an opening, thus costing the business more money.
While the code is the code, inspectors, developers and real estate brokers agree there is room for interpretation â€” a small amount of wiggle space that can either make development easier or create costly delays.
The North Carolina board of education is telling public school administrators to plan on adding five more classroom days next year, but the state isn't setting the expanded school year in stone just yet.
State school board Chairman Bill Harrison said Thursday he hopes to meet with state lawmakers before they return to work in February to describe problems local school districts face from a new law increasing the current 180-day school year to 185 days.
School districts complain they'll have to pay for five extra days of school bus fuel and other costs despite state budget cuts.
Catawba Valley Community College recently received the largest private gift in its 53-year history.
Area real estate developer James V. Tarlton Jr. made the donation to the CVCC Foundation, and the college will rename its on-campus multipurpose center The Tarlton Complex in his honor.
Tarlton said he did not want to disclose the amount of the gift to the college, and college officials said they respect that wish.
"It was substantial," Tarlton said.
Authorities are investigating a dead body that was found floating in Lake Norman on Thursday morning.
Catawba County sheriff's deputies responded to a report of a dead body about 10:30 a.m. Wednesday morning near The Boat Rack on Spinnaker Bay Drive in Sherrills Ford.
Catawba County Sheriff Coy Reid said an employee at the boat rack observed the body floating in the water about 25 feet from the shoreline and called 9-1-1.
The victim is a white male about 50-years-old, Reid said. Authorities are not releasing his name or address until his family is notified about the death.
Christmas activities highlight events this week in Catawba County.
Conover will light its tree downtown, Hickory will march its annual parade, an ensemble will sing Christmas tunes in Hickory and Newton senior adults will dance to a variety of music.
A chili and pottery fundraiser, bridge-building contest and several community information sessions also dot the schedule.
Read on for more details and pick up copies of The Observer News Enterprise throughout the week at county newsstands for the latest on events, breaking news, daily comics, opinions and more.