November 30th, 2011
A fire destroyed an elderly coupleâ€™s home Wednesday in northern Catawba County.
Family and neighbors say a fire burst from a wood furnace at the home of Bill and Euella Winebarger at 5942 Hightower Road in Hickory. The flames completely engulfed the home and caused minor burns to Billâ€™s hands and ears, family members said.
Family members say the couple had just returned home around noon on Wednesday when the fire started.
It was nearing 6 p.m., and Catawba firemen were circling an old, cinderblock house at 5400 Hudson Chapel Road.
The one-story, abandoned residence was soaked. It had rained all day, which dampened the Catawba Fire Departmentâ€™s chances of easily starting a training fire at the house that most neighbors consider a burden to the community.
The house, located directly across from Catawba Elementary School, already burned more than four years ago, said Catawba Fire Chief Donald Robinson.
A district court judge agreed to continue the DWI case against Assistant District 25 Attorney Eric Bellas on Wednesday in Brunswick County.
Bellas was scheduled to appear in court for DWI and civil revocation of driverâ€™s license charges in relation to an incident that occurred this summer at Sunset Beach. Court officials said Bellasâ€™ attorney, Roy Best, appeared for him and the case was continued until Jan. 25.
Bellas, 45, of Morganton, was charged with DWI while attending a district attorneyâ€™s conference in Sunset Beach.
A Hickory man will spend the rest of his life in prison after he was convicted Wednesday of first-degree murder.
Ryan Ansley Rendleman was sentenced in Catawba County Criminal Superior Court after a jury deliberated for four hours and decided that he was guilty of killing former girlfriend Christy Whitmore, according to a release from the district 25 attorney's office.
Whitmore was found dead in March 2010 at the mobile home park where she lived with Rendleman.
Rendleman's trial lasted nine days at the Catawba County Justice Center.
Thieves have targeted electronic equipment in multiple homes in Catawba County in the last week.
Flat-screen TVs and video games were stolen in Hickory, Conover and Catawba.
Thieves also stole cigarettes from a Hickory convenience store, and others took a catalytic converter from a vehicle sitting at Catawba Valley Community College.
Following are crimes reported by the Catawba County Sheriff's Office.
Suspects stole a 55-inch flat-screen TV from the home of Randall Scott Setzer, 38, of 1156 Wagon Wheel Road in Hickory, on Monday.
A German-based manufacturer of fan wheels and blowers will bring at least 62 jobs to Catawba County when it opens a new manufacturing plant in Hickory.
Punker LLC produces fan parts for the HVAC and exhaust industries. The company's Hickory plant will be its first manufacturing operation in the United States, according to a release from the Catawba County Economic Development Corporation (EDC). Plans for the plant were announced Wednesday.
Lions, tigers and other exotic animals in Catawba County?
Theyâ€™re here â€”Â and they are lawfully allowed as North Carolina is one of eight states that do not regulate possession of exotic animals. Catawba County leaders want to change that, however, and the Wednesday edition of The O-N-E examines how the countyâ€™s animal control officials are trying to better regulate possession of exotic animals in area municipalities.
St. Stephens spoiled the head coaching debut at Bandys for Mark Story.
The Indians (1-1) pulled out to an early lead and never looked back, cruising to the 66-43 victory in Catawba on Tuesday.
Bandys (0-1) fell behind in the first quarter due to 12 turnovers, and were outscored 39-14 in the first half. Dillion Spencer and Jordan James led the Indians in the early going with seven points each in the first half.
The Fred T. Foard girls basketball team improved to 2-0 on the season with a 50-32 victory against the West Lincoln Lady Rebels.
North Lincoln 50, Bunker Hill 36
The Bears fell to 0-3 on the season with a loss to the Knights on Tuesday.
Gray Brotherton scored 21 points, while Travis Cannon added 12 points for the Knights (1-0).
Jordan McGinnis led Bunker Hill with seven points, while Nathan Sherrill added six points.
St. Stephens 54, Ashe Co. 30
113: Body Miller (ASHE) pinned Chris Hovis 1:34
This photo of an Allen's hummingbird at Riverbend Park is The O-N-E news photo of the week.
The hummingbird, only the second ever recorded in North Carolina, first visited the park Nov. 18.
The adult male bird has a rusty-colored head, back and sides; metallic green on his back; and a bright orange-red throat.
The photo was taken by Western Carolina University student Michael McCloy and provided by Catawba County.