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Police search for man in gas station robbery

Charlotte police are looking for a man in connection with an armed robbery on Sept. 4 at the Shell gas station on Glenwood Drive.

The man walked into the store, implied he had a weapon and robbed the clerk, police said.

Call CrimeStoppers if you have any information. 


Published: Mon, 05 Oct 2015 21:27:45 -0400

Document: Murder suspect denied gun permit

New documents show a man accused of shooting and killing a woman in west Charlotte was denied a gun permit earlier this year.

Immanuel Felton was arrested and charged with Alexia Mayfield's killing.

PAST ARTICLE: Police charge man for woman’s murder in west Charlotte

Felton is accused of shooting and killing her on Nobles Avenue on Friday night, police said.

Investigators haven't released a motive.

Felton applied for a gun permit in April but the Mecklenburg County Sheriff's Office denied his permit because he had "sought or received mental health treatment." Police have not revealed how Felton obtained a gun.


Published: Mon, 05 Oct 2015 19:21:44 -0400

General Mills recalls 1.8 million boxes of Cheerios

General Mills has announced they are recalling boxes of cheerios that have been mislabeled.

The company said today that its voluntarily recalling 1.8 million boxes of Cheerios and Honey Nut Cheerios products made at its facility in Lodi, California. The boxes are being recalled after an incident allowed wheat flour to enter its gluten-free oat-based system.

>> Read more trending stories 

A General Mills spokeswoman said consumers have reported illnesses online and at least two official illness complaints have been reported directly to General Mills as a result of the affected products.

The company is asking customers to check the "better if used by" code dates on Honey Nut Cheerios boxes for July 12-25, 2016. Plant code "LD" would also be denoted at the end of the listing. 

For boxes of original Cheerios, the dates are July 14-17, 2016, and the code would appear as follows: 

14JUL2016 LD

15JUL2016 LD

16JUL2016 LD

17JUL2016 LD

General Mills, which is transitioning five varieties of Cheerios to gluten-free, said other cereals and products produced at other facilities have not been affected.

Cheerios officially released this statement:

"We want to reassure you that this was an isolated incident and we have implemented a solution to ensure that this will not happen again. We'll also continue to test products and our oat flour supply to ensure our products meet the gluten-free standard. We care about what you and your family eat and we are truly sorry for this mistake. We will work extremely hard to earn back your trust."

Customers who want refunds or have questions should call General Mills consumer services at 800-775-8370.

Published: Mon, 05 Oct 2015 18:13:37 -0400

Family members claims assault was motive for Lancaster killing

Jeff Barrett, 42, had just left his home for a friend's house Saturday night when he was shot and killed in the street.

He was a construction worker and a father of five.

Within hours, deputies charged Derrick Stalk, 16, with murder. Barrett was shot in the chest and leg, and two 9-millimeter shell casings were found in the street near his body.

Lancaster Co. Sheriff’s Office charges 16-year-old with murder

Lisa Hanna was Barrett's girlfriend and is the mother of his 18-month-old daughter.

"He was a very, very great man," Hanna said. "Two minutes after he walked out of our home, I heard gunshots."

Neighbors did as well, including long-time friend Misty Hinson.

“It's just very heart-breaking, because Jeff was such a wonderful person. He really was," she said.

Lancaster County sheriff's deputies would not discuss a motive for the shooting as of late Monday.

However, family members and friends told Channel 9 that Stalk had been hanging around the neighborhood recently.  

They said he had stolen money from another man, and Barrett had confronted him about it a few days ago.

During that confrontation, Stalk hit Barrett in the head, family members told Channel 9.

Deputies said they do have a report of that alleged assault from Sept. 29 filed by Barrett. 

However, since Stalk is a juvenile, they cannot release information about that case or confirm a possible suspect.

Deputies did say they have not charged anyone with that assault at this time.

Deputies said they are still interviewing neighbors on Thomasville Street but are not looking for more suspects.

Misty Hinson's sister, Rhonda, also knew Barrett and said his death makes no sense.
"You always hear about stuff like this, but when it hits you right where you stay, with people you know, it's devastating," she said.
On Monday, Channel 9 spoke to Barrett's mother and sister. They said they forgive the teenager who's charged in the killing.

Stalk is being held at the Department of Juvenile Justice in Columbia, South Carolina. Deputies expect him to return to Lancaster County for a bond hearing later in the week.




Published: Mon, 05 Oct 2015 17:26:38 -0400

Caregiver steals $50K from Ohio woman

A woman has been charged with stealing approximately $50,000 from a woman she was supposed to be caring for, according to the Butler County Prosecutor’s and Sheriff’s offices.

Nancy Jean Taylor, 49, obtained online a power of attorney over an 83-year-old Ohio woman’s estate, and once the paperwork was notarized, she began stealing money, according to the two county agencies. The scam lasted almost a year, according to the two offices.

>> Read more trending stories  

A report was filed with the Butler County Sheriff’s Office in December 2014 concerning a reported theft.

“Initially, it appeared what she was doing was legal,” said Butler County Sheriff’s Detective Kim Peters. “She had the proper paperwork giving her rights to the victim’s money. I knew it wasn’t right, so the Butler County Prosecutor’s Office Elderly Taskforce, Adult Protective Services and the victim’s bank, Fifth Third, got involved.”

The agencies and bank were able to have the power of attorney removed, and Taylor was charged with theft, a second-degree felony.

“Jail is where she needs to be," said Butler County Sheriff Richard Jones. 

“There is too much of this going on in this country,” said Jones, who urges family and friends to become more involved with the elderly.

Taylor is being held without bond.

Published: Mon, 05 Oct 2015 17:21:15 -0400

Security camera catches burglar’s fall from ceiling

Police hope the public can help identify the criminal who literally dropped into a convenience store.

The burglary happened late Sunday and the store’s surveillance camera caught the burglar’s precipitous entry -- through the ceiling and onto the tile floor.

The unidentified, after-hours customer apparently found a way in through the roof, according to the Springfield, Ohio, police report.

After falling through the ceiling and landing inside the store, the burglar can be seen in the video immediately trying to climb back up to the hole he fell through.

Aside from the cleanup and necessary repairs to the building, the store owner found nothing missing, according to the report.

Police said the burglar looks to be in his late 30s. He was wearing a black baseball hat, dark blue short-sleeve shirt, blue jeans and light brown leather work boots.

Published: Mon, 05 Oct 2015 16:30:08 -0400

These cities have the highest ATM fees

According to Bankrate, ATM fees for out of network withdrawals have risen 4% in the last year. The 2015 Bankrate Checking Survey found that the national average charge for a consumer using an ATM that doesn't associate with one's personal checking account is now $2.88. 

Consumer expert Clark Howard recommends joining a credit union.

>> Read more trending stories 

“The credit unions offer a fee free ATM network that allows you to avoid ATM charges [across the 50 states],” said Howard.

Small banks are another good choice, according to Howard, but many of them went under during the financial crisis.

Now, fewer people are using out of network ATMs.

According to Bankrate, these cities have the highest average ATM fees:

Minneapolis: $3.19

Phoenix: $3.15

Milwaukee: $3.15

Houston: $3.06

Denver: $3.05

Dallas: $3.00

The same source cites these cities as having the lowest average ATM fees:

Baltimore: $2.75

Chicago: $2.75

St. Louis: $2.75

Philadelphia: $2.75

Pittsburgh: $2.70

Cincinnati: $2.61

Kansas City, Missouri: $2.55

Published: Mon, 05 Oct 2015 16:28:26 -0400

New evidence presented in Maggie Daniels homicide case

The man accused of sexually assaulting and strangling to death a popular high school counselor in Newton appeared before a judge Monday.

Attorneys for Sharman Odom revealed new evidence found on Maggie Daniels’ body belonged to another man.

Odom was not smiling in court, like he did the day of his arrest.


For the first time, he also had something to say since prosecutors announced they plan on seeking the death penalty. 

Before the hearing got underway, Odom let the judge know he had no plans on sitting while he was in court.

"Mr. Odom, thank you. You can sit down, sir," Judge Greg Hayes said.
"I have to sit?" Odom asked the judge.

"Pardon?" Hayes said.

"I have to sit?" Odom said.

"No, sir. You don't have to sit," the judge told Odom.

"I'm good. I'm good," Odom said.
Odom stood as prosecutors and defense attorneys made three motions in the case. 
They included his attorneys wanting evidence preserved in the case to prosecutors asking for nearly $50,000 to test evidence at an out-of-state lab.
But it was a motion to see a Newton police captain's personnel file that is raising new questions.
Odom's attorneys want to know if there's a connection between that captain and Daniel's boyfriend.
They told the judge there was evidence found on Daniels the night she was killed that belonged to her boyfriend, not Odom.

"DNA analysis from the crime scene also showed what appears to be a fresh semen stain in the shorts that Miss Daniels was wearing," Odum’s defense attorney said.
The high-profile case attracted a lot of attention after Daniels, who worked as a counselor at Discovery High School, was found killed inside her apartment.
Weeks later, police arrested Odom, who lived in the same apartment complex, after finding his DNA on a strand of hair at the crime scene. 

"It was an eye-opener to what can happen even in a little small town like Newton," resident Roxy Shook said.
The judge plans on reviewing some of those motions made before making a decision.  
Odom's attorneys also declined to discuss why they've billed more than $50,000 in fees so far in the case.  


Published: Mon, 05 Oct 2015 16:06:47 -0400

How to help your pets if you are in an abusive relationship

Research shows abusers often lash out at all members of the household, including pets.

Two-thirds of battered women say their pets were abused, as well.

There are animal shelters in the Charlotte area that will take in your pet if you're trying to leave an abusive situation. Click here for details.

CLICK HERE for facts from the American Humane Society about pets and domestic violence.

CLICK HERE for FAQs and facts from the ASPCA about pets and domestic violence.

Published: Mon, 05 Oct 2015 16:03:41 -0400

Spooky number 13 coincidence in NFL game

The Huffington Post reports a sharp-eyed NFL fan noticed a weird coincidence during this weekend's NFL game between the Cleveland Browns and the San Diego Chargers and grabbed a screenshot of it.

>> Read more trending stories 

During the 3rd quarter on 3rd and 13 with a score of 13-13, there was 13:13 left to go and 3 seconds left on the play clock, which resulted in "3's" and "13's" showing up everywhere on the scoreboard.

To top it off, Browns QB Josh McCown is wearing his number 13 jersey and standing off by himself in the upper righthand corner of the screen.

Published: Mon, 05 Oct 2015 16:00:00 -0400

Local charities help SC flood victims

Volunteers left the Charlotte Salvation Army just a couple hours ago.

They're not the only ones, other groups and companies are rushing to help but met some challenges.

Volunteers with the Charlotte Salvation Army loaded an emergency disaster truck with water, coffee and food to take to families in Columbia impacted by historic flooding.

"We want them to know Charlotte is praying for them, that we're here ready to stand by them," Major Larry Broome, Salvation Army Charlotte, said.

Richard Vosteen has been a disaster volunteer for 20 years. He said 'this' disaster is unlike any other.

"When you've lost everything, a hot meal and a kind word, a touch on the shoulder often means everything as far as bringing hope to people," Vosteen said.

The local American Red Cross is already in Wilmington.

At this Lowe's distribution center in Statesville emergency items like generators, dehumidifiers, shop vacs and more were loaded into trucks and are now heading to South Carolina.

"We're working with local agencies, as well, for their needs and making sure we have the people, products and services our communities are going to be in need of," Bill Edwards, Lowes Vice President of Store Operations said.

Travel is difficult because interstates and highways are still shut down and authorities are asking people to stay off them, so first responders can rescue people if necessary.

I talked to the u-s disaster relief manager for Samaritan's Purse via skype. He said they have three disaster units ready to go... But, they can't help people clean out homes. Until the flood water recedes.

“Right now is the time for us to continue to gather information, wait for the assessment reports to come in. We then let volunteers respond from across the country," Tim Haas, U.S. disaster relief manager with Samaritan’s Purse said.

Volunteers from the Salvation Army on their way to Columbia are prepared to stay a week.

The commander said they will rotate volunteers if needed, but they still don't know what the needs will be in the long-run.

How to Help SC:

Phone Numbers to volunteer:

  • Charleston – 843-764-2323 x321
  • Columbia – 803-508-5251
  • Myrtle Beach – 843-764-2323 x321
  • Upstate – 864-270-9575

Make a Donation:

Make a contribution to Salvation Army

Make a contribution to Samaritan's Purse

Make a contribution to American Red Cross Disaster Relief or at 1-800-REDCROSS

Red Cross Shelters in SC

Published: Mon, 05 Oct 2015 15:47:12 -0400

The cheapest days to book flights for the holidays

If you're jetting off for Thanksgiving, Orbitz says Tuesday, Oct. 6, is the cheapest day to book a flight.

A cheaper flight means more money for a bigger turkey, right?

And if Thanksgiving is anything like last year, a lot of people will be traveling.

If you miss Oct. 6, the entire week is a good time to book cheap holiday flights.

Christmas, we're lookin' at you. Book a flight Oct. 9.

And if you plan to ring in the new year in a new city, the best time to book is Oct. 10.

Orbitz says fares tend to rise about 5 percent the weeks of those three holidays. So don't snooze — you'll lose.

This video includes an image from jennie-o / CC BY 2.0.

Published: Mon, 05 Oct 2015 15:41:04 -0400

Coal ash sites worry Belmont residents

Several Belmont residents are worried coal ash sites they didn't know about could be contaminating their water.

In the 1990s, Duke Energy buried 800,000 tons of coal ash at a horse farm and on Holy Angels property in Belmont.

Duke spokesperson, Catherine Butler, said, "It can be used as fill material instead of dirt so back in the 1990s, Duke Energy upon the request of different land owners, provided coal ash to be used as fill material."

EJ Smith didn't know there were unlined coal ash sites near his home when his family moved in seven years ago.

Now, he will only drink his water after installing a $7,000 filtration system.

He said private tests revealed alarming results.

"Vanadium and Hexavalent Chromium are the two with the biggest health risks," Smith said.

 "My fear is what's in my children. How much of this stuff is in my kids right now."

The owner of the horse pasture told Channel 9 by phone, he is not worried about any contamination from coal ash.

Holy Angels sent Channel 9 a statement.

It read in part, "We were not informed of any risks" and, "We share our neighbors' concerns about water quality and support the further study of this important issue."
State environmental officials said they're looking into residents' water concerns.

Tom Reeder, NC DENR assistant secretary for the environment, said, "We're basically trying to see if the levels that have been found in these wells are what we would expect from the natural conditions."

 Smith wants answers for his family and his neighbors.

State environmental officials said if they suspect these coal ash sites are the cause of any water contamination.

They could require the property owner or Duke to install ground water monitors.

It's too early to tell whether that will happen.

Duke said when they completed those fill sites in the 1990s, they transferred the title of the coal ash to the property owners.

If residents have concerns about well water or have results of private tests to share, they should contact their county Health Department.

Camp Hope Issued a statement on the use of coal ash:

"In 1998 Duke Power Company approached Holy Angels about creating more usable space at our Camp Hope recreational facility on Lake Wylie by using coal ash as structural fill. We were not informed of any risks associated with coal ash and agreed to the proposal. It has not been determined whether the coal ash deposited by Duke Power on our property has caused any groundwater contamination. We share our neighbors' concerns about water quality and support the further study of this important issue.

 Our Holy Angels priority is to not only provide the compassionate care and safety for the medically fragile men, women and children we serve daily, but to strive continuously for the utmost wellbeing of our greater community."

Related Stories:

EPA sets limit for toxic pollutants released into waterways

Duke Energy reaches $7 million deal with NC on coal ash

Duke Energy, agency reach deal on coal ash problems

North Carolina residents affected by coal ash cite alliance

Court clears Duke Energy plan to clean more coal-ash pits

Court bid to stop Duke Energy unearthing more coal ash fails

Published: Mon, 05 Oct 2015 15:05:46 -0400

Domestic violence can also affect the workplace

Domestic violence doesn't always stay at home. It affects the workplace as well.

However, 70 percent of businesses have no official policy on it.

The most obvious threat to the workplace is the safety and security of workers.

Reduced productivity is also an issue as well as employee absenteeism and increased medical costs.

Experts said companies can take small steps to help their employees.

  • CLICK PLAY: Karen Schulz of Verizon Wireless explains why domestic violence has such a significant effect on the workplace


Safe Alliance is hosting a summit on workplace violence on Oct. 29.

Local employers are invited and encouraged to attend. 

Published: Mon, 05 Oct 2015 15:02:44 -0400

Texas governor compares Dallas Cowboys' defense to Texas border

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott is under fire for sending an angry tweet on Sunday after the Cowboys loss to the New Orleans Saints.

In the tweet, he compares the Cowboy defense to the Texas border, which he describes as porous.

Twitter users jumped on the Texas governor's tweet because one of his campaign promises was to secure the Texas-Mexico border.

Many others responded with angry tweets. Here are a few:


Published: Mon, 05 Oct 2015 14:47:54 -0400

Suspension upheld for student accused of staring at another student

A 12-year-old's suspension will stand after he was punished for having a staring contest with a female student last year.

"He was playing a game with her. He said she was laughing. They were engaged. When she finally giggled and said stop, he stopped," Candice Tolbert, the boy's mother, told WLWT

>> Read more trending stories  

The Cincinnati Archdiocese said the boy, along with another classmate, were suspended for one day after the girl's parents complained.

She claimed the two boys cornered her in a classroom closet, WLWT reported.

A staring showdown leads to a student being suspended and now a lawsuit.

Posted by WLWT on Thursday, October 1, 2015

According to court documents, a teacher testified, "She said that during snack time, she was approached by (the student). He walked up to her, said nothing, just stared at her."

Court papers also said the girl claimed that she "felt fearful," WXIX reported.

The boy in question did write an apology letter that read, "I never knew she was scared because she was laughing." The letter went on to say, "I understand I done (sic) the wrong thing that will never happen again. I will start to think before I do so I am not in this situation," WXIX reported.

A judge denied the boy's parents' claim that the St. Gabriel Consolidated School in Glendale, Ohio, did not give their son due process, WXIX reported.

Because of that the suspension will stand.

The parents are considering appealing the judge's decision, WXIX reported.

Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

Published: Mon, 05 Oct 2015 14:33:55 -0400

Florida Senate candidate allegedly sacrificed goat, drank its blood

A candidate running for a spot in the U.S. Senate apparently went medieval two years ago after a story of him sacrificing a goat and drinking its blood was revealed.

Augustus Sol Invictus, the candidate in question, believes the entire story is an attempt to smear his campaign, the Orlando Sentinel reports. Invictus also says he's certain a civil war is coming -- he's wondering why no one else is.

"The only question is when the citizens are going to start fighting back?" he said. "I don't think I'm the only person who sees a cataclysm coming, but I think I'm the only person saying it, and I think that scares people."

While he is looking for support, Invictus did admit that he sacrificed a goat but said it was not “brutal and sadistic.” "I did sacrifice a goat. I know that's probably a quibble in the mind of most Americans," he said. "I sacrificed an animal to the god of the wilderness ... Yes, I drank the goat's blood."

Andrew Wyllie, Libertarian candidate for governor last year, said Invictus is trying to “lead a civil war” and wants to “recruit neo-Nazis to the party.” According to Wyllie, the party doesn’t accept Invictus as part of their own. "He is the absolute exact opposite of a Libertarian. He's a self-proclaimed fascist. He's promoting a second civil war," Wyllie said. "It's absolute insanity. We must explain to people this is the opposite of Libertarians. This guy has no place in the Libertarian Party."

Wyllie, who until Thursday was the party's state chairman, said he left because the rest of the party's executive committee wouldn't oppose Invictus' Senate campaign, according to the Tampa Bay Times.

Invictus admitted to the Sentinel that he is under investigation by the FBI, the U.S. Marshals, and other law enforcement agencies over previous comments he has made about government in his writing and on his YouTube videos. According to the Sentinel, “he renounced his citizenship in one paper” and “prophesied a great war” with claims he would return for a revolution following a walk in the woods.

Read more at the Orlando Sentinel.

Published: Mon, 05 Oct 2015 14:23:59 -0400

Man pleads guilty to beating wife to death in Hickory

A man in Catawba County pleaded guilty Monday to second-degree murder after first telling police that his wife slipped and fell at their home near Hickory. 
Investigators said Marvin Hill beat his wife to death in November 2013. 
The couple, who worked together at Krispy Kreme in Hickory, had just returned home from a trip to Myrtle Beach. 
Hill's attorney said he became upset after noticing something on his wife's phone.  
An autopsy showed that Louver Hill died from blunt-force trauma after suffering three blows to the head.

Published: Mon, 05 Oct 2015 14:20:56 -0400

Little Debbie wrappers lead police to missing boy

A trail of snack cake wrappers helped authorities locate Brandon Varnes who was reported missing early Monday.

Deputies said Brandon wandered out the back door of his home on Landrum Lane in Bardin around 7:30 a.m. Brandon's younger siblings saw him leave the home, but didn't say anything until about two hours later, deputies said. 

PCSO deputies with K-9s searched a 30-acre wooded area near the boy’s home. The St. Johns County Sheriff's Office, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and Florida Fish and Wildlife also responded with K-9s to assist in the search. 

When he left home, Brandon was wearing blue pants and a gray T-shirt with no shoes and was carrying a box of snack cakes, according to the Putnam County sheriff's Facebook page.

"He actually left the house with a couple (of) boxes of snack cakes, or Little Debbies, and we were able to find some of those wrappers along the trail as well," PCSO Capt. Gator Deloach said.

Brandon was also reported missing in August 2014. He was found safely over 8 hours later. The Florida Department of Children and Families is working with the family.

Published: Mon, 05 Oct 2015 11:28:31 -0400

Some Taco Bell menu items are now certified vegetarian

Taco Bell is officially the first fast-food restaurant to offer meals certified by the American Vegetarian Association. 

The company's CEO said in a statement that the fast-food giant already serves more than 350 million vegetarian menu items each year. He said, though, "Until now (we) haven't been vocal about it."

The AVA has given its seal of approval to 13 vegetarian menu items, including the 7-Layer Burrito and the Cantina Power Veggie Bowl. (Video via Taco Bell)

But with 35 certified vegetarian ingredients (26 of them vegan), customers have plenty of options for creating their own meals, officials said. (Video via Taco Bell)

Don't worry, meat lovers, you too can customize your meals on the company's website and mobile app. But now, you'll be able to click through an entirely vegetarian category. Who knows, you might even make the switch full-time.   

This video includes images from Getty Images and Mike Mozart / CC BY 2.0.

Published: Mon, 05 Oct 2015 11:16:40 -0400