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Equestrian fraud scheme leads to federal guilty plea for former Buncombe commissioner

Ellen Frost admits to role in fraud conspiracy in federal court plea, could get up to 5 years in prison. by Staff Reports  August 10, 2020 The federal courthouse in Asheville. Carolina Public Press file photo Ellen Frost, the 65-year-old former Buncombe County commissioner facing accusations of using federal funds to sponsor equestrian activities, pleaded guilty […]

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Police accountability: Accessing law enforcement records in NC

by Kate Martin   Audio from Carolina Public Press · Police accountability: Accessing law enforcement records in NC As calls for police accountability sweep the nation, more people are interested in understanding how to find out whether law enforcement officers in their communities have been accused of misconduct. However, even getting something as simple as a police report in North Carolina […]

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RUTHERFORD & MCDOWELL COUNTIES, NC —Judicial District 41 has been ravaged by drugs for decades. Unfortunately, the most vulnerable individuals in our society – the addicts, those living in poverty, and those with prior criminal histories who are easily discredited and overlooked – have been actively exploited, wrongfully imprisoned, and far too many have died […]

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Rep. David Rogers, Sen. Ralph Hise Violate Legal & Ethical Mandates for PD Creation Outside of Public View

After the most recent article in the RC Catalyst series examining the state of our local government, additional information has been obtained regarding David Roger’s involvement in establishing the Public Defender’s Office. This information further illuminates the efforts to conceal the creation of this office, the identities of the officials involved, and the financial benefit […]

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Stolen Property Located, Suspects Sought

On June 26, 2020, a Haulmark 16′ tandem axle trailer and Knudson 1770 Gutter Machine were stolen out of Rutherford County. Both were located and recovered in Mill Spring, North Carolina, on July 9. Detective Ellenburg secured warrants on Joseph Anthony Pavelko and Melissa Cooper Philbeck.  The Rutherford County Sheriff’s Office is currently seeking information on […]

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NC faith leaders call for action on neglected policy proposals

By Rob Schofield, NC PUBLIC PRESS In case you missed it, be sure to check out the following new and powerful letter to Gov. Cooper, Senate leader Phil Berger and House Speaker Tim Moore that was put together by the North Carolina Council of Churches and signed by a diverse array of faith leaders from […]

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legislative provision addressing public access to records used in a death investigation

Gov. Roy Cooper, seen here at an earlier press conference, said Wednesday that a legislative provision addressing public access to records used in a death investigation is “problematic,” but he didn’t say he won’t allow it to become law anyway due to other measures in the bill. Screen grab from UNC-TV Following public outcry and […]

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Rutherford County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigation Division is seeking the public’s assistance

The Rutherford County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigation Division is seeking the public’s assistance in locating a Haulmark 16ft tandam axel trailer with a Knudson 1770 Gutter Machine on it.  The trailer was reported stolen on 06/26/2020 from 238 Thunder Road in Rutherfordton. Pictures are included of the stolen trailer and gutter machine. Anyone with information […]