Local and State Headlines for Tuesday, April 17, 2018

posted by Tank Spencer -

Longtime Waynesville Priest Indicted For Sex Abuse (Waynesville, NC)  

A longtime Waynesville priest is facing indictments of sexual child abuse going as far back as the 1980's.  One woman says Howard White abused her while he worked at Grace Church in the Mountains.  He was pastor there for more than two decades.    He has been charged with multiple rape offenses and forcible sexual offense.  Just last year, White pleaded guilty to child sex charges in Boston. 

Sitcom Star Dies In Asheville Home (Asheville, NC)  

Television sitcom star and Asheville resident Harry Anderson is dead.  Asheville Police confirmed that he was found at his residence yesterday morning.  His son says he died of natural causes.  Anderson was nominated for three Emmy Awards for his role as Judge Harry Stone on "Night Court."  He and his wife moved from New Orleans to Asheville in 2006, shortly after Hurricane Katrina.  

Republican Candidate Pulls Out Of District 115 Race (Montreat, NC)

A candidate for the Republican ticket for House District 115 is pulling his name from the race just weeks ahead of the May 8th primary.  Former Buncombe County GOP chairman Nathan West says "an ugly and divisive Republican primary just won't contribute" to defeating the Democratic incumbent John Ager.  Black Mountain businesswoman Amy Evans is the other qualifier in the Republican primary.  The ballot is still expected to hold West's name, as some absentee ballots have already been sent out and returned.  

Waynesville Man Accused Of Stealing Mail In Three Counties (Waynesville, NC)

Waynesville Police say a 31-year-old man has been arrested for stealing mail in three counties.  Dakota Creek was reportedly found in possession of items like paychecks and credit cards stolen from Waynesville, Asheville and Mills River.  Investigators believe Creek targeted areas that had clusters of mailboxes so he could grab as much mail as possible at once. 

Duke Energy Approved To Offer Solar Rebates (Asheville, NC)

Duke Energy is encouraging North Carolina residents to go solar in a 62-million-dollar rebate program.  State regulators approved Duke's plan this month, which make customers who installed a solar system this year eligible for a sizable rebate.  Duke's North Carolina President David Fountain said recent energy legislation is fostering an affordable energy mix in the state.  

Trees Coming Down Along Blue Ridge Parkway (Asheville, NC)

 Trees are falling along portions of the Blue Ridge Parkway as the National Park Service begins a major project to restore some of the originally-intended views for the scenic drive.  Arborists plan to cut a handful of mature trees in Haywood and Jackson Counties that will make certain overlooks available for full view.  Parkway landscape architect David Anderson says the overgrowth is "blocking the view that was the original design intent [ of the parkway ]."

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