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Archive for July, 2009

Family of Geoffrey Graham speaks out about arrests

Monday, July 27th, 2009

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The family of 22-year-old murder victim Geoffrey Graham is speaking out. Graham was killed two years ago. Last week, New Hanover County detectives arrested three men for the crime.

“It almost felt like he was going to just come right around the corner, and say ‘ok, I’m coming home now’. And we realized that is not going to happen,” said Kourtnei Martin.

Martin just found out three men are under arrest in connection with the murder of her 22-year-old brother nearly two years ago. There was a break in a case that has been weighing heavy on his family since he died. “It has brought those wounds just right back open,” she said.

Graham was shot in the head in 2007 at his Ogden home. Christian Jones of Hampstead, Nicholas Matasich of Wilmington and Randy Owens of Hampstead are charged with first degree murder, robbery and kidnapping.

Graham’s family said Geoffrey was no stranger drugs, but they do not believe it was a factor in his murder. Martin said, “Someone decided that they wanted what he had. Or they decided he had more than he had because of where he lived, what he drove.”

Detectives are still looking for one more suspect in connection with Graham’s murder. If found, 22-year old Adam Ward of Hampstead, along with the three other suspects, will be charged with first degree murder and armed robbery.

The three suspects made their first court appearance in court last week.

Detectives want anyone with information about where Adam Ward is to call the New Hanover County Sheriff’s Office at 910-798-4200.

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videoThe family of 22-year-old murder victim Geoffrey Graham is speaking out. Graham was killed two years ago. Last week, New Hanover County detectives arrested three men for the crime.

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Associated poll

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Deadly cases of mosquito-borne disease found in Columbus/New Hanover counties

Monday, July 27th, 2009

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Public health officials are on alert after cases of a deadly mosquito-borne disease were found in Columbus and New Hanover counties.

Crews sprayed for mosquitoes in Castle Hayne, after Eastern Equine Encephalomyelitis was found in a chicken flock that is regularly tested for illnesses there.

A horse in Columbus County was recently put down after testing positive for EEE.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, there is an average of only five cases in humans in the US each year. However, EEE is one of the deadliest mosquito-borne diseases.

“We ask that people just be sure if you’re outside at dusk and dawn that you wear long sleeves or long pants if possible,” said Dave Jenkins of the New Hanover County Environmental Health. “Apply DEET or some other insect repellent if you’re going to be out and you know the mosquitoes are biting.”

Mosquitoes breed in even a little bit of stagnant water, so be sure to regularly clean out old tires, rain gutters, and other areas around your property.

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Public health officials are on alert after cases of a deadly mosquito-borne disease were found in Columbus and New Hanover counties.

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Associated poll

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High risk of rip currents, ways to stay safe

Monday, July 27th, 2009

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A rip current can develop anywhere along the beach. “On high risk days, like today, we try to encourage people not to get in the water unless they’re good, strong swimmers,” said Reece Simmons of Oak Island Water Rescue.

The best way to get out of a rip current is to swim parallel to shore, until you’re out of the rip. Then you need to make it back to shore.

Mark Sudman of Clayton said, “We kind of experienced it earlier today. I didn’t know what it was, but we were out there in the water and it just started pulling us a little bit.”

Simmons added. “We’re prepared. We stay prepared and we’re well-trained and we’ll deal with the situation if it arises. We don’t have lifeguards in the Town of Oak Island. We have 12 miles of oceanfront to cover, so we opt to use our rescue boats that we can launch right into the surf. We can get to the location quickly onto the hard surface, launch the boat and have a successful rescue.”

Simmons has one more piece of advice. He said, always respect the ocean.

Oak Island crews did not have any ocean rescues, but the rough waters led to an early morning rescue off of Fort Fisher. It happened at around 1:00 Sunday morning. Three boaters were stranded in water when their boat overturned. Multiple crews responded to the rescue. Choppy water in the dark night complicated the rescue.

“It took about 2 and a half hours. The Coast Guard helicopter was on the scene to help illuminate the area. It was a good effort from a lot of agencies working together for a successful outturn,” said Simmons.

The names of the three boaters haven’t been released.

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videoBe careful if you are heading to the beach Monday. There is a moderate to high risk of rip currents again. WWAY’s John Rendleman talked to beach goers, and has some tips on how to stay safe.

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Associated poll

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Frequently asked questions about Middle Sound sewer connection

Monday, July 27th, 2009

By Chris Mazzolini,Chris.Mazzolini@StarNewsOnline.com

With long delayed mandatory sewer connections for Middle Sound residents about to begin again, the Cape Fear Public Utility Authority has scheduled an informational meeting to explain the process to customers.The meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. Thursday at Ogden Elementary School, 3637 Middle Sound Road.

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NC snack food factory resuming limited production

Monday, July 27th, 2009

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GARNER, N.C. — Workers are restarting production at a North Carolina snack food factory damaged by a fatal explosion last month.

ConAgra Foods Inc. says limited production will begin this week on the north side of the sprawling facility in the Raleigh suburb of Garner. The site’s south side, used for packaging, was heavily damaged in the June 9 explosion that killed three employees and injured dozens of others.

Two federal agencies have blamed natural gas for the blast.

Workers have been paid their wages since the explosion. ConAgra says it is working with its plant in Ohio and third-party manufacturers to help with packaging the products.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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Workers are restarting production at a North Carolina snack food factory damaged by a fatal explosion last month.

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