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Archive for September, 2009

UPDATE: Pender man faces up to 30 years in prison for child pornography charges

Thursday, September 10th, 2009

By Shannan Bowen and David ReynoldsDave.Reynolds@StarNewsOnline.comShannan.Bowen@StarNewsOnline.com

Raleigh | A Pender County man pleaded guilty this week to two counts of manufacturing child pornography and could spend decades in prison, according to a statement from U.S. Attorney George E.B. Holding’s Office in Raleigh.

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Strickland’s impounded Corvette sold

Thursday, September 10th, 2009

By Shelby SebensShelby.Sebens@StarNewsOnline.com

Allen Strickland, 17, sold the Corvette to P&C Wrecker Services in Whiteville after he wrecked the car in late August, an employee of the company said.

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Whats Happening: September 11-13

Thursday, September 10th, 2009

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Friday marks eight years since the September 11th terrorist attacks. This weekend, many groups are holding ceremonies to honor the thousands of lives lost.

On Friday, retired members of the fire department of New York now living in the Carolinas will remember the events of September 11th and the nearly 350 firefighters who died that day. It begins with a memorial mass at St. Brendan’s Catholic Church on Hwy 17 in Shallotte at 9:00 a.m. After that, a ceremony begins at 11:00 a.m. in the Victory Garden at Brunswick Community College.

Woodmen of the World Lodges 130 and 1088 are also holding a ceremony to honor the heroes and victims of the terrorist attacks. It takes place at the North Carolina Wildlife Action State Headquarters on Sunset Terrace Avenue in Whiteville. It begins at 11:00 a.m. and should last about 30 minutes.

Wounded service members returning from Iraq and Afghanistan are being honored this weekend. Hope for the Warriors is cycling across the area. A ceremony begins Friday morning at 8:45 a.m. at Lake Front Park. Cycling begins at 9:00 a.m. A beach bash will follow at 6:00 p.m. at Caswell Beach. The following morning, you can join in a community ride around Oak Island.

The Red Knights International Firefighters Motorcycle Club is also holding a memorial ride to honor those whose lives were lost on 9/11. It begins with a kick off party Friday night at the Beach House on Market Street from 8:00 p.m. until midnight. The ride begins Saturday at 10:00 a.m. at Britt Motorsports on Market Street. Registration is $25 per motorcycle and an additional $10 per passenger. Proceeds benefit the burn center in Chapel Hill.

Saturday, it is a salute to World War II veteran’s jamboree. More than 50 veterans will be on hand to share their stories and show off wartime memorabilia, photos and documents. It takes place at the Hannah Block Historic USO, 120 S. 2nd St., from 10:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m.

Funds are needed to build the Officer Down Memorial Wall in Wilmington to honor local law enforcement officers who died in the line of duty. That is why a celebrity autograph fundraiser is taking place Saturday at Independence Mall. You will get to meet Tar Heels football coach John Bunting, BoneCrusher Smith, actors from One Tree Hill, and more. It begins at 10:30 and ends at 1:30. Cost is $20.

Moms and moms-to-be don’t want to miss the Cape Fear Maternity and Baby Expo Saturday. It begins at 9:00 a.m. at the Coastline Convention Center. It ends at 4:00 p.m. Admission is five dollars for adults.

It is a big anniversary for Leland. The town is celebrating twenty years of incorporation. A Founders Day festival begins at 10:00 a.m. and ends at 3:30 p.m. at the Leland Municipal Park. There will be music, entertainment, crafts and of course, events to keep the kids occupied.

And on Sunday, First Presbyterian Church presents its 13th season of “Music at First.” It begins at 5:00 p.m. The concert is free, but donations are appreciated.

Also, if you have a child who still rides in a car seat, you will want to take advantage of a free child safety seat check conducted by Safe Kids of Cape Fear and New Hanover Trauma Services. It takes place Saturday from 10:00 a.m. until noon at Mayfaire Town Center.

You can always find out what’s happening by going to our Community Calendar page.

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videoFriday marks eight years since the September 11th terrorist attacks. This weekend, many groups are holding ceremonies to honor the thousands of lives lost.

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Associated poll

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Locals seek change in hate crimes against gay community

Thursday, September 10th, 2009

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Critics of North Carolina hate crime laws made their voices heard outside of the New Hanover County Court House Thursday. Hate crime laws in North Carolina upgrade misdemeanors to felonies, but some groups feel the law neglects some often targeted members of the community.

In mid-July, two men were attacked while leaving a bar in downtown Wilmington. They say the attack took place because of their sexual orientation.

“In downtown there is a lot of general violence, but this violence by three assailants was directed towards these two men because of the perception that they were gay,” said Tab Ballis, who is promoting hate crime awareness.

North Carolina laws protect against discrimination for race, religion, or country of origin by classifying them as hate crimes, which carry stiffer penalties. Assistant district attorney James Blanton said, “Sexual orientation is not one of the protected classes. If someone commits a misdemeanor assault based on the fact that the victim has a different sexual orientation that they’re not satisfied with, it would not bump it up to a felony.”

Thursday community supporters raised their signs calling for that to change. The North Carolina General Assembly is considering Bill 207 which would broaden the definition of hate crimes.

“It helps to have our gay community supported, adding not only sexual orientation, but gender and disability as well,” said Ryan Burris.

Supporters believe the Safer Communities Act would provide more security for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. Burris said, “I definitely think it would help to deter people from targeting a specific demographic as the gay community.”

“Hate crimes are based on fear, ignorance, and misunderstanding. And I think we all believe that folks that pay taxes deserve to be safe in their own community,” added Ballis.

Thirty-three states recognize violent crimes associated with a victim’s sexual orientation as hate crimes. If legislatures approve Bill 207, North Carolina would be added to that list.

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Critics of North Carolina hate crime laws made their voices heard outside of the New Hanover County Court House Thursday. Hate crime laws in North Carolina upgrade misdemeanors to felonies, but …

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Associated poll

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A 9/11 bicycle ride to honor those who can’t anymore

Thursday, September 10th, 2009

By David ReynoldsDave.Reynolds@StarNewsOnline.com

Twenty-seven cyclists – all of them injured veterans – stop in Wilmington while traveling from the Camp Lejeune area to Oak Island as part of The 9/11 Ride For the Warriors.

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