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Archive for November, 2009

Pender ‘Immunity Day’ draws about 60 offenders

Wednesday, November 4th, 2009

By Veronica GonzalezVeronica.Gonzalez@StarNewsOnline.com

People with suspended licenses or outstanding warrants who hadn’t come to court to resolve their cases got a chance to do so on Immunity Day without facing further penalties or fines for failing to appear.

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Second chance for some of those with misdemeanors in Pender County

Wednesday, November 4th, 2009

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Prosecutors in Pender County took an unprecedented step Wednesday to clear their caseload. It was Immunity Day at the Pender County Courthouse. People facing misdemeanor charges who missed their court date got kind of a “second chance”.

Valerie Myers got a ticket for speeding, but was slow to get to court.

“I missed a court date cause I didn’t have a way up here, and I had it confused with the Wilmington court,” said Myers.

Wednesday, she got a second chance; an immunity day to answer the charge without paying an additional fine for failing to appear.

“Today was a day to wipe the slate clean for a number of people who have simple driving offenses and non-violent misdemeanors,” district attorney Ben David said.

About 50 people showed up at the Pender County Courthouse Wednesday to take advantage of Immunity Day, which is only about one percent of the total outstanding misdemeanor cases in Pender County. District attorney Ben David and district court judge John Carroll had hoped more would have accepted the offer, but they are glad to at least have these cases off of the court docket.

Carroll said, “They were able to get their license back because we’ve striked the call-in fail. And it gets a lot of cases that have just been lingering around out of the way.”

David got the idea from a similar program in Wake County and wanted to try it out in Pender. But for these defendants, the second chance was a one-time offer.

“There’s not going to be a third chance. Today was the day for immunity. If they come in tomorrow or a year from now, there’s going to be consequences,” said David.

If it proves to be a success, David may hold an immunity day in New Hanover County. Myers hopes he does. “It was a good thing. I hope they do it in Wilmington, cause I have one in Wilmington right after I had that accident with a rental car,” she said.

District attorney Ben David said clearing these cases lets his office focus its attention on violent criminals and felony cases.

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videoProsecutors in Pender County took an unprecedented step Wednesday to clear their caseload. It was Immunity Day at the Pender County Courthouse. People facing misdemeanor charges who missed their court date got kind of a “second chance”.

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Associated poll

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Cape Fear Museum, conservation expert look to save a piece of Wilmington’s history

Wednesday, November 4th, 2009

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The Cape Fear Museum turned to an expert Wednesday to save a piece of Wilmington’s past.

Conservation expert Todd Jorgensen, who has worked on exhibits at the Smithsonian, is in the Port City to preserve a portion of a historic longleaf pine.

The tree is an example of an old method used to collect sap; a process important to make tar and turpentine in colonial times.

“It’s a teaching tool when you can actually put the artifact out on display and explain the story behind it,” said Cape Fear Museum curator Barbara Rowe. “This is the old style, and that’s why its important to us and we want to include it in our colonial exhibit.”

The tree will be finished and put on display some time in January.

An exhibit opening Friday will show off samples of Jorgensen’s work through the years.

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The Cape Fear Museum turned to an expert Wednesday to save a piece of Wilmington’s past.

Conservation expert Todd Jorgensen, who has worked on exhibits at the Smithsonian, is in the Port City…

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cfmuseum150.jpg

Associated poll

More: continued here

Pender County suspect turns self in after seeing sketch of himself

Wednesday, November 4th, 2009

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A man turned himself in to Pender County law enforcement Tuesday after seeing a sketch of his face.

A witness described a man he saw breaking into a home in Hampstead to a sketch artist. The Pender County Sheriff’s Office released the sketch to the media and several people called in to identify him.

Pender County detective Scott Lawson said one of those callers was 19-year-old Justin Akins, who saw the sketch of himself on the Star News website.

“Mr. Akins saw the sketch of himself, recognized it as being him, called and said he wanted to turn himself in for breaking into the house,” Detective Lawson said.

Akins is being held at the Pender County Jail under a $10,000 secured bond.

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A man turned himself in to Pender County law enforcement Tuesday after seeing a sketch of his face.

A witness described a man he saw breaking into a home in Hampstead to a sketch artist.

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sketch150.jpg

Associated poll

More: continued here

Leland pastor facing child sex charges

Wednesday, November 4th, 2009

Leland | A 46-year-old pastor from Leland has been charged with felony sex crimes against a child, officials said.Brunswick County sheriff’s deputies arrested James T. Johnson of Leland on Tuesday, according to a detective with the office. Johnson is the pastor of the Olive Branch Church in Leland.

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