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Archive for January, 2012

Wilmington police looking for bank robbery suspect

Friday, January 27th, 2012

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — New Hanover County Dispatch confirms police are searching for suspect after a report of a bank robbery in Wilmington.

It happened at 1:30 Friday.

Police say a white, male suspect allegedly robbed the TD Bank at 802 South College Road. The suspect was last seen driving a maroon car, traveling toward Fountain Drive. He is not believed to be armed.

Dispatch could not confirm if the suspect got away with cash from the bank. If you have any information on the suspect, call 911.

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Berger in jail after failing to appear; judge orders mental evaluation

Friday, January 27th, 2012

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Brian Berger is back behind bars. The New Hanover County Commissioner was arrested this morning after he failed to appear in court.

Berger is no stranger to running behind schedule, but today there was a serious price to pay for his tardiness.

For more than half an hour sheriff’s deputies walked around Berger’s home Friday morning after he did not show up to court. After finally making contact with him, officers arrested Berger for failure to appear.

The deputies said Berger thanked them for their professionalism, but they did not discuss why he had not made it to court.

Downtown, court waited on Berger. He was scheduled to appear at 9:30 a.m. for a violation of a domestic violence protective order filed by his ex-girlfriend Heather Blaylock, who was in the courtroom.

Fellow County Commissioner Jonathan Barfield was subpoenaed to testify. He waited more than an hour before the judge let him and other witnesses go. Barfield said he had a busy day, which was wasted waiting for Berger.

“We’re wasting taxpayers’ dollars,” Barfield said. “For those of community action who are just sitting here for the last hour and a half, those folks could have been at work as well doing their jobs. So I just see it as a total lack of respect and disregard for other people’s time.”

Almost two hours after the hearing was scheduled to begin, Berger finally arrived at the court house in hand cuffs. Judge Shelly Holt quickly issued a $25,000 secured bond pending a forensic evaluation for competency. The evaluation must be done within seven days. The judge may then revisit the bond depending on the results.

The sheriff’s office says Berger’s case was handled according to protocol.

“Mr. Berger has had issues in court the past couple of months, and we’ve tried to address those equally the way we do with anybody else,” Sheriff’s Office spokesman Sgt. Jerry Brewer said.

We tried to talk to Commissioner Berger’s attorney Thom Goolsby after the bond hearing, but he declined to comment.

Berger is scheduled to be back in court for this charge Tuesday.

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North Carolina Supreme Court says Judge Jolly exceeded authority shutting down traffic court

Friday, January 27th, 2012

RALEIGH, NC (WWAY) — The North Carolina Supreme Court issued this opinion this week regarding Judge Jerry Jolly’s shut-down of District Attorney Jon David’s traffic court:

On writ of certiorari pursuant to N.C.G.S. § 7A-32(b) to review an administrative order entered on 15 April 2011 by Judge Jerry A. Jolly in District Court, Brunswick County. Heard in the Supreme Court 10 January 2012.

The order of the District Court is vacated in each and every respect. As this Court has noted:

Even in the name of its inherent power, the judiciary may not arrogate a duty reserved by the constitution exclusively to another body, nor may it violate the constitutional rights of persons brought before its tribunals. Furthermore, doing what is reasonably necessary for the proper administration of justice means
doing no more than is reasonably necessary. The court’s exercise of its inherent power must be responsible — even cautious and in the spirit of mutual cooperation among the three branches.

The very genius of our tripartite Government is based upon the proper exercise of their respective powers
together with harmonious cooperation between the three independent Branches.

329 N.C. 84, 99–100, 405 S.E.2d 125, 132–33 (1991) (footnote and internal citations omitted); see also N.C. Const. art. IV, § 10 (setting forth the responsibilities and duties of the District Courts); N.C. Const. art. IV, § 18 (setting forth the responsibilities and duties of the District Attorney).

By order of the Court in Conference, this 26th day of January, 2012.


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UNCW tuition hike 9.2%, chancellor says

Friday, January 27th, 2012

UNCW Chancellor Gary Miller said the university will bring its tuition increase to 9.2 percent.

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Carolina Beach fires town attorney

Friday, January 27th, 2012

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