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Archive for June, 2014

Officers graduate from training for handling mental health issues

Friday, June 27th, 2014

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Some area law enforcement officers celebrated today the completion of special training. Some say recent situations involving police force would have turned out differently if officers would have gone through this course.

The story about a police officer shooting and killed an 18-year-old schizophrenic boy in Boiling Spring Lakes made national headlines.

“Had he properly been approached, I believe that situation would have turned out totally differently,” said Stanley Oathout, president of the Wilmington Chapter of the National Alliance of Mental Illness.

Oathout thinks would have gone differently if the officer involved had gone through crisis intervention training.

“I’ve found that, unfortunately, that shooting has driven an awful lot the desire to train,” Oathout said.

Oathout says he’s seen the direct benefit of crisis intervention training. Course evaluator Christopher Smith couldn’t agree more.

“As a school resource officer, I’ve used the techniques taught in cit in a plethora of situations,” Smith said.

Including situations where officers are dealing with a person with mental illness in crisis.

“Talk to the individual; teaching you to communicate better with them to try and avoid situations where you have to use force,” Smith said.

This is the 22nd class that’s graduated from the 40-hour program

School resource officers say this training will let them gain a better understanding.

“It allows us to recognize the signs and symptoms,” said William Kittlaus, a Pender County SRO.

That means before a crisis can even occur, this training could make all the difference.

“This training can make a valuable difference between confrontation and getting this person proper care,” Oathout said.

Officers say they hope all their colleagues can eventually go through this course.

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Forbes ranks Wilmington 292 out of 357 communities for manufacturing jobs

Friday, June 27th, 2014

Manufacturing employment fell more than 21 percent in New Hanover last year from its peak in 2008

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Bill would help victims in Camp Lejeune, Asheville

Friday, June 27th, 2014

RALEIGH, NC (AP) — Two North Carolina congressional leaders have introduced legislation they say will help people exposed to contaminated water near a closed Asheville factory and a Marines Corp base.

Sen. Kay Hagan and US Rep. G.K. Butterfield said Friday the measure would pre-empt states from limiting the timeframe in which damages can be recovered in pollution lawsuits.

The legislation is in response to a recent US Supreme Court ruling that halted an Asheville lawsuit.

The Supreme Court cited a 10-year limit for filing lawsuits when ruling Asheville residents couldn’t sue a nearby electroplating business for contamination that closed in the 1980s. US Justice Department attorneys then asked a federal appeals court to dismiss a lawsuit blaming contaminated tap water at Camp Lejeune, citing the Asheville ruling.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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Marine dies during fitness test at Camp Lejuene

Friday, June 27th, 2014

ONSLOW COUNTY, NC (WCTI) — A Marine died during a fitness test at Camp Lejeune Friday morning.

According to base officials, the 39-year-old male Marine collapsed during the run portion of a semi-annual physical fitness test at about 7:40 a.m. Friday.

The cause of his death has not been determined, officials said. The Marine's identity has not been released.

To continue reading the story, click here.

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Sheriff explains policy violated by demoted deputies

Friday, June 27th, 2014

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — We are learning more about the demotion this week of two New Hanover County sheriff deputies for conduct unbecoming.

Sheriff Ed McMahon could not say what Sean Jones and Larry Robinson did, because it is a personnel matter, but he says conduct unbecoming could be any number of violations that reflects poorly on the department.

“It could be. You name it,” McMahon said. “Something that you would think when you heard it, you know what, a law enforcement officer is not supposed to do that, especially a staff officer. And that could be from on-the-job things to personal life things.”

Both men have been with the sheriff’s office since the early ’90s.

On top of losing rank, Robinson and Jones had their hourly pay docked as well.

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