Parade marks 42 years since troops left Vietnam Disneys The Aristocats Kids

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Operation Pill Crusher event nets 18,286 pills

Each year, organizations across North Carolina team up with Safe Kids and the Department of Justice for drug takeback events to properly dispose of unused and unwanted medication.

Locally, the Macon County Sheriff's Department, along with both the Franklin and Highlands Police Departments work together throughout the year for Operation Pill Crusher. Through events that coincide with the state's Operation Medicine Drop, as well as each law enforcement agency having permanent medication drop boxes, Macon County officials work year round to keep unwanted medicines off the streets.

Last Saturday, the Macon County Sheriff's Department collected 18,286 pills during its annual spring drug take-back event. Since October 2014, through similar events as well as their permanent drop box, the sheriff's department has collected 90,462 pills.

Officer injured apprehending a suspect

Macon County Sheriff's Department Detective Tim Holland is still at home recovering from surgery that was a result of injuries incurred in a police chase that ensued Thursday evening.

Detective Holland, along with Detective Will Rhoden were involved in a chase Thursday after a suspect failed to stop for a routine traffic stop. While briefly attempted to flee police in his vehicle, Jessie Mal Cowart, 25, wrecked on Arthur Drake Road before taking off on foot.

According to Sheriff Robert Holland, Cowart fled into a wooded area and was immediately pursued by both Rhoden and Holland at which point Cowart refused to cooperate with law enforcement's commands to stop.

East Franklin’s fourth grade science fair asks ‘the big questions’

Fourth grade students at East Franklin Elementary put on their thinking caps last week for the 11th annual science fair. Project choices were selected by the students according to their interests and they were asked to follow the scientific method. The students came up with a "big question," created their hypothesis, conducted research and then completed their experiment in order to draw a conclusion.

"The kids were all very excited and a few were nervous but they all had a great time showing off their projects to other East Franklin students and their families," said East Franklin Fourth Grade Teacher Lora Neitz.

Warrior hikers begin 2,168-mile journey

Franklin one of 35 stops along the Appalachian Trail.

In 1948, Earl Shaffer became the first person to hike the entire length of the Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine. Now at 2,168.1 miles, the journey is an ambitious mission in itself, but completing the trek wasn't Shaffer's sole mission. His intention was to "walk off the war" to forget about the sights, sounds, and losses of World War II.

It took Shaffer a little over four months to hike the entire trail. Recognizing that having to become reaccustomed with day to day life, and to set aside the training and instinctual reactions taught by the military as being no easy feat, following in Shaffer's footsteps, Marine Corps Captains Mark Silvers and Sean Gobin turned to nature to help become reassimilated into life after service.

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William ShillingLast Thursday, William Shilling, 51, was arrested and charged with misdemeanor counts of simple physical assault and simple non-physical assault. Shilling is an attorney with the Macon County Department of Social Services.

According to documents on file at the Macon County Clerk's office, an arrest warrant signed by magistrate Miciah Leatherman states that there was probable cause to believe that Shilling inflicted physical injury to his child, who is less that 16 years old. “The physical injury inflicted caused a red mark on the victim's abdomen, and was inflicted by other than accidental means,” reads the warrant.

The complaint and motion on file states that Shilling assaulted the child after an altercation over the child's grades. According to his wife Cheryl's testimony, the child “got a ‘C’ last grading period in Algebra, Bill took a steak knife, punched it into the wall, jerked and removed it off the wall, removed all of [the child's] gaming systems devices, and told him if he didn't improve his grades, he would beat them into him and clear his room so it looked like a prison cell.”

The warrant continues to claim that Shilling allegedly threatened to physically harm his wife Cheryl Shilling and their son by saying, “I will kill you and I will burn the dogs alive and I will burn the house down.”

An additional warrant states charges of assault on a female after Leatherman found probable cause that Shilling forcefully used his chest to push the victim into a wall in the couples’ residence.

District Court Judge Donna Forga issued a Domestic Violence Protective Order forbidding Shilling from contacting his wife or minor son until Feb. 24.

Additional documents on file at the Clerk's Office signed by Judge Forga, report that in Cheryl Shilling’s request for the domestic violence protective order, on Feb. 9, William Shilling threatened to have Cheryl involuntarily committed and to remove their son's limbs to torture the child. Forga's report states that on Feb. 8, Cheryl claims that Shilling threatened to blow his own brains out and has threatened to drive their vehicle into a ravine making the child an orphan. It also states that Shilling has reportedly said that he wants to bludgeon the child. The document also states that the couple owns two handguns, one in their home and one in the law office.

Shilling was originally released on a $500 bond under orders not to have any contact with his wife or son due to a domestic violence protective order. On Feb. 15, he was once again arrested after sending an email to his wife, and leaving a letter addressed to the child, violating the protective order. Due to the violation, Shilling had to spend 48 hours in jail.

In response to the allegations against him, Shilling has filed a series of documents with the Clerk of Court’s office claiming that his wife's allegations are “baseless and wholly exaggerated.” He requested that the court release monies, personal items, his vehicle; grant visitation with the minor child and custody of his dog, and return office items.

Shilling is scheduled to appear in court on March 7.





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