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News General

First Chief in five decades to do so

Principal Chief Michell Hicks won Thursday's election of the Eastern Band of the Cherokee Indians with 2,124 votes to secure his third four-year term as Chief of the Eastern Band of the Cherokee Indians. He is only the second individual to serve three terms in the Tribe's history.

Hicks beat out his challenger, Patrick Lambert, by a narrow 135 votes. Write-in candidate, Susan Toineeta, received 80 votes overall.

Lambert, who serves as the executive director of the Cherokee Tribal Gaming Commission, first ran against Hicks in the 2007 election, where he lost by a mere 13 votes.

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Jackson County authorities have arrested a man suspected of raping a Cashiers woman last month.

On the evening of August 30, Jackson County Sheriff's Officers arrested 30-year-old Efrain Ubera Morales, of Amethyst Drive in Cashiers. According to JCSO Major Shannon Queen, the suspect was arrested without incident while trying to pay a traffic ticket. “He tried to pay the ticket and an officer recognized him while he was in the magistrate's office,” said Queen.

The arrest followed an investigation that began on August 14, when officers received a report of a sexual assault that had occurred in the Cashiers area. According to reports, the victim was a 34-year-old Caucasian woman from Cashiers. The primary suspect in the case was described as about 5'6 to 6'0 tall Hispanic male, brown eyes, and black spiked hair.

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Residents speak out against proposed Verizon wireless tower location

It was tense in the conference room of Town Hall last Wednesday, during a public hearing about the Verizon Wireless proposal to build a supplemental tower on Gaston Street in Franklin. Residents within a 1,500-foot radius of the site were invited to the Aug. 24 hearing to learn more about the plan and to voice any concerns that they may have.

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Highlands Board of Commissioners are elected every four years. The mayor and board serve four-year “staggered terms.” The mayor and two commissioners were up for election in 2009, leaving three remaining commissioner seats up for election on Nov. 8.

The three seats up for re-election are currently held by Dennis DeWolf, John Dotson, and Larry Rogers. Both Dotson and Rogers filed to run again, while De- Wolf decided to give up his seat.

Three challengers will be joining the incumbents for the Nov. 8 election. Brian Stiehler, Michael Rogers, and Eric Pierson have all filed to run for the vacant board of commissioner seats. Michael Rogers was not available for comment at presstime.

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published: 10/18/2013
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