- published 3/27 (Larry) - unpublished ?

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Past and current elected officials and employees from all over Western North Carolina joined members of the community last Friday to honor the nearly four decades of public service Jack Horton has given during his tenure in local government.

Horton, who officially retired as Macon County's manager on Tuesday, has spent the last 36 years working in local government all across the state. The Southwestern Community College Annex building was filled with people who have worked with Horton at different points during his career.


Individuals are calling and telling citizens that they are working for a company and represent the Macon County Sheriff’s Office and that there is a debt owed by the person receiving the telephone call. The caller then informs the citizen that they owe a certain amount of money and if the debt is not paid immediately that the Sheriff will come at a specific date and time to retrieve property from their home worth the value of that debt.

This is a scam and a method frequently used to defraud individuals of their personal funds. The Macon County Sheriff’s Office will not have anyone call your residence or business to conduct business. Only uniformed officers assigned to “Civil Process Unit” will conduct business related to any seizures or forfeitures pursuant to North Carolina Law and with the proper legal documentation signed by a Judge or other Judicial Official – no exceptions.

If you have been a victim of any such scams you are asked to contact your local law enforcement agency and report it.

A vehicle accident occurred on 441S. last Thursday morning. A Werner Enterprises Inc. tractor trailer driven by Mebrahtu Abraham from Washington D.C. and a Macon County tractor trailer driven by James Banta of Franklin, were both traveling south on 441.

Victoria Wood was traveling north in a black Toyota car when she swerved into the southbound lane. Abraham saw Wood heading into his lane and tried to move over into the right lane that was occupied by Banta to avoid hitting Wood head on.


Donald Lee Dowdle, 34, of Highlands has been placed under arrest and charged with the rape of a child. Information was submitted to the Sheriff's Office regarding multiple incidents over several years. Detective Amy Stewart of the Macon County Sheriff's Department obtained a search warrant for Dowdle's Buck Creek home.

Investigators entered the home on Sept. 27 and confiscated among other things three cell phones, kindle tablets, three sd cards – typically used for storing files, tubes of numbing creams, an eyeglass case with drug paraphernalia inside, a “Vaultz” case with 21 cds/dvds and other items believed to possibly contain evidence on them.


A resolution has been found in the murder case of Thomas Larry Ramsey. Last Wednesday, Sept. 28, Randall Boyd Fouts, 46, of Franklin pled guilty to second degree murder, first degree kidnapping, and first degree burglary.

On Aug. 12, 2010, the grisly murder scene on Johnson Road in the Cartoogechaye community was discovered by a concerned family member of Ramsey's. The camper in which Ramsey resided was found in a state of disarray with the door ajar, a broken window, and blood throughout.

Once investigators arrived at the scene, they found Ramsey, age 61 at the time of his murder, inside the camper, deceased. He had been wrapped in a blanket after being bound with electrical cords and beaten, likely with a bloody hammer that was found near the body. A television was also found on top of the body. The officers on the scene were initially unable to identify the body as a result of the crime.


On Thursday, Oct. 10, the Macon County League of Women Voters will host a forum for mayoral candidates for the Town of Franklin. Long-time mayor, Joe Collins, is stepping down.

Two candidates, Sissy Pattillo and Bob Scott, are vying for the position. Both currently serve as aldermen on the town board.

Three alderman seats are available, with ten candidates competing for those seats. Two seats are being vacated by Scott and Pattillo; Billy Mashburn is running for reelection.


On the afternoon of Tuesday, Sept. 24, a vehicle accident occurred in front of Arby's on 441S.

A black Ford F250 driven by Samual Hastings of Franklin pulled out from Bojangles in front of an Anderson Trucking Co. tanker truck out of Anderson S.C. that was traveling south on U.S. 441, driven by Kevin Shirley from Abbyville S.C.


Sewer, water infrastructure among items discussed.

The ballot for November's election for Franklin's Town Board is full of candidates. With 10 people vying for the three open aldermen seats and two candidates signed up for the mayor seat, there is no shortage of choices for the town's next representatives. Venture Local Franklin and the League of Women Voters hosted a candidate forum Tuesday night at the Macon Bank Corporate Center to give voters the chance to get to know the candidates better.


A 10th Mountain Division Soldier, stationed at Fort Polk, La., with the 94th Brigade Support Battalion, 4th Brigade Combat Team died in Gamberi, Afghanistan, Thursday, Sept. 19, in a non-combat related incident.

Deceased is Sergeant William D. Brown III, age 44 of Franklin, N.C. He was a healthcare specialist.

Brown joined the Army in May 2010. After completing training at Fort Jackson, S.C., he was assigned to Fort Sam Houston, Texas. Brown arrived at Fort Polk in December 2012.

Brown deployed with his unit to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom in July 2013.



Franklin's Tourism Development Authority (TDA) held its monthly meeting Monday night at Town Hall. At the meeting, board members were given an update of the marketing strategy that is currently being implemented and they also considered the grant request to fund PumpkinFest.

Jessica Mason of Premiere Marketing was present to provide details about the results of the strategic campaign that focuses on the city of Atlanta, Ga.

According to Mason, from Aug. 15 through Sept. 3, 3,153 visitors logged in to Franklin's website.


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published: 10/18/2013
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