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Defendant used the U.S. mail to send threatening letters

U.S. Attorney Anne M. Tompkins announced that Ronald Thomas Brim, 28, of Walnut Cove, NC, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Frank D. Whitney in Charlotte to 20 years imprisonment, to be followed by three years of supervised release, for using the U.S. mail to threaten the lives of former President George W. Bush and Former First Lady Laura Bush, for mailing threats to destroy the White House and Pentagon by explosives, and for using the U.S. mail to threaten Billy and Franklin Graham and others.

U.S. Attorney Tompkins is joined in making the May 17 announcement by Russell F. Nelson, Special Agent in Charge of the U.S. Secret Service, Charlotte Field Division, and Keith Fixel, Inspector in Charge of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service.

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Campaign yields 12,223 safety violations

North Carolina Transportation Secretary Gene Conti announced today that more than 12,223 drivers and passengers were cited for seat belt and child passenger safety violations during the “Click It or Ticket” campaign, which began May 23 and ended June 5.

“This campaign serves as a reminder to buckle up as the summer travel season begins,” said Conti. “Law enforcement agencies across the state helped ensure North Carolinians stayed safe over the Memorial Day holiday, and I thank them all for their dedication.”

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When she heard that the assistant principal at her children’s school was going to be transferred to a new school on July 1, Debbie Hunter was alarmed. “I just don’t understand why they send him away when he does such a fabulous job at South Macon,” she said.

Randy Shepherd has been the assistant principal at South Macon Elementary School for five years, and according to Hunter, vice president of the school’s PTO, he has done such a good job that the parents don’t want to see him go. And they are going to fight to keep him.

On Friday afternoon, a group of parents and kids holding picket signs mounted a small protest across from the school as other parents were arriving to pick up their children. With signs that read, “Save Shep,” the protestors explained to passing cars that Shepherd had been informed earlier in the week that he would be transferred to fill the assistant principal position at Cartoogechaye Elementary School effective July 1.

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A Franklin man was arrested after leading authorities on a high speed chase on Tuesday, May 31.

At approximately 10 p.m., Macon County Sheriff’s Officers conducting a license checkpoint on Highway 28 North at the Big D Convenience Store noticed a motorcycle pull off into a work zone and turn its lights off just south of the checkpoint.

Officers Robert Young and Dereck Jones reportedly approached the vehicle right before the driver, Calvin Dale Hurst, turned back onto 28 heading back toward the Town of Franklin.

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It is now illegal in North Carolina to sell, manufacture or possess controversial synthetic drugs. North Carolina will join 28 other states in the ban on the substances.

On Wednesday, a law went into effect that bans the sale of synthetic marijuana and cocaine, sold under the guises of “herbal incense” and “bath salts,” which were reportedly used as recreational drugs. The two substances are now Schedule I controlled substances.

“I think it’s a good decision our legislators made,” said Macon County Sheriff Robert Holland, who visited local businesses last January, asking them to stop selling the synthetic marijuana products.

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While keeping a nervous eye on Raleigh and Washington, the Macon County Board of Commissioners continues negotiations on its own fiscal plans with hopes that a status quo budget for fiscal year 2011-2012 will be adequate to maintain all essential services in the county without need of a tax hike.

The board has met numerous times over the past few weeks to hear from various heads of agencies and departments in the county and to make adjustments to the county manager’s budget proposal which was presented on May 10. At a public hearing on the budget at the county courthouse on Tuesday night, no members of the public elected to speak.

Last week, the board looked at budget requests from the public school system, the Department of Public Health, and the Sheriff's Office. Two county fire departments, Nantahala and Cullasaja, both approached the board requesting millage rate increases in their districts.

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On Monday, the Town of Franklin Board of Aldermen swore in Farrell Jamison as their newest alderman.

Aldermen unanimously appointed Jamison to assume the remainder of former alderman Jerry Evans’ term, which ends in November. At that point, a partial two-year term will be up for election, along with three other seats, to finish out Evans’ four-year term, starting in December. The other positions will be four-year terms.

“I am worried about the different projects with the town,” said Jamison, citing economic development and its urgent need in Franklin as one of his many areas of concern as alderman. “I hope the board contiues to work on what the town will look like in the next 10 or 20 years... Now is the time,” he said.

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Franklin authorities have arrested a local convenience store clerk suspected of taking more than $15,000 from his place of employment.

Dennis Ray Mason, 54, of Hoffman Lane, was charged on May 29 with one felony count of larceny by an employee and one felony count of embezzlement. The charges stemmed from an incident reported on December 16 claiming that more than $10,000 went missing from the Automatic Teller Machine located inside the Village Trader convenience store, located on Hwy. 28 north of Franklin.

According to the incident report made at the time, Franklin Police Department Captain Steve Apel was provided with business deposit records by store owner Abdul Waliany.

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Karen Reed, president of the Jackson County Early College PTO, accepts a check from Larry Hinton, General Manager of Andy Shaw Ford, Inc, as Erica Bullock, Andy Shaw, and members of Early College look on.

The extension of the Macon County Airport runway is nearly complete, according to Airport engineer Eric Rysdon, who reported to Airport Authority members on May 29 that the project could be finished within a few short weeks.

The finishing touches of the extension will be applied while additional lights are installed to make the runway operational. “Paving is complete,” said Rysdon. “The painters are actually out there marking the temporary stripes.”

Rhodes Brothers Paving took on the paving project under the commission of Buchanan and Sons, Inc., based out of Whittier, who began the project last October at a price of $2.6 million.

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published: 10/18/2013
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