Local News

  • Teen pleads guilty after fatal wreck

    A Sunset Beach teenager has pleaded guilty to charges related to a fatal wreck that occurred last October in Carolina Shores.

    Maria Cortes, 17, pleaded guilty before Judge Thomas Aldridge on Feb. 28 to a misdemeanor charge of no operator’s license as well as failure to comply with restricted driving license, according to assistant district attorney Quintin M. McGee.

    Cortes was 16 years old at the time of the Oct. 5 collision on U.S. 17 that killed Robert Clary Jr., 58, of Calabash Drive in Carolina Shores.

  • Low-cost spay/neuter clinic in works

    Thanks to a donation from a resident, a new reduced-cost spay-neuter clinic for pets should be opening in a few more months.

    The clinic will be at the site of a former plant nursery off U.S. 17 in the Winnabow area.

    The effort is being orchestrated by Adopt an Angel, an animal rescue and foster nonprofit group based in Wilmington.

    The future facility, targeted for opening this summer, came about thanks to a $200,000 donation last April from an unnamed individual, according to Jo Hitchuk of Adopt An Angel.

  • MacKenzie first SBHS student appointed to Naval Academy

    SOUTHPORT—South Brunswick High School senior Conall MacKenzie is the first student from the school to receive an appointment to the United States Naval Academy.

    MacKenzie has had his sights set on attending a service academy since his sophomore year, when he began comparing the Merchant Marines, Coast Guard and Naval Academy programs.

    “I saw Annapolis and was blown away,” MacKenzie said.

  • Fire departments switch on upgraded emergency radios

    BOLIVIA—After several months of delays at the state level, Brunswick County firefighters can finally switch on their emergency radios.

    Emergency Services Director Anthony Marzano told members of the local emergency planning committee last Wednesday that as of 9:03 a.m. Tuesday morning, Feb. 20, Brunswick County fire departments switched to the VIPER radio transmitting system.

    The county has received 365 portable VIPER radios and installed 116 mobile radios in emergency vehicles, but couldn’t use them until service was established.

  • Leland plans Tuesday roundtable to talk about business signs

    LELAND—Town officials will host a roundtable meeting next Tuesday to learn what residents and business owners think about signs.

    The meeting will begin at 7 p.m., Tuesday, March 5, in Leland Town Hall.

    Leland has a sign ordinance in place that allows lower profile signs, up to 8 feet tall for individual businesses and 15 feet tall for multi-use signs in shopping centers.

    It’s been an unenforced ordinance until now.

    In January, town staff proposed requiring businesses to replace non-conforming signs within the next five years.

  • Town council rejects plan to adopt FlexCode zoning

    LELAND—The town council has voted down moving to FlexCode zoning.

    The decision was made at Thursday’s town meeting, despite board members’ unanimous support for the project.

    After councilman John Tait’s call for a vote on the rezoning plan failed two votes to three, the three officials who voted against it said the proposal still needs work before making it town law.

    “It needs tweaked a little. We will look into it more,” councilwoman Jane Crowder said. 

  • One year in, Leland police chief still building community trust

    LELAND—One year into his tenure as Leland police chief, Mike James is working on ways to improve service to residents.

    “My main focus is to provide the best service we can provide for our citizens and visitors to Leland,” James said. “When I say we are a community police department, I follow that philosophy. I mean it with all my heart. Our partnership with the citizens is vital to do the job.”

    James was hired as interim police chief Feb. 20, 2012. He was named to the permanent position Nov. 15.

  • Mystery remains cause beachcombers to call police

    Unidentified remains found on the beach Sunday in Holden Beach led a Shallotte couple to take it to the police for identification.

    Nina Clark and her husband Bob found an unusual item while walking their dogs.

    “I saw something in the distance on the beach. I thought it was a conch shell, but it was not a conch shell,” Clark said.

    Clark said they were at the point—the eastern end of the island—when she found what she described as a thigh bone and shin bone connected by knee cartilage and tendons.

  • Leland man charged with second-degree murder for fatal wreck

    DELCO—Leland resident Martha Mintz was killed in a head-on collision Friday, a wreck that has led to a second-degree murder charge against Pierre Walker.

    According to a report by N.C. Highway Patrol Trooper M.E. Campbell, at around 3:24 p.m. Friday, Feb. 22, Walker, 26, of 9453 Grady Way NE, Leland, was involved in two collisions while traveling on U.S. 74/76.

    Walker, who was driving a 1998 Cadillac Deville, hit another vehicle while both were traveling east on N.C. 74/76 in Brunswick County.

  • No justice for Jaronn

    SHALLOTTE—March 1, 2013, marks one year since 3-year-old Jaronn Ladale McAllister was killed in Shallotte.

    There are still no charges related to his death.

    “I’m personally responsible and accountable for what happens and for making sure we get charges and do everything we can to get a conviction,” Shallotte Police Chief Rodney Gause said. “It’s my responsibility, and I’m not making excuses. I don’t want to blame anyone else. Everyone has worked very hard on this case.”