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Local News

  • Martin trial day two: Defendant admits to hitting victim in recorded interview

    BOLIVIA—“We have a big problem,” Dave Crocker told James Dean Martin as Martin walked into an interview room at the sheriff’s office in July 2007.

    Martin, 20, is being tried for first-degree murder, robbery with a dangerous weapon and conspiracy to commit robbery with a dangerous weapon. Crocker, a special investigator with the District Attorney’s Office, took the stand Thursday as a witness for the prosecution.

  • Martin trial day three: Martin guilty of first-degree murder

    BOLIVIA—After deliberating for about an hour and a half Friday afternoon, a Brunswick County jury found James Dean Martin guilty of the 2007 robbery and murder of Oak Island restaurateur Phillip Cook.

    The jury found Martin, 20, guilty of first-degree murder, robbery with a dangerous weapon and conspiracy to commit robbery with a dangerous weapon.

    Superior Court Judge D. Jack Hooks Jr. sentenced Martin to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

  • Ocean Isle votes to install playground on island

    OCEAN ISLE BEACH—Children will now have a new place to play on Ocean Isle Beach.

    The board of commissioners approved the installation of a playground on Third Street near the Museum of Coastal Carolina at its meeting Tuesday.

    The Ocean Isle Beach Conservancy approached the board of commissioners at its February meeting and proposed the idea for a playground to add to the family-friendly atmosphere of the island.

  • Martin trial day one: Alleged co-conspirator testifies in robbery, murder trial

    BOLIVIA—In a brief respite from serving her three-year prison sentence, Whitney Jenkins was back in Brunswick County on Wednesday.

    But the former Oak Island resident, serving 35-42 months in the N.C. Department of Corrections for trafficking methamphetamines, wasn’t back in Brunswick County for a visit.

  • Lincoln Elementary to be a Bright Ideas Academy

    LELAND—Bright Ideas will be happening throughout Lincoln Elementary School next year.

    The Brunswick County Board of Education approved a request from Lincoln staff to become a Bright Ideas Academy at its meeting last week. The Lincoln staff presented it to the board’s curriculum committee last month, and explained Bright Ideas would benefit the school.

  • Bare-hoofin' it

    SUPPLY—Charly Boy stood patiently in place as Scott Spencer trimmed the black-and-white-paint Tennessee Walking Horse’s barefoot hooves last week.

    For the past three years, Spencer, a certified trainer in natural horsemanship, has been practicing and perfecting what he believes is a healthier, more natural way for horses to move via The Healthy Hoof program—going shoeless.

  • Driver charged in concrete truck wreck near school

    Nineteen minutes after Union Elementary School released its students, a concrete truck overturned on Union School Road, just off U.S. 17 south of Shallotte last week.

    According to N.C. State Highway Patrol Troopers on the scene, the driver of the concrete truck was driving south on U.S. 17 at about 55 mph when he swerved onto Union School Road to avoid a car stopped at the light around 3:19 p.m. Wednesday, April 8.

    Troopers charged the driver, Steven Chadwick Epps, 38, of Conway S.C., with careless and reckless driving, according to state highway patrol Sgt. T. Daniels.

  • State should leave local ABC systems alone, SB councilman says

    SUNSET BEACH—Town councilman Bob Bobinski believes ABC stores should be left under the control of local boards, rather than fall under greater control by the state as mandated in pending legislation.

    Bobinski, who serves on the Sunset Beach ABC board, said at a town council meeting April 6 if the bills are enacted, it would not be a good thing for the town or locally managed ABC stores in North Carolina.

    “It would be a terrible loss of control,” Bobinski said at the monthly council meeting.

  • Stop annexation

    STAFF PHOTO BY LAURA LEWIS

    Stop annexation

    A ‘stop annexation’ sign marks the spot along the east side of N.C. 179 that is being eyed for annexation by the town of Sunset Beach. With sewer a concern, as well as residents in the area who oppose the idea, Sunset Beach Town Council will revisit the plan at its next monthly meeting May 4.

     

  • SBFD gets $40,850 grant for new equipment

    U.S. Rep. Mike McIntyre made a special delivery to the Sunset Beach Fire Department last week in the form of a $40,850 ceremonial check and grant to buy new emergency equipment.

    The money was awarded to the department in January by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) through the Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program.

    The grant will be used to buy a breathing air compressor and rapid intervention pack (RIT-PAK).