Local News

  • Fire and war can't break this veteran

    SHALLOTTE—Jimmy Todd had just turned the television off in his living room and was preparing for bed Wednesday, Feb. 15. When he flipped the switch to his bedroom light, it didn’t turn on.

    Then he heard a loud boom, but he had no idea the roof of his house at 4393 Ritz Circle was on fire.

    He didn’t have smoke detectors in his attic. The ones in his home were functioning but hadn’t yet been triggered by the fire in the attic.

  • Ocean Isle Beach officials talk about fiscal needs


    OCEAN ISLE BEACH—On Wednesday, Feb. 22, the town of Ocean Isle Beach conducted their annual budget workshop retreat. During the daylong meeting, the board of commissioners met with town staff including department heads and discussed upcoming issues and expenditures facing the town in the upcoming fiscal year.

  • It's all about vision

    SHALLOTTE—The town of Shallotte is considering donating town land for a new Shallotte Senior Center.

    The land, which is within the town’s vision plan area, would be donated to Brunswick Senior Resources Inc.

    The idea was discussed Tuesday during the Shallotte Board of Aldermen’s annual retreat.

  • Work under way on new boat ramp in Sunset Beach

    SUNSET BEACH—Construction work is under way on a future state-operated boat ramp on the Intracoastal Waterway.

    Soon, the water work portion of the project will be finished, Sunset Beach Town Administrator Gary Parker said, speaking at a day-long town council retreat Feb. 21 at Sea Trail.

    Then the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission will bring in its own construction crew to do land work, including a parking lot. The goal is to have the ramp completed in time for the upcoming season, Parker said.

  • The Brunswick Beacon looks back: 1967-1971

    Editor's note: This is the third in a yearlong series reflecting on the history of The Brunswick Beacon. Each month we will bring readers a glimpse into the past.

    Back in Brunswick County 45 years ago, the New Year kicked off with bang when a car was hit by a train.

  • Candidate filing under way for 2012 election

    BOLIVIA—Candidate filing for the 2012 election is under way. Filing began at noon Monday, Feb. 13, and ran until noon Wednesday, Feb. 29.

    The 2012 primary election will be Tuesday, May 8, and the General Election will be Tuesday, Nov. 6. 

    As of 5 p.m. Tuesday, the following candidates have filed for office.

    County commissioners

  • New DSS chair says board will ‘move forward’ and ‘serve community’

    BOLIVIA—In their first meeting since former chairman Charles Warren was removed, members of the Brunswick County Board of Social Services got back to business Monday.

    Last week Brunswick County commissioners voted four votes to one to remove Warren from the DSS board for, among other things, removing fellow board member Pat Sykes and a Beacon reporter from a December 2011 DSS board meeting.

    Commissioners also voted four votes to one to appoint former DSS board member Elsie Peterson, whose term expired last year, as Warren’s replacement.

  • Man gets life, no parole for drive-by shooting murder

    BOLIVIA—Life in prison. No possibility for parole.

    On Monday evening those were the words 28-year-old Matthew Lee Baber heard as he was sentenced for the first-degree murder of James Murdock.

    After deliberating for less than an hour, jurors convicted Baber, of Sunset Beach, of the first-degree murder of Murdock, 28, from a May 8, 2008, drive-by shooting.

    Jurors also found Baber guilty of felony firing into an occupied vehicle.

    Superior Court Judge Christopher Bragg sentenced Baber to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

  • Baber guilty of first-degree murder in drive-by shooting death of Calabash man

    BOLIVIA—After deliberating for less than one hour, jurors convicted Matthew Lee Baber of the first-degree murder of James Murdock in a 2008 drive-by shooting.

    Jurors also found Baber guilty of felony firing into an occupied vehicle.

    Jurors found Baber guilty of first-degree murder on the felony murder rule, meaning they found him guilty of murder while in the commission of felony.

    The verdict came after four days of testimony in Brunswick County Superior Court.

  • Forensic neuro-psychologist testifies for defense in first-degree murder trial

    BOLIVIA—Dr. Antonio Puente, a forensic neuro-psychologist took the stand Monday morning as the first and only witness for the defense of Matthew Baber, who is on trial for first-degree murder.

    In the fourth day of testimony in the first-degree murder trial in Brunswick County Superior Court, Puente testified Baber had “diminished capacity” the night prosecutors said he shot and killed 28-year-old James Murdock with an AK-47 assault rifle on May 8, 2008.