Chapel Hill Man Charged with Strangling Ex-Girlfriend

A Chapel Hill man is facing charges after reportedly strangling a female victim.

Lieutenant Josh Mecimore says Chapel Hill Police received a report of the assault on Tuesday.

“The victim reported an incident from the previous day that she said occurred Monday mid-day,” Mecimore says, “where the suspect, it looks like, grabbed her from behind, strangled her from behind.”

Mecimore says it appears the suspect and victim had been in a previous relationship.

Police have arrested 33-year-old Phillip Rashan Walker in connection with the assault.

Mecimore says Walker has also been charged with communicating threats and cyberstalking.

“It looks like he’s also been contacting her via text and messages on social media platforms where he’s made some threatening comments,” Mecimore says.

The arrest report lists Walker’s employer as UNC Hospital but also says he is unemployed. Mecimore says that means he was likely either formerly or is currently employed by UNC Hospital.

The report says Walker was charged with felony assault by strangulation and misdemeanor charges of assault on a female, communicating threats and cyberstalking.

Mecimore says there was evidence of the assault but no injuries that appeared to be life-threatening.

Walker was held in the Orange County Jail without bond and was scheduled to appear in court Wednesday afternoon.

The Compass Center for Women and Families offers a 24-hour domestic violence hotline at (919) 929-7122.

Durham Man Charged in Flare Gun Shooting

Durham Police are looking for an individual after a man was shot in the face with a flare gun at a Panera Bread on Tuesday.

Investigators have charged 53-year-old Todd Newland Pope with assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill.

Police say the victim and the suspect know and other and the incident does not appear to be random.

Pope is not in custody at this time.

Anyone with information as to Pope’s whereabouts is asked to call Crime Stoppers at (919) 683-1200. Crime Stoppers pays cash rewards for information leading to arrests in felony cases and callers can remain anonymous.

Man Shot in Face with Flare Gun in Panera Bread Bathroom

Durham Police say a man was shot in the face with what appears to be a flare gun in the bathroom at a Panera Bread on Tuesday morning.

Police say two men got into an argument inside a bathroom at the Panera Bread on Witherspoon Drive and one shot the other in the face.

The victim was taken to the hospital for treatment of serious injuries, according to authorities.

Police say investigators are still speaking with witnesses.

No charges have been filed at this time.

Chapel Hill Woman Charged with Felony Hit and Run

Chapel Hill Police have arrested a woman in connection with a hit and run involving a pedestrian.

Chapel Hill Police Lieutenant Josh Mecimore says police responded to a report of a pedestrian being struck on Fountain Ridge Road at Highview Drive at 8:25 last Tuesday night.

Maureen Patricia Rogers. Photo via Chapel Hill Police.

Maureen Patricia Rogers. Photo via Chapel Hill Police.

The pedestrian was suffering from non-life threatening injuries, according to police, and – after initially refusing – was eventually transported to the hospital for treatment of lacerations.

“There was no suspect vehicle. They fled the scene,” Mecimore says. “And then it looks like the investigating officer had given out a description of the vehicle and the damage that was expected to be on the vehicle and another officer came across that vehicle.”

Mecimore says that officers questioned the suspect when the vehicle was found on Thursday.

“She, at the very least, told him that she thought she’d hit a deer,” Mecimore says.

On Friday, police arrested 58-year-old Maureen Rogers, of Charlesberry Lane, on a felony charge of hit and run. The charge was elevated to a felony level due to the injuries sustained by the pedestrian, according to police.

Rogers appeared before a magistrate and was released on a $3,500 unsecured bon.

She was scheduled to appear in court on Monday morning.

Durham Police Arrest 8 In Anti-Gun Violence Campaign

Durham Police have announced that eight arrests have been made as part of an initiative focused on a string of violent gun crimes in late 2015 and early 2016.

Authorities say Durham saw a 47 percent decrease in non-fatal and fatal shootings from January 7 through January 31, 2016, when compared with the period from December 13, 2015, through January 6. Durham saw homicides nearly double in 2015.

Durham Mayor Bill Bell joined Interim Police Chief Larry Smith and Sheriff Mike Andrews on January 7 to call for an end to the gun violence.

“It’s not going to be tolerated. We don’t tolerate it. We’re going to put a stop to it,” Bell said at the press conference.

Law enforcement identified 19 individuals who were believed to be connected with the stretch of violent crime. Officials announced the arrests of eight of those 19 individuals, on Tuesday.

“We are still working closely with the community to reduce violent crime and we appreciate the assistance we have received,” said Smith.

Community members have been calling for more consistency from law enforcement.

Police say officers from several units have been focused on the identified people of interest and those who have been arrested face charges ranging from failure to appear in court up to murder.

Those arrested are 33-year-old Terence Deyon Foster, 27-year-old Andre Dewayne Johnson, 25-year-old Deshawn Bailey, 23-year-old Messiah Gattis, 21-year-old Lamonte Colbert, 22-year-old Michael Gill, 16-year-old Najay Peace and 20-year-old Keon Deloatch.

Foster was arrested January 5 and is facing charges of assault with a deadly weapon inflicting serious injury, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, failure to appear on earlier charges and a parole violation. He was placed in the Durham County Jail with no bond and was later transferred to Central Prison in Raleigh.

Johnson was arrested on January 6 and charged with possession of marijuana with the intent to manufacture, sell or deliver, two counts of possession of cocaine, possession of drug paraphernalia and resisting, delaying and obstructing a government official. Johnson was arrested while he was out of jail on bond for prior charges of trafficking in Schedule 1 controlled substances and other charges. Johnson was released from prison after posting a $100,000 bond.

Bailey was arrested on January 6 for failure to appear on a traffic charge. He posted a $1,500 bond.

Gattis was arrested on January 7 after a standoff at an apartment on Junction Road. Gattis is charged with injury to property, assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill, carrying a concealed weapon, going armed to the terror of the public, discharging a firearm from an enclosure, 10 counts of discharging a firearm within the city limits and resisting, delaying and obstructing an officer. Gattis was released pending indictments.

Colbert was arrested on January 8 on outstanding common-law robbery, communicating threats and larceny charges. Colbert remains in jail under a $6,500 bond.

Gill was arrested on January 8 on an outstanding probation/parole violation. He was placed in the Durham County Jail under no bond and later transferred to the Polk Correctional Facility.

Peace was arrested on January 14. He is facing charges of possession of a stolen vehicle and resisting, delaying and obstructing a government official. He was released from prison after posting a $7,500 bond and was arrested January 15 and charged with felony larceny of a vehicle. Peace then posted $15,000 bond and is currently out of jail.

Deloatch was arrested on January 20 and charged with murder in connection with a January 4 shooting death. Deloatch was placed in the Durham County Jail with no bond.

Chatham County Authorities Bust Meth Lab

Chatham County officials have arrested two individuals in connection with two meth labs in Siler City.

Authorities say Chatham County deputies executed a search warrant last Friday, January 29, on Driftwood Drive and discovered two methamphetamine labs and additional paraphernalia and a weapon of mass destruction.

Chatham County Sheriff’s Office officials have charged 20-year-old Gabrielle Dowdy and 28-year-old Michael McCurdy with felony manufacturing methamphetamine, possessing methamphetamine, possessing/distributing methamphetamine precursor, maintaining a dwelling/vehicle/place for controlled substances and possessing a weapon of mass destruction.

Law enforcement officials did not elaborate on the weapon of mass destruction.

Authorities say McCurdy and Dowdy were also charged with misdemeanor possession of drug paraphernalia.

McCurdy is being held on a $25,000 secured bond, and Dowdy is being held on a $10,000 secured bond.

Both are scheduled to appear in court on February 29.

Chapel Hill Police Locate Missing Teenager

Chapel Hill Police have located a teenager that was reported missing.

Police sent a release around 5:20 Saturday evening seeking assistance in locating 19-year-old Devon Jamar McLean. Officials say McLean is believed to be suffering from dementia or a cognitive impairment.

Just after 5:50 Saturday evening, Police sent out a tweet saying McLean had been located and is safe.

Chapel Hill Police Investigating Assault of UNC Student

Chapel Hill Police are investigating the report of an assault on a female UNC student that occurred shortly after 2 am on Friday morning.

The victim was walking along the western end of North Street when she was attacked from behind. The victim resisted and the suspect then fled. No weapon was reported in the assault.

The suspect has been described as a black male wearing dark clothes, a flat-bill cap and a letterman style jacket.

Anyone with information about this crime is urged to call 911 or Crimestoppers at 919-942-7515.

Suspect Steals $15K Worth of Banjos from Burlington Store

Burlington Police are looking for a suspect who allegedly stole more than $15,000 worth of banjos from a local business.

Officers responded to Lowe Vintage Instrument Company in downtown Burlington on Wednesday afternoon.

Stolen banjo. Photo via Burlington Police.

Stolen banjo. Photo via Burlington Police.

Police say a suspect walked in while an employee was assisting another customer and ran out with three vintage banjos including a 1930’s blue Gibson RB11 banjo valued at $8,995, a 1960 wood grain Fender Artist banjo valued at $1,595 and a 1930 wood grain Gibson TB-2 five-string neck banjo valued at $5,495.

Stolen banjo. Photo via Burlington Police.

Stolen banjo. Photo via Burlington Police.

The suspect was described as a black male in his early 30s, estimated to be 5’ 10” tall weighing approximately 150 pounds. Police say he was wearing a black jacket and black toboggan and fled in a white vehicle.

The investigation is ongoing.

Police say the banjos were located at Worthridge Auctions in Greensboro and returned to Lowe Vintage Instrument Company.

Anyone with information related to this investigation is asked to contact the Burlington Police Department at (336) 229-3500 or Burlington / Alamance Crimestoppers at (336) 229-7100.

Arrest Made in Murder of Hillsborough Man

Burlington Police have charged a suspect with first-degree murder in connection with the death of a Hillsborough man.

Police have charged 34-year-old Cesar Torres-Acevedo, of Burlington, in the death of Juan Mario Martinez Trujillo, of Hillsborough, on June 13, 2015.

An investigation shows Torres-Acevedo allegedly killed the 56-year-old Trujillo by setting him on fire intentionally.

The investigation started with police responding to a call of a possible person in distress on the eastbound shoulder of I-40/I-85 near the Alamance Road exit. Officers found a male, later identified as Trujillo, who had been critically burned. Trujillo was transported to UNC Hospital and died on August, 24, 2015 from his injuries.

Officials say Torres-Acevedo and Trujillo were known acquaintances.

Police say Torres-Acevedo was being held in the Gaston County Jail on unrelated charges. He is currently being held without bond on the new charges.

The investigation is ongoing, according to police, and more arrests may be coming.

Anyone with information related to the incident is asked to contact the Burlington Police Department at (336) 229-3503 or Burlington/Alamance Crime Stoppers at (336) 229-7100.