New Yancey County K9

10/20/17 09:15 AM
The Yancey County Sheriff’s Department has a new deputy in training. K9 Jackie will be ready for service in late December. Meanwhile the search continues for the person or persons responsible for the death of the Yancey County Sheriff's Department K9 Chris. Chris was shot Wednesday morning, July 12th in his kennel at his home in the Bald Mountain community.   A fundraiser in August had over $5500 in donations for the purchase and training of the new K9 Deputy.

Yancey Sheriff Report 10/11 - 10/18/17 (Details)

10/18/17 12:23 PM

20 Year Additional Sentence

10/18/17 07:55 AM
A Morganton man who is serving time for robbery and attempted murder in Burke County has been sentenced to another 20 years in a similar case in McDowell County.
44 year old Stacey Heatley was found guilty in McDowell County Superior Court of attempted first-degree murder, robbery with a dangerous weapon and felony breaking or entering. (more)

Share Your Ideas About Ray-Cort Park

10/17/17 01:26 PM
Coming up this next Tuesday, October 24th is a community gathering at Ray-Cort Park. The event will be held from 4 to 6 pm and its purpose is to get input about revitalizing the park.    The event is sponsored by multiple community organizations including, Partners Aligned Toward Health, Blue Ridge Partnership for Children, Yancey County Parks, and the Yancey Library. There will be live music, crafts, and food provided, along with opportunities for you to share your thoughts, ideas, and stories about the park.  Ray-Cort Park is located on Mitchell Branch in Burnsville. 

Local Sheriff Offers Tips for a Safe Halloween

10/17/17 09:36 AM
Soon our streets will be scattered with little ghosts, goblins, and witches trick-or-treating this Halloween.  “Halloween should be filled with surprise and enjoyment, and following some common sense practices can keep events safer and more fun,” said Sheriff Banks of Yancey County. The Sheriff reminds all Yancey County residents to follow these safety (more)

Mitchell Sheriff Activity Report 10/8 - 10/15/17 (Details)

10/16/17 10:49 AM

The Wall That Heals

10/12/17 09:27 AM
The Wall That Heals, traveling Vietnam Veterans Memorial opening ceremony was held Thursday morning. The Wall replica and Mobile Education Center open at Heritage High School baseball field 24 hours per day until Sunday at 3 pm. No admission, everyone is invited. (more pics)

Recreational Trails Grants

10/11/17 03:29 PM
One local and a couple of area groups are recipients of Recreational Trails grants.  Twenty-five matching grants for trails projects across North Carolina for 2018 have been awarded for a total of $2.1 million.  The matching grants, recommended by the North Carolina Trails Committee and approved by the North Carolina Department of Natural and Cultural Resources, will help fund healthful recreation opportunities for hikers, cyclists, paddlers, equestrians and off-highway vehicle users throughout the state and will promote tourism for the enjoyment of the state’s natural resources. Locally the N.C. High Peaks Trail Association will receive $52,460 for Phase III of the Mount Mitchell Trail Renovation Project. In the broader area, Burke County will receive $100,000 for Fonta Flora State Trail– Northwest Connection Boardwalk along the shore of Lake James,  plus $100,000 for the Mountains to Sea Connector Trail and a new boardwalk. The City of Marion will receive $30,000 for the Upper Catawba River Trail signage, kiosks, and maps for up to 30 access points along the  Trail. And McDowell County will receive $100,000 for Lower Catawba Falls Access safety and accessibility improvements. For a complete list go to

Double Murder Suspect Captured in Madison County

10/11/17 02:50 PM
According to the Unicoi County Sheriff's Department double murder suspect Clyde William Banner has been captured in Madison County. He has been charged with fugitive of justice in Madison County and will be brought back to Tennessee on two charges of first-degree murder in Unicoi County. The original crime scene is located at Lower Higgins Creek Road which is about 5 miles outside of Erwin. Unicoi County Schools were on preventative lock down for a period of time on Wednesday as authorities pursued Banner . We will have more information as it becomes available. 

Yancey Sheriff Report 10/4 - 10/11/17 (Details)

10/11/17 01:08 PM

Zero Tolerance for Speeding in Spruce Pine City Limits

10/10/17 03:39 PM
The Spruce Pine Police Department announced at the October 9th Town Board Meeting that they will begin  zero tolerance for speeding inside the Spruce Pine City limits on Wednesday, November 1st.  It is due to the outpouring of complaints about the speeding on Oak Avenue that has the Town Board and the Police Department concerned about the safety of citizens and businesses inside the city limits. Spruce Pine Town police officers will be issuing NC State citations to any vehicle caught speeding past the posted speed limit within the city limits. Police Chief, Bill Summerlin urges everyone to make their travels to downtown Spruce Pine “a safe and slow trip.” 

Stroupe Sr Denied Lower Bond

10/09/17 04:40 PM
Monday, October 9th  in a Henderson County courtroom, Phillip Stroupe Sr was denied a lower bond.  His bond was left at $500,000. His trial date has not been scheduled.  His son, Stroup II's next court date is December.  Phillip Michael Stroupe Sr. is charged with accessory after the fact to first-degree murder, a class C felony, and has been in custody since July 30. Stroupe's son, Phillip Michael Stroupe II, is charged with first-degree murder, robbery with a dangerous weapon and kidnapping in the death of Hendersonville resident Thomas Bryson. He also faces various other charges related to the five day manhunt he led law enforcement personnel on across Western North Carolina and eastern Tennessee. 

Mitchell Sheriff Activity Report 10/1 - 10/8/17

10/09/17 03:42 PM

Local Woman Witnessed Vegas Shooting

10/06/17 07:49 PM
Connie McKinney of Mitchell County was in Las Vegas on October 1st and witnessed the deadly mass shooting incident.  She is back in Spruce Pine and told WLOS News  about the traumatic scene she saw unfold before her eyes. McKinney   was there to celebrate her niece's 30th birthday. She was staying at the Tropicana Hotel, which is across from the Mandalay Bay Hotel and the concert venue for the  Route 91 Festival, featuring Jason Aldean. She was in her room listening to the concert when sounds like fireworks started going off. She looked out toward the festival and instead of fireworks saw chaos as people were running and screaming. She heard reports of multiple shooters, cut the lights out and stayed in her room, praying. The incident gave McKinney a deeper appreciation for life and for the quick action of the first responders that night. 

Deadline to Register for Burnsville Town Election

10/06/17 01:14 PM
This Friday, October 13th is the deadline for registering if you plan on voting in the upcoming town election on November 7th. All residents of the Town of Burnsville who are currently registered to vote with the Yancey County Board of Elections may vote in this election. Voters will choose a Mayor and two council seats, all for four year terms. Polls will open from 6:30 am until 7:30 pm at the Burnsville Town Center. Any town resident who wishes to vote in this election but are not currently registered to vote, must register on or before 5:00 pm on Friday the 13th. Voters, who have moved outside their precinct but still remain within the town of Burnsville, need to notify the Yancey County Board of Elections in writing by 5pm on October 13th. Absentee ballots will not be allowed. For more information   contact the Yancey County Board of Elections at 682-3950, 8:30 am to 5:00 pm or by email at  

High Absenteeism in Schools

10/05/17 02:53 PM
According to the North Carolina Early Childhood Foundation, one in eight students in North Carolina miss more than 15 days each school year, with 26 percent of students chronically absent.  In our area Mitchell County has the lowest rate of absenteeism at  12.5 percent, Yancey is next at 15.8 percent. Madison rate is one of the highest at 18.2 percent. There are various issues that can lead to chronic absences. Mitchell County is serving breakfast each morning in the classrooms to address some of the issues that may be affecting attendance.  They also have started an incentive program this year in order to combat the problem.   

Madison County Woman Steals Vehicle

10/05/17 02:36 PM
According to the  Madison County Sheriff's Department Tiffany Mills of Madison County  stole a vehicle to make her court date. Tiffany, age 29 was arrested Monday, October 2nd in downtown Marshall. She was charged with possession of a stolen motor vehicle. Apparently Mills was due in court for a minor traffic offense and stole vehicle from a home in Buncombe County so she wouldn't miss her court date.

Burnsville Visioning Workshop

10/05/17 01:04 PM
There will be a Burnsville Workshop visioning session for Downtown and Main Street presented by “Construction Professional Network Institute” on October 12th & 13th at the Burnsville Town Center.  The purpose of the meeting is to envision the future of Burnsville's Main Street and downtown area. The Construction Professional Network Institute looks at design and construction ideas and uses their expertise to help  communities improve their physical and economic environment.  If you would like to have input into this process you can drop by any time on October 12 from 10:15 am to 12:15 pm or from 3:00 to 5:00 pm or on October 13 from 1:00 to 3:00 pm.  For more information  contact Burnsville's mayor at

Yancey Sheriff Report 9/27 - 10/3/17 (Details)

10/04/17 04:26 PM

Avery Drug Crackdown Continues

10/04/17 02:35 PM
Avery County authorities continue their drug crackdown with three additional arrests as part of Operation Rattlesnake. The most recent arrests bring the total to 30, with more than 70 charges brought so far. (more)

Mountain Community Health Partnerships Receives Quality Improvement Award

10/04/17 01:24 PM
Mountain Community Health Partnership (MCHP) is pleased to announce they have been awarded a $62,021 Quality Improvement Award. The award amount will be used to support our Health Centers with ongoing improvement of patient care and outcomes. MCHP was among 36 Health Centers in North Carolina to receive the Quality Improvement Award. A total of $2,387,571 was presented to Health Centers (more)

Mountain Community Health Partnership Receives AIMS Grant

10/04/17 01:10 PM
Mountain Community Health Partnership (MCHP) is pleased to announce they have been awarded a $175,700 AIMS Grant from the Health Resources & Services Administration (HRSA). MCHP was among 1,178 Health Centers to receive the AIMS Grant. Nationwide, HRSA awarded $200 Million to increase access to mental health and substance abuse treatment.
The purpose of these funds is to expand access (more)

Drug Take Back Day Success

10/02/17 04:01 PM
71 pounds of prescription drugs were collected during the recent Drug Take Back Day. On Saturday, September 23rd  between  the drugs collected at Take Back Day and collection of the permanent drug drop boxes 71 pounds were brought in. That is 71 pounds of drugs that will not be diverted and sold illegally, end up in the hands of children or youth or end up in our rivers and streams. Drug Take Back days was sponsored by the Mitchell-Yancey substance Abuse Task force in partnership with the Yancey Sheriff's Department, the Burnsville Police Department and Prescription Pad in Burnsville. To find out more about Mitchell Yancey Substance Abuse Task Force go to their Facebook page or call 682-7899.

Mitchell Sheriff Activity Report 9/24 - 10/1/17 (Details)

10/02/17 10:19 AM

Operation Rattlesnake Bites 29 People

09/29/17 03:48 PM
The Avery County Sheriff's Department is in the process of  Operation Rattlesnake, an undercover drug operation that has been going on for eight months.  Operation Rattlesnake is seeking to "get the people pushing poison out from under the rocks", according to Avery County deputies.  The undercover investigation came to a head on Tuesday, Sept. 26, as officers (more)

Yancey Sheriff Report 9/21 - 9/26/17 (Details)

09/29/17 12:07 PM

Escaped Inmate Captured

09/27/17 06:59 AM
An escaped inmate is back behind bars. 51 year old Michael Dewayne Clark was captured in McDowell County yesterday and turned over to the N.C. Department of Corrections. Clark escaped from a work assignment at Harnett Correctional Institution on September 14th. (more)

Yancey County Shooting

09/27/17 06:57 AM
One man shot during an argument Tuesday afternoon off North Bee Branch Road in the Green Mountain community. According to Chief Deputy Shane Hilliard multiple shots were fired and Josh Murphy was hit once in collar bone. Murphy was transported to the hospital in stable condition. David Murphy of Burnsville was arrested and charged with one count of Assault with a Deadly Weapon Inflicting Serious Bodily Injury and one count of Assault with a Deadly Weapon Inflicting Serious Injury.  Murphy remains in the Yancey County Jail under a $50,000 bond. 

Illegal Prescription Drug Diversion and Money Laundering

09/26/17 04:09 PM
A pharmacy manager from Burnsville, has plead guilty for her role in the fraudulent diversion of prescription drugs and money laundering, according to a news release from the Department of Justice. Karen Ann Turner,  age 37, plead guilty in the Western District of North Carolina to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and one count of money laundering.  Turner was charged in connection with a fraudulent scheme that operated out of pharmacies in Burnsville , and Travelers Rest, South Carolina.  As a part of that scheme, Turner bought prescription drugs at lower prices by falsely stating that the drugs would be used to fill patient prescriptions through the pharmacies that she operated.  Instead of using the drugs for patient prescriptions, Turner sold them at higher prices to unauthorized drug wholesalers.  Some of the prescription drugs that Turner bought and sold were in short supply.  Turner laundered the profits by transferring them through bank accounts that she controlled.  According to the news release, these fraud schemes increase the risk that patients will receive ineffective or unsafe drugs, and can expose hospitals to exorbitant prices for drugs that are in short supply. Court documents say she operated the scheme from 2011 through 2014, with revenue exceeding more than $1.3 million. This case is being prosecuted through the coordinated efforts of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of North Carolina and the Civil Division’s Consumer Protection Branch, with assistance from FDA’s Office of Chief Counsel.  The criminal investigation was conducted by FDA’s Office of Criminal Investigations. Sentencing will be scheduled at a later date.

Avery Forfeited Drug Money Goes to School System

09/26/17 03:41 PM
Avery County Schools have received more than $10,000 from forfeited drug related money. The Avery County Sheriff’s Office turned it over to the Avery County School System in accordance with the  NC Constitution which prohibits the use of fines or forfeitures for any other use. The Avery County Sheriff’s Office has forfeited money to the school system before but this is the largest amount in recent history. The Avery Sheriff’s Office also provides grow lights and other agricultural supplies to the local horticulture departments in the schools when they are turned over by the courts through the forfeiture program. 

Mitchell Sheriff Activity Report 9/10 - 9/24/17 (Details)

09/26/17 10:46 AM

Charters of Freedom Dedication Held

09/26/17 07:17 AM
A large crowd gathered for the dedication of the Charters of Freedom exhibit   yesterday evening at the Yancey County Courthouse. The Yancey Commissioners partnered with the nonprofit group, Foundation Forward to provide copies of these documents in etched bronze, placed on brick pedestals on the courthouse lawn.  (more)

Students Gather at Site of New School, Board Meeting

09/22/17 01:45 PM
At the Monday, September 18th monthly meeting of the Yancey County Board of Education, board members were updated on the 2016-2017 school year test results that were released this past week by the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction. Again, this year Yancey (more)

Callaghan Sentenced to 40 Years for Rape

09/22/17 12:41 PM
 On September 21, 2017, a Mitchell County jury convicted Michael James Callaghan of felony statutory rape and felony statutory sex offense.  At the time of the offense, the victim was 15 and Mr. Callaghan was 52. Resident Superior Court Judge R. Gregory Horne sentenced Mr. Callaghan to prison for a minimum of 40 years and maximum of 58 years.  If Mr. Callaghan is (more)

Riddle Sentenced As Habitual Felon

09/21/17 03:14 PM
District Attorney Office Press Release:
Bakersville, NC - On September 18, 2017, Shawn Riddle was convicted of two counts of felony breaking and entering, two counts of felony larceny after breaking and entering, six counts of felony breaking and entering a motor vehicle, felony larceny of a motor vehicle, and felony possession of a stolen motor vehicle.  (more)

Charters of Freedom Dedication

09/20/17 04:50 PM
Monday, September 25th at 5 pm the Yancey Commissioners are planning to hold a special event to dedicate the Charters of Freedom exhibit on the courthouse lawn. The U.S. Constitution, Bill of Rights and Declaration of Independence are considered our country's Charters of Freedom and are housed in the National Archives building in Washington, DC.  Many people are not able to travel that far to see these important founding documents. Thus the Yancey Commissioners have partnered with the nonprofit group, Foundation Forward to provide copies of these documents in etched bronze, placed on brick monument pedestals on the courthouse lawn. The county provided the site preparation through a combination of volunteer labor and contributions. The September 25th date has been chosen due to it being the anniversary date of the approval of the Bill of Rights.  Everyone is invited to come attend this special event and view these copies of these important documents. 

Yancey Sheriff Report 9/13 - 9/19/17 (Details)

09/20/17 02:26 PM

Betty Smith to Receive Order of the Long Leaf Pine at MHU

09/18/17 04:47 PM
The Liston B. Ramsey Center for Regional Studies at Mars Hill University has announced that traditional musician, scholar, and teacher Betty Smith will receive the Order of the Long Leaf Pine on October 2, 2017, during the Ramsey Center’s opening celebration for its new exhibit, “The Minstrel of Appalachia.” The award, conferred by the Governor of North Carolina, is one of the (more)

Escaped Inmate Could Be In Area

09/18/17 04:36 PM
Authorities continue to search for an escaped North Carolina inmate who could be in our area. Michael D. Clark,  age 51 escaped Thursday morning, September 14th. Clark was a minimum custody inmate serving a sentence at Sanford Correctional Center for felony breaking and entering. He was on a work assignment  in Lillington  when he reportedly walked off.  Authorities say Clark is originally from western North Carolina and spent time in McDowell and Yancey counties before his incarceration, which is why they believe he have come back to this area. His projected release date was February 2020. Authorities are following leads and ask anyone with information on Clark's whereabouts to call 911 immediately.  

Time to Clean out Your Medicine Cabinet

09/18/17 04:09 PM
The Mitchell-Yancey Substance Abuse Task Force, under the umbrella of PATH (Partners Aligned Toward Health), wants to remind you to take time during this fall to clear out your medicine cabinet of unused and expired drugs. The MitchellYancey Substance Abuse Task Force has once again partnered with local law enforcement and the federal Drug Enforcement Agency to sponsor the 2017 Fall Drug Take (more)

Yancey, Mitchell Among Lowest Credit Card Debt in State

09/18/17 04:06 PM
Apparently Yancey and Mitchell County citizens have less credit card debt than almost any other people in the state. Smart Asset, a financial technology company recently released their third annual study of the topic. The report shows  Yancey County citizens to rank 2nd lowest in credit card debt in the state. Mitchell came in as ninth lowest in the state.   In Yancey County credit card debt is 8.3% of income, in Mitchell County 9.5%. For more information on the study, including the methodology and interactive map, check here

Part of Blue Ridge Parkway Still Closed With Storm Damage

09/14/17 10:32 AM
Parts of the Blue Ridge Parkway remain closed after Hurricane Irma's remnants tore through Monday and Tuesday causing downed trees and rock damage. Over 300 miles of the Parkway, from the Virginia state line through Cherokee suffered damage from the storm. Sections remaining closed include: (more)

Fundraiser for Burnsville Glass Gateways

09/13/17 03:28 PM
A fundraiser for the Burnsville Glass Gateways will be held Sunday September 17th from 6:00pm-8:00pm at the Burnsville Town Center.  At the fundraiser there will be an update on the project , food  and music.  The Gateways Project is  one of the county's efforts to make Burnsville attractive to business and industry looking for a new location.  The Project has received grants from the NC Arts Council and just recently also received a $75,000 matching grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. This money will go toward making the first of two 28 foot tall handmade glass telescopes to be featured at the east and west entrances to the town. Local glass artists are making the glass that will be featured in the telescopes.  They will be solar powered to showcase the colors reflecting sunrise at the east entrance and sunset at the west entrance.  The telescopes relate to naval Captain Otway Burns, the arts community and the dark sky designation.    For more information contact the Toe River Arts Council at 682-7215.  Tickets are available at the Toe River Arts Gallery and the Yancey Chamber of Commerce.

Yancey Sheriff Report 9/9 - 9/13/17

09/13/17 12:51 PM

Car Seat Safety Check

09/12/17 02:24 PM
In honor of National Child Passenger Safety Month, Toe River Health District, along with Safe Kids NC, will be hosting a Car Seat Safety Check in Yancey County Saturday, September 16th from 10 am to 2 pm.  It will be held near the ATM in the parking lot below the Yancey Sheriff's Office on East Main Street in Burnsville. There will be several Child Passenger Safety Tech's available to check seats. Three out of four child seats are used incorrectly. Parents, caregivers, grandparents--everyone is invited to come have their child's seat checked to make sure it is being used correctly.  Cars are one of the most dangerous places your kids will be, so it is very important to make sure their seat belts are working correctly.  

TSA Finds Loaded Gun at Asheville Airport

09/11/17 03:36 PM
Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officers prevented a passenger from bringing a loaded handgun on board a plane at a Asheville Regional Airport   checkpoint this morning just after 6 a.m. The passenger was stopped by TSA officers with a loaded .40 caliber handgun. The TSA officer detected the firearm as the passenger’s carry-on bag passed along the conveyor belt in the checkpoint X-ray machine. The officer immediately contacted local law enforcement, which responded to the checkpoint. The passenger was questioned and local law enforcement took possession of the firearm. To date, TSA officers have detected 10 firearms at Asheville Airport checkpoints this year. They found five firearms at Asheville last year. There is a right way to travel with a firearm and a wrong way. The wrong way is to bring it to a checkpoint.  Passengers are permitted to travel with firearms in checked baggage if they are unloaded, packed in a hard-side case, locked, and packed separately from ammunition. Then the firearm must be taken to the airline check-in counter. TSA has details on how to properly travel with a firearm on  

Forest Service Closes Campgrounds Due to Hurricane Irma

09/11/17 03:12 PM
The U.S. Forest Service has temporarily closed all of the campgrounds and recreation areas in the Natahala, Pisgah and Uwharrie National Forests. Due to the remnants of Hurricane Irma heavy rain is expected and may result in flash flooding of low-lying and poorly drained areas. High winds, especially in ridgetop areas, are predicted making camping extremely dangerous due to the potential for (more)

Mountain Community Health Partnership Explains Blue Cross

09/11/17 02:24 PM
Recently a number of our patients may have received a letter from Blue Cross Blue Shield regarding their physician at one of the Mountain Community Health Partnership centers; Celo Health Center or Bakersville Community Medical Clinic.  The letter from BCBS of NC indicated that as of October 5, 2017, their physician is no longer in network with Blue Medicare HMO and that they have been (more)

Irma Goes West

09/11/17 07:22 AM
The latest projected path of Hurricane Irma shows the massive storm moving far west of Western North Carolina toward western Tennessee.  The WNC Mountains will still feel some strong winds and heavy rain from the outer edges of the storm. (more)

New Mitchell County Emergency Notification Service

09/08/17 09:39 AM
Mitchell County has announced a new emergency notification service available for local citizens. Known as Hyper-Reach, the service provides warnings and notifications about local emergencies, hazards, and threats to county residents.  Hyper-Reach uses telephone calls, text messages, email, and TTY/TDD services to send these alerts. In order to receive the messages, residents have to sign up (more)

Yancey Sheriff Report 8/30 - 9/6/17 (Details)

09/07/17 10:48 AM

Local Student Athlete Passes Away

09/06/17 09:05 AM
Mitchell County and many others in the surrounding area are mourning the passing of a Mitchell High school senior and former football player.  17 year old Ben Bonner passed away Tuesday morning.  Last Friday Ben was riding as a passenger in a golf cart at Memorial Stadium at Mitchell High School when he fainted and fell out of the cart and hit his head on the pavement. He suffered a (more)

Concord Baptist Church Hurricane Relief (more)

09/04/17 12:25 PM
People from across Yancey and Mitchell counties have come together to support Hurricane Harvey Relief efforts at Concord Baptist Church. They continue working to fill a 54 ft trailer to go to Texas later this week.  

Mitchell Sheriff Activity Report 8/27 - 9/3/17

09/01/17 02:21 PM

Yancey Sheriff Report 8/23 - 8/30/17 (Details)

08/31/17 09:00 AM

Congressman Meadows Meet and Greet

08/30/17 09:33 AM
U.S, Congressman Mark Meadows met with local constitutes on Tuesday at the Mitchell Chamber of Commerce office in Spruce Pine. Coffee and donuts were served as Meadows answered questions. (more)

Red Cross Working around the Clock

08/30/17 06:52 AM
The American Red Cross is working around the clock along the Gulf Coast to help the thousands of people whose lives have been devastated by Tropical Storm Harvey. (more)

Christmas Tree from Avery County Going to White House

08/29/17 01:10 PM
A Christmas tree from our area will be going to the Nation's Capitol to be the 2018 Christmas Tree at the White House. Larry Smith of Avery County was recently chosen to supply the special tree.  Also Beau and Rusty Estes of Ashe County will provide a tree for Vice President Mike Pence’s home for Christmas of 2018. The announcements were made recently in Green Bay, Wisconsin where industry leaders and growers meet every other year to choose the growers to supply trees for the President’s and Vice President’s homes.

Cause for Paws Successful

08/28/17 04:20 PM
The Yancey County Sheriff's Department has exceeded their goal for the K9 fund. Fundraising efforts began in July after K9 Officer Chris was  shot and killed in his kennel.  Many people responded to the tragic news of Chris' death by wanting to help the Sheriff's Department to purchase and train another dog. Lee and Melissa Howell of Pigs and Grits Restaurant in Burnsville took it a step farther with the  Cause for Paws event held  Monday night, August 14th at the restaurant. The staff donated their time and the waitresses donated their tips, Lee and Melissa donated the food to make the fundraiser a success, bringing the total raised  to $5529.00.  Chief Deputy Shane Hilliard said, "The outpouring of support from the community and people all across the country has been unreal during this tragedy. Now that we have the money raised we can focus on finding the best K-9 to serve the citizens Yancey County."

NC Education Lottery Issues Warning About Scam

08/28/17 01:35 PM
The North Carolina Education Lottery is getting reports of scammers sending fake emails to people across the state. The emails claim a person has won a prize of over $1 million in an online drawing called the “Legacy Prize.” The email asks for a player’s personal information to be sent to an overseas claim office. Here are some things that will help people determine if an (more)

Mitchell County Sheriff Report 8/20 - 8/27/17

08/28/17 10:18 AM

Yancey Sheriff Report 8/17 - 8/25/17 (Details)

08/25/17 04:25 PM

NC Cooperative Extension Recognizes Yancey County

08/25/17 04:00 PM
At the 110th Annual Conference of the North Carolina Association of County Commissioners, Yancey County was one of only six counties in North Carolina to be recognized as an outstanding partner by North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service. (more)

Bailey Sentenced as Habitual Felon

08/25/17 12:26 PM
 On August 22nd,   Larry Ray Bailey,  age 54, was convicted of Failing to Report an Address Change as a Registered Sex Offender.  This was the third time Mr. Bailey was convicted of failing to maintain his status as a registered sex offender.  Mr. Bailey’s sentence was enhanced because the District Attorney’s Office identified him as a habitual felon.  Superior Court Judge Gary M. Gavenus sentenced Mr. Bailey to prison for a minimum of 7 years and 3 months and a maximum of 9 years and 9 months.  District Attorney Seth Banks said in a statement, “My office continues to be committed to prosecuting sex offenders who violate the terms of the Sex Offender Registry. I would like to thank Assistant District Attorney Milton Fletcher and the Yancey County Sheriff’s Office for their continuing efforts to protect the citizens of Yancey County.”

Stroupe Received Help

08/24/17 01:59 PM
Authorities have begun searching the Pisgah National Forrest for additional evidence related to Philip Stroupe II manhunt and murder case.  Meanwhile warrants reveal that Stroupe's victim, Tommy Bryson, apparently died from a gunshot wound to the head. Warrants also say Stroupe received help from his father and friends while he was on the run.  According to the warrants a family member of  Jennifer Hawkins of Barnardsville says she cooked for Stroupe, let him shower, then cleaned with bleach. Documents also say Stroupe told them he shot someone and stole his truck. According to warrants,  Stroupe Sr  was spotted on the Blue Ridge Parkway flashing his car lights and honking his horn and has now admitted to authorities that his son asked him to help move Bryson's body and apparently the younger Stroupe  provided him directions as to where to find it. According to warrants, Stroupe  told his father how to avoid the jail cameras and the elder Stroupe asked, "What's your lawyer saying?" To which Stroupe II replied, "She says as long as they don't have him, they don't have nothing - bottom line." Stroupe II has been  indicted for first degree murder, robbery with a dangerous weapon and first-degree kidnapping.  His father, Phillip  Stroupe, Sr., was also indicted for accessory after the fact to first-degree murder.

Construction at Yancey Courthouse

08/23/17 01:42 PM
 If you have noticed the large pile of dirt and lots of activity on the Yancey County Courthouse lawn, you may have been wondering what is going on.   According to County Manager Nathan Bennett, below the Foundation Forward monument project,  French Broad Electric is replacing an older electric transformer bank on the street that serves the area that includes the  courthouse and Wells Fargo. That replacement project is requiring new modern transformers which will be placed on a concrete pad adjacent to the courthouse building.  The county has to install a new trench for the electric service from the street to the new transformer location. In the same area a brick screen wall is being constructed to address aesthetic and safety concerns on that side of the building including an air circulation intake, natural gas piping/meter, outside water access point and future HVAC units. According to Bennett the project should be finished soon.

Man Found Dead at Marion Truck Stop

08/22/17 04:18 PM
Most everyone in this area is familiar with Love's Truck Stop in Marion, near the intersection of NC 226 South and Interstate 40. Over the weekend a Tennessee man was found deceased there. Steven Bridge, age 30,  of Clinton, TN apparently passed away there on Friday afternoon. Just after 5 p.m.   911 communications dispatched emergency crews to check on someone sleeping in their vehicle at the Truck Stop. According to Lt. Rusty Jenkins of the Marion Police Department, once officers arrived on the scene, it was apparent that the occupant  was deceased. Jenkins said that there were no signs of foul play or evidence that the death was narcotics related. He added that Bridges did suffer from health-related issues.

Both Stroupe Men Indicted

08/22/17 01:59 PM
Phillip Michael Stroupe II was indicted for first-degree murder of Thomas Bryson of Mills River Monday, August 21st, by a Henderson County grand jury. He was also indicted for robbery with a dangerous weapon and first-degree kidnapping.  His father, Phillip  Stroupe, Sr., was also indicted Monday for accessory after the fact to first-degree murder. Stroupe was captured In McDowell County on July 27, after a six day manhunt that spanned multiple counties.  Bryson's body was discovered off Glenn Bridge Road in Arden three days later. District Attorney Greg Newman has said he will seek the death penalty against the younger  Stroupe . He remains in the Henderson County Jail on a $2 million bond.

2016 State of County Health Reports (Details)

08/22/17 10:24 AM

Yancey County Accidents

08/22/17 07:00 AM
There was a multiple vehicle accident on highway 197 north in Burnsville around 4:45pm yesterday afternoon.  The accident occurred near Mine Fork and involved several vehicles.  Multiple fire departments and emergency workers responded to the scene. Details are not available at this time from the highway patrol. Several people were injured and flown by helicopter to hospitals in the area. Emergency services were also responding to a motorcycle accident on the Parkway at the same time yesterday. We will have more details as they become available. 

Madison Man Charged with Rape

08/22/17 06:58 AM
An investigation by the Madison County Sheriff’s Office has led to the arrest of a Marshall man, 36 year old Jonathan Woodrow Ramsey of Tilson Branch Road.  Ramsey is in custody in the Madison County jail and has been charged with multiple counts of statutory rape. His bond was set at $500,000. A press release by the sheriff's office says a complaint to the sheriff’s office started the investigation. The release states that Ramsey “had been having inappropriate contact with at least two minor children” and had sexually molested one child. 

Mitchell Commissioners Recognize Martinez and Lane

08/21/17 01:31 PM
David Martinez and Stacey Lane were recognized by the Mitchell County Commissioners for their volunteer service to the children of Mitchell County.  Jeff Vance, local coordinator for the Governor's Volunteer Service Award, explained the award and David's and Stacey's service to (more)

24 Hour Manhunt Comes To An End

08/21/17 10:10 AM
Jason Garland Hurst, age 38 of Madison County was captured Saturday evening, August 19th in Ernestville, Tennessee, after a 24 hour manhunt that involved several law enforcement agencies and a K-9 officer .   According to police Hurst was involved in a domestic disturbance on Thursday evening in Yancey County. Apparently Hurst rammed his girlfriend's car with another vehicle then later stole a truck in Madison County which he abandoned after a chase by Unicoi deputies who tried to shoot out his tires to strand the vehicle. Hurst wrecked and  disappeared into the woods near the Clear Branch welcome center on Interstate 26 on Friday morning. Hurst was spotted several times Saturday in Unicoi County and finally captured by police that evening.  He is being held on numerous charges including felony evading arrest. 

Mitchell County Sheriff Report 8/13 - 8/20/17 (Details)

08/21/17 09:21 AM

Statement from NC House Representative Presnell on Monument Removal

08/18/17 01:52 PM
The destruction of monuments and other objects of remembrance throughout history did not erase the history they represented. In 1944, Nazi Germany destroyed numerous buildings, castles and parks in Poland. From 1959 to 1964, Nikita Khrushchev closed and/or destroyed more than 10,000 mostly-rural churches as part of his anti-religious campaign in the Soviet Union. In 2001, the Taliban (more)

News from Mission Health Concerning BCBS of NC

08/18/17 09:33 AM
Since Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina (BCBSNC) has refused to engage in any dialogue toward a new contract, Mission Health has outlined a plan to help consumers affected by the inevitable end of its current contract with BCBSNC on October 5, 2017.  Mission’s transition plan will cover everyone with BCBSNC insurance coverage, including consumers with BCBSNC commercial (more)

Transylvania Grand Jury Indicts Stroupe II

08/17/17 02:41 PM
 A Transylvania County grand jury indicted Phillip Stroupe, II on multiple charges related to the manhunt of Stroupe last month. The case has  now been transferred to superior court. Stroupe, II is scheduled to appear in Henderson County Court next Tuesday, August 22, for the murder of Tommy Bryson of Mills River. Stroupe is accused of killing Bryson while on the run from police. His father, Phillip Stroupe, Sr. is also scheduled to appear that day, he is charged with accessory after the fact of first-degree murder. The District Attorneys from the various counties, including Yancey County where charges are pending, will coordinate schedules so there are no conflicts. 

Yancey Sheriff Report 8/9 - 8/16/17 (Details)

08/16/17 02:30 PM

A New Year for Mitchell Juvenile Crime Prevention Council

08/16/17 01:13 PM
Richard Gambill of BRP, Misti Silver of Mayland Community College, and Richard Biega of Trinity Episcopal Church kicked off the new year of service for the Mitchell County Juvenile Crime Prevention Council at their August 16 meeting at the Mitchell County Administration (more)

1.5 Million Working North Carolinians Exempt from Income Tax by 2019

08/16/17 01:05 PM
The state Department of Revenue projects 1.5 million working North Carolinians will not owe any state income tax on their earnings by 2019, mostly middle to low-income earners filing 30% of all returns. (more)

Human Trafficking Arrest

08/16/17 07:37 AM
WLOS News is reporting that A Yancey County man is among nearly a dozen people facing felony charges in Tennessee after a human trafficking operation. Those arrested include a youth leader, a coach and a volunteer firefighter. One of the men arrested was Bradley Laws, of Green Mountain. Authorities said those involved attempted to purchase sex from an underage girl in Kingsport during a four-day operation.

Second Court Appearance for Stroupe Sr.

08/16/17 07:35 AM
68 year old Phillip Michael Stroupe Sr., of Burnsville, The father of the man accused of kidnapping and murdering Thomas Bryson made his second appearance in Henderson County Court on Tuesday. Judge Mack Brittain unsecured Stroupe Sr.'s $250,000 bond. Stroupe Sr. still faces a $500,000 secured bond for his charges of accessory after the fact of first-degree murder. His son, Phillip Michael Stroupe II, faces charges of first-degree murder, among other charges, in the death of Thomas Bryson. A grand jury will meet Monday to decide whether to indict Stroupe Sr. on the charges. 

Yancey Sheriff Encourages School Bus Safety (Details)

08/15/17 04:29 PM

Mitchell County Arrests

08/14/17 02:38 PM
In recent arrests by the Mitchell County Sheriff's Department Rodney Adam Forbes, age 28 of Wintergreen Patch Road, Burnsville, was arrested on August 11th after deputies responded to a call of a male subject being shot on Sean Drive in Spruce Pine. The person identified Forbes as the shooter.  Forbes was located coming out of the woods near the scene. He was placed under arrest but (more)

Press Release from BRRH Medical Staff

08/14/17 12:20 PM
The medical staff of Blue Ridge Regional Hospital gathered for a special meeting on July 31, 2017 to discuss the discontinuation of Labor and Delivery Services at BRRH. The following is the statement agreed upon by majority vote: We, the medical providers of Blue Ridge Regional Hospital, want the public to know that we believe labor and delivery and surgical services are (more)

Mitchell Sheriff Activity Report 8/6 - 8/13/17 (Details)

08/14/17 09:31 AM

Cause for Paws Tonight

08/14/17 05:56 AM
You heard the tragic story of how Yancey County Sheriff's Department K-9 Chris was shot and killed at his home.  Now you can help raise money to help fund the training for a new K-9.  Pig and Grits of Burnsville will hold a fundraiser tonight at the restaurant on West Main Street. This Cause for Paws event will be from 5 to 7 pm with a menu of pulled pork with cole slaw, barbecue beans, sweet tea and banana pudding all for just $10.00 per person. All proceeds will go to the Yancey County K-9 Unit. You are invited to be a part of Cause for Paws  benefit  for the Yancey County Sheriff's Department K-9 program tonight at Pig and Grits. 

Disagreement Continues Between Mission and Blue Cross

08/11/17 08:52 AM
There are no signs a potential health care divide will be resolved anytime soon. On Thursday, area news media received dueling statements from the CEO's of Mission Health and Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina (BCBSNC). Mission was hoping to make some headway for patients covered under the Affordable Care Act, but that's just the latest way they've agreed to disagree. Mission had announced plans to accept existing rates for those who have no other options, since Blue Cross Blue Shield is the only company on the exchange in the mountains. Blue Cross Blue Shield rejected that offer. This chapter comes as a new contract is needed for Mission Health to remain in the Blue Cross network for consumers. The deadline is October 5. Blue Cross NC says it remains ready and willing to negotiate on behalf of members as soon as Mission Health withdraws its termination. Meanwhile, Mission contends it's Blue Cross that's dropped the ball in negotiations. As the impasse continues, BCBSNC said any increase to already high healthcare costs statewide would drive up premiums. Fifty six days away from the October 5 deadline, the tug of war continues to play out in the news media, and the only thing certain is uncertainty.

Yancey Board of Education August 7th Meeting

08/10/17 02:28 PM
YCS First Day of School--Due to the educational opportunity of the upcoming solar eclipse, Yancey County Schools would like to inform the public that the first day of school for the 2017-18 school year has been changed from Monday, August 21st to Tuesday, August 22nd.   Tuesday, August 22nd will be the first day of school for students and will be a full day of school. Yancey County (more)

Local Schools and the Solar Eclipse

08/10/17 10:16 AM
With the approach of the Solar Eclipse on Monday August 21st area public schools are either adjusting their school schedules or offering special instruction that morning and then dismissing early so the students will have the opportunity to experience the solar eclipse safely. Yancey County Schools have canceled school on Monday, August 21st which was the original first day of school for the (more)

Yancey Sheriff Report 8/2 - 8/9/17 (Details)

08/09/17 12:11 PM

Yancey Deputies Make Drug Arrests

08/09/17 08:57 AM
In the early morning hours of Friday August 4th deputies with the Yancey County Sheriffs office served a search warrant on a camper off of Westside road and subsequently served another related search warrant at a residence off of Grey Squirrel Ln. During these searches deputies located and seized 2.7 ounces of marijuana and 2.3 ounces of methamphetamine as well as over $2,000 in cash. (more)

Two Men Rescued from Linville Falls

08/07/17 04:08 PM

A word of caution when enjoying local rivers and falls. Two men visiting Linville Falls August 3rd found themselves in a difficult situation while swimming. A father and son visiting from Maryland, ventured beyond a warning sign while swimming. They encountered difficulty in the water and climbed up on a ledge but could not get back down. This was  in the water between the Upper Falls and the rough water that cuts through rock into the Lower Falls, where the river drops some 45 feet. Emergency responders were able to use rigging rope to secure lines across the river and pull the two men out. There were only minor abrasions but the pair was issued a number of citations.

Murder Investigation Continues

08/07/17 03:56 PM
The investigation into the murder of Thomas Bryson continues. Documents show that investigators met Phillip Stroupe Sr   at the Starbucks at the Asheville Mall to get his help in finding his son.  At that time they secretly placed  a GPS tracker on his vehicle, hoping he would lead them to the younger Stroupe. Investigators then followed the suspect's father to help finally capture accused killer Phillip Stroupe II. Stroupe's father has been charged with accessory after the fact to first degree murder  and accessory after the fact kidnapping. Court documents also show that   investigators found four different items of interest at the  house on Rocky Lane in Barnardsville, where authorities believe the younger Stroupe  hid during the manhunt. That  house burned down last week. That fire is being investigated as a possible arson. Authorities seized black painted pieces of grass which may be related to  the black painted on Thomas Bryson's silver Honda Ridgeline truck.  They also found a Walmart receipt, a cell phone and shoe impressions from one of the home's bedrooms.  Investigators also searched the vehicle of one of the accessory suspects, seizing two cell phones and a piece of trim.

Mitchell County Sheriff Report 7/30 - 8/6/17 (Details)

08/07/17 09:56 AM

Yancey Sheriff Report 7/27 - 8/3/17 (Details)

08/04/17 09:36 AM

House Fire at Suspects Home

08/04/17 06:51 AM
A house fire broke out late last night at the home of three people charged with felony accessory after the fact of first-degree murder in the Phillip Stroupe II case. The flames broke out at 4 Rocky Lane in Barnardsville, the home of Frederick Badgero Jr., Jennifer Hawkins, and Larry Hawkins III. (more)

Mars Hill Child Abuse Charges

08/04/17 06:49 AM
A man and a woman are accused of child abuse after officials discovered they kept an infant child locked in a cage. The Madison County Sheriff’s Office said deputies and the social services department responded to a home in Mars Hill, on Wednesday regarding a child neglect complaint, when they found the child in the “self-made” cage upstairs. (more)

Lots of Tourists in Area for Festivals

08/02/17 03:34 PM
It's going to be a busy couple of days in both Spruce Pine and Burnsville.  In Mitchell County the excitement started last Sunday with the opening of the Grassy Creek Mineral and Gem Festival.  This show is free, runs thru Sunday the 6th, and is held outside behind Spruce Pine Chevrolet on Hwy 226 South. Adding to that is the NC Mineral and Gem Festival beginning today and continuing thru Sunday in the Spruce Pine Commons Shopping Center on Hwy 226 South, in the old Food Lion building. There is a $3.00 charge but the building is both air conditioned and rain proof! Thousands more descend upon our area on Friday with the opening of the Mt Mitchell Crafts Fair in downtown Burnsville. The fair is free and open 9 to 5 on Friday and Saturday. With the extra traffic, try to be patient, drive slowly and watch out for people unfamiliar with our roadways and remember these visitors bring lots of extra dollars for our local economy. 

Black Painted on Bryson Truck

08/02/17 02:00 PM
While on the run from authorities last week, Philllip Stroupe II apparently tried to disguise the Honda Ridgeline that he stole from Tommy Bryson. Bryson's truck was solid silver and Stroupe II spray-painted the bottom part black. Henderson County authorities have released a photo of the truck and are asking anyone who may have seen the truck in its altered state to contact the Henderson County (more)