Female Armored Car Worker Shot in Brazen Daylight Robbery Near South Park

From www.wbtv.com By Chris Dyches, Web Content Producer, January 23, 2012

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) – At least one school was on lock down for hours Monday morning after police say a female armored truck employee was shot during an armed robbery in the SouthPark area.

According to Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police, Loomis Fargo employees were robbed at the Foxcroft Shopping Center early Monday morning, just before 9 a.m.

The location is a small group of stores at Fairview and Valencia Terrace, including Caribou Coffee, where a man walked from last year and was later killed along a neighborhood street. (Click here to read that story)

A previous report of the armord car incident at Fairview and Sharon roads was incorrect.

Police told WBTV that the female employee, 47-year-old Ladena Duncan of Charlotte, was seriously wounded when she shot in the upper arm while she was working on a Wells Fargo ATM at the shopping center.

After Duncan was shot Loomis Fargo employees tried to drive her to the hospital, but they stopped along the way and called for medical help.

According to MEDIC, emergency officials were called to the intersection of Providence Road and Cavendish Court, nearly two miles away from the shooting.  Duncan was transported to Carolina Medical Center with serious injuries.

Police say Charlotte County Day School, which is in the area, was on lock down until about 10:45 am as a precaution during this incident.

Officers say they don’t know if the shooter got away with any money.

Published in: on January 24, 2012 at 10:22 am  Leave a Comment  

Search Warrant Return Says CMPD Found Blood-Soaked Uniform, Knife in Home of Flying Biscuit Murder Suspect

From www.wbtv.com, January 23, 2012

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) – A murder suspect confessed to his sister to fatally stabbing a pregnant co-worker more than ten hours before police found her body behind a dumpster, a police search warrant shows.

 A Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police search warrant shows that Mark A. Cox also admitted to his sister at 10:50 pm Friday, Jan. 13, that he had also stolen the victim’s car earlier that night.

Cox’s sister, despite seeing bloody clothing at their family home and knowing about Danielle Watson’s stolen car, apparently did not call police, who found Watson’s body after someone discovered her behind a dumpster near the cafe where Cox worked with her.

Police say  Cox, 22, stabbed  Watson, 25, during a robbery at the Flying Biscuit Cafe off Rea Road in the Stonecrest Shopping Center last Friday night.

Watson, who was two-months pregnant, was the manager at closing time; Cox was her co-worker — who was hired weeks after getting out of prison. 

According to a CMPD search warrant signed on January 14, officers were called to the Flying Biscuit at 6:24 a.m. about a larceny. When officers arrived, an employee at the store said they had found the business open, including a safe, and said that money was missing from the restaurant.

When officers entered the restaurant, they found blood inside the building. Nearly two-and-a-half hours later, an employee with Allied Waste Company told officers that he had found a woman’s body behind the dumpster in the parking lot adjacent to the Flying Biscuit.  Officers say the woman was identified as Watson.

According to the warrant, officers determined that Watson was supposed to be closing the restaurant with Mark Cox the previous night.

When officers arrived at the home the Cox shared with family members, they saw “a blood trail leading to the residence, as well as blood on the front door,” the warrant states.

A person who lives in the home allowed officers into the home, the warrant says, where officers saw “a large amount of apparent blood on the kitchen counter, as well as throughout the residence.” The officers also found a large butcher knife in a mug filled with an unknown liquid on the kitchen, according to the warrant.

Officers spoke to Chelsea Amanda Cox, Mark’s sister, who told officers that Cox had come to the home around 10:50 p.m. and said that he needed to talk to her.

 According to the warrant, Cox confessed to his sister that he had stabbed Watson multiple times during an argument and had dumped her body in a dumpster. Chelsea Cox also told officers that she found a white plastic trash bag in her closet, with Mark Cox’s work uniform, which was soaked in blood.

Cox reportedly told his sister that he had taken Watson’s vehicle and was planning to dump the bloody clothes and the vehicle in a river, the warrant states.

Police spoke to another employee of the Flying Biscuit who told officers that Cox had come to his home around 11 p.m. Friday night.

The employee told officers that Cox had “an unknown amount of money on his lap when he arrived,” the warrant states. Officers showed the employee a picture of Watson’s vehicle, which the employee identified as the vehicle Cox was driving.

Cox was arrested on Monday and later brought back to Charlotte. He is being held in the Mecklenburg County jail without bond.

Employees told WBTV that Cox, who had just been hired in December after serving three years in prison for robbery, worked in the restaurant’s kitchen. Watson, hired just a week or two after Cox, was a manager there and had access to the safe.

CMPD said Watson’s fiance received a phone call late Friday night that led him to believe Watson was in trouble. He tried to get back in touch with her, but when he couldn’t, he called police.

There was a mix-up though with the address and it took several hours for police to figure out all the details.

Watson’s case would be the first one prosecuted under the “Unborn Victim’s Act.” The new law took effect December 1. It allows prosecutors to charge an offender with murder of a fetus even if the offender or victim did not know about the pregnancy.

Cox is currently facing one count of murder, but on Wednesday the District Attorney’s Office said it planned to seek an additional murder charge against Cox for killing Watson’s unborn child.

Published in: on January 24, 2012 at 9:59 am  Leave a Comment  

Lancaster, SC Woman’s Brutal Killing Prompts Personal Safety Courses

From www.wbtv.com By Derrick Rose, Reporter, January 24, 2012

LANCASTER, SC (WBTV) – When her friends and family took a moment to reflect on her life, somehow, they knew Hope Melton’s death would not be in vain. The Lancaster County Sheriffs Department is making sure that happens.

It was how Melton died that made the effort possible. She left a gas station last month, not knowing she would be chased, kidnapped and beaten to death with a bat.
The suspect, according to investigators, was someone she never knew, but had crossed her path for just a moment that day.

That’s the reason the phone calls started flooding into the Sheriff’s Department.

“Mostly women have been the folks that are calling asking for this type of thing, they’re the ones that have created the demand,” Major Matt Shaw said.

The department’s response has been information: step by step instructions and tools to keep you the public safe from attackers.
Shaw will be the instructor for a series of classes around the county starting this week.

He points out our first and best weapon is ourselves.

“We are so busy and caught up with all the things that are going on in our life with work; we’ve got our cellphones glued to our hands, we’re not paying attention to what’s going on around us, we don’t see the person in the parking lot that’s coming across, to confront us or talk to us.”

There are also some weapons that are simple. but effective.

“It’s a kitty cat,” Shaw said, showing off a keychain accessory that when held a certain way can be used as a sharp defense weapon. “Other places that would prohibit use of a firearm, you would be able to carry something like this and used as a last ditch effort to get somebody off of you,” he said.

It’s about having options in a life or death situation, he said.

Knowing what to do is important, but more so, hopefully never having to do it.

Concealed Weapons Laws

North Carolina
South Carolina

Safety Class Dates, Locations

Jan 25 6:30pm USCL Carol Ray Dowling Center
Jan 30 6:30pm Buford High School Auditorium
Jan 31 6:30pm Indian Land High School Gym
Feb 1  6:30pm Andrew Jackson High School Auditorium

All classes are free. Class size will be limited to the number of seats available at the specific venue. No pre-registration is required.

Published in: on January 24, 2012 at 9:31 am  Leave a Comment  

Charotte City Council Approves Protest Rule Changes Amid Raucous Meeting

From www.wsoctv.com, January 24, 2012

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — The Charlotte City Council meeting over protest rule changes got rowdy Monday night.

 The council passed the new rules mostly for the Democratic National Convention, but they affect Occupy Charlotte demonstrators, too.

 Protestors in the crowd laughed at public officials, shouted, booed and hissed. They mocked council members throughout the hearing. Two city leaders reprimanded them: Mayor Anthony Foxx and the usually soft-spoken council member David Howard.

 “It was very disturbing that you guys laughed when we talked about — you heard what he said,” Howard said.

 When the vote passed, the audience burst into shouts and chants. City leaders called a recess. Most stood up and walked out. The crowd took the rally into the lobby, where dozens of police were already on hand. At last check, no one was arrested.

 “I knew this was going to happen, and I’m upset that it happened, but I was prepared for it to happen. I am very proud of all my brothers and sisters who stood up today and voiced their opinions,” activist Alex Tyler said.

 City leaders wouldn’t put a sunset clause on the rules, but they did agree to review the rules after the January presidential inauguration.

 New rules forbid camping on city property, which Occupy Charlotte has been doing. Council members agreed to give occupiers a grace period to leave. One possibility is next Monday.

Published in: on January 24, 2012 at 9:25 am  Leave a Comment  

Better Business Bureau Releases Dirty Dozen List

From www.wcnc.com by BILL McGINTY, January 24, 2012

CHARLOTTE,N.C. – The Better Business Bureau today announced its ‘Dirty Dozen’ list of area businesses with the most unanswered or unresolved complaints in 2011.

“This year, there are only nine businesses on the BBB’s Dirty Dozen list,because we are not including companies that have gone out of business,” said BBB president Tom Bartholomy.
In 2011, consumers filed 12,914 complaints with the BBB against businesses in the Southern Piedmont area of N.C. and S.C. 
“Fortunately, the majority of businesses in our area work to resolve complaints that consumers file with the BBB,” Bartholomy said.  “However, there are businesses that don’t respond to, or resolve consumer complaints, and that earns them a well-deserved spot on the BBB’s ‘Dirty Dozen’ list.”
The nine businesses with the most unanswered and unresolved complaints from January 1, 2011 through December 31, 2011 are:
  1. Home Appliance Repair (BBB Grade F) – Gastonia-based Home Appliance Repair tops the BBB’s list with 13 unanswered and unresolved complaints in 2011. Consumers paid $150 to $927 Michael D. Henderson for appliance repairs that  they allege were not done properly, if at all.
  1. Queen City Appliance Repair (BBB Grade F) – Benny Stafford from Charlotte had eleven unanswered or unresolved complaints filed against him in 2011 for appliance repairs that were allegedly not done properly, if at all. Since 2006, he has used 16 different business names and has had 51 total complaints filed with the BBB. He is a ‘repeat offender’ on the BBB’s Dirty Dozen list which he first made in 2007. 
  1. Mechanical Security Solutions (BBB Grade F) – Consumers and businesses from 10 states ordered copper-guard security enclosures for air-conditioning units which ranged in price from $400 to $1,500 from Bessemer City based, Mechanical Security Solutions, but allegedly did not receive the products ordered. The company had 11 unanswered or unresolved complaints in 2011. 
  1. Home-Tek Handyman, LLC (BBB Grade F) – Ten homeowners filed complaints  unresolved. Complaints cite Chris Robinson from Hickory’s Home-Tech Handyman allegedly  for poor quality work and failing to follow up. Since 2008, 35 total complaints have been filed against the company. 
  1. Voice for Inmates (BBB Grade F) – Inmates and their families paid Shelby-based Voice for Inmates, owned by Darnell Barber, $60 to $100 for messaging services and personal websites that allow them a convenient way to communicate. Complaints allege that they did not receive the services in a timely manner, if at all. The company had eight unanswered and unresolved complaints in 2011, and 18 total complaints since 2009. 
  1. Mutt Huttz (BBB Grade F) – Consumers filed complaints against this Cramerton-based company alleging that they ordered, but did not receiving custom made dog crate covers that averaged $100 in price. Mutt Huttz is owned by Betty Hauser and had seven unanswered or unresolved complaints in 2011. 
  1. Harrelson Nissan (BBB Grade F) – This Rock Hill car dealership had six unanswered or unresolved complaints in 2011. Complaints focus on sales and finance issues related to trade-in values, rebates, supplemental warranties and financing terms.
  1. Green Eco Solutions of NC, Inc. (BBB Grade F) – Homeowners paid Pineville-based Green Eco Solutions for window and roofing replacement jobs that ranged from $800 to $11,000 and filed complaints alleging poor workmanship and incomplete jobs. Five complaints were unanswered or unresolved in 2011.
9.        M2Host.com (BBB Grade F) – This Charlotte company provides website hosting and domain registration services. Consumers filed five complaints that were unanswered or unresolved in 2011 after they alegedly did not receive the services they paid for.
Consumers can check out businesses at www.bbb.org or by calling the BBB (toll-free in N.C. and S.C.) at 1-877-317-7236.
Published in: on January 24, 2012 at 9:17 am  Leave a Comment  

Armored Car Worker Shot in SouthPark Robbery Attempt

From WBT Radio by Chris Miller, January 23, 2012

CHARLOTTE – An armored car employee was seriously wounded this morning during an attempted robbery near SouthPark, police said.

The Loomis Fargo worker was shot around 9 a.m. in the Foxcroft Shopping Center off Fairview Road. MEDIC described her wounds as life-threatening.

She had just gotten out of the armored Loomis vehicle to service an Wells Fargo ATM when a man approached her. Police said the man tried to rob the employee when he shot her in the shoulder.

The employee got back into the armored vehicle, and its driver called 911 while heading for Carolinas Medical Center. A dispatcher told the Loomis driver to pull over, which the driver did at Providence Road and Cavendish Court.

MEDIC took the wounded employee to Carolinas Medical Center.

A police alert to residents described the suspected shooter as a black man in a grey sweatsuit, last seen running toward the Camden Fairington apartments.

Charlotte Country Day School went on lockdown as a precaution. School officials said the lockdown was lifted around 11:40 a.m.

Published in: on January 23, 2012 at 11:53 pm  Leave a Comment  

Charlotte Man’s Death Ruled Homicide

From The Charlotte Observer of January 23, 2012 by Steve Lyttle

The death of a Charlotte man whose body was found outside a convenience store Thursday has been ruled a homicide, police said Monday.

The body of Yama Monteith Fluker, 32, was discovered inside a car at Al’s Mini Mart, in the 2300 block of Toomey Avenue. A customer at the store saw the man in the car shortly before 4 p.m. that day and contacted police. Fluker was dead at the scene.

Police have not said how long Fluker was dead, or how he was killed. Originally, they said the case was a “death investigation,” but Officer Robert Fey, a CMPD spokesman, said Monday that investigators now consider it a homicide.

Anyone with information in the case is asked to call detectives at 704-432-TIPS, or leave a message with Crime Stoppers, 704-334-1600.


Published in: on January 23, 2012 at 11:38 pm  Leave a Comment  

Brazen Daylight Criminal Acts Continue, Even Outside Charlotte

2 Men Pull Home Invasion in Kannapolis, NC, Steal SUV

From www.wcnc.com, January 20, 2012

KANNAPOLIS, N.C. — Kannapolis police are investigating a home invasion that happened early Friday afternoon.

2 men break into home, steal SUV

(Google Maps)

Police said two men broke into a home off of Marie Avenue around 11:20 a.m. and stole a black Nissan Xterra.

A woman was home at the time of the invasion but was unharmed, according to police.

The Xterra has Arkansas plates that read: 501-OTO.

If anyone has information on this crime they’re asked to contact the Kannapolis police at 704-920-4000.

Published in: on January 20, 2012 at 4:51 pm  Leave a Comment  

Man Faces 2nd Murder Charge in Co-Worker Death

From www.wcnc.com, January 19, 2012

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — A judge denied bond to a man accused of murdering his pregnant co-worker at a Ballantyne cafe last week, and a second murder charge was added in the case.

Mark Anthony Cox was denied bond Wednesday in court in the murder of 25-year-old Danielle Watson, and assistant District Attorney Bill Stetzer added a second murder charge against Cox related to Watson’s unborn baby.

 The 22-year-old Cox was also given a court appointed attorney during his appearance.
Along with the two murder charges, Cox is facing two counts of armed robbery.

He allegedly stabbed Watson to death in the kitchen of the Flying Biscuit Cafe in Ballantyne Friday night.

Watson was two months pregnant and planned to marry her fiancé, Keith Smith, several days before her murder.

The Unborn Victims of Violence Act, also called “Ethen’s Law,” went into effect December 1. Under the law, anyone causing the death of an unborn child, except in the case of abortion, can be charged with murder.

The law covers a woman in any stage of pregnancy, from conception, and an attacker doesn’t need to know the woman was pregnant in order to be charged.

Cox was apprehended at a friend’s house on Hedgelawn Way in the northern outskirts of Fayetteville on Monday afternoon, and Watson’s 1997 Chevrolet Cavalier was found at a nearby apartment complex.

None of Watson’s family members were in court during the hearing.

Published in: on January 20, 2012 at 9:01 am  Leave a Comment  

Man Arrested in Shooting Death of Restaurant Employee

From www.wcnc.com, January 20, 2012

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Charlotte-Mecklenburg police arrested one of two suspects in the killing of an east Charlotte restaurant employee during a robbery last Sunday.

 Police charged Briley Belk IV, 31, with murder and robbery in the death of Edward Rosen at the Fast Wok on East W.T. Harris Boulevard.

 Briley Belk IV

Police said they are still searching for a second suspect who was the driver in the murder and robbery.

The two suspects were spotted leaving the restaurant in a burgundy Chrysler PT Cruiser.

If anyone has information they’re asked to call Crime Stoppers at 704-334-1600.

Published in: on January 20, 2012 at 8:54 am  Leave a Comment  
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