The Morning Roundup: Hillary's Here, Sextortion, Abortions, and More | News
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Wednesday, June 22, 2016

The Morning Roundup: Hillary's Here, Sextortion, Abortions, and More

Posted by on Wed, Jun 22, 2016 at 9:15 AM

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Wednesday the 22nd. Your news: 

1. Hillary's in town. Clinton will speak in Raleigh today. From the News and Observer
Clinton’s event, scheduled for 2:30 p.m. at the Fairgrounds Expo Center, is her first campaign stop in North Carolina since becoming her party’s presumptive nominee. Her campaign says she will “discuss her vision for an America that is stronger together and her commitment to build an economy that works for everyone.”
The state's two biggest Democratic down-ballot candidates, Roy Cooper (governor) and Deborah Ross (U.S. Senate), will not be in attendance, the N&O reports. 

2. Melton found guilty. Following a two-week federal trial, Kelvin Melton—the gang member accused of organizing the 2014 kidnapping of Wake County Assistant District Attorney Colleen Janssen's father—was convicted yesterday on several counts, including "conspiracy, kidnapping, attempted kidnapping and using a firearm during a violent crime," according to WRAL. More:
Assistant U.S. Attorney Leslie Cooley, who prosecuted the case, said the Janssen family was relieved by the conviction but didn't want to speak publicly about the kidnapping or the trial.

Former Wake County District Attorney Ned Mangum, who took office a few days before the kidnapping, called it "the most unbelievable investigation" with which he's ever been involved.

"(There was) very little sleep on the part of a lot of people, and we were really, really fortunate and lucky for this to have what I think is a happy ending," Mangum said.

...Melton said he would never get involved in a "stupid" caper like the kidnapping, contending someone else had set him up to take the fall for the crime so they could move up in the hierarchy of the Bloods street gang.

His defense attorneys argued that all of the co-defendants lied about Melton's involvement to secure reduced sentences for themselves under plea agreements with the government.
Melton faces a life sentence for the crimes. 

3. No vote in Raleigh on anti-abortion group. An anti-abortion group, A Hand of Hope, wants to relocate in Raleigh next door to Preferred Women's Health Center, which offers abortion services. The anti-abortion people have literally compared their situation to a McDonald's opening next to a Burger King. There's a hitch, though, which is that the space they want to move is zoned for residential, not for...whatever it is you call what A Hand of Hope does. The Raleigh City Council was supposed to vote on this last night, but delayed it because of a administrative error. From the N&O
The City Council scheduled a public hearing on the request for 2 p.m. Tuesday and was poised to vote. But council members extended the hearing until July 5 after learning that the city mailed notices with the wrong hearing time to some neighbors.

...“A Preferred Women’s Health Center is disappointed with the lack of accountability we’ve seen regarding the rezoning situation,” said spokeswoman Calla Hales. “Our organization has been given several conflicting answers regarding incorrect information being provided to us.”

...It’s unclear why some notices had inaccurate information. Councilman Russ Stephenson speculated that the hearing was originally scheduled for 7 p.m. at a meeting in early June but was pushed back due to a full agenda.
Raleigh's Planning Commission voted unanimously to approve the rezoning back in May. 

4. Wake County schools cutting $15 million from their budget. From WRAL

The Wake County Board of Commissioners voted unanimously Monday to approve a $1.2 billion budget for the fiscal year that starts July 1. Commissioner Betty Lou Ward tried to add $5 million to the budget to help the Wake County Public School System to deal with growth, but her motion failed 2-5.

“We know that we will not receive enough local funding to cover the cost of growth, legislative impacts, and maintaining current programs,” school officials said in a press release.

The district said staff members are currently looking to identify ways to cut about $15 million in costs from their proposed $1.5 billion budget.

“Over the next several weeks, our staff will develop a list of possible options to close the funding gap,” school officials said. “We are already a very lean and efficient organization, so virtually any cut affects classrooms.”

No layoffs are planned as part of the cuts, officials said. 

5. Don't be a victim of sextortion in N.C., FBI warns. A release from the Charlotte office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation attempts to draw awareness to the growing problem of children being sexually exploited by adults online. 
Nationally and in North Carolina, the FBI has seen a significant increase in sextortion activity against children who use the Internet, typically ages 10-17, but any age child can become a victim. The FBI has identified an alarming number of children are communicating with individuals online who seek to sexually exploit them. With school dismissed for the summer, children will have extra time to access their electronic devices. With an Internet connection or a smartphone, even the youngest children are susceptible to this type of criminal exploitation.
More on that can be found here

Enjoy this #blessed day. 

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