The Morning Roundup: A Federal Indictment, a New HB 2 Travel Ban, and a Mystery Lottery Ticket | News
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Wednesday, September 28, 2016

The Morning Roundup: A Federal Indictment, a New HB 2 Travel Ban, and a Mystery Lottery Ticket

Posted by on Wed, Sep 28, 2016 at 8:08 AM

click to enlarge Fletcher Hartsell could be going away for awhile.
  • Fletcher Hartsell could be going away for awhile.
Good morning, everyone. Your news: 

1. Federal grand jury charges N.C. state senator with money laundering, wire fraud, mail fraud. A total of fourteen counts—five for mail fraud, three for wire fraud, six for money laundering—were handed down against Fletcher Hartsell yesterday. From the News & Observer
The indictment alleges that Hartsell engaged in a scheme to solicit and obtain campaign money from 2007 through 2015 that he spent on personal items and services and then concealing his actions by filing knowingly false campaign finance reports.

The indictment alleges he spent campaign money on a trip to Charleston, S.C., with his wife’s handbell choir, on haircuts, tickets to “Jersey Boys,” a vacation with his wife in Edenton, his granddaughter’s birthday party and getting his driver’s license renewed.

Additionally, according to the indictment, Hartsell spent campaign money on car expenses and repairs, lawn care and “memberships in certain clubs.
There's also this bit: 
Hartsell, according to the indictment, said expenditures related to haircuts were “proper because he was a ‘hippie’ and would not get his hair cut were he not a legislator.” The “Jersey Boys” show “constituted ‘therapy’ for him.” Hartsell told the elections board investigator, the indictment alleges, that his campaign paid for his granddaughter’s birthday “were proper because he mingled there with constituents.”
The balls on this guy. Hartsell was indicted by a Wake County grand jury back in June. Somewhat incredibly, Hartsell is still serving in the N.C. Senate, though he has announced he will not run for reelection. 

2. California limits state travel to North Carolina over HB 2.
The state joins five others, including New York, Vermont, and Washington, that have adopted similar policies as a result of the hideous law. From the Sacramento Bee
Gov. Jerry Brown on Tuesday signed a bill that prohibits state agencies from compelling their employees to travel to states with laws that allow discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity.

The effect is to ban state-funded travel to North Carolina and other states that may adopt policies like its HB2, the law that struck down local measures protecting gays and lesbians from workplace discrimination and prohibited cities from passing new anti-discriminatory policies.

The bill applies to the University of California and the California State University system, which may lead to restrictions on travel for college sports teams.

It also could limit travel for conferences and training. Employees still may be required to go to those states if they’re called for legal, legislative or safety reasons.
On Monday, sixty U.S. investors and money managers representing over $2 trillion in assets—among them, John Hancock, RBC Wealth Management, Morgan Stanley Investment Management, and the New York City Comptroller's office—called for the law to be repealed.

3. UNC football player denies rape charges. Allen Anthony Artis, accused two weeks ago by a UNC sophomore of rape, and subsequently charged with misdemeanor assault on a female and misdemeanor sexual battery, said yesterday he has been wrongly accused. From WRAL:
Artis, 21, a linebacker from Marietta, Ga., said he was "surprised, hurt, and distraught" by Robinson's allegation. She said he raped her in an apartment at the Ram Village complex on Valentine's Day, and she told police she thought she had been drugged before the alleged assault.

"False accusations like that can affect my reputation," he said. "My last name, I share with everyone in my family. It’s important to me – it means something – and the people who share it, I don’t want them hurt by that."
Artis took a polygraph test and passed, Artis' attorney says. Orange County prosecutor Jim Woodall says the case remains under investigation. 

4. Hillary went straight from the debate to Raleigh.
Our dude Paul Blest live-blogged the thing. Read it here

5. Media outlets call for release of full Keith Lamont Scott footage. The dash- and body-cam videos disseminated by the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department on Saturday tell an incomplete story of what happened in the moments before Scott's death at the hands of police. The Charlotte Observer reports that a press coalition is pushing for more: 
A letter from Jonathan Buchan of the law firm Essex Richards to police Chief Kerr Putney and Charlotte Interim City Manager Ron Kimble this week says that the video should be considered public record under current law.

Joining the Observer in the request are the Associated Press, CNN, WBTV (Channel 3), WSOC (Channel 9), WCNC (Channel 36), ABC News, WFAE-FM (NPR, 90.7) and The News & Observer of Raleigh.
6. Please claim your winning lottery ticket, unidentified person in Wake County. You have about ten days before you lose out on getting $25,000 a year for the rest of your life. Are you out there, person who bought the Lucky For Life ticket at the Harris Teeter on N.C. 55 in Cary on Monday, April 11? 

That's all for now. Enjoy your day. 

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