Published in News on June 9, 2005 1:47 PM
Teen won't face
A Dudley teen-ager, accused of taking part in the murder of a man last year, will not be tried for his life.
Donavan Ray Lofton, 18, of Running Deer Circle was charged with first-degree murder and an attempted robbery in connection with the fatal shooting of Billy Joe "B.J." Gregory of Dudley.
Judge Jerry Braswell of Goldsboro ruled that the trial will be non-capital. Braswell set Lofton's secured bond at $100,000.
Lofton was not present for a brief hearing this week in Wayne County Superior Court. He was represented by lawyer Louis Jordan of Goldsboro.
Two other Dudley teens -- Michael Omar Mozingo, 18, of Brentwood Drive and James Marque Bowden, 17, of Daffodil Drive -- also were charged with first-degree murder.
When sheriff's deputies answered a 911 call Oct. 15, they found Gregory with a single gunshot wound to his chest in his home at 201 Hazelwood Drive.
Investigators have said only that the crime was drug-related.
Worker in trench
in critical condition
The condition of man who was injured Tuesday when a trench collapsed on him was downgraded today to critical at Pitt County Memorial Hospital in Greenville, a spokeswoman said.
James Mintz Jr., 39, was injured during a construction of a new sewer line on Tina Avenue in Pikeville.
Another worker, Reginald Hough, 53, of Mount Pleasant, was killed during the trench collapse.
Both men worked for Eudy Pipe Service of Concord, a subcontractor for L-J Inc. of Columbia, S.C.
A mobile home was destroyed and a home was damaged in separate fires, a New Hope fire official said Wednesday. No one was injured in either blaze.
An electrical short in a wall receptacle on Monday was believed to have caused a fire that destroyed a mobile home at 124 Ted St., Battalion Chief Darryl Carlisle said.
When 15 firefighters answered the 4:51 p.m. call with four trucks, Carlisle said, "Flames were showing from the windows. The entire trailer was gutted."
They needed more than two hours to put out the fire, investigate the cause and finish salvage work. Elroy and Pinewood volunteers assisted.
The occupant, Sharon Jones, was not home when the fire started. The home, owned by Morris Davis of Goldsboro, was valued at $7,000. Contents, valued at $5,000, also were destroyed. No other homes were threatened, Carlisle said.
Unattended cooking was blamed Sunday for a kitchen fire at 1365-B Parkstown Road.
"Grease in a pan was left on the stove that was turned on," Carlisle said.
A neighbor had put out the fire with a garden hose before 13 New Hope firefighters answered the 3:56 a.m. alarm with two trucks. The fire damaged cabinets and was confined to the kitchen. Pinewood volunteers assisted.
Damage was estimated at $2,500 to the home and $2,500 to the contents. The home, owned by Juanita Jones, an occupant, was valued at $70,000. Contents were valued at $10,000. Linda Parks also was listed as an occupant, the report said.
Crime of the Week
The passing of forged checks stolen from a church has been selected by Goldsboro-Wayne County Crime Stoppers as the latest "Crime of the Week."
The checks were stolen from Salisbury AME Zion Church in Pikeville. A black man then passed the checks May 10 and May 12 at BB&T branches in Goldsboro. The suspect was described as being in his mid-20s and 6-feet tall with a slim build. He wore a dark do-rag.
Anyone with information about this theft, the identity of the suspect or any other crime in Wayne County was asked to call Crime Stoppers at 735-2255. Callers may remain anonymous, and they may be eligible for cash rewards of up to $1,000, if their information leads to arrests in felony cases.
Five people were injured and damages were estimated at $23,800 in four recent traffic collisions in Wayne County, officers reported.
*A man was injured at 2:30 p.m. Wednesday during a traffic collision on Dr. M.L. King Jr. Expressway, the U.S. 117 bypass, near West Elm Street, Goldsboro police said. Kent Prosser O'Kelly, 84, of Emerald Isle was treated and released from Wayne Memorial Hospital, a spokeswoman said. The report said O'Kelly was making a left turn from the right, southbound lane and his minivan collided with a southbound car. The other driver was listed as David Michael Whaley, 48, of Lakehurst Drive, Dudley. Damages were set at $1,900.
*Three people were injured and damages were estimated at $7,700 in a three-vehicle crash at 5:19 p.m. Monday at N.C. 581 and Pikeville-Princeton Road, the Highway Patrol said. One driver, Patricia W. Norman, 42, of Clayton, and another motorist, Heather Jo Reid, 29, and a passenger, Kendrick Dail, 5, both of Adds Road, Pikeville, were released after emergency-room treatment. The third driver, Lisa Michelle Daughtry, 32, of Fields Road, Pikeville, was charged with a yield violation at a stop sign. The report said Ms. Daughtry's eastbound van collided with Ms. Norman's northbound car and then spun into Ms. Reid's stopped, westbound pickup truck.
*Damages were estimated at $6,000 in a two-vehicle wreck at 1 p.m. Monday at U.S. 117 and O'Berry Road, the Highway Patrol said. A northbound driver, Jo L. Lewis, 53, of Farmville, was charged with a stoplight violation. The report said her sport utility vehicle collided with a westbound car driven by Robin Lee Vandenbroek, 17, of Everittsville Road, Dudley.
*A driver was injured in a one-car wreck at 10:40 p.m. Sunday on U.S. 70 near Lake Wackena Road, the Highway Patrol said. Antonio Shauntae Poole, 26, of Spence Street, LaGrange, was released after emergency-room treatment. His westbound car ran off the left side, crossed the median and eastbound lanes and struck a fence and trees, the report said. Poole was charged with driving left of center and driving while his license was revoked. Damages were put at $8,200.
Five handguns were reported missing Wednesday from the Neuse River Pawn Shop at 2339-C U.S. 117 South, the Wayne County Sheriff's Office said.
The handguns were a Ruger .22 caliber target gun, a .40 caliber Taurus, a 9-millimeter Smith and Wesson, a .357 Taurus and a .40 caliber Glock. The firearms were valued at $1,894. The date of the theft was not known.
Sheriff's deputies also are investigating these reports:
*A scanner and a video-game controller were stolen between Monday and Wednesday after a window was damaged at a home in the 100 block of Betty Drive, deputies said. The resident, David Milton Pearce, estimated the value of the stolen property at $180 and damage at $300.
*A four-by-eight-foot rental trailer was stolen between Sunday and Wednesday from Tommy's Food Mart at 3426 Wayne Memorial Drive, deputies said. The trailer was valued at $2,000.
A man entering his residence early today was robbed of his wallet with $210, according to a Goldsboro police report.
Lee Collins Langley told officers that he was entering the Waynesborough House at 104 S. Center St. at about 3:30 a.m. Then a black man grabbed his wallet and fled. Langley said he was not injured and did not see a weapon. He could not describe the suspect further.
Micheal Lee Mooring, 23, of East Main Street in Eureka was charged by Wayne County Sheriff's deputies with stealing $400 worth of medicine May 22 from a home on Forehand Road, where he was staying as a guest. The medicine is used to treat epilepsy and sleep disorders. Mooring was released from custody on a written promise.
A 13-year-old boy was reported missing Wednesday by relatives to the Wayne County Sheriff's Office. D'Austin Cornell Hasell of 1659 Tommy's Road was described as black, 5-feet-7 and 100 pounds with black hair and brown eyes.
When Hasell was seen last, he was wearing a white T-shirt and black shorts. Anyone with information on his location was asked to call the Sheriff's Office at 731-1481.
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