07/12/05 — Public records

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Published in News on July 12, 2005 1:45 PM

Bad headlight

leads to chase

When officers tried to stop a car with a defective headlight Monday night, the driver sped away and led them on a four-mile, high-speed chase in southern Wayne County.

Sheriff's Deputy William Wells saw the 1996 Nissan at about 9:20 p.m. at U.S. 117 and Genoa Roadand gave chase. According to a Sheriff's Officer report, the driver ran stop signs, passed several vehicles on a double yellow line and reached 85 mph on rural, two-lane roads. The driver went south on Genoa Road and eventually turned into Odom Farm Road, where he jumped out and ran into a home, the report said.

Rico Tarvone Merritt, 24, was charged with felony speeding to elude arrest, misdemeanor possession of marijuana, failure to heed blue lights and siren and resisting arrest. He was placed in the Wayne County Jail in lieu of a $15,000 secured bond.

House fire

A bedroom fire on Monday resulted in about $14,000 in damages to a home at 410 S. Pineview Ave., the Goldsboro Fire Department reported.

"The heat source could not be determined, but a contributing factor was a 4-year-old child," Assistant Chief Jerry Langston said today.

The resident, the child and another woman escaped the fire. No one was injured.

The fire started in the child's bedroom, Langston said.

The home, valued at $95,000, was owned by Winfred Bryant. Contents were valued at $40,000. Damage was estimated at $10,000 to the home and $4,000 to contents.

Mobile home fire

A faulty refrigerator was believed to have caused a mobile home fire Monday night at 113 Brandy Drive in Hazelwood Mobile Home Park, a fire official said today.

"It started at the bottom of the refrigerator," Dudley Fire Chief Kendall Lee said. "It blew the door off and blew the back door open. A neighbor heard the explosion."

The resident, whom Lee identified as Richard Spencer, was out of town.

The home, valued at $20,000, had about $10,000 in damages, Lee said. About half of the contents, or $5,000 worth, also were damaged.

About 30 volunteer firefighters from Dudley and Arrington answered the 7:30 p.m. call.


A Dudley woman said she was kidnapped and beaten Monday night by a man, according to a Goldsboro police report.

The 25-year-old woman said the man picked her up from work at the Seymour Johnson Air Force Base gate, but instead of taking her home, he took her to a relative's house on N.C. 111 South, the report said. The man then struck the woman with a masonry tool and coaxed her back into the car. When the man stopped for gas at a convenience store at N.C. 111 and U.S. 70, the woman jumped behind the wheel and drove away.

The man was described as black, about 30 years old, 6-feet-1 and 325 pounds with short black hair and brown eyes. He wore a blue shirt and blue jeans.


Five people were injured and damages were estimated at $40,200 in six recent traffic accidents in Wayne County, law officers reported.

*Two people were injured and damages were estimated at $8,000 in a collision at 7:47 a.m. Monday at North George and Workman streets. Yamona Lee Underwood, 29, of West Holly Street, and her passenger, Danielle Foster, 24, of North Carolina Street, were treated and released from Wayne Memorial Hospital. Ms. Underwood was charged with not having liability insurance. William Thomas Davis Jr., 40, of Appletree Creek Road, Stantonsburg, was charged with a safe-movement violation.

*A passenger was injured in a one-vehicle wreck at 12:01 a.m. Saturday on Crow's Foot Road near Odom Mill Road. Paula Carr, 34, of Friendly Drive, was released after emergency-room treatment. No charges were filed. Damage was set at $1,000.

*A car was destroyed in a wreck at 10:30 p.m. Saturday on Mount Carmel Church Road near Airport Road. Maurice Thomas Lewis, 19, of Hart Circle, was charged with reckless driving. The car was valued at $15,000.

*A car was destroyed in a crash at 2:40 a.m. Saturday on Mills Road near Thigpen Dairy Road, the Highway Patrol said. The driver, Quinton Lamont Martin, 20, of Fayetteville, was charged with exceeding a safe speed after his car ran off the right side out of control in a curve, struck a power pole and a porch and stopped in a yard. The car, valued at $8,000, was destroyed. Damages to the pole and porch were put at $4,000.

*A driver was thrown from a moped and injured at 4:15 p.m. Saturday on Long Henry Grady Road near Pineview Cemetery Road, the Highway Patrol said. Ether W. Hatten, 66, of Long Henry Grady Road, Seven Springs, was listed today in stable condition at Wayne Memorial Hospital. No charges were filed. Hatten said he moved to the edge of the road because of another vehicle came up behind him and it ran off the right side and overturned. Damage was set at $200 to the moped.

*A driver escaped serious injury in a one-car crash at 7:11 p.m. Thursday on Black Creek Road near N.C. 222. Frances Yvonne Willoughby, 55, of Black Creek Road, Fremont, was charged with reckless driving. The report said her car ran off the right side, struck a bank and overturned. Damage was fixed at $4,000.