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Carolina Panthers tight end Greg Olsen warms up prior to the team’s NFL football game Dec. 29 against the New Orleans Saints in Charlotte. Released by Carolina in late January, Olsen eventually signed a $7 million, one-year deal with the Seattle Seahawks in February after considering Washington and Buffalo as other potential landing spots.


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Volunteers assist neighbors during pandemic

While cases of COVID-19 continue to increase in the Twin Counties, some local residents are using this time to reach out to help their neighbors.

Ten new positive cases were reported Thursday in the Twin Counties, making a total of 254 cases.

The Nash County Health Department reported seven new cases on Thursday, bringing the total number of cases in that county to 118. Of that number, 43 are considered recovered, 67 are isolated at 金殿国际棋牌-首页, five are hospitalized and three have died.

The Edgecombe County Health Department reported three new cases on Thursday, bringing the total in that county to 136. Of that number, 70 are considered recovered and seven have died. The number of people hospitalized was not reported.

While the current pandemic restrictions are intended to protect residents from exposure to the virus, they also are causing economic hardship to many. Some local residents are using the crisis to find ways to help alleviate the hardships their neighbors are experiencing.

One such opportunity came on Thursday when the Raleigh-based Inter-Faith Food Shuttle, which is associated with Feeding America, came to the Word Plaza in front of Word Tabernacle Church. Hundreds of cars came through the line to pick up boxes of food delivered by the shuttle.

Though the total number of people served is not yet available, the Rev. Freda Noel, senior pastor of On a Mission Ministry Inc. and one of the organizers of the local event, said that roughly 3,000 people were served at a similar event last month.

“This is the third time the event has been held,” Noel said. “Normally, the distribution is held at the South Rocky Mount Community Center, but the Reach Center at Word Tabernacle Church has hosted the event for the past two months while the community center has been closed.”

Tameka Joyner, program coordinator for the Reach Center, said the effort is working well at that location.

“They reached out to us when the community center closed, and we were glad to help,” Joyner said.

Dozens of local volunteers were on hand to assist with the food distribution. The Rocky Mount Police Department and the Nash County Sheriff’s Office also assisted with traffic control for the event.

The food distributions are being held during the first Thursday of each month, Noel said. The event begins at 11 a.m. and goes until 1 p.m. or later, if food still is available.

The event next month is slated to be held at the South Rocky Mount Community Center, Noel said.


Local
Work continues on new DMV headquarters

Has the coronavirus put on hold the transformation of the former Hardee’s corporate headquarters complex into the future state Division of Motor Vehicles headquarters?

If your answer is no, then you are correct.

“The work never stopped,” DMV spokesman John Brockwell said on Thursday in response to emailed questions about the status of the complex along North Church Street.

Rocky Mount Area Chamber of Commerce President and CEO David Farris on Thursday said, “We see a good summer for Rocky Mount.”

Mayor Sandy Roberson on Thursday spoke of the potential of local residents filling positions vacated by DMV workers who choose to transfer to other state agencies or who are close to retirement age.

Roberson also said his understanding is that there are DMV jobs offering what would be quite good pay in the Rocky Mount area.

Roberson emphasized another thing he is elated about is that the relocation of the DMV perhaps creates opportunities for other state agencies to relocate to Rocky Mount.

Roberson cited the proximity of Rocky Mount to Raleigh and the relatively low costs of operations in Rocky Mount compared to some of the places in Raleigh.

Roberson said that in Rocky Mount, “The doors are open and we’re open for business.”

Of the coming of the DMV headquarters to Rocky Mount, Roberson said, “This is exciting news and I think we should celebrate it.”

“I think it’s fantastic,” he said.

The General Assembly requires a process for relocating the DMV from the present headquarters along New Bern Avenue in Raleigh because of health and safety issues beyond the state’s control.

Gov. Roy Cooper, as North Carolina’s top official, on Dec. 18 signed a 15-year lease with the landlord for the Rocky Mount location, sealing the deal on what had been the most competitive of 10 site proposals.

Work at the future North Church location began on Feb. 10. DMV officials have said business units will be moving in when their respective work spaces are complete.

Brockwell said the plan remains for the first move-in to begin this summer. Farris said the relocation will be in phases, as different parts of the operation are ready and the technology to transfer is ready.

The Telegram asked Brockwell whether there are discussions or talks with any agency about mass transporting workers from the Raleigh-Durham area to the Rocky Mount area in a weekday daily commute.

Brockwell said DMV is in discussion with the Durham-based GoTriangle, the Rocky Mount-based Tar River Transit, the Rocky Mount-based Carolinas Gateway Partnership and the Rocky Mount Area Chamber about regional transportation.

Farris said, “We have been working on it for a period of time now,” and emphasized there is a greater picture because a lot of people who live in the Research Triangle Region work at a variety of businesses in the Rocky Mount area.

Farris also noted the Kingsboro Business Park will be coming online just off U.S. 64 between Rocky Mount and Tarboro.

Farris also noted a lot of people in the Rocky Mount area work in the Triangle region and spoke of developing transport hubs in the future where riders can switch from one vehicle to another.

“The vision is we can serve more than DMV and make it a little bit easier,” Farris said.

The former Hardee’s complex dates as far back as 1967.

After Hardee’s was sold to CKE Restaurants Holdings in the late 1990s, the headquarters was moved to Missouri and later to Tennessee.

In 2000, what was Centura Bank signed a long-term lease for the complex.

Even after Centura Bank was acquired by RBC Bank and RBC’s U.S. headquarters moved to downtown Raleigh in 2005, RBC kept much of the back-office functions in Rocky Mount.

PNC Bank acquired the U.S. retail side of RBC Bank and continued to use the site until the expiration of a lease in 2016.


Local
Authorities warn about phone scam

The Nash County Sheriff’s Office warned residents Thursday of a new scam that is going on in the area.

According to information posted by the law enforcement agency, some area residents are receiving phone calls from local telephone numbers with people who are identifying themselves as members of the Nash County Sheriff’s Office.

“They will even give a legitimate-sounding name as well such as Lieutenant Knox or Captain Smith. They will give you a story such as you have missed jury duty and that a warrant has been issued for your arrest, but in order to clear out the warrant then you need to pay ‘XX’ amount of dollars. They will then try to get you to purchase prepaid VISA cards or gift cards from the local store,” Chief Deputy Brandon Medina said in a Facebook post.

Medina said the scammers go to great lengths to make the story seem real.

“One citizen stated that the scammer even transferred them over to several other “members” of the sheriff’s office who they spoke with, which made the scam sound that much more legitimate. On top of that, if you call the number back, it says, ‘You have reached the non-emergency number of the Nash County Sheriff’s Office,’ and gives you prompts for different divisions at the sheriff’s office, but obviously no one ever answers ... they want you to leave your name and number to call back,” the post said.

The number the scammers are calling from this week seems to be 462-3060, but they constantly change the number, so it is hard to keep up with them. One phone number stops working, and they just get a new one, the post said.

Medina offered advice in dealing with such scammers.

“Scammers are getting more and more sophisticated in trying to take your hard-earned dollars. First of all, no law enforcement agency is going to call you and try to have you alleviate any type of warrant or process with a gift card or prepaid debit card. That should be your red flag that it is a scam,” Medina said. “Secondly, if you ever have any doubt about the legitimacy of whether an actual deputy sheriff from the Nash County Sheriff’s Office is calling you, call us on our real non-emergency line at 252-459-4121.”

Medina advised residents not to call the number back.

“Don’t ever call back to the same number they are calling from. With today’s technology, these scammers are able to ‘spoof’ their number to show anything they want when they are calling you,” Medina said. “Unfortunately, we take reports daily from citizens who are fooled by these people and end up giving them their hard-earned money because they thought it was legitimate. Many times, it is hard for us to investigate and prosecute these crimes because these scammers are not even in the United States.”

This scam also is being used in other areas with other law enforcement agencies. Anyone who is uncertain about the legitimacy of such calls should check before giving money to anyone, he said in the Facebook post.

“We ask that everyone just use caution and if you ever have any doubts about what they are telling you, you can call us at 459-4121 and we can verify whether a deputy is actually trying to reach you for a purpose,” Medina said.


Local
Nash County woman killed in I-95 wreck

A 42-year-old Nash County woman is dead as a result of a two-vehicle wreck in the early morning hours of Thursday on Interstate 95 in the far southern part of the county, the State Highway Patrol said.

Jennifer Marie Hinnant was alone and driving a 2012 Volkswagen car southbound near mile-marker 127 when the car struck the rear of a tractor-trailer and became pinned underneath the tractor-trailer, a patrol official in Raleigh said.

The car caught on fire and both the tractor-trailer and the car came to rest on the shoulder of I-95, the official said.

The patrol received the call at 2:03 a.m. and Trooper L.M. Caskey responded, the official said.

Hinnant listed an address in the 2400 block of Canterbury Road.

The identity of the driver of the tractor-trailer was not immediately available.

Mile 127 of I-95 is the location for the interchange with N.C. 97.


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