02/16/2023 AM News Break
By Reagan Wall & David Katzenmaier
In local news, an 87-year-old Boone man was arrested and charged with third degree sexual exploitation of a minor. According to court documents, William R. Townsend was arrested after a jury returned an indictment on him. The court documents stated that Townsend allegedly possessed an image file containing explicit material of a minor younger than six years old with an adult male that was sexual. According to the Watauga Democrat, the incident occurred last year on July 18, 2022. The arrest report stated that Townsend was issued a March 6th court date and a $15,000 secured bond.
In state news, the North Carolina state government is on track to see a $3 billion surplus this year. General Assembly staff economics and Governor Roy Cooper’s state budget office agreed on a new revenue forecast. They project that North Carolina will see $33.67 billion dollars by the end of the fiscal year on June 30th. That is 10.7% above the predicted number from last summer when the current state budget law was put in place. Republican legislators and Governor Cooper will have more money to give away when they broker the next two-year budget. According to WRAL News, the forecast summary says that revenue continues to grow because of high corporate profits, a decline in individual income tax collections and consumer spending.
In national news, Buffalo grocery mass shooter gets life in prison during intense sentencing for racist attack. The attacker who carried out a mass shooting on May 14, 2022 and killed 10 black people “for the future of the white race” was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole on Wednesday. The emotional moment came after Katherine Messey, the sister of a victim, addressed the shooter, Payton Gendron. As she spoke, a man in gray lunged toward the shooter and was taken out of the courtroom which led to a short break. The District Attorney said the man would not be charged because of the high emotions in the courtroom. According to NBC News, the judge told Gendron that he would get no mercy from the courtroom.
The App State Men’s basketball team plays in their second to last home game tonight as they take on Texas State. Pregame coverage starts at 6:15 on 90.5 with tip-off scheduled for 6:30. Women’s basketball travels north to take on Old Dominion as well tomorrow, that one is set to get started at 6:30 also.
Diamond Sports Group, also known as Bally Sports, which owns and operates 19 regional sports networks that televise about a third of all M.L.B., N.B.A. and N.H.L. games, said on Wednesday that it would not make a $140 million interest payment on its nearly $9 billion of debt, setting the stage for a possible bankruptcy filing next month. The company owes teams about $2 billion in rights fees this year, according to its most recent financial filing, and the fees have continued to increase as fewer Americans stick with cable television, meaning less revenue for Diamond Sports. If bankruptcy is filed, it could change the landscape on how sports is televised
In MLB news, pitchers and catchers officially reported to spring training this past Monday, with position players arriving today for their first assignments. Full teams arriving to their faculties mark the beginning of baseball season, with spring training games officially starting next Friday.
In other baseball news, The York Yankees have announced that SP Frankie Montas will undergo shoulder surgery, with a late-season return considered the best case scenario. Montas dealt with some shoulder issues before the Yankees traded for him in August, and he was only able to throw one inning in the postseason after missing time on the IL.
Today's weather is brought to you by booneweather.com. It’s gonna be another warm day in the high country with a high of 61 and a low of 40. Possible showers throughout the day.