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News Briefs: County giving schools more money

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County giving schools more money

SMITHFIELD — County commissioners on Monday extended a financial lifeline to Johnston’s public schools.

Commissioners agreed to give the schools an extra $950,000 a month to help close the gap between the schools’ spending and revenue.

The county will give the schools that amount in February, March, April and May. In June, commissioners will decide what amount, if any, to give the schools to close out the budget year.

In agreeing to the supplemental funding, commissioners also said they would also hire an outside firm to determine how the schools found themselves in a budget hole.

Woman who died in home faced court date

WILSON’S MILLS — Police are investigating after a woman died in her home.

On Jan. 28, emergency responders answered a call for medical assistance at 130 Stone Ridge Drive, where they found Patricia Joan Erwin, 58. That was around 6 p.m. A few minute later, Johnston County EMS pronounced the woman dead, police said in a new release.

Erwin was scheduled to appear in Wake County court last week on charges she rammed her car into a house and into a Highway Patrol cruiser, police said.

One held, one sought on heroin charges

SMITHFIELD — Police have arrested one man and are seeking another on heroin charges.

In a news release, police said they had charged Terrill Silver of Rocky Mount with bringing 61 grams of heroin into Smithfield. They are seeking Roshid Staton, 35, of Rocky Mount on charges he sold more than 35 grams of heroin to undercover agents.

Police said the heroin had a street valued of more than $75,000.

Tickets on sale for battle anniversary

FOUR OAKS — Advance tickets for the country’s largest Civil War reenactment of 2020, the 155th anniversary of the Battle of Bentonville on March 21-22, are limited but still available. Other weekend family activities are free.

Single-day tickets are $12 for adults and $6 for children ages 7-12; younger children are free. A combination ticket for both days is $20 for adults and $10 for children. Battle reenactments will be at 3p.m. Saturday and 1:30 p.m. Sunday.

The weekend activities will include lectures, games, music and other free family fun. Only the battle reenactments are ticketed and include calvary-mounted drill demonstrations an hour before the battles. Program presenters will include Mark Bradley, a Civil War historian, and Carolyn Cole, who will speak on descendants of enslaved from the Cole Plantation.

Proceeds from ticket sales will benefit preservation of Bentonville Battlefield and construction of a new visitor center. Tickets can be purchased online at

Eastfield Crossing developer names CFO

SELMA — Adventure Development LLC has named Jim Whited chief financial officer.

Adventure is the company behind Eastfield Crossing, a soon-to-be developed 2.8 million square-foot mixed-use property on Interstate 95 in Selma.

Whited brings more than 25 years of experience in commercial real estate to the company.

“We value Jim’s expertise in asset management and accounting, dispositions, financing, due diligence and projection modeling and look forward to his guidance and contributions as we move forward on our Eastfield Crossing project,” said Kevin Dougherty, president of Adventure Development.

Upon his retirement in 2017 from Capital Associates, a commercial real estate firm, Whited joined Adventure Development as a financial adviser.

Smithfield attorney receives award

RALEIGH — Smithfield attorney Jack O’Hale has received the 12th annual Wade M. Smith Award from the N.C. Bar Association’s Criminal Justice Section.

The award, named for Raleigh attorney Wade Smith, honors career contributions to the field of criminal justice law.

O’Hale has been an attorney since 1975. He has tried more than 300 jury trials and thousands of non-jury and administrative trials during his 44-year career.