Around 2 p.m. Saturday afternoon, a man broke into and vandalized offices in the Haywood Park building. Local business owner Jose Ibarra of Applied Solutions Group is circulating the following security camera shot, asking for the public’s help in identifying the perpetrator.
Asheville police say they found the body of Anthony Sawyer in the French Broad River today off of Amboy Road. An autopsy is scheduled for later this week.
At tonight’s Asheville City Council meeting, two major issues will get aired publicly: an update on changes to the Asheville Police Department evidence room and a hearing on the budget for the next fiscal year. Some police officers and firefighters have announced their intent to show up and demand a higher raise than the one percent in the proposed budget.
The Asheville Police Department will hire a new evidence-room manager, but an audit of absent items remains under wraps despite a mounting media push for disclosure.
Speaking with media this morning, Asheville Police Department Chief William Anderson wouldn’t answer questions about the extent of missing, guns, drugs, and money from the APD evidence room, or when the public will see the unrevealed audit. The APD is looking for a new, civilian evidence room manager, something Anderson believes will hasten “the healing process.” Photo by Max Cooper.
Around 100 people showed up for a May Day rally this afternoon in Pack Square. Protesters focused better rights for workers, free education and opposed deportation of undocumented immigrants, among other issues. Police presence was light and the event remained peaceful. Photos by Max Cooper.
The state administrative office of the courts has denied a records request from local media for the audit of the Asheville Police Department evidence room, but a NC Press Association attorney maintains the audit should be public record. Meanwhile, more media have joined a push to release the audit.
Today, an array of local media has united in a call for District Attorney Ron Moore to release the audit of missing guns, drugs and money from the Asheville Police Department evidence room. A joint statement declares that Moore’s actions in ignoring open records requests for months “are not in compliance with either state law or the practices of transparent government.”
According to the contract for the audit of missing guns, drugs, and money from the Asheville Police Department’s evidence room, the city of Asheville should have received a copy when the audit was completed in January. The city still hasn’t received a copy, and District Attorney Ron Moore has refused to respond to open records requests for the public release of the $175,000 audit. City manager Gary Jackson says he’s satisfied with Moore’s handling of the case, and is not pressing for the release of the audit.
The contract for the audit of the Asheville Police Department’s evidence room.
A stabbing at Mike’s Side Pocket has left part of Haywood Road closed down as police investigate. The Asheville Police Department claims it’s too early to release details, but that “there’s no current danger to the public.” While an observer on the scene says at least one person is dead, and a source says that another died in the emergency room, these are not yet confirmed. (Photo by Bill Rhodes)
In the aftermath of a vehicle collision yesterday, March 27, that left four injured and led to the arrest of a suspected drug dealer in the Montford neighborhood, several witnesses assert that police chased the suspect as he sped away, creating a dangerous situation. The APD states that officers chose not to pursue.
The Asheville Police Department’s rules on vehicle pursuits.
More than two months ago, Xpress requested a copy of the audit of the Asheville Police Department’s evidence room from District Attorney Ron Moore. We have received no reply. According to attorneys from the North Carolina Press Association, the audit should be public record, and Moore’s behavior violates the state’s open records law.
Last June, local musician Juan Holladay was arrested by police in an incident that sparked allegations of excessive force. Today, Holladay had his day in court, and was found guilty of resisting/obstructing an arrest, but not guilty of creating a public disturbance.
What happened when a new protest movement clashed with an Asheville City Council with former activists in its ranks. Photo by Bill Rhodes
Will the Asheville Police Department lead by example of the social order they've been tasked to uphold and not ride their bikes on sidewalks? As they pass, I'm forced to walk in the street, unprotected and unrepresented. — Nathanael Roney Asheville The writer is the senior graphic designer at Mountain Xpress
In the middle of the packed Council chambers, William Anderson, the Asheville Police Department’s new chief, was officially sworn in. Anderson promised to make responsiveness to the community among his top priorities.
Enforcing a new city ordinance, the Asheville Police Department cleared tents from the Occupy Asheville campsite — one of the last public Occupy encampments in the country — in front of City Hall late yesterday evening. Three protesters, claiming the rules infringe their rights, were arrested for ordinance violations. Photo by Bill Rhodes.
With a noon eviction deadline, Occupy Asheville campers make preparations for what comes next.
(Photos by Bill Rhodes)
The audit of the Asheville Police Department evidence room was completed Jan. 9, but don’t expect the details to go public soon. While Buncombe County District Attorney Ron Moore has told some media that the audit showed that around 200 drug parcels might be missing, the Buncombe County District Attorney’s keeping the results secret, even from city government.