Man charged with

statutory rape

LUMBERTON — A St. Pauls man has been arrested and charged with engaging in sex acts with a 12-year-old girl, according to a Sheriff’s Office report.

Jorge Perez Cruz, 28, was charged Sunday with statutory rape of a child by an adult, indecent liberties with a child and communicating threats. He was jailed at the Robeson County Detention Center and placed under a $100,000 bond.

There may be more charges as the investigation continues and if more victims come forward.


Schools, ball field to

get tested for GenX

According to The Fayetteville Observer, the water at three Cumberland County schools and a ball field near the Chemours plant will be tested for a potentially harmful chemical, state officials said Tuesday.

The state Department of Environmental Quality said in a statement that it will test for GenX at Alderman Elementary School, Gray’s Creek Elementary School, Gray’s Creek High School and water fountains at a ball field north of Marshwood Lake. State officials also will test the lake and Point East Lake.

Results will be released when the tests are finished, state officials said.


Infant shot during

birthday celebration

CLINTON — An infant is in stable condition following a shooting in the Clinton area, in which two men opened fire on a third man at a birthday celebration Sunday, missing him and striking a nearby mobile home where the child was being kept.

Around 8:55 p.m. Sunday, deputies from the Sampson County Sheriff’s Office responded to Bumpy Lane regarding a “shots fired” call with possible injuries. Upon arrival, deputies were met by a female carrying an infant that had been shot in the torso.

The infant was listed in stable condition.


School merger

brings people out

WHITEVILLE — Columbus County commissioners continue to wrangle over the issue of merging the Columbus County and Whiteville City Schools, and on Monday a packed meeting room brought numerous views on both sides of the proposal — as well as two motions that, in essence, keep the possibility alive.

The first motion asked members of both school boards to forward their resolutions on the issue to the state legislature and passed unanimously.

The second motion that no merger occur now passed on a 5-2 vote.

— From staff and wire reports.