NC official accused of holding back Cawthorn’s challengers + Suspect in custody after shooting into a car uptown

·4 min read

Good afternoon, Charlotte. Kristen here. Have company coming to town for the holidays, or just hosting a lowkey celebration with your close friends? Regardless, you’ll need something to eat.

CharlotteFive’s Heidi Finley proposes making a reservation for your holiday crowd, or preordering a meal to pick up. Here are some Charlotte restaurants you can order from, for those of you who want to avoid spending the holidays in the kitchen.

Alright, let’s dive into today’s headlines:

1. Western NC GOP official accused of holding back Madison Cawthorn’s challengers

The North Carolina GOP is reviewing allegations that Michele Woodhouse, a GOP chapter chair and candidate for the newly-drawn 14th Congressional district, hindered the campaigns other Republican candidates.

What’s happening here?

  • Two Republican candidates in NC-14, Bruce O’Connell and Wendy Nevarez, have said Woodhouse either discouraged their candidacy or denied them equal standing with U.S. Rep. Madison Cawthorn (Cawthorn has since switched to run in the 13th district).

  • Now, Woodhouse is running for Congress herself in NC-14.

  • Woodhouse denies the accusations.

According to Jeff Moore, the communications director for the NC GOP, the organization was looking into the complaints. He declined to provide further comment.

Find out more in this exclusive by the Observer’s Will Wright.

2. Suspect in custody after shooting into a car in uptown Charlotte, police say

Charlotte-Mecklenburg police officers clear the scene of a shooting at Trade and Tryon streets in uptown Charlotte, NC, on Tuesday, Dec. 7, 2021. A suspect was arrested after a foot chase, police said.
Charlotte-Mecklenburg police officers clear the scene of a shooting at Trade and Tryon streets in uptown Charlotte, NC, on Tuesday, Dec. 7, 2021. A suspect was arrested after a foot chase, police said.

A suspect was arrested after firing a gun on uptown Charlotte’s Tryon Street around 11:15 a.m. today, police said.

The shooting happened near Trade Street, Charlotte-Mecklenburg police Capt. Brad Koch said. The area was closed to traffic for a period of time after the incident.

What happened?

  • A car pulled up on Tryon, and a passenger got out. They began firing several rounds into the vehicle, Koch said.

  • Officers nearby tried to get the shooter to surrender, but a foot pursuit began.

  • Officers arrested the suspect a short distance away from the scene.

This is a developing story. Stay updated here with the Observer’s Jonathan Limehouse.

3. NASCAR Racing Experience owner Bob Lutz charged with aggravated assault, strangulation

A view of Charlotte Motor Speedway’s Roval road course on Oct. 5, 2021.
A view of Charlotte Motor Speedway’s Roval road course on Oct. 5, 2021.

NASCAR Racing Experience owner Robert ‘Bob’ Lutz has been charged with aggravated assault and strangulation against a female, according to Metropolitan Nashville Police Department online arrest records.

Lutz, 52, is the former owner of the now-closed Myrtle Beach Speedway, and is the president and CEO of both the Richard Petty Driving Experience and Driving 101, LLC. That’s the parent company based in Concord of both the NASCAR Racing Experience and the Mario Andretti Racing Experience.

According to records, Lutz was arrested at 3:30 a.m. Saturday in a downtown Nashville hotel.

Our colleague at The (Myrtle Beach) Sun News, Alan Blondin, has the rest of the details.

4. News from around Charlotte

Electric vehicle maker adding more jobs, opening third Charlotte facility by Hannah Lang

  • Arrival, a British electric vehicle company, is adding 150 jobs and investing $11.5 million in a battery module production facility off Yorkmont Road.

‘Can’t be a blood sport.’ Can CMS, county turn corner on failing schools dispute? by Anna Maria Della Costa

  • School and county leaders met Monday night, “a step” toward Mecklenburg County’s board of commissioners and Charlotte-Mecklenburg school board members working together to remedy the city’s failing schools, the school board’s consultant AJ Crabill said.

A December heat wave in Charlotte? Here’s the latest on the unseasonal temps by Joe Marusak

  • It’s about to be unseasonably warm out there, folks.

5. How Charlotte’s namesake brought Christmas trees to the English-speaking world

Four-year-old Emma Cannon races through Christmas trees carrying a cup of cocoa Saturday at Frosty’s Choose & Cut Christmas tree farm. The Sexton family has had a Christmas tree business selling Fraser firs since the 1960’s in Ashe County. Now three brothers in the fourth generation of the family, including 23-year-old Matthew Sexton, have taken up the mantle of the business with hundreds of acres of trees they sell in bulk besides 60 acres at Frosty’s Choose & Cut where families from across the state and region come to pick their own trees. Frosty’s gets visits from Santa on the weekends and has other features like branding a slice from the chosen tree’s trunk to give to the family that purchased the tree. Cars lined up to be loaded with trees on Saturday, Nov.18, 2017.
Four-year-old Emma Cannon races through Christmas trees carrying a cup of cocoa Saturday at Frosty’s Choose & Cut Christmas tree farm. The Sexton family has had a Christmas tree business selling Fraser firs since the 1960’s in Ashe County. Now three brothers in the fourth generation of the family, including 23-year-old Matthew Sexton, have taken up the mantle of the business with hundreds of acres of trees they sell in bulk besides 60 acres at Frosty’s Choose & Cut where families from across the state and region come to pick their own trees. Frosty’s gets visits from Santa on the weekends and has other features like branding a slice from the chosen tree’s trunk to give to the family that purchased the tree. Cars lined up to be loaded with trees on Saturday, Nov.18, 2017.

The weather outside is frightful ... but inside cozy houses, Charlotteans sport decked-out evergreens, a centuries-old holiday ritual. But do you know how the Christmas tree tradition came about in the English-speaking world? Charlotte’s namesake had a lot to do with it

With the Observer’s Sara Coello, learn more about how Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz brought the Christmas tree trend to the Western world.

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