Last week, reports on social media caused a lot of emotion around the community when images of a deceased pet pig made rounds. We did reach out to Clay County Sheriff's Office to get the official press release concerning their investigation. Here is that press release from Clay County Sheriff's Office.
On Thursday, 01/10/2019 the Clay County Sheriff’s Office received a report of an incident that occurred on the previous Sunday. The complainant alleged the intentional killing of a family “pet” pig and cited a previous incident where the pet was injured with pellets from a gunshot. At this time the complainant believed this to be a retaliatory act stemming from the previous incident. Images of the animal being processed had been posted online and were being represented as the results of a legal hunt and harvest of a Feral Swine. The Complainant had been made aware of the images being posted online and ultimately brought the matter to the attention of law enforcement.
Previously on 11/26/2018 a report had been filed documenting an incident involving these same residents and the same animal. On this occasion law enforcement was called in after an altercation that ended with accusations of trespassing and ultimately resulted in an assault. At that time, it was reported that the animal was found to be on the property of another and was responsible for damages to the property. Upon the owner retrieving the animal, an altercation ensued. According to statements received by law enforcement, multiple attempts had been made by the affected party(s) to the owner of the animal to take steps to prevent any further incidents. Neither party at that time chose to pursue criminal charges and the matter was concluded with each side being advised to not have any further contact.
At this time the Clay County Sheriff’s Office and the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission have discovered information that this incident is not a criminal matter. North Carolina General Statute Chapter 113-129(5c) defines Feral Swine as “Free-ranging mammals of the species Sus scrofa”. In this instance, the animal in question could not legally be classified as anything other than Feral Swine due to the lack of an adequate enclosure. This was evident by the frequency of known “free ranging” incidents accounted to officers during their inquiry by members of the Cold Branch Community. Adequate enclosure being defined as one that, at a minimum, effectively prevents the animal from free ranging as much as it protects the animal from becoming exposed to other free ranging Feral Swine, among others. According to NC Wildlife officers, the manner in which this animal was harvested was also legal and did not violate any laws.
It is unfortunate that this family has lost its pet and we want to express our empathy over their loss. Additionally, we understand how the community has been impacted over this incident and want to assure all involved that the matter has been thoroughly investigated by state and local law enforcement.
Sgt. Christopher J. Lockett, USMC, of Murphy, passed away on Monday, January 7 at the young age of 26.
Chris will be coming home Tuesday, January 15, 2019.
We are hoping to see our community line the roadways with American flags as we pay our respects to our fallen soldier.
Flags can be picked up at Chevelles in Murphy and Fatback's Citgo.
Information is still limited at this time and will be updated when we learn more.
The full obituary can be found HERE.
Our family at WKRK sends our sincere condolences to the family, friends and many loved ones of Sgt. Christopher J. Lockett.
MURPHY NC – Officials with Erlanger Murphy Medical Center announced today that the hospital is changing its name to Erlanger Western Carolina Hospital. In an unveiling ceremony Friday morning, hospital CEO Mark Kimball told a crowd of elected officials, area residents and civic leaders that, “Our new name, Erlanger Western Carolina Hospital, more clearly reflects our broadening reach as well as our proud affiliation with the Erlanger Health System.”
In explaining the reason for renaming the 40 year old healthcare facility Kimball said, “Although our hospital is based in Murphy, over the years it has not only grown in size and scope, but we now provide medical services in surrounding areas like Andrews and Hayesville.” The Erlanger CEO also said the new name was the result of a strategic planning process and because employees, physicians and members of the community felt strongly the current name was too narrow-focused. “Everyone wanted a name that more accurately reflected our region and the various communities we serve.”
During his announcement, Kimball praised the hospital’s affiliation with the Erlanger Health System that was finalized last April. “By joining the Erlanger family of hospitals, we have gained the expertise, knowledge and resources that come with partnering with a nationally acclaimed health system,” he said. “Today we are anchored by a leading academic medical center with seven hospitals, six Life Force air ambulances and the 10th largest public healthcare system in the United States.”
On Thursday, employees of the newly-named hospital were given t-shirts with the new Erlanger Western Carolina Hospital logo during a special celebration event and on Friday employees gathered in front of the first sign bearing their hospital’s new name. Joining Kimball during today’s announcement at the Tri-County Community College were hospital Chief of Staff Dr. Thomas Clayton, Cherokee County Commissioner Cal Stiles and Barbara Hughes with the Murphy City Council.
Erlanger Health System and local officials cut the ribbon for the Erlanger Primary Care in Andrews, N.C. on December 13.
The primary care practice focuses on promoting healthy living and disease prevention. The internal and family medicine providers deliver health coverage through coordinating specialty care, continuing care and help to identify potential issues or address current ones. Providers treat a wide range of issues from anxiety and ADHD to flu and diabetes.
“Today, I can say that we as public officials of Andrews and as patients of the Erlanger System are proud to say that we have not been forgotten and more than ever feel included and welcomed as we become accustomed to the Erlanger family,” stated Andrews Mayor James Reid during the ribbon cutting ceremony on December 13. “The proof of the Erlanger commitment to providing health care to our citizens is right here.”
Erlanger Primary Care is located at 2751 Business Highway 19 in Andrews and is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. To make an appointment with a primary care provider please call 828-321-4510.