Tillis took pharmaceutical money within weeks of co-sponsoring new drug price bill

Senator Thom Tillis accepting more than $20,000 in campaign contributions from political action committees tied to pharmaceutical companies within two weeks of sponsoring a bill related to drug prices in late 2019.

  State unemployment benefits remain static as federal dollars wind down

  CMPD, city refuse to release report detailing June 2 tear gas incident

  Emails on RNC highlight the ways delegates failed to follow guidelines

Council tweaks ethics policy during late night meeting

  Time and money running out for Charlotte coronavirus relief funds

  Local woman says she was detoured on I-77, forced to take express lanes

Continued Coverage

  As early voting days approach, some NC counties still need poll workers

  Charlotte family claims they were billed hundreds after coding error

  Former Mecklenburg Co. Health Department nurse alleges whistleblower retaliation in new lawsuit

  CMPD Chief claims officer’s comments prove there was no plan to trap protesters

  State won’t pay woman’s claim after car damaged on highway

  NC legislators likely to expand unemployment benefits but only in short term

  DA’s office does not dismiss possible investigation of June 2 protest incident

The Mecklenburg County District Attorney’s office did not explicitly rule out a possible investigation of the June 2nd protest incident.

  WBTV Investigates helps saves local woman more than $4,000 in medical bills

When you live on a fixed income, every dollar makes a difference. Surprise medical bills can be a huge problem. That’s what happened to one 74-year-old, Charlotte area woman.

  Court scheduling hearings on police video petitions after WBTV investigation

The Mecklenburg County Superior Court has scheduled nearly two dozen cases to be heard involving petitions to release law enforcement video, a little more than a week after a WBTV investigation found a massive backlog of cases waiting to be heard.

  Citizens kept in the dark as court holds hearings with no public notice

The Mecklenburg County court system is routinely holding court hearings without advertising the hearing to the public. A court official says public notice isn't required but an expert in court transparency says it limits the public's ability to access court proceedings.

  Prisoners continued being sent to laundry job after co-workers tested positive for COVID-19

  NC House Rules Chair pleads guilty to federal charges, resigns seat

  Former N.C. congressman gets probation in federal bribery case, billionaire donor sentenced to 7 years

  Council suggests minor tweaks to ethics policy to “stop the bleeding”

  Transparency delayed as Mecklenburg Co. courts fail to schedule hearings on police video

  Three councilmembers facing independent ethics investigations as city attorney calls for an overhaul of the rules

  Union Co. teachers say district-issued cleaner is dangerous for students, staff

Teachers in Union County Public Schools have raised concerns about a cleaning solution issued for use in classrooms this school year, the label for which advises it can be harmful to human skin and cause eye irritation. The district hasn't provided any alternative.

  Gov Cooper calls on Republican leaders to raise state unemployment benefits

Cooper is calling on the legislature to increase the state benefits that already exist, which rank low compared to other states across the country.

  Elderly couple without AC for over a month contacts WBTV Investigates for help

On days when temperatures are hovering around 90-degrees, imagine being cooped up inside your home with no air conditioning. For the past month, Curtese Shiflet and her husband say they have been begging technicians to fix their AC Unit, but the excuses keep coming along with the heat!

  As COVID-19 spikes in some ZIP codes, causes aren’t always clear

Health officials and researchers are using zip codes data to help pinpoint COVID-19 hot spots. The data is helpful but doesn't tell the full story.

  Man gets thousands of dollars in bills for procedure he thought was covered by insurance

A local man went to the hospital thinking his procedure would be covered by insurance, but got a rude awakening when he opened the mail and got a bill for thousands of dollars instead.

  NC chose cooperation over transparency, leaving meatpacking plant virus cases unpublished

North Carolina health officials scrapped a plan to identify meatpacking plants with outbreaks of COVID-19 after some county health departments voiced concern that it would end cooperation with the companies.

  NCGOP files ethics complaints against two council members in wake of other conflict questions

A news release sent by NCGOP states that complaints filed were in direct response to conflict of interest questions raised about a planned partnership between City Councilman Tariq Bokhari’s non-profit Carolina Fintech Hub and the City of Charlotte.

  Mecklenburg County outlines COVID-19 restrictions enforcement plan

Wednesday night Mecklenburg County staff and CMPD laid out a two part enforcement plan to ensure local businesses are complying with local and state COVID-19 restrictions.

  Local woman gets surprise medical bill for more than $700

WBTV continues investigating surprise medical bills as a woman called for help after going to the emergency room, paying a copay, and still ended up with a big bill.

  CMPD issues more than a dozen citations to bars, arcades for violating COVID-19 orders

As part of an operation targeting “Fish Arcades” CMPD and other law enforcement agencies visited more than 200 establishments and issued more than a dozen citations for businesses in violation of local and state COVID-19 orders.

  Charlotte tow truck driver accused of pepper spraying customer for third time

David Satterfield is facing a simple assault charge for pepper spraying a man while he was towing his car.

  NC needs more poll workers this year, but the pandemic has made them harder to find

North Carolina is bracing for a shortage of poll workers at the same time as more help is needed to handle a surge of early and absentee voting.

  Woman pays $5,000 for landscaping project in backyard, says it’s not complete

A Charlotte area woman who paid $5,000 for a contractor to create a “dream backyard” says instead, she was left with a muddy mess.

  New lawsuit claims Union Co. Sheriff’s Office deleted video of inmate’s death

A new lawsuit filed Tuesday says Union County Sheriff Eddie Cathey and his staff at the jail are responsible for the death of an inmate who died from a drug overdose while in custody. The lawsuit also says some video of the incident was deleted.

After councilman’s non-profit partnership with city scrapped, city officials now looking for other options

While council members nearly unanimously agreed there was a conflict of interest, several pointed out during the Tuesday meeting that this will make it difficult to create and approve the program on a quick timeline.

  Hospital executives say no need for field hospital right now

Armato joined a virtual Mecklenburg county commission meeting Tuesday to update commissioners on how the hospitals are doing. He says the surge that was projected has been watered down by preventative measures.

  As COVID-19 spread in meatpacking plants, workplace complaints piled up

Of 75 complaints and referrals related to COVID-19 and the meat packing industry through July 15, none have prompted fines or even a site visit, the NC labor department says. But a N.C. DOL spokesman says they're just relying on the companies' word.

  Council nixes partnership between city and councilman’s nonprofit

A majority of city council members ultimately decided that even the appearance of a conflict of interest was enough to avoid the dilemma all together.

  Deputy’s report said a suspect was resisting before being tased, pepper sprayed. Video shows otherwise.

A narrative of a violent arrest by Union County sheriff's deputies last year contains allegations that the suspect resisted arrest that are not seen in video of the incident. Instead, the video shows a man being tased and pepper sprayed while on his knees with his hands behind his back.

  Insurance company agrees to pay $27,000 hospital bill for Concord family after WBTV report

An insurance company is agreeing to pay a $27,000 hospital bill for a family in Concord.

City attorney says no violation in deal involving councilman’s nonprofit

City Attorney Patrick Baker sent a memo to council members on Sunday detailing his review of a proposed program involving a nonprofit run by Councilman Tariq Bokhari that would train workers for the financial tech sector.

  Gov. Cooper ‘urging’ Congress to extend $600 in federal unemployment benefits in N.C.

In order for North Carolinians to keep earning an extra $600 in unemployment benefits, Congress would need to pass an extension which Governor Roy Cooper pushed for on Tuesday.

  Charlotte accounting firm files class-action lawsuit against big banks

Some accounting firms claim in the lawsuit that the banks have not paid them the required fees for helping small businesses apply for PPP loans.

  Potential contract between councilman’s nonprofit and City of Charlotte raises questions about conflict of interest

The dispute centers around Carolina Fintech Hub (CFH) and its president, Councilman Tariq Bokhari.

  Federal investigators probing Atrium, sheriff’s office after assault on teen

The December assault of a 16-year-old boy outside of an emergency room in Lincoln County is under investigation by the FBI and US Attorney’s Office for the Western District of North Carolina.

  $600 in federal unemployment benefits set to expire in NC this weekend

If Congress doesn’t act the program expires this weekend leaving many North Carolinians wondering how they’ll pay their bills.

  Family claims Atrium Health didn’t obtain pre-authorization prior to hospitalization

A Concord couple is facing a 27-thousand dollar hospital bill for treatment they thought was covered by insurance. After fighting with the hospital for 9 months, they turned to WBTV.

  Gaston County woman fears stimulus check stolen by scammers

More than 20,000 people nationwide have filed complaints with the Federal Trade Commission about identity theft related to the coronavirus.

NC virus testing started slow, pace gradually catching up to national average

Documents obtained by the N.C. Watchdog Reporting Network show state health leaders waited until mid-April to begin formulating a comprehensive state-wide testing plan. At the same time, North Carolina was slipping to the bottom of the back in per-capita testing compared to other states.

  Tenant contacts WBTV Investigates about water leak in apartment

Tenant says, when it rains, water seeps through the wall right into his apartment.

  Prosecutor won’t file charges against Harris in NC-9 probe

Wake County District Attorney Lorrin Freeman announced on Wednesday that she would not file charges against former Republican congressional candidate Mark Harris as part of her probe of the 9th Congressional District scandal.

  17 people have tested positive for COVID-19 at this nursing home. It’s not been reported by DHHS.

Four Gaston County nursing homes with COVID-19 outbreaks have gone weeks without being identified by state health officials, despite a pledge to disclose all outbreaks at nursing homes and other congregate living facilities.

  Thousands of PUA claims backdated to March still pending in North Carolina

110,212 people still have an unresolved claim with the North Carolina Division of Employment Security.

  NC still lacks plan for regular mass testing in nursing homes

North Carolina lacks a plan for regular testing for staff and residents in nursing homes and lags other states in even ordering mandatory one-time testing. Experts say that could cost lives.

Judge: NC prisons out of compliance with court orders

A judge said Friday that North Carolina prisons are out of compliance with a court order, and that conditions in state prisons were likely unconstitutional in light of the global COVID-19 pandemic.

  PPP loans show stark racial divide in Charlotte businesses

While the vast majority of business owners decided not to identify their race in their applications, out of 2,267 businesses only a small portion were listed as minority owned.

  NC’s prisons said all inmates would be tested for COVID-19 by August. It doesn’t have a schedule to do so.

The North Carolina prison system does not have a schedule to test all of its inmates for COVID-19, despite repeated claims it will complete the testing by mid-August, which came after a judge ordered mass testing.

  With federal benefits expiring at end of the month, jobless North Carolinians unemployment benefits will be slashed by more than half

The $600 dollars from the FPUC is slated to expire on July 25th meaning if Congress doesn’t act, jobless North Carolinians are facing a steep drop in their weekly deposits.

  Woman says she was billed for medical procedure in S.C. but not N.C.

A South Carolina woman was shocked to learn her insurance would cover medical procedures in North Carolina but not across the border.

  Gov. Cooper vetoes bill that would make death records secret

Gov. Roy Cooper vetoed Senate Bill 168 Monday night, which has gained national attention for a provision that would have shielded some death investigation records from the public.

NC legislators, governor call for repeal of restrictions on death investigation records

North Carolina legislators introduced a bill Monday to repeal a provision they passed last month that would shield some death investigation records from the public.

  Back at work, some North Carolinians still seek retroactive unemployment benefits

North Carolina still has more than 118,000 pending unemployment claims and some people tell WBTV they've been waiting for months.

  DPS hires company for armed guard service despite history of disciplinary action

The N.C. Department of Public Safety hired a security company to provide armed guards at prisons around the state despite a history of past disciplinary actions, state records show.

Gov. Cooper calls death records secrecy bill ‘problematic’ as lawmakers weigh changes

Following public outcry and two days of protests about a measure that would shield death investigations from public access, Gov. Roy Cooper said he has concerns about the language under scrutiny.

  Charlotte man says he’s being targeted by Code Enforcement, cited repeatedly for overgrown grass

A Charlotte man says he’s being unfairly targeted by the city’s code enforcement office, being cited repeatedly for tall grass on a piece of property he didn’t even know was his.

  WBTV Investigates: COVID in the Carolinas

A group of journalists from media outlets across North Carolina made the decision to work together, to hold leaders accountable and find any missing puzzle pieces in the state’s reporting of the pandemic.

  Top lawmaker says NCGA will ‘revisit and correct’ bill that would limit access to death investigation records

Days after the North Carolina legislature’s passage of a bill that includes a measure to further restrict death investigation records from public access, some lawmakers say they plan to walk back the provision.

  Black American Airlines passenger says she was called racial slur before being kicked off flight

The African-American woman says another customer called her a racial slur but that the company decided to remove her from the flight and not him.

  While you were sleeping: North Carolina legislators restrict access to public records

While North Carolinians were sleeping early Friday morning, the General Assembly swiftly passed a bill that would shield death-investigation records from the public. The bill was requested by N.C. Department of Health and Human Services and passed unanimously by lawmakers.

  As COVID-19 patients increase, hospitals prepare for surge

Leaders at health systems around the state say a combination of better medical care and larger stockpiles of protective gear mean they can handle surges in COVID-19 patients more effectively today than they could three months ago.

  16-year-old scammed out of more than $2,000 after buying jet skis online

WBTV responded to the same ad and the scam artist offered to sell us the same two jet skis she just sold to the Hansons. When WBTV told her we were reaching out for the Hansons, there was no response.

  NC superintendent asks auditor to investigate contract signed by state board chairman

North Carolina Superintendent of Public Instruction Mark Johnson has asked the state auditor to investigate a contract signed by Eric Davis, the chairman of the North Carolina Board of Education. Johnson says Davis violated state procurement laws.

  Judge denies state request to withhold some information about COVID-19 prison precautions

North Carolina prison officials asked a judge for permission to withhold some information about how its responding to COVID-19 in prisons

  NC kept moving hundreds of inmates during pandemic. Experts say that increased risks.

NC prison officials transferred more than 1,000 inmates between various prisons in April and May, at a time when they said inmate movement had been largely restricted. Experts say each inmate movement increased the risk of spreading the virus.

  Woman says she was billed thousands for a drug that should have been free

Gina Bond has multiple sclerosis. She gets special medicine a few times a year and, usually, it’s supposed to be free. But then she started getting a bill for thousands of dollars – with nobody willing to tell her why.

  How do cops use force in NC? Most agencies won’t say.

Law enforcement agencies across the state refuse to tell the public how they use force when policing their communities, citing provisions in state law they say shield such records from public view. Now, some state leaders say those laws should be re-examined.

  NC opens homeowner application program for those impacted by Hurricane Florence, Matthew

The North Carolina Office of Recovery and Resiliency has opened the application process for homeowners affected by Hurricane Matthew and/or Florence who are seeking rebuilding assistance.

  As state unemployment insurance runs out, federal benefits kick in

The Division of Employment Security says that people are eligible to extend those benefits through the Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation program.