Vigil for teen who died in police custody turns violent
Protesters allege foul play in the death of Jesus Huerta, 17, who died of a gunshot wound while in police custody.
December 20th, 2013
01:26 PM ET

Vigil for teen who died in police custody turns violent

A vigil for a teen who died in police custody turned violent in Durham, North Carolina, with riot police using tear gas and batons to disperse the crowd.

At least six people were arrested at the Thursday night march to protest the death of 17-year-old Jesus Huerta, according to police.

"I could not be more proud of the restraint and professionalism demonstrated by our officers," Durham Police Chief Jose Lopez said in a statement to the media, adding that injuries to those marching were minimized because of his officers' actions.

"There was a march. The peaceful intent did not exist. We used the best practices in law enforcement," he said at a news conference Friday.

Protesters threw bottles and rocks at police officers and vandalized police property, Lopez said, defending his officers' reaction to the vigil.

The Durham Police Department says Huerta died on November 19 from a self-inflicted gunshot while handcuffed in the back of a police cruiser. The teen was being taken to the police station by Officer Samuel Duncan about 3 a.m. for a second-degree trespassing violation.

FULL STORY
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Filed under: North Carolina • Protest • Race • U.S.
April 15th, 2013
01:54 PM ET

Reward offered year after soldier's disappearance

It's been one year since Fort Bragg soldier Kelli Bordeaux went missing, and there's now a reward being offered for information that could help authorities solve the mystery, according to police in Fayetteville, North Carolina.

The military is offering $25,000 for information that could help explain what happened to Pfc. Bordeaux, Detective Jeff Locklear told CNN on Monday.

Last April, police and the military searched an area near a Fayetteville bar where Bordeaux was last seen and last used her cell phone, authorities then told CNN.

The 23-year-old soldier left the Froggy Bottoms bar early on a Saturday, police told CNN then. She had been drinking and was given a ride home by a bar employee, according to a U.S. Army official who spoke on condition of anonymity at the time of that story.

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Filed under: Military • North Carolina • U.S. Army
April 12th, 2013
11:03 AM ET

N.C. A&T locked down after armed-person report

North Carolina A&T State University's campus in Greensboro was locked down Friday morning after school police received a report of a person with a weapon on campus, the school said on its website and its Twitter account.

No shots have been fired and no injuries have been reported, according to a school representative.

FULL STORY
January 8th, 2013
04:15 PM ET

Gay wife excluded from military club says she’d still join

A woman who says she believes a private military spouses club excluded her because she’s gay says she’d still join the group if it reverses its decision.

“I would go tomorrow,” Ashley Broadway, the wife of U.S. Army Lt. Col. Heather Mack, told CNN's Brooke Baldwin on “CNN Newsroom” Tuesday afternoon. “Wherever we were stationed, I was a volunteer of some sort. Between my educational background, my volunteerism, my energy, my enthusiasm to help all military families, I would absolutely be elated to. If anything, I would like to be a part of the group so that they can see that my family is no different than their families.”

Broadway applied to the Association of Bragg Officers' Spouses after she and Mack who married in Washington, D.C. moved to Fort Bragg, North Carolina. Broadway says the club told her she couldn’t join because she doesn’t have military identification.

Read more about Broadway's attempt to get into the club.

Spokeswoman: FBI at home of woman who had affair with ex-CIA chief David Petraeus
FBI agents were at the North Carolina home of Paula Broadwell, shown here, on Monday night, an FBI spokeswoman said.
November 12th, 2012
09:35 PM ET

Spokeswoman: FBI at home of woman who had affair with ex-CIA chief David Petraeus

FBI agents are at the Charlotte, North Carolina, home of Paula Broadwell, the woman who had an affair with then-CIA Director David Petraeus, said FBI spokeswoman Shelley Lynch.

Lynch declined to say what the FBI is doing at the house. Petraeus resigned as CIA Director last Friday, citing an extramarital affair as the reason.

Click here to get the latest on Petraeus' affair and resignation


Filed under: CIA • North Carolina
Two crew members missing as famed sailing ship sinks off North Carolina
The HMS Bounty sails past the Chicago skyline in 2003. The ship has been used in several movies.
October 29th, 2012
08:52 AM ET

Two crew members missing as famed sailing ship sinks off North Carolina

Crew members of a tall ship used for classic adventure films faced a harrowing real-life drama Monday as Hurricane Sandy forced them to abandon ship about 90 miles off Cape Hatteras, North Carolina.

Fighting waves towering 18 feet high and winds of 40 mph, a group from the HMS Bounty boarded two lifeboats, the Coast Guard said. Helicopter crews saved 14 people stranded in the Atlantic Ocean. But as of midday Monday, two people were still missing, and the ship had sunk, a Coast Guard spokesman said.

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Filed under: Hurricanes • North Carolina • Tropical weather • Weather
UNC coach Roy Williams has surgery to remove tumor, school says
September 19th, 2012
01:07 PM ET

UNC coach Roy Williams has surgery to remove tumor, school says

University of North Carolina men's basketball coach Roy Williams underwent surgery this morning to remove a tumor from his right kidney, UNC sports information director Steve Kirschner said in a statement.

“The surgery went well and according to plan,” Dr. Eric Wallen, professor of urology at UNC, said in a statement. “Coach Williams did great. I fully expect him to coach this season and for years to come. He could miss some practice time if we perform another procedure sometime in October, but he would be able to resume his coaching duties prior to the start of the regular season.”

The school said the tumor was found during a physical earlier this month. The surgery took three and a half hours, the school said.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with Coach Williams and his family for a full recovery,” says UNC Director of Athletics Bubba Cunningham. “Obviously his health and prognosis are my greatest concerns. He’s in great hands with the medical staff at UNC Hospitals. The basketball team is also in outstanding hands with Steve Robinson, CB McGrath, Hubert Davis and Joe Holladay. As Coach Williams frequently says, he has the best staff in the country and I know they will do an excellent job as Coach Williams recuperates. We will be ready for his return as soon as he is able to do so, but I have stressed to him that he returns only when he has been given the medical approval and he is ready to do that. Hopefully that will be soon and for a long, long time to come.”

Williams is set to begin his 10th season as the head coach of the UNC Tar Heels. He has the fourth highest winning percentage in college basketball and is first among active coaches.

 

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Filed under: College basketball • North Carolina
Water trapped between levees
August 29th, 2012
10:28 PM ET

Water trapped between levees

  • New Orleans mayor imposes dusk-to-dawn curfew
  • More than 817,000 without power across 5 states
  • Isaac's maximum sustained winds slip to 60 mph
  • Emergency crews rescue people stranded by floods

Refresh this page for the latest updates or read the full CNN story here.

[Updated 10:28 p.m. ET]

[Updated 10:20 p.m. ET] Water that overtopped levees was trapped in Plaquemines Parish with nowhere to drain. Officials were considering intentionally breaching a levee downstream to allow some of the floodwater to flow back out of the inundated area, Gov. Bobby Jindal said.

Parish President Billy Nungesser said parish officials will go out at low tide to check the back levee - a second line of defense - at the town of Braithwaite and determine where to punch holes in it. It will be Saturday, at the earliest, before crews can cut the levee open, letting water flow out into the marsh.

[Updated 10 p.m. ET]

[Updated 9:52 a.m. ET]  New Orleans officials said there had been 12 incidents of looting. Police said arrests were made in each case, but didn't specify how many people were involved.

[Updated 9:48 p.m. ET] Lake Pontchartrain's water levels are "beginning to stabilize," St. Tammany Parish officials said, according to the New Orleans Times-Picayune. Water had spilled out from the lake and flooded low-lying areas of the parish.

Rescues continue in areas around the vast Louisiana lake, including Lewisburg, Guste Island, Lacombe and Slidell, the newspaper's website reported.

[Updated 9:29 p.m. ET] Joey Amann gathered family and friends into his home in Hancock County, Mississippi, to ride out the storm, he told CNN affiliate WALA.

"You know, we just figured we'd be safer in numbers. Since our house is eight feet off the ground, we figured we'd be safer there but the water just kept coming," Amann said.

"It was scary. I mean, I've never seen the water raise this fast on this road and I've been here all my life. It just came out of nowhere."

The group ended up being rescued by emergency personnel in boats.

Amann told the station he lost his home to Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

"Thirty-six years I've lived here, and it's just devastating," he said. "Seven years ago, we were going through the same thing. No one thought it would be this bad, but it's worse than we anticipated."

FULL POST

Gotta Watch: Fast food fondlers
Some Burger King employees lost their jobs over this photo that went viral.
July 19th, 2012
06:52 PM ET

Gotta Watch: Fast food fondlers

Fast food service may not be considered “fine dining” but customers who frequent such establishments expect a certain level of sanitation. Unfortunately, in some cases that trust is misplaced.  Check out these videos of fast food workers with less than healthy manners.  Do their punishments fit their crimes?

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Fast food workers fired over food safety

Affiliate WKYC reports on the reaction to a viral photo of a Burger King employee stomping on store lettuce.

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2009: Domino's food tampering video

In 2009, two Domino's employees were arrested for filming as they allegedly tampering with food. Affiliate WCNC reports.

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2008: Employees bathe in store sink

In 2008, KFC fired multiple employees who photographed themselves bathing in the store's sink. Affiliate KOVR reports.

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Filed under: California • Fast Food • Food • Gotta Watch • North Carolina • Ohio • U.S.
July 6th, 2012
02:50 PM ET

Andy Griffith died of heart attack, death certificate says

Andy Griffith's death certificate says the actor died of a heart attack, after years of suffering from other illnesses, including coronary artery disease.

The North Carolina native had long endured hypertension and hyperlipidemia, his certificate said, which can suggest high cholesterol or high triglycerides.

The heart attack occurred about 24 hours before he died, the certificate says. Griffith passed away at 7 a.m. Tuesday morning and was buried less than five hours later.

He was 86.

Most known for his role as the sheriff of Mayberry on the CBS series "The Andy Griffith Show," Griffith "has been laid to rest on his beloved Roanoke Island," the family said in a statement issued Tuesday.

FULL STORY
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Filed under: Celebrity • North Carolina • Showbiz • TV
Harvard-bound homeless grad 'overwhelmed' by ovation
Dawn Loggins, 18, at her high school graduation ceremony in Lawndale, North Carolina, on Thursday.
June 8th, 2012
05:09 PM ET

Harvard-bound homeless grad 'overwhelmed' by ovation

Dawn Loggins whose inspirational story of going from homeless to Harvard inspired millions walked across the stage late Thursday at North Carolina's Burns High School to loud cheers.

When her name, Ashley Dawn Loggins, was intoned, it brought down the house. Everyone in the auditorium erupted with enthusiastic yells and whistles. Most rose in a standing ovation to honor the first person from Lawndale, North Carolina, to ever be accepted to Harvard.

A CNN story on Dawn earlier in the day caught like wildfire through social media, with nearly 60,000 people sharing her story on Facebook. Thousands more tweeted Dawn's tale.

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From homeless to Harvard

Dawn Loggins never gave up on her dreams, even when she was homeless. She heads to her dream school, Harvard, this fall.

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Homeless student to go to dream college

CNN's Randi Kay talks to rising freshman Dawn Loggins about graduatnig and realizing her goal of attending Harvard.

As Dawn took in the crowd's applause Thursday, she beamed with pride and accepted the leather-bound folder that housed the diploma she’s worked so hard to get. She then broke down in tears.

“All I could hear were their screams, I couldn’t hear myself think," she said later. "That’s when I got overwhelmed and really emotional. I felt like all my hard work had finally been recognized.”

After shaking hands with school administrators, she went back to her peers, lost in a sea of light blue caps. Outside, she was mobbed by well-wishers.

A man whose granddaughter was in Dawn’s fourth-period class said, “I don’t know what you’re doing honey, but keep doing it because it’s working. And you’re gonna get where you wanna go.”

Dawn had been abandoned by her drug-abusing parents last summer and left to fend for herself her senior year. She worked as a school janitor to make ends meet, and school staff pitched in to help.

“It feels amazing to finally be done and to have worked so hard for this and to finally have achieved it," she said, crying.

Dawn’s family made the ceremony. Her mother, stepfather, grandmother, half-sisters and cousins attended. But it was her brother, Shane, she wanted to see most. He'd helped her throughout her life. “Love ya,” he told her Thursday evening.

Her custodial supervisor, Julie Barrett, said simply: “Congratulations baby! I am so proud of you."

Dawn, 18, plans to take a week off of work. But she’ll be back at Burns High in a week to once again take up her mop and broom as she works through the summer to help pay for college. While Harvard is paying for tuition, room and board, she still has to pay for textbooks, school materials and other living expenses.

She thanked everyone who has reached out to help with donations. She will use the money to set up her nonprofit organization, named Uplift. “There are other students whose situations are worse than mine, and their futures are less certain,” she said. “The only way to get out of poverty is through education.”

For teens in similar situations as hers, Dawn encourages hard work and communication. “I encourage people in poor situations to talk to someone at school, to talk to a guidance counselor, or talk to an administrator, a teacher. Because the school system can help,” she said.

Any contributions can be sent to: Burns High School/Dawn Loggins Fund, 307 E. Stagecoach Trail, Lawndale, NC 28090.

Dawn's story echoes that of another:  In 2007, The Foundation for a Better Life, a Colorado-based group that promotes values through advertisements, started a nationwide "Ambition" billboard campaign.

"From homeless to Harvard. AMBITION. Pass it on," the billboard said.

It featured a photograph of Liz Murray, a once-homeless girl from the Bronx who graduated from Harvard and went on to become an author. Her story was captured in a 2003 Lifetime movie.

The Foundation for a Better Life says Liz's story was to show people that "dedication pays off - and, if there's something that you want in life, you can better yourself and just work for it."

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Filed under: Education • North Carolina
May 30th, 2012
11:33 AM ET

Beryl strengthens slightly along coastal Carolina

Two days after slamming into northeast Florida, Beryl - slightly strengthened but still a tropical depression - prepared to re-enter the Atlantic on Wednesday, spreading heavy rain and blustery winds along the coast of the Carolinas.

The storm, which came ashore early Monday with 70 mph winds near Jacksonville Beach, Florida, increased its maximum sustained winds from 30 to 35 mph, the National Hurricane Center said.

"On the forecast track, the center of Beryl is expected to move off the coast of southern South Carolina later today and move along or just off the coast of South and North Carolina through this evening," forecasters said.

FULL STORY
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Filed under: North Carolina • South Carolina • Tropical weather • Weather
Overheard on CNN.com: How does same-sex marriage factor into voters' decisions?
President Obama, shown at a February event, hasn't backed Vice President Joseph Biden's support of same-sex marriage.
May 8th, 2012
06:17 PM ET

Overheard on CNN.com: How does same-sex marriage factor into voters' decisions?

Editor's note: This post is part of the Overheard on CNN.com series, a regular feature that examines interesting comments and thought-provoking conversations posted by the community.

President Barack Obama has expressed views on same-sex marriage that CNN opinion columnist LZ Granderson has called an "awkward dance," whereas Vice President Joe Biden has expressed support. Granderson, who is gay, asserts that Obama is keeping his conscience in the proverbial closet. The issue is in the spotlight because North Carolina's primary, among three happening Tuesday, includes a referendum that would constitutionally ban same-sex marriage. The state currently does not permit such unions. What's your take? Share your view on video via CNN iReport.

Obama keeps his conscience in the closet

Two iReporters weighed in on the issue with video commentary. Mark Ivy of Farmersburg, Indiana, says he is gay and in a long-term committed relationship. He also expresses his independent political views frequently on CNN iReport, and said he believes the issue should be decided by the states rather than federal government.

Compared to other things, the marriage issue is a "blip on the radar," Ivy said. He indicated that he doesn't want politicians "pandering" in order to capture "our vote."

"Our time will come, but during this presidential election, the LGBT should keep its eyes on the more needy issues of the economy, jobs and the national debt."

Another iReporter, Egberto Willies of Kingwood, Texas, said he supports Barack Obama and believes the issue is important, but that will come in time.

"His position on same-sex marriage does not weaken my support," Willies said. "It means we must use several avenues to exert pressure to ensure he comes to the right conclusion eventually." FULL POST

February 24th, 2012
12:17 PM ET

Disturbances prompt cancellations of some Nike releases

[Updated at 4:13 p.m. ET] Concerns about disturbances among large crowds waiting to buy special-edition Nike shoes tied to this weekend’s NBA All-Star Game prompted stores in several states to cancel the releases, media reports say.

Of particular interest among many would-be shoppers, according to the reports, was the $220 Nike Foamposite One Galaxy, a space-themed, glow-in-the dark shoe that nods to the space legacy of Florida, where this weekend’s game is happening in Orlando.

In Orlando on Thursday night, a Foot Locker House of Hoops store at Florida Mall cancelled a special 11 p.m. opening after police were called to handle a crowd of about 1,200 people, CNN affiliates Bay News 9 and WFTV reported.

The crowd outside the mall was moved across the street before the late-night opening. But at one point, people rushed toward the store, which was to sell the Foamposite One and other All-Star-related releases, the affiliates reported.

“People tried running over the cops. People tried just getting into that line,” witness Youssef Abounouadar told WFTV. “Everyone ran to the door, and it started getting really hectic.”

FULL POST

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Filed under: Basketball • Florida • Georgia • Maryland • NBA • North Carolina • Sports
January 10th, 2012
11:53 AM ET

Task force recommends $50,000 payment to N.C. sterilization victims

A task force has recommended that a one-time payment of $50,000 be given to each of the living victims of North Carolina's forced sterilization program, committee spokeswoman Jill Lucas told CNN.

North Carolina's eugenics program sterilized an estimated 7,600 people between 1929 and 1974, many of them against their will.

The Eugenics Compensation Task Force will make its recommendation to Gov. Bev Purdue who will include the recommendation in the budget she submits to the state legislature which will take this up in the spring, Lucas said.

The five-member task force - including a doctor, lawyer, historian, retired judge and retired journalist – met for 10 months and faced a February 1 deadline to send a recommendations to the governor.

preliminary report released in August suggested the state provide victims with mental health services and a tax-exempt payment of $20,000 to $50,000. The report also recommended funding for the continuation and expansion of the North Carolina Justice for Sterilization Victims Foundation, which operates the task force, as well as funding for a traveling exhibition to educate the public about the state’s defunct eugenics program.

There are few public details about who – if any – were targeted for sterilization and how they were coerced into it.

Nationally, many eugenics programs focused on criminals and mentally ill people, but in North Carolina, it extended to healthy women and children who were often poor and uneducated. Mothers were pushed or tricked into signing release forms for their young daughters to undergo the sterilization operation under threat of losing state-provided aid or custody.

Their stories and circumstances have only begun to emerge recently, sometimes in emotional public hearings, sometimes in phone calls to the victims foundation.

FULL STORY ON IN AMERICA BLOG
Graham released from hospital
Billy Graham was released from the hospital on Tuesday.
December 6th, 2011
02:14 PM ET

Graham released from hospital

Evangelist Billy Graham returned to his home in Montreat, North Carolina, Tuesday afternoon following a six-day stay at nearby Mission Hospital in Asheville for treatment of pneumonia.

Graham's longtime spokesman A. Larry Ross tweeted on Tuesday: "Evangelist Billy Graham was released from Mission Hospital this afternoon, and will be home for the holidays!"

And he added, "Upon discharge from Mission Hospital, Billy Graham expressed gratitude for thoughts and prayers from around the world."

Graham was hospitalized on Wednesday, according to a release from the hospital.

FULL STORY
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Filed under: Billy Graham • Christian • North Carolina • Religion
Hospitalized Billy Graham continues to show improvement
Billy Graham speaks in 2005 during his Crusade at Flushing Meadows Corona Park in Queens, New York.
December 4th, 2011
06:02 PM ET

Hospitalized Billy Graham continues to show improvement

Evangelist Billy Graham is showing signs of improvement as he continues to recover from pneumonia in a North Carolina hospital, a spokeswoman for Asheville's Mission Hospital said Sunday.

The 93-year-old Graham was admitted to the hospital Wednesday in stable condition.

"Doctors are encouraged by Mr. Graham's significant clinical progress, but have not yet set a date for discharge," hospital spokeswoman Merrell Gregory said in a statement.

Gregory also reported progress in Graham's physical therapy, saying he is "walking more in the private corridor outside his room."

Graham was visited over the weekend by his family, according to Gregory. He also watched on television his pastor deliver his regular Sunday sermon, she said.

This is Graham's second bout with pneumonia this year. He was previously hospitalized for the infection in May.

FULL STORY
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Filed under: Billy Graham • Christian • North Carolina • Religion
November 30th, 2011
12:01 PM ET

Great white shark spotted off ... North Carolina?

Matt Garrett of Boston, Massachusetts, and a group of friends decided to go fishing off the coast of North Carolina over the Thanksgiving weekend and things were going swimmingly.

“It was our second time fishing. We went fishing the day before,” Garrett said, adding that he intended to enjoy a day of leisure.  “I brought my golf clubs and fishing rods,” he said.

But as they navigated about 25 miles off Wrightsville Beach, something fishy happened.

"Everything was biting (at first), then all of a sudden nothing was biting at all. We knew something was up,” he said.

“Off in a distance we saw two big fins sticking up in the water. We thought it was a couple Atlantic Sunfish or two dolphins. As the two fins approached a little closer, we noticed it was a giant shark."

A great white shark.

Garrett said, "It was all amazement, seeing such a large living creature. It also doesn't seem real. It was very surreal!"

The shark T-boned the boat, turned around and slapped the boat with its tail, Garrett said.

Capturing it all on his iPhone 4S, Garrett said, “It didn't sink in until later that this was so significant," he said.

Paul Barrington of the NC Aquarium confirmed to CNN affiliate WECT that it was indeed a great white shark, a rarity for North Carolina waters, but not unheard of.

Barrington told WECT the shark was likely just being nosey. Garrett figured as much. "He nudged us with his nose and turned around and slapped the boat with his tail," he told the station.

Asked if he ever got out golfing, Garrett said, “I got out for nine holes and I assure you it wasn’t nearly as exciting.”


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Filed under: North Carolina • Sharks • U.S.
October 23rd, 2011
04:28 PM ET

Gabrielle Giffords to undergo 'intensive' therapy in North Carolina

U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords arrived in North Carolina on Sunday to undergo "intensive" rehabilitation as she continues her recovery from being shot in the head in a mass shooting in January, her office said.

The two-week trip to Asheville has been in the works for several months, according to her office. Her therapy sessions will begin Monday and last until November 4, according to her office.

A statement from the office said Giffords will be working with a therapist who treated her previously in Houston. The statement did not identify the therapist or any medical facility in Asheville involved.

FULL STORY
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Filed under: Arizona • Gabrielle Giffords • North Carolina
September 13th, 2011
03:03 PM ET

N.C. senate approves putting same-sex marriage amendment on 2012 ballot

North Carolina will put an amendment banning same-sex marriage on the ballot in May after the state's House and Senate passed the measure.

The measure cleared the Senate by a vote of 30-16, according to Mark Johnson, spokesperson for governor's office. On Monday the House also passed the measure by a vote of 76-41.

Read the bill (PDF)

If the constitutional amendment is approved by voters during the primary in May, North Carolina would become the final state in the Southeast to add a constitutional amendment regarding same-sex marriage.

Proponents of the measure said they felt it was important that the amendment be added so that it would protect the state's policy on gay marriage. North Carolina currently has a ban on same-sex marriage, but legislators are seeking to protect that ban by chiseling it into their constitution.

“We think the people of this state – not judges, bureaucrats, or politicians – should define marriage, which I personally believe should be between one man and one woman," Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger said in a statement after the measure passed. "We look forward to eight months of healthy debate before voters decide this issue at the polls.”

The proposed constitutional amendment sparked anger from many Democrats in the legislature, who argued the Republicans were trying to push through the measure since they have control for the first time in 140 years.

Others argued the legislature should be focused on more pressing issues such as the economy or jobs.

That concern also came from North Carolina Gov. Bev Perdue.

“I’m focused on solving problems and creating jobs.  This partisan exercise does neither: Same-sex marriage is already illegal in North Carolina, and this constitutional amendment would not create a single job. In fact, it could hurt existing North Carolina businesses - as Speaker Tillis himself acknowledged - and harm our ability to attract new businesses to invest and grow jobs here. “

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