Latest North Carolina news, sports, business and entertainment at 9:20 p.m. EDT


Legislative cafeteria worker tests positive for COVID-19

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — The COVID-19 outbreak has reached into North Carolina's Legislative Building, where a cafeteria employee tested positive for the virus. Legislative Services Officer Paul Coble wrote to legislative staff that the unidentified worker was sent home March 26 after showing symptoms and received the positive test result on Wednesday. The cafeteria closed Wednesday indefinitely for cleaning. Employees working with the person have been asked to self-quarantine. Coble said snack bars at the building and at an adjoining office building were being cleaned and expected to reopen Thursday for takeout only.


North Carolina man arrested for violating gathering order

TARBORO, N.C. (AP) — A North Carolina man has been arrested after sheriff's deputies who were responding to a call about a shooting found more than 70 people at a barn. News outlets report the Edgecombe County Sheriff’s Office responded to Bynum Drive in Pinetops in reference to shots fired into a residence. When deputies reached the scene, they saw vehicles leaving the area, and when they went to the back of the residence, they found more than 70 people, which is in violation of Gov. Roy Cooper's order limiting gatherings. John Fitzgerald Taylor of Pinetops was charged last Saturday for violating the governor's executive order.


Nearly 60 homeless people suspected, confirmed with virus

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Health officials in North Carolina say nearly 60 homeless people have either been suspected or confirmed to have the coronavirus, or have been exposed to someone who has. The Charlotte Observer reports Mecklenburg County Health Director Gibbie Harris briefed members of the General Assembly on Thursday about the county’s response to COVID-19. She said 58 people — all but one who are homeless — are staying in a hotel leased by the county for people who have tested positive for the virus, display symptoms and are awaiting results, or have been exposed to someone with the virus and need somewhere to isolate.


Police say North Carolina woman intentionally set on fire

GOLDSBORO, N.C. (AP) — Investigators for a North Carolina police department say a woman was intentionally set on fire after a dispute. News sources reported on Thursday that officers with the Goldsboro Police Department responded to a call of an assault at a residence on Wednesday. When they arrived, officers found 38-year-old Latonya McCoy suffering from severe burns. McCoy was taken to a local hospital before she was transferred to the burn unit at UNC Hospitals in Chapel Hill, where she is listed om critical condition. An investigation is underway, but police have made no arrests so far.


Internet speeds dropped, then rebounded, in some cities

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — As more people work from home because of the coronavirus pandemic, internet speeds slowed down last month across the state of North Carolina. But the Raleigh News & Observer reported Wednesday that speeds are rebounding in some cities. For example, Charlotte and Raleigh saw median download speeds drop at least 20%. Winston-Salem experienced one of the largest drops in the nation. Its median speed fell 41%. But in the past week, some of North Carolina's cities have begun to see speeds increase. Raleigh resumed its normal range of speeds. And Winston-Salem saw one of the largest improvements in the country with a nearly 40% jump. Charlotte continued to see a slow down.


Biltmore Estate temporarily shutters, furloughs workers

ASHEVILLE, N.C. (AP) — The Biltmore Estate in North Carolina is furloughing 2,200 employees after temporarily closing its doors because of the coronavirus outbreak. The Asheville Citizen-Times reported Wednesday that the 8,000-acre estate hadn't closed its doors since World War II. It first opened to the public in 1930. The 250-room chateau was built by businessman George Vanderbilt in the late 19th Century. It anchors an estate that is home to a winery, hotels, restaurants and a working farm. The estate opened as a tourist attraction during the Great Depression as a way to help the area economically. These days the estate typically draws about 1.4 million visitors a year.


Data: Virus impact disproportionate for blacks in Charlotte

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Heath officials observing COVID-19 in North Carolina's largest city say demographic data showed African Americans are being disproportionately affected. The Charlotte Observer reports that data from Mecklenburg County shows black residents accounted for 43.9% of 303 confirmed COVID-19 cases locally through Saturday. By comparison, the U.S. Census estimates from last July show African American  residents make up only 32.9% of Mecklenburg County’s population. Mecklenburg County Commissioner Mark Jerrell said the numbers are alarming, and it’s something officials have to get under control immediately. As of Wednesday, Mecklenburg County reported 444 cases of coronavirus.


3-year-old wounded in drive-by shooting in North Carolina

KANNAPOLIS, N.C. (AP) — Police in North Carolina say a 3-year-old was the victim of a drive-by shooting and suffered life-threatening injuries. News sources report officers with Kannapolis police found the girl at a home on Tuesday evening. The child was taken to a local hospital for treatment. Police say the parents of the child were also at home at the time of the shooting and were not injured. According to police, those responsible for the shooting drove by the residence in a dark colored sedan which is the object of a search.