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Headline Roundup: Death Penalty Decision Coming Next Week In Death Of 3 Arab-Americans; More

A judge will decide next week whether prosecutors have enough evidence to seek the death penalty against the man accused of shooting three young Arab-Americans to death. Craig Hicks is charged with first-degree murder in the Febraury 10 killings of 23-year-old Deah Bara-cot, 21-year-old Yusor Abu-Salha and 19-year-old Razan Abu-Salha.

Police say the shootings were motivated by a long-running dispute over parking at the condominium complex where Hicks and the victims lived. The families of the victims say the shootings were hate crimes. 

NC State Disbands Fraternity
NC State University has disbanded its Pi Kappa Phi fraternity chapter over the discovery of a racially offensive pledge book. Chancellor Randy Woodson said yesterday the fraternity was ordered to immediately vacate its on-campus house.

The move comes one week after a worker at a restaurant near campus found the notebook and turned it over to a Raleigh TV station. The book contains sexist and racist remarks.

Pi Kappa Phi can apply to return to campus with new membership in 2018. This is the second disciplinary action NC State has taken against a fraternities this month. Chacellor Woodson has called for a "thorough review" of the university's Greek system. 

Santorum Drops In On Legislative Building In Raleigh
Former U.S. Senator Rick Santorum paid an impromptu visit to the Legislative Building in Raleigh today. The Pennsylvania Republican was in the capital to speak to a conservative group. In that speech, the former presidential candidate said he’s “kicking around” the idea of another run for the White House. 

Three NC Teams Play For Elite Eight Spot
Three North Carolina teams are playing this week for a spot in the “elite eight” of the NCAA men’s basketball tournament. North Carolina takes on number one seed Wisconsin tonight in Los Angeles, tipoff is at 7:45. NC State and Duke both play tomorrow night.

After 58 Years, Charlotte Restaurant To Close
The Old Hickory House Restaurant will close its doors next week after 58 years in business. The barbecue spot on North Tryon Street in Charlotte announced its last day in business will be next Saturday. Co-owner David Carter tells the Charlotte Observer construction for the Lynx Blue Line light rail extension slowed business in recent years. Carter says the family hasn’t ruled out opening the restaurant in another location. 

Bill Cutting Taxes $1 Billion Introduced
A bill introduced today in the state Senate would cut personal and corporate income taxes by $1 billion a year. The plan sponsored by Republican senators Bob Rucho of Mecklenburg County, Bill Rabon, and Jerry Tillman would cut the state personal income tax rate to 5.625 percent in 2016 and 5.5 percent in 2017.

Linccolnton's Mohican Mills Will Close
Mohican Mills in Lincolnton will close its doors in two months. The textile manufacturer that’s been in business for more than 60 years notified employees yesterday. It’s unclear how many employees will be affected by the closure. CEO Steven Myers says in a statement that Mohican has exhausted all options to stay in business and is left with no alternative but to close.

Four Of 20 Fastest Growing US Cities Are In The Carolinas
Four of the 20 fastest growing metro areas in the U.S. are in the Carolinas. According to data released today by the census bureau, Myrtle Beach came in at number tw, growing 3.2 percent from 2013 to 2014. Hilton Head, Raleigh, and Charleston grew by more than 2 percent.

Mark Price Introduced As New UNCC Coach
UNC Charlotte introduces Mark Price as its new men’s basketball coach. Price has been an assistant coach in the NBA since 2007, most recently with the Charlotte Hornets. He played for Georgia Tech and Cleveland.

Earlier this month, UNC Charlotte and former coach Alan Major announced they had mutually agreed to part ways after five years. Major took two medical leaves of absence in the past year. He says leaving was the best decision for his health and for the team moving forward.

Dean Smith Treats Players To Dinner Out
The estate of Dean Smith is sending a check for $200 to each of the players he coached at UNC. Sports Illustrated reports coach Smith wanted to treat all of his former players to a dinner out.

NC Ag Agency Could Soon Oversee Deer Farming
North Carolina's agriculture agency could soon oversee deer farming for meat, hides, and hunting scents. A farm bill introduced in the state Senate yesterday would transfer regulation of what is seen as a growing livestock field from North Carolina's Wildlife Resources Commission to the state Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. 

The Wildlife Resources Commission was criticized in 2011 after biologists killed nine deer to test them for a fatal deer disease found in about 20 states but not in North Carolina. The farm bill would also alter highway laws to make it easier for farmers to move oversized loads.