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Felon convicted on firearms charge

SALISBURY — A jury convicted Willard Jackson Bellamy of Salisbury last week of felony possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, according to a press release from the office of District Attorney Brandy Cook.

The trial was held in Rowan County Superior Court.

Judge Casey Viser sentenced Bellamy to a minimum of 15 months to a maximum of 27 months in prison. Bellamy was placed on supervised probation for 24 months and ordered to serve a split sentence of six months in prison, along with additional conditions of supervised probation.

The press release described the incident:

On Feb. 6, 2015, deputies with the Rowan County Sheriff’s Office were dispatched to Stokes Ferry Road concerning an armed person who had fired a gun.

Dispatchers reported hearing a shot fired while on the phone with the 911 caller. The caller, Bellamy’s sister, reported that Bellamy fired the gun. The firearm had belonged to her and she had given to him a week or two ago.

Bellamy’s sister told deputies that Bellamy was impaired and could hardly walk. He then picked up the gun and said “I can’t do this anymore” and went outside.

She called 911 and heard two gun shots.

Another witness told deputies that Bellamy said he was going to kill himself. Deputies located Bellamy and the firearm and he was arrested. Bellamy admitted to taking the firearm and shooting it, according to authorities.

Bellamy was previously convicted of six driving while impaired convictions, felony trafficking in opium/heroin, among other convictions.

Bowers gets six months for DWI

Paul Newman Bowers of Rockwell was convicted last week by a jury in Rowan County Criminal Superior Court of driving while impaired, according to the District Attorney’s Office.

Judge Casey Viser sentenced Bowers to a minimum of six months to a maximum of six months in prison. Bowers was placed on supervised probation for 18 months and ordered to comply with his conditions of supervised probation.

According to a press release,  a trooper was dispatched to a wreck on Rothrock Road in Rockwell. When he arrived, Bowers had wrecked his moped and was yelling for help.

Bowers admitted to drinking three beers and lab analysis confirmed his blood alcohol content was a .10, authorities said. Bowers had a prior driving while impaired conviction, among other convictions.

District Attorney Cook said she appreciated Assistant District Attorneys Barrett Poppler and Tiffany Tschudi’s trial preparation, along with the thorough investigations by the Rowan County Sheriff’s Office and the N.C. State Highway Patrol.

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