Gurnal Scott

Assistant News Director

Gurnal Scott joined North Carolina Public Radio in March 2012 after several stops in radio and television.   After graduating from the College of Charleston in his South Carolina hometown, he began his career in radio there.  He started as a sports reporter at News/Talk Radio WTMA and won five Sportscaster of the Year awards.  In 1997, Gurnal moved on to television as general assignment reporter and weekend anchor for WCSC-TV in Charleston.  He anchored the market's top-rated weekend newscasts until leaving Charleston for Memphis, TN in 2002.  Gurnal worked at WPTY-TV for two years before returning to his roots in radio.  He joined the staff of Memphis' NewsRadio 600 WREC in 2004 eventually rising to News Director.  In 2006, Raleigh news radio station WPTF came calling and he became the station's chief correspondent.  Gurnal’s reporting has been honored by the South Carolina Broadcasters Association, the North Carolina Associated Press, and the Radio Television Digital News Association of the Carolinas.

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Law
5:50 am
Tue October 15, 2013

Durham Police Put 'Bull's Eye' On High-Crime Neighborhood

Map of the target area for the Durham Police Department's "Operation Bull's Eye" initiative
Credit Durham Police Department

Durham police officers are crediting an initiative started six years ago for reducing crime in one of the city's most violent neighborhoods. 

"Operation Bull's Eye" targeted a two-square-mile area with high rates of crime and "shots fired" calls.  Officers used enforcement and community-building programs to bring shooting incidents down by more than half and overall violent crime down by nearly 40 percent. 

Durham's deputy chief Larry Smith says the lower numbers can't be attributed to enforcement alone.  

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Military
11:09 pm
Fri October 11, 2013

Purple Heart Memorial Dedicated At Camp Lejeune

Credit United States Marine Corps

Camp Lejeune now has a memorial for military service members wounded in the line of duty. A Purple Heart memorial was given an official dedication Friday.

Captain Ryan Powell is from the Wounded Warrior Battalion Regiment at Quantico, Virginia. He says the memorial is being located near the Wounded Warrior Battalion-East headquarters which provides non-medical care for injured Marines on base. That includes a recovery protocol that also treats the mind, body and spirit...

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Environment
10:51 pm
Fri October 11, 2013

N.C. Conservationists To Begin Coastal Cleanup Project in 2014

North Carolina's Marine Patrol will get help next year in removing trash from coastal waterways.
Credit NC DENR

Conservation groups will begin an effort next year to clear debris from North Carolina waterways.  Fishermen have told coastal organizations that many spots where they drop lines are littered with old crab pots and debris hidden deep in the water. 

The North Carolina Coastal Federation is leading a two-year project to clean up state waters from StumpyPoint to the Virginia line.  Ladd Bayliss is one of the federation's coastal advocates.

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Sports
6:56 am
Fri October 11, 2013

Wolfpack, Blue Devils Take To The Gridiron This Weekend

Duke players acknowledge the Wallace Wade Stadium crowd.
Credit Duke Photography

The Duke Blue Devils return to the gridiron Saturday after an open date last weekend.  The Naval Academy will come to Durham for a 12:30 p.m. kickoff at Wallace Wade Stadium. 

Last week it appeared this contest may have been in doubt.  The Midshipmen faced the possibility of canceling their appearance because of the ongoing government shutdown.  Duke head coach David Cutcliffe said Navy kept Duke in the loop on their travel plans.

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Politics & Government
6:55 am
Fri October 11, 2013

NCDOT Opens Bidding On Building A New Highway 12 Bridge

The temporary metal bridge that currently spans where N.C. Highway 12 was destroyed by Hurricane Irene. The state DOT is seeking a contractor to build a permanent bridge there.
Credit NCDOT

State transportation officials are working to permanently fix N.C. Highway 12 in Dare County. NCDOT officials say they are in the process of hiring a contractor to build a permanent bridge that will resist future washouts.  

Currently, a temporary metal bridge links where the roadway was destroyed by Hurricane Irene last year. 

Secretary Tony Tata said in an agency release that the project will be an important step in offering a reliable route to the Outer Banks for businesses, residents and visitors. 

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Military
6:29 am
Thu October 10, 2013

Coast Guard Suspends Search For Missing Boater

Credit US Coast Guard

The Coast Guard suspended its search Wednesday night for a missing boater near Cape Lookout.  The man sent out a distress call Tuesday night saying that his 22-foot Bayliner was taking on water.  He said his plan was to put on his life vest, gather some supplies and swim about 200 yards to shore. 

Petty Officer 1st Class Brandyn Hill says it appears the unidentified boater was well prepared in the event of trouble

"Having a life jacket is one of the most important things to help keep that person above the water and prevent them from drowning," says Hill. 

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Business & Economy
5:41 pm
Mon October 7, 2013

European Vote Could Hurt NC Tobacco Exports

Tobacco at Strickland Farms
Credit Leoneda Inge

U.S. tobacco growers are watching new regulations being considered across the Atlantic.  The European Parliament is set to vote on guidelines that would curtail the use of additives in tobacco that provide flavorings to the plant. 

Burley tobacco -- produced mainly in Kentucky -- contains a number of additives that change the taste.  North Carolina has some burley growers, but mostly exports flue-cured tobacco.  N.C. State extension economist Blake Brown says any new regulations could hurt tobacco farmers.

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Business & Economy
5:15 pm
Thu October 3, 2013

Harris Teeter Shareholders Sign Off On Kroger Merger

Credit Mike Kalasnik via Flickr, Creative Commons

Harris Teeter shareholders have approved a plan for Kroger to acquire the Matthews-based grocery chain.  Harris Teeter officials said in a statement that 83 percent of the votes cast by shareholders were in favor of the $2.5 billion merger agreement.   The acquisition by Ohio-based Kroger still has to be approved by federal regulators. 

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Politics & Government
4:41 am
Tue October 1, 2013

Gov. McCrory Calls Federal Lawsuit On New Voting Rules An 'Overreach'

NC Governor Pat Mc Crory
Credit NC Governor's Office

North Carolina governor Pat McCrory has criticized the federal Justice Department's lawsuit alleging racial discrimination over new voting rules as a government overreach.

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder criticized the law signed by McCrory in August, saying changes such as restrictions on certain types of ID and fewer early-voting hours would reduce participation rather than expand it. 

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Sports
9:25 am
Fri September 27, 2013

Triangle College Football Teams Try To Bounce Back

Carter-Finley Stadium in Raleigh
Credit NC State Athletics

The UNC football team faces off this weekend against in-state rival East Carolina.  North Carolina has won 12 of 15 all-time games against the Pirates from Greenville, but that won't dampen the pride that each squad will bring into the game at Chapel Hill.  Tar Heels head coach Larry Fedora says the game puts old friends and foes back on the same field.

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