First Drip (8/10/15): Men arrested after bringing gun to church, acting suspiciously

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Police arrested 16-year-old Austin Hannon and 27-year-old Michael Blake after the two brought a gun into First Haitian Church of Grace in northeast Charlotte on Sunday. The two men reportedly entered the church and said they wanted to pray with someone from the church and were led to a room in the back to do so. Church officials became uneasy when they saw the men were carrying a backpack and acting suspicious. When asked, the men admitted they had a .40 caliber handgun in the bag, which was confiscated by church leaders until police arrived. 

Mecklenburg County officials are looking for ways to protect a Confederate monument near Memorial Stadium after it was vandalized twice in three weeks. The county contracted a private firm to clean the monument on both occasions, paying $370 the first time and $380 the second. A county spokesperson said video surveillance is one option being discussed by county leaders. 

Construction will begin on a 19-story tower next to the Westin Charlotte in Uptown on Friday. Portman Holdings recently secured construction financing for its $122 million office tower, which will be located at 615 S. College St. The 370,000-square-foot office tower will be built atop the Westin parking deck. Portman Holdings now expects construction to be complete in February 2017 instead of the fourth quarter of 2016.

Five people, including two police officers, were shot during an incident in Gastonia on Saturday night. The two officers suffered non-life-threatening injuries, while two other men were killed and another person was injured. Gaton County Police did not release the names of the officers, nor the two men killed in the shootout. 

Gunfire erupted in Ferguson, Missouri overnight during protests marking the one-year anniversary of the fatal shooting of unarmed Michael Brown by police officer Darren Wilson. Four people were shot and three arrested early this morning during the protests. Police said one suspect who was shot by police is in "critical, unstable" condition in a local hospital and undergoing surgery. Belmar said that after a shootout between six people, the suspect ran away, but then shot at police who were chasing him in an unmarked vehicle with emergency lights flashing.

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