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Washington County ready to cement its legacy

Thu, 12/11/2014 - 3:39pm

SANDERSVILLE, Ga. — They’ve grown up hearing the stories and seeing the pictures and jerseys of the local legends lining the walls of places from Washington County High School to Dairy Lane burger joint.

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Trial near for woman charged in toddler death

Thu, 12/11/2014 - 2:39pm


The case against an Augusta woman charged with murder in the death of her toddler could go before a jury as early as February.

Marina Mae Middlebrooks, 30, was indicted on murder and cruelty to children charges in July.

The case could go to trial as early as Feb. 9, according to Hank Syms, the Assistant District Attorney prosecuting the case.

Middlebrooks was arrested May 2, 2013 in connection to the death of her 2-year-old daughter, Sky Allen.

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Savannah River Site offering public tours in 2015

Thu, 12/11/2014 - 1:58pm


Savannah River Site will again offer public tours of the former Cold War-era plant that produced materials for nuclear weapons.

The public can register for one of 22 tour dates in 2015, according to a news release. Registration begins Dec. 29 for the free tours.

Each year, driving tours are offered of the Department of Energy site near Aiken. More than 1,000 seats are available to see the site’s facilities and learn more about the history, current activities and future missions at SRS.

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High court denies Sentinel request for appeal; 13 lawsuits to proceed to trial

Thu, 12/11/2014 - 1:36pm


In a unanimous decision released Thursday, the Georgia Supreme Court denied a motion for reconsideration filed by Sentinel Offender Services.

Sentinel attempted again to convince the state’s highest court it was wrong in its Nov. 24 opinion that ended the practice of tolling – indefinitely extending a probation sentence in a misdemeanor case whenever a probation officer alleged misconduct.

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Gun found in Augusta airport bag

Thu, 12/11/2014 - 1:32pm

A loaded gun was pulled from a carry-on bag at Augusta Regional Airport on Wednesday, making it the third firearm discovered this year.

According to a Transportation Security Administration news release, TSA employees discovered the loaded .380 Smith & Wesson handgun in the bag around 4 p.m.

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Kay Allen denied payment of attorney's fees after complaint agrainst her dismissed

Thu, 12/11/2014 - 1:02pm

ATLANTA — Former Columbia County Tax Commissioner Kay Allen lost her bid for $1,300 in attorney’s fees for defending a complaint against her that was dismissed by the state campaign-finance commission.

The commission voted 3-1 Wednesday to deny her motion to order reimbursement of the fees from her former deputy, Dwight Johnson, who filed the dismissed complaint.

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Driving while black? New app developers offer advice

Thu, 12/11/2014 - 12:12pm



PORTLAND, Ore. — Though the developers of the soon-to-be released “Driving While Black” smartphone application want motorists to download their product, there is a time when they definitely don’t want users searching for it.


“Do not reach for your phone when you are talking to police,” stressed Melvin Oden-Orr, one of two Portland lawyers creating the app.


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Bob Jones University admits sex abuse mishandling

Thu, 12/11/2014 - 11:58am


GREENVILLE, S.C. — Bob Jones University President Steve Pettit says the Greenville school has failed to uphold and honor its core values in investigating reports of sexual abuse.


Local media outlets report the results of a two-year investigation into the university’s handling of such complaints is being released Thursday. The university hired a group called the Godly Response to Abuse in the Christian Environment, to investigate.


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Ga. sheriff tries to identify human remains

Thu, 12/11/2014 - 11:54am

GAINESVILLE, Ga. — Authorities in northeast Georgia are seeking the public’s help in their attempt to identify human remains discovered in October.

The Times reports the remains were found in eastern Hall County.

Hall County sheriff’s spokeswoman Deputy Nicole Bailes said homeowners were out walking on their property off M. Bailey Road and discovered the remains Oct. 9.

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SC gay marriage lawyers seek state legal fees

Thu, 12/11/2014 - 7:38am

CHARLESTON, S.C. — Attorneys whose lawsuit opened the way for same-sex marriages in South Carolina are asking a federal judge to order the state to pay their legal fees.

The Post and Courier of Charleston reported that the attorneys are asking that the South Carolina attorney general’s office pay them nearly $153,000 in legal fees.

Judges can order losing parties to pay their opponents’ fees, especially in civil rights cases.

Attorney General Alan Wilson has lost repeated efforts to enforce South Carolina’s constitutional ban against same-sex marriage.

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SC bills allow gun permits as voter ID, keep convicts working

Thu, 12/11/2014 - 7:21am

COLUMBIA — A South Carolina senator has introduced legislation that would let convicts with jobs serve their sentence during the days they’re not working, while their wages are garnished to make their child support payments.

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Augusta toxic waste site permitted to stop treating groundwater

Wed, 12/10/2014 - 9:34pm

After three decades of environmental cleanup, an Augusta toxic waste site has been given permission to stop treating contaminated groundwater.

The former Monsanto Corp. site on Marvin Griffin Road will continue to monitor groundwater for chemicals but won’t have to draw it for treatment, according to a Georgia Environmental Protection Division consent order filed Nov. 18.

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Shooting suspect sought, considered armed and dangerous

Wed, 12/10/2014 - 8:52pm

An unidentified victim was hospitalized Wednesday after being shot in the head in Richmond County.

Approximately 8:10 p.m., deputies responded to the 2300 block of Wheeless Road, where a 33-year-old white male was found suffering from a gunshot wound, according to Richmond County Sgt. Glen Rahn.

The victim was transported to Georgia Regents Medical Center with injuries that are not considered life threatening, Rahn stated.

Deputies say the victim was grazed by a projectile that was fired through the door of the residence from an unknown suspect.

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Couple donates more than 700 Beanie Babies to Augusta's American Red Cross

Wed, 12/10/2014 - 4:44pm

Jennifer Pennington opened an upstairs office door in the American Red Cross’ Augusta headquarters this summer and told an 8-year-old girl whose family had just lost her home to fire to pick any Beanie Baby she’d like.

Before her lay more than 700 vintage stuffed animals, each packaged in protective boxes, their name tags covered in plastic slips.

After much deliberation, Pennington said the girl chose “Halo the Angel Bear,” to watch over her with “lots of love” and be her “guardian angel from up above,” as the toy’s poem read.

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Empty Stocking Fund: Family struggling with father's loss of job

Wed, 12/10/2014 - 2:47pm



An Augusta father lost his job in October and now his family is struggling to make ends meet.

“I am paying all our bills with just my income,” his wife writes, “but that leaves no money for Christmas.

“I would really like to get my daughter something. I would love to see a smile on my 6-year-old’s face on Christmas morning. Please help me.”

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Cubs sign former GreenJacket Lester

Wed, 12/10/2014 - 10:34am

Former Augusta GreenJacket Jon Lester agreed to a $155 million, six-year contract with the Chicago Cubs, the first big deal of the off-season involving a top-level starting pitcher and one Chicago hopes will help end more than a century of frustration at Wrigley Field’s Friendly Confines.

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South Augusta city offices closing; moving

Wed, 12/10/2014 - 10:18am

South Augusta’s tag and utilities customer service offices will serve their last customers today before opening in new locations next week.

The new locations, as part of the City of Augusta - Citizens Service Center, will open at 1 p.m. Monday at a space in the Bi-Lo shopping center, 3463 Peach Orchard Road. The former locations of the tag and utilities customer service offices were 2029 Lumpkin Road and 2760 Peach Orchard Road, respectively.

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Water line break closes James Brown Blvd.

Wed, 12/10/2014 - 8:25am

A portion of James Brown Boulevard will be closed this morning while crews repair a broken water line.

According to Richmond County dispatch, James Brown Boulevard at Ellis and Greene streets will be closed starting at 8 a.m. The area will be reopened after repairs are made.


North Augustan charged in SC slaying

Wed, 12/10/2014 - 8:23am

A North Augusta man is facing murder charges in Allendale County after killing one and wounding two in a shooting Saturday.

Laparis Shemel Flowers, 24, of Georgetown Drive, has been charged with murder, three counts of attempted murder and possession of a weapon during a violent crime, according to a SLED news release.

Authorities said Flowers fired multiple shots into a Ford Crown Victoria in the parking lot of Pinewood Apartments, 852 Barton Road, killing the vehicle’s driver, Russell Smart. He was pronounced deceased at the scene.

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Ga. cops dump sex offender in nearby county

Wed, 12/10/2014 - 6:55am

ATHENS, GA. -- A homeless man was turned away from one Athens shelter because he was a convicted sex offender and another because it had no room, police said.

As a result Monday, Athens-Clarke County police drove 51-year-old Ronald Dwayne Roebuck back to Walton County from where he’d come earlier in the day.

Athens authorities said Monroe police had driven Roebuck to the Salvation Army shelter on Hawthorne Avenue, pointed him toward the door and quickly drove off.

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