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Judge may block child death information

Thu, 02/19/2015 - 8:55am

MARIETTA, Ga. — A judge is considering a request by prosecutors that would prevent agencies from releasing information about the death of a toddler who died after being left in a hot vehicle in suburban Atlanta.

Justin Ross Harris has pleaded not guilty to murder and other charges in the death of his 22-month-old son, Cooper Harris, on June 18. Harris told police he was supposed to drive his son to day care but forgot the child was in the SUV and drove to work.

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No stabbing in mall fight, police say

Thu, 02/19/2015 - 8:40am

Police said this morning a Wednesday fight at the Augusta Mall did not result in a stabbing, as was originally reported, although a juvenile was arrested for fighting.

“Someone at the mall saw a knife. That is true, but there was no stabbing,” Richmond County Sheriff’s Sgt. Michael McDaniel said today.

Police were called to the Buffalo restaurant area of the food court at the Augusta Mall, 3450 Wrightsboro Road, around 4:45 p.m., after a stabbing was reported.

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Bad roads cost Georgians, group says

Thu, 02/19/2015 - 8:05am

ATLANTA -- Georgia drivers pay an extra $7.9 billion yearly for the problems with roads and bridges across the state, according to a report released Wednesday by transportation advocates.

That comes to $742 for every Athens driver, $1,259 for every Augusta driver and $1,800 for every Savannah driver.

The report was prepared for TRIP, a Washington-based organization funded by construction, labor and engineering outfits. And it was distributed by the Georgia Chamber of Commerce’s Transportation Alliance and the AAA auto club.

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Lawmakers challenge history teaching

Thu, 02/19/2015 - 7:43am

ATLANTA -- Members of the House and Senate education committees took turns Wednesday criticizing an executive from the College Board for having a liberal slant on guidelines it publishes for teaching advanced-placement American history.

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Social media blamed for UGA meningitis scare

Thu, 02/19/2015 - 7:33am

ATHENS, Ga. -- The president of the University of Georgia on Wednesday blamed misinformed commenters on social media and irresponsible broadcast news reporting for spreading false rumors that a UGA student died this week from bacterial meningitis.

UGA President Jere Morehead said the comments and reports spread unwarranted fear across the campus.

“The rumor mill that has blown up around her passing is unfortunate and is feeding speculation that simply is not true,” he said.

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Georgia health-care enrollment tops 530,000

Wed, 02/18/2015 - 11:02pm


More than 530,000 people in Georgia have enrolled in the Affor­dable Care Act, a nearly 15 percent increase in the last week or so before Sunday’s deadline, and 11.4 million gained coverage overall, officials with the federal marketplace and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services said Wednesday.

A lot of them waited until the deadline Sunday, when the marketplace saw its biggest day ever, marketplace CEO Kevin Counihan said.

“It was a blowout weekend for us,” he said.

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Georgia Regents coach Dip Metress notches milestone win as Jaguars roll past Francis Marion

Wed, 02/18/2015 - 10:42pm

As the seconds started ticking down Wednesday night, Georgia Regents students started chanting “Two-fifty! Two-fifty!”

Devonte Thomas scored 21 points as the Jaguars overcame a slow start for a 101-75 win over Francis Marion at Christenberry Fieldhouse.

Georgia Regents (21-5, 13-4 Peach Belt Conference), which checked in at No. 5 in the Southeast Region rankings earlier in the day, extended its winning streak to nine and remained tied atop the East Division with UNC Pembroke (22-4, 13-4) with two games remaining.

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Rep. Rick Allen to visit Davidson, ARC on Thursday

Wed, 02/18/2015 - 10:05pm

U.S. Rep. Rick Allen will visit a pair of Richmond County schools today.

From 9 to 10:30 a.m., Allen will tour and visit classrooms at John S. Davidson Fine Arts Magnet School.

Allen is then scheduled to visit the Academy of Richmond County, where he will tour the campus from 11 to 11:30 a.m. before eating lunch with students from 11:30 a.m. until noon.

Allen, the representative for Georgia’s 12th district, will speak to students about how he represents them in Washington, according to a statement from Richmond County Superintendent Angela Pringle.


RCSO to conduct customer survey at Augusta Mall

Wed, 02/18/2015 - 10:05pm

The Community Services Division of the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office will be in the food court of the Augusta Mall on Friday to conduct a customer satisfaction survey.

RCSO will conduct the survey from 10 a.m. until 4:30 p.m., according to a statement from Lt. Allan Rollins.

“We promise our citizens that information from the survey will be incorporated into our strategy planning for the Augusta community,” Rollins stated.



Activist to speak to commissioners about policing of handicapped parking

Wed, 02/18/2015 - 9:19pm


A community activist said he will challenge the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office’s lax enforcement of handicapped parking violations before Augusta Commission members next week to ensure people with disabilities get the “fair and equal” treatment they’re guaranteed in state and federal law.

Tim Hollobaugh, an Augusta disability-rights consultant, plans to appear before the Public Safety Committee at 1:05 p.m. Monday to request that Sheriff Richard Round­tree instruct his deputies to take a more active role in enforcing the state’s handicapped parking law.

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Hutt posts double-double, GRU women win again

Wed, 02/18/2015 - 8:25pm


Kariel Hutt has added sushi to her diet. Coach Nate Teymer keeps wearing a pink tie. And the superstitious Georgia Regents women keep winning.

Hutt scored 17 points Wednesday night as the Jaguars pulled away for a 52-40 win over Francis Marion at Christenberry Fieldhouse.

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Augusta pupils make teddy bears for sick children

Wed, 02/18/2015 - 7:58pm

Charlotte Stansfield tightly hugged a newly fashioned teddy bear on Wednesday but quickly loosened her grip. She wasn’t saddened about losing a new friend, but eager to give it away.

Charlotte’s kindergarten class from Westminster Schools of Augusta spent the morning at Build-A-Bear Workshop, a field trip that teachers hoped taught about kindness, generosity and community service.

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Three suspects sought in Zales Jewelry theft

Wed, 02/18/2015 - 6:12pm

The Richmond County Sheriff’s Office is searching for three suspects in connection to a theft that occurred at Zales Jewelry in the Augusta Mall.

The theft happened in December, according to a statement from Sgt. Michael McDaniel, and items taken were not listed in the report.

The first suspect is described as a heavy-set black male in his late 30s. He appears to be 5-foot-10.

A second suspect is described as a slender black female in her late 30s. She’s approximately 5-foot-5 and 110 to 150 pounds.

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RCSO investigating stabbing report in mall food court

Wed, 02/18/2015 - 5:56pm

A suspect is in custody after an altercation and report of a stabbing Wednesday afternoon at the Augusta Mall.

A man had been stabbed at the food court, according to information provided to Richmond County dispatch and deputies responded about 4:45 p.m.

Witnesses say the man was stabbed in the back, but could not be found when officers arrived.

Deputies detained a suspect, whose name has not been released, dispatch confirmed.

Around 5 p.m., deputies were checking area hospitals to see if a victim with a stab wound had arrived for treatment.

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Cold temps bring fire warnings

Wed, 02/18/2015 - 2:03pm

Fire department officials are asking residents to watch vacant properties in their neighborhoods for fires as temperatures dip this week.

According to a news release, firefighters have responded to six fires at vacant structures since Jan. 1. More fires are possible as temperatures drop and the homeless seek shelter in vacant homes and use accelerants to start fires.

“As long as everybody is alert and looking at these situations we may be able to stop or slow down the incidents of fires in vacant homes,” Fire Marshal Chief Jason Beard said.

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Cold weather prompting changes at local school districts

Wed, 02/18/2015 - 1:35pm


Cold weather is prompting some local school districts to make changes to their operating hours and procedures.

Richmond County will open schools 30 minutes early Thursday and Friday to ensure students arriving for classes will not have to wait outside in the cold. Outdoor sporting events and trips requiring the use of school vehicles will be suspended both days.

The Edgefield County school system will have a two-hour delay for all students Thursday and Friday because of the expected low temperatures. School staffs will still have to report at 8:30 both days.

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Cause of UGA student death undisclosed

Wed, 02/18/2015 - 1:10pm

ATHENS, Ga. -- Although the cause of death for a University of Georgia student remained undisclosed, Athens Regional Medical Center officials confirmed that no cases of the highly contagious bacterial meningitis have been treated at the hospital.

“(There have been) no confirmed cases of bacterial meningitis, nor any other communicable diseases, within the past seven days that require notification or follow up of exposed individuals,” ARMC noted in a statement issued Tuesday.

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Richmond County mother charged with child abuse

Wed, 02/18/2015 - 12:53pm


An Augusta mother is facing charges after doctors found her 6-month-old child with new and old signs of abuse.

Jamie Lynn Morgan, 23, called an ambulance to her Forster Street home about noon Tuesday, saying her 2-year-old son hurt her infant daughter.

According to a Richmond County Sheriff’s Office report, Morgan told doctors that she left her son alone with her daughter while she used the bathroom, then returned to find her son had jumped on the baby, hitting her in the head with his knee.

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SC touts unclaimed property

Wed, 02/18/2015 - 9:14am

COLUMBIA — South Carolinians have more than $462 million in unclaimed property, and State Treasurer Curtis Loftis wants everyone to know about it.

The South Carolina General Assembly is proclaiming Wednesday as Unclaimed Property Day.

Loftis says nearly 27,000 accounts worth $16 million were paid to South Carolina individuals and businesses by the Palmetto Payback unclaimed property staff last fiscal year.

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Over 300 people identified whose prosecutions might be tainted

Tue, 02/17/2015 - 11:29pm

As the investigation into the improper and possibly illegal conduct of a federal prosecutor and ATF agent continues, U.S. Attorney Edward Tarver released the names of an additional 340 people whose criminal prosecutions may have been tainted.

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