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Augusta chosen to join expanded VA initiative

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Fri, 10/02/2015 - 4:15pm

Augusta was selected this week as one of 25 cities nationwide to participate in an expanded Department of Veterans Affairs program aimed at increasing education and employment opportunities to veterans.

The Veterans Economic Communities Initiative brings together local and national partners to provide better networks and tools for veterans, service members and military families, according to a news release.

The public-private partnership started in May. Its membership has now doubled, the release stated.

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Expected rains cancel outdoor events in Richmond, Columbia, Aiken counties

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Fri, 10/02/2015 - 1:12pm

The expectation of heavy weekend rains is canceling many outdoor events in Columbia, Richmond and Aiken counties including all outdoor Westobou Festival events and Harlem’s annual Oliver Hardy Festival.

Rain and possible flooding is expected throughout the weekend, according to the National Weather Service.

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Update: Victim in Aiken traffic death named

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Fri, 10/02/2015 - 8:14am

An Aiken High School student was killed this morning in Aiken County after being struck by a vehicle while walking to a school bus stop.

Chief Deputy Coroner Darryl Ables identified the victim as Skylar Pennington, 16. She was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash near her Columbia Highway North home.

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Richmond County Sheriff's Office holds open forum

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 10/01/2015 - 9:02pm

Hayley Briggs, 19, of Augusta, came to tell the sheriff’s office she believes she was a victim of police brutality.

“I was standing with my sister outside a vacant house when a cop pulled up because we were parked the wrong way.

“Instead of just (communicating with us), the deputy slammed me on my head and I actually blacked out for a moment. You know, how am I supposed to trust law enforcement when they do things like that? I want police to protect me, not attack me.”

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Oktoberfest cancelled, Fort Gordon officials say

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 10/01/2015 - 7:34pm

Fort Gordon’s Oktoberfest celebration scheduled for this weekend has been cancelled due to expected inclement weather, officials said.

According to a statement from the installation’s Public Affairs Office, all Oktoberfest activities with the exception of the carnival on Thursday and Friday have been cancelled.

The National Weather Service issued a flash flood watch Thursday because of Hurricane Joaquin for east central Georgia, including the entire Augusta area, from Friday morning to Monday morning.

Faces of Survival: Marisa Appling

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 10/01/2015 - 5:25pm

Marisa Appling was in the Navy, serving in Iraq, when she felt a lump in her left breast during a routine breast exam. Breast cancer was the last thing on her mind – she thought it was just a cyst.

Because she was only 27, the doctor at the clinic told her it was nothing to worry about. It was still bothering her when she returned to the U.S. She went to the VA and was sent to Dwight D. Eisenhower Army Medical Center for a biopsy.

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Impending bad weather concerns forces time changes for high school games

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 10/01/2015 - 3:51pm

Weather concerns led to changed game times for some of this week’s high school football contests.

Here are the affected games for Friday:

• Augusta Christian at Pinewood, 5:30 p.m.

• Abbeville at Strom Thurmond, 6

• Dixie at McCormick, 6

• Ridge View at North Augusta, 6:30

• Ridge Spring-Monetta at Fox Creek, 7

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9 killed in Oregon college shooting

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 10/01/2015 - 2:51pm

ROSEBURG, Ore. — A gunman opened fire inside a classroom at a rural Oregon community college Thursday, killing at least nine people before dying in a shootout with police, authorities said. One survivor said he demanded his victims state their religion before he started shooting.

The attack shattered the first week of classes at Umpqua Community College in the small timber town of Roseburg, about 180 miles south of Portland.

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Augusta area expecting wet weekend; emergency declared in South Carolina

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 10/01/2015 - 12:46pm

Prepare for a wet weekend.

The National Weather Service has already issued a flash flood watch for east central Georgia, including the entire Augusta area, from Friday morning to Monday morning.

The warning states an upper level low pressure area will become stationary across the region through the weekend and could dump three to five inches with locally higher amounts up to eight inches. There is still some uncertainty to the exact locations for the heaviest rainfall.

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Pat Dye's remark in 2002 helped Georgia beat Alabama

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 10/01/2015 - 10:41am


During 12 seasons as head coach at Auburn, Pat Dye went 6-6 against Alabama and 7-5 against Georgia.

But his impact at both rival schools has been felt long after leaving Jordan-Hare Stadium in 1992. Dye’s most memorable – and controversial – moment came four games into the 2002 season when he boldly stated on a Birmingham radio show that Georgia “wasn’t man enough” to go into Tuscaloosa and beat Alabama.

Dye was confident the comment would ruffle feathers. He also believed it was true.

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Miller Theater restoration effort features street party this month

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 10/01/2015 - 9:46am


A campaign aimed at restoring the Miller Theater will kick off with a street party later this month.

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Moped accident kills Warrenville man

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 10/01/2015 - 9:37am


A Warrenville man died Wednesday evening after his moped collided with a vehicle.

Aiken County Chief Deputy Coroner Darryl Ables said Gregory Joyner, 54, was traveling north on York Street in Aiken about 9;30 p.m. when he collided with a 2015 Jeep Wrangler, which was traveling west and driven by Stephen Cline of Aiken. Joyner was pronounced deceased at Aiken Regional Medical Centers at 10:06 p.m. from blunt force injuries. He was not wearing a helmet.

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October visitor spending in Augusta estimated to be $3.2 million

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 10/01/2015 - 8:54am

Visitors to Augusta are expected to spend more than $3.2 million in October.

The 10,000 people attending the Boshears Memorial Fly-In from Oct. 16-18 are predicted to bring in an estimated $188,000 in direct visitor spending, the most among October events, according to a report released by the Augusta Convention and Visitors Bureau and Augusta Sports Council.

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Sheriff's Office public forum tonight

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 10/01/2015 - 8:11am


The Richmond County Sheriff’s Office seeking the public’s input at a public forum this evening at the Henry Brigham Center.

The public is invited to the event to ask questions of the sheriff’s office and to give input on crime or police practices in the county. The event will be held at 6:30 p.m. at the Henry Brigham Center, 2463 Golden Camp Road.

The sheriff’s office has planned another event for later this month in the Sand Hills area. More details on that event will be released at a later time.


Columbia County deputy in accident

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 10/01/2015 - 8:09am


A Columbia County sheriff’s officer and another driver were injured in a crash during a chase late Wednesday.

Capt. Steve Morris said deputies were called to a residence on Candlewood Drive about 9 p.m. for a domestic dispute, but the suspect, Cecil Herrin, 45, left the home on a motorcycle before officers arrived.

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No shutdown: House approves bill to keep government open

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Wed, 09/30/2015 - 4:21pm


Just hours before a midnight deadline, a bitterly divided Congress approved a stopgap spending bill Wednesday to keep the federal government open – but with no assurance there won’t be yet another shutdown showdown in December.

Democrats helped beleaguered House Republican leaders pass the measure by 277-151 – a lopsided vote shrouding deep disagreements within the GOP – after the Senate approved it by a 78-20 tally earlier in the day. The votes sent the bill to President Obama for his signature.

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Boxing event scheduled for Saturday moved to Nov. 14

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Wed, 09/30/2015 - 3:08pm

The professional boxing event scheduled for Saturday in Augusta has been moved to Nov. 14.

The matches to be held at Bell Auditorium have been rescheduled to the later date because a main-event fighter fell ill.

Ray Whitfield and Divante Jones, both from Augusta, are the feature names for the event, which will still start at 7:45 p.m. Doors open at 6:45.

Tickets already purchased will be valid for the Nov. 14 event.

Auto auction Saturday for Salvation Army

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Wed, 09/30/2015 - 11:32am


The Salvation Army will hold its last auto auction of the year this Saturday.

It will consist of 40 car, trucks, boats and scooters. The feature car will be a 2006 midnight blue Chrysler Sebring. Other cars include a 1977 Cadillac Deville, 2005 Dodge Magnum and a 1994 Mazda 626. The inventory can be viewed online at

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Burke County homicide victim identified as Augusta man

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Wed, 09/30/2015 - 11:26am


The Georgia Bureau of Investigation said a decomposed body discovered in the Burke County woods last week has been identified as an Augusta man and is considered a homicide.

The body has been identified as Michael Jones, 27.

The Burke County Sheriff’s Office responded Friday to a wooded area off of Watkins Pond Road after a hunter discovered the human remains. According to the GBI, which is assisting in the case, the body was in the area for several days and in a state of decomposition. A cause of death has not been given.

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3 charged in kidnap-slaying of South Carolina man in Augusta

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Wed, 09/30/2015 - 9:41am

Three people have been charged with the kidnapping, robbery and shooting death of a South Carolina man last

Police discovered Cordeldrick Laquinn Brooks,

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