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Macon brush fire will burn until it rains

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Wed, 08/27/2014 - 2:26pm

MACON, Ga. — Authorities say a brush fire burning in the Macon area is expected to smolder until the next significant rainfall.

The Telegraph reports that Macon-Bibb County firefighters early Wednesday morning were called to the area off Tucker Valley Road. The newspaper reports that the orange glow of the fire can be seen by motorists on nearby Interstate 475.

Authorities planned to continue to monitor the blaze as there are some homes and buildings nearby. No injuries were reported.

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Holiday will see cheap gas, lots of cops

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Wed, 08/27/2014 - 2:05pm

Authorities in Georgia and South Carolina are teaming up this weekend to target impaired drivers and protect the 1.2 million motorists in the two states who plan to travel in what AAA projects will be one of the busiest Labor Days in recent memory.

The Georgia and South Carolina departments of public safety plan to launch its annual “Hands Across the Border” campaign in the Augusta area at 8 p.m. Thursday with a safety checkpoint near exit 17 on Interstate 520 East in Aiken County.

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Atlanta lawyer embezzled millions, suit says

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Wed, 08/27/2014 - 1:54pm

ATLANTA -- A one-time managing partner of a prominent Atlanta law firm that specializes in real estate closings has been accused by his own practice of embezzling more than $30 million from escrow accounts.

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Workers comp for staff kickball injury?

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Wed, 08/27/2014 - 12:12pm

COLUMBIA -- A man who was severely injured during the company kickball game he organized is entitled to workers’ compensation, the S.C. Supreme Court has ruled.


The justices reversed the Court of Appeals and the state workers’ comp panel in its Wednesday decision.


During the company-sponsored kickball game in 2007, Stephen Whigham jumped and landed awkwardly on his right leg, shattering his tibia and fibula.


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Teacher group backs Carter for governor

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Wed, 08/27/2014 - 12:03pm


ATLANTA — One of the largest teachers’ groups in Georgia has announced its support for Democrat Jason Carter, as he challenges Republican Gov. Nathan Deal in the fall.


The Georgia Association of Educators endorsed Carter on Wednesday, citing a “chronic underfunding and dismantling of Georgia’s public education.”


The group has historically backed Democrats, although it declined to endorse anyone in the 2002 governor’s race. That lack of support was considered a factor in then-Democratic Gov. Roy Barnes losing his bid for re-election.

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UGA legend Magill remembered by friends

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Wed, 08/27/2014 - 11:23am

Daniel Hamilton Magill Jr., legendary University of Georgia tennis coach and sports historian, passed away Saturday at the age of 93.

With a celebration of his life set for noon Thursday at Athens Country Club, two of Magill’s close friends, Jack Bauerle and Allen Miller, shared personal memories this week of the man many call “the greatest Bulldog ever.”

 Five days before Jack Bauerle left to coach at the 2012 London Summer Olympics, Dan Magill called his longtime playing partner to confirm a doubles match.

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Isakson chides Nunn about Sen. Harry Reid

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Wed, 08/27/2014 - 7:35am

ATLANTA -- Sen. Johnny Isakson needled Michelle Nunn a little Tuesday about her hints that she might not support Sen. Harry Reid for majority leader.

“The oldest rule in politics and in life is: you can’t have it both ways,” he said. “You can’t say ‘I might’ and say ‘I might not’ and expect the people of Georgia to believe it one way or another. You’ve got to ultimately declare what you’re going to do.”

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Woman arrested for stealing perfume from Wal-Mart

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 9:17pm

A South Carolina woman was arrested Tuesday after returning stolen items from Wal-Mart in an attempt to receive store credit on a gift card.

Approximately 12:35 p.m., deputies responded to the Wal-Mart on Wrightsboro Road, where Danniell Lashall Kelly, 26, admitted to stealing two bottles of perfume, according to an incident report from the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office.

Kelly, of Columbia, S.C., was issued a $26.22 gift-card refund by customer service before being apprehended as she attempted to leave the store.

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Commission ends gridlock, moves forward on bonds without IFS securities

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 8:55pm

The Augusta Commission ended just under three months of gridlock over a plan to issue some $160 million of refunding water and sewer bonds and $30 million in bonds for system improvements Monday, rejecting overtures from a firm touting its minority ownership that twice delayed the plan’s approval.

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RCBOE begins planning for new west Richmond school in anticipation of Fort Gordon influx

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 8:36pm

Citing rising student populations at several existing schools, the Richmond County Board of Education is planning to build a new school in the western portion of the county.

Board of education members took the first steps toward establishing a new school at the Aug. 19 board meeting, hiring CFS Architects to handle design services for the project. Richmond County School System Program Director Jeff Baker said the new school would be used to ease population overflows as new military families move to the area prior to Fort Gordon’s Cyber Command Center opening in the next few years.

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Man pleads guilty to assaults, gets life plus 20 years

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 4:59pm

A 20-year-old Augusta man suspected of attacking three women, including the rape of one and the attempted rape of another on the Paine College campus, pleaded guilty Tuesday.

Jarius Dantzler accepted a plea negotiation and pleaded guilty to the most serious charge in each of his three cases in exchange for a sentence of life in prison plus 20 years.

Dantzler had previously rejected opportunities to plead guilty before his trial on one of the cases began Monday in Richmond County Superior Court.

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Michaux: It's time to apologize for picks right now

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 3:20pm

As college football finally enters the playoff era, there’s nowhere to go but up.

Same could be said for my preseason predictions.

This annual exercise is more often than not destined for failure. College football has so many variables (just ask the injury-decimated 2013 Georgia team) that it’s practically impossible to foresee all of the eventual pitfalls in August.

But usually you can at least stumble upon one or two keen judgments.

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Open house Wednesday on Augusta Regional Airport's master plan

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 3:15pm

An open house is set Wednesday to gather input on Augusta Regional Airport’s master plan update.

The Augusta Aviation Commission began the process in January to update the airport’s 20-year master plan and expects to have it complete next spring. During the open house, airport officials, members of the aviation commission and the consultant team will be available to collect feedback on draft plans for future airport facilities.

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Ga. VA nurse gets federal prison term

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 3:10pm

BRUNSWICK, Ga. -- A VA nurse from Glennville, Ga., will serve five years in federal prison and must repay $450,000 in federal funds she received by filing bogus worker’s compensation claims, the U.S. attorney said.

Loretta Smith, 41, pleaded guilty Feb. 26 to two counts of mail fraud in the mailing of the fraudulent claims and Senior U.S. District Judge Dudley H. Bowen sentenced her Friday in Dublin, where Smith had worked as a nurse at the Carl Vinson VA Medical Center.

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Police identify suspect in Carrie Street shootings

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 2:57pm

Police have identified the man they say killed one and injured three in a shooting on Carrie Street late Sunday.

Police announced the arrest Monday, but waited until Tuesday to publicly identify Robert Ivory Anderson Jr., 49, of Wintervale Road.

Officers were called to the area near 1013 Carrie St., around 11 p.m. Sunday where they found four people with gunshot wounds.

One of them, Quintroy Deion Roberts, 29, of Richmond Hill Road, was pronounced dead at the scene. The three others, who all resided at 1015 Carrie St., were treated for their injuries.

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Report: Training injuries triple at Fort Gordon

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 2:39pm

The death of a Mississippi national guardsman at Fort Gordon this month highlights a growing trend of training injuries on post that one Army doctor said could be solved by soldiers modifying fitness routines and not pushing themselves to get in peak physical condition.

In the past four years, training injuries have more than tripled at Fort Gordon, climbing from 21 in 2011 and 2012 to 77 in 2013 and 2014, according to statistics kept by the Army Combat Readiness and Safety Center in Alabama.

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Aiken man arrested in narcotics sting

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 2:27pm


An Aiken man is facing drug charges after the completion of a three-month investigation into a large operation of illegal narcotic sales.

Daryl Antonio Simmons, 39, of 125 Sharlyn Lane, has been charged with distribution of cocaine, three counts of trafficking cocaine and four counts of distribution of cocaine within a half-mile of a school.

Aiken County sheriff’s investigators on Monday searched Simmons’ home, where they seized 69 grams of cocaine, 17 grams of an unknown white powder and 355 grams of an unknown crystal white substance.


Police called when neighbor shoots at dog

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 2:24pm


A Hephzibah woman called police Sunday after a neighbor shot at her dog.

She told police that Ryan Adams, 24, of Elmwood Court, who was in his vehicle, fired a shot about 9 p.m. and then drove away.

Adams initially told police it was fireworks, not a gunshot. He later said he was walking to his car with his gun for protection when the miniature pinscher came into his yard in an aggressive manner. He said he fired one shot out of instinct, according to a sheriff’s incident report.

Adams told police the dog runs loose frequently.

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Snake fungal disease discovered in Georgia

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 2:09pm


Georgia’s snake population could be threatened by a deadly fungal disease found in a wild snake in Bulloch County.

A mud snake tested positive last month for snake fungal disease, a skin dermatitis that causes scabs, crusty scales, nodules, abnormal molting and other changes to the snake’s skin. According to the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Georgia-based nonprofit The Orianne Society, which focuses on conserving imperiled snakes, discovered the emaciated snake on the edge of a blackwater swamp near Statesboro.

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Aquinas football keeps firm grip on No. 1

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 2:06pm


Aquinas is the unanimous pick again.

For the second week in a row, the Irish football team received all first-place votes in the Georgia Sports Writers Association Class A poll. Aquinas started its season with an easy 41-6 win at Glenn Hills in its first game played ranked No. 1. Aquinas plays Friday at Prince Avenue Christian, which is ranked No. 8.

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