Georgia News Roundup
March 03, 2014 12:00 PM | 1552 views | 0 0 comments | 9 9 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Georgia to join national teacher preparation initiative

ATLANTA (AP) — Georgia is joining a national fellowship program aimed at better preparing teachers of in-demand subject areas.

Gov. Nathan Deal is scheduled to announce that Georgia is joining the Woodrow Wilson Fellowship Program Monday afternoon at the state Capitol. The fellowship program is part of a national initiative to bolster teacher preparation in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

Deal and president of the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation, Arthur Levine, are expected to discuss details of the program in the north wing of the Capitol.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.

Georgia coalition pushing to end capital punishment

ATLANTA (AP) — A group of religious leaders, human rights activists and others are planning to call for Georgia lawmakers to end capital punishment in the state.

Georgians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty is planning to gather in the state Capitol rotunda March 11. Director of the Georgia Council on Developmental Disabilities, Eric Jacobson, is one of the scheduled speakers.

Organizers said in a release that part of their call to action involves pushing lawmakers to reconsider parameters for the burden of proof for proving a defendant's intellectual disability.

Georgia was the first state to pass laws prohibiting executing mentally disabled inmates, but requires that a defendant's intellectual disability be proven beyond a reasonable doubt in court. Georgia's burden of proof is the strictest in the nation.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.

Georgia principal suspended after arrest on sex charge

ATLANTA (AP) — School officials say a metro Atlanta elementary school principal has been suspended after he was charged with traveling with intent to have sex with a child.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports 56-year-old John McGill was among 14 people whose arrests were announced Sunday as part of an undercover investigation by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation and other agencies targeting people using the Internet to try to meet children for sex. McGill is principal of Mt. Carmel Elementary School in Douglas County.

A spokeswoman for the school system, Karen Stroud, says McGill has been suspended pending the outcome of the investigation.

McGill's attorney, Mac Pilgrim, says the principal hasn't yet been able to tell his side of the story and "there's always more than meets the eye."

Information from: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.

Police: Long Island woman accused of hindering probe

MINEOLA, N.Y. (AP) — A Long Island woman has been arrested in Georgia on charges she hindered a police investigation involving the sexual assault of her young daughter.

According to Newsday, the Massapequa woman was arrested Sunday in Convington, Ga. They say she fled there with her 11-year-old daughter to avoid a police investigation into claims her husband sometimes abused the girl.

The paper says Nassau County police were notified in October by a state agency that the girl had been sexually assaulted.

Police say the woman refused to reveal her husband's location and continued to allow him access to the girl. Police say the man was located in Florida where he was arrested Jan. 27 and charged with predatory sexual assault of a child

The girl is in the custody of relatives.

Information from: Newsday, 

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.

Georgia woman killed by train honored on Oscar night

ATLANTA (AP) — A 27-year-old camera assistant killed by a train during a movie shoot in southeast Georgia was remembered by her colleagues on Oscar night.

WSB-TV reports hundreds of people attended a memorial service for Sarah Elizabeth Jones on Sunday at the Atlanta Botanical Gardens. In Savannah, dozens more film industry workers remembered Jones during an Oscar-viewing party, WSAV-TV reports.

Jones was killed and seven film crew members were injured in the Feb. 20 train collision outside Savannah during shooting for "Midnight Rider," a film based on the life of singer Gregg Allman.

Thousands of people had signed petitions asking for Jones to be included in the "In Memoriam" segment during the Oscars. That didn't happen, but an onscreen banner with her name and photo was shown during the broadcast.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.

Georgia men finish 300-mile relay for wounded soldiers

AUGUSTA, Ga. (AP) — A group of runners has completed a 300-mile relay across Georgia to raise money for charities that help wounded and sick Army soldiers.

The Augusta Chronicle reports the six runners finished their journey Sunday at Fort Gordon, three days after they started running at Fort Benning in Columbus. Their efforts raised about $3,000 for the Wounded Warrior Project and the Fisher House, which provides low-cost lodging for families of service members being treated at Fort Gordon's Army hospital.

Relay organizer Ray Miller of nearby Millen says he and some friends came up with the idea for the run across Georgia about three years ago. During the relay, runners would alternate between running three miles and riding in an escort vehicle for nine miles.

Information from: The Augusta Chronicle , 

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.

2 people rescued from burning home in middle Georgia

PERRY, Ga. (AP) — A middle Georgia fire chief says two people were rescued from a burning house by guests at a nearby wedding.

WMAZ-TV reports no one was injured in the fire that engulfed a home Sunday on Main Street in Perry. Fire Chief Joel Gray says two people were trapped inside the house, but they were saved by strangers attending a wedding at a park across the street.

Perry firefighters spent about six hours extinguishing the fire, which was so intense when crews arrived that they couldn't enter the home. The house was declared a total loss. Investigators are still working to determine what caused the blaze.

Information from: WMAZ-TV, 

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.


Motorcycles escort Vietnam wall replica to museum

FORT BENNING, Ga. (AP) — Hundreds of motorcycle riders helped escort a replica of the national Vietnam Memorial wall as it arrived by tractor trailer at Fort Benning, where the wall will spend the next five years on display at the National Infantry Museum.

The Columbus Ledger-Enquirer reports Harris County Sheriff Mike Jolley said more than 1,000 motorcyclists took part in the wall's arrival Sunday.

A dedication ceremony is scheduled for later this month after the wall replica is set up on a 2-acre site outside the Army museum.

Though smaller than the actual Vietnam Memorial in Washington, the replica still stands 8 feet high and measures 240 feet long. Its surface is inscribed with the names of more than 58,000 military service members who died or were declared missing in Vietnam.

Information from: Columbus Ledger-Enquirer, 

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.

Grand marshal ready for Savannah St. Pat's parade

SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) — Savannah has a new top Irishman ready to lead its St. Patrick's Day parade in just two weeks.

The Savannah Morning News reports local whiskey salesman Dave Roberts received the official sash and medals bestowed upon the parade's grand marshal during a ceremony Sunday. Roberts has served on the Savannah committee that organizes the St. Patrick's Day parade for 38 years and has held nearly every office the committee has.

As grand marshal, Roberts will march at the front of the sprawling parade as it winds through Savannah's downtown historic district on March 17.

Irish immigrants began celebrating St. Patrick's Day with a parade in Georgia's oldest city 190 years ago. It's become one of America's largest St. Patrick's Day celebrations, drawing up to 400,000 revelers to Savannah annually.

Information from: Savannah Morning News, 

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.

Qualifying begins for Georgia's May 20 primary

ATLANTA (AP) — Qualifying is underway for Georgia's May 20 primary, with Republicans and Democrats filing their paperwork to appear on the ballot.

Gov. Nathan Deal and House Speaker David Ralston were among the first Republicans to qualify Monday at the Capitol. Both are seeking re-election and will appear on the GOP primary ballot. Deal is expected to draw two primary challengers, state schools Superintendent John Barge and Dalton Mayor David Pennington.

Top Democrats expected to qualify include Michelle Nunn, former CEO of the nonprofit Points of Light and daughter of former U.S. Sen. Sam Nunn, and state Sen. Jason Carter, an attorney and grandson of former President Jimmy Carter. Nunn has announced plans to run for Georgia's open U.S. Senate seat, while Carter is running for governor.

Qualifying continues through Friday.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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