Wednesday, December 13, 2017

A NEW SIT DOWN RESTAURANT FOR THOMASTON?

AN ATLANTA DEVELOPER SUBMITTED THE ONLY BID TO THE CITY OF THOMASTON FOR THE TRIANGLE OF PROPERTY AT THE CORNER OF WEST GOODRICH AVE. AND U.S. 19—HALF A MILLION DOLLARS.

THE UPSON BEACON REPORTS---CHARLES MIXON/ROB BEAUCHAMP PROPERITIES OF ATLANTA PROPOSE A SIT DOWN RESTAURANT AT THE SITE.

FOR IT TO WORK—CITY HALL WOULD HAVE TO CLOSE PARK DRIVE—AND THE 1.179 ACRES MUST BE REZONED COMMERIAL AND COULD BE COMBINED WITH THE ROGERS PROPERTY THAT FRONTS ON PARK DRIVE. CITY OF THOMASTON GOT THE PROPERTY IN AN EXCHANGE WITH THE BF GOODRICH COMPANY YEARS AGO.

KAY HIGHTOWER—CHAIR OF THE GREATEST GENERATION MEMORIAL PARK COMMITTEE —EXPRESSED RESERVATIONS ABOUT SELLING THE TRACT AT A RECENT MEETING---INSTEAD SUGGESTING IT REMAIN A GREEN SPACE ENTRANCE TO THE PARK.

CITY OFFICIALS TOLD HER THE INTENT IN SELLING THE SITE IS TO PROMOTE COMMERCIAL GROWTH—THE HIGHEST AND BEST USE FOR THE SITE.


THE ITEM IS EXPECTED TO BE ON NEXT TUESDAY'S CITY COUNCIL AGENDA.

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

EX-STATE HOUSE MEMBER JOHN YATES HAS DIED

Mr. John Yates, age 96 of Griffin, Georgia passed away on Monday, December 11, 2017 after several months of declining health.

A visitation for Mr. John P. Yates will be on Saturday, December 16, 2017 from 12:00 PM until 2:00 PM at Conner-Westbury Funeral Home. Following the visitation, a funeral service will be conducted at 2:00 PM in the Chapel of Conner-Westbury Funeral Home. Reverend Gene Walton will officiate. Interment will follow at Griffin Family Cemetery.

Friday, December 8, 2017

INTERIM PRESIDENT NAMED GORDON STATE COLLEGE

University System of Georgia Chancellor Steve Wrigley has named Dr. Stuart Rayfield interim president of Gordon State College.
Rayfield has been serving as the interim president of Bainbridge State College since June 1, 2016. She will assume her post at Gordon State on January 1, 2018, replacing President Max Burns who has previously announced his plans to retire, effective December 31, 2017.
“Dr. Rayfield has done an outstanding job leading Bainbridge State through a period of significant change over the past year and a half,” said Chancellor Wrigley. “As we move forward with the consolidation of Bainbridge State College and Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College, I am grateful to Dr. Rayfield for her willingness to shift her focus, qualifications and expertise to the deserving students, faculty and extended community at Gordon State College.”
Prior to her role as interim president at Bainbridge State, Dr. Rayfield served as the Frank D. Brown Distinguished Chair in Servant Leadership, associate professor and director of the Servant Leadership Program at Columbus State University.
Rayfield previously served as interim associate provost for Undergraduate Education at Columbus State in 2015. In this role, her areas of responsibility included the Academic Center for Excellence, dual enrollment, Faculty Center for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning, and co-leadership of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges accreditation reaffirmation.
She has previously served as an instructional designer at TSYS and student affairs consultant at Auburn University in Alabama. Prior to her service at Auburn University, she held positions at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tenn., Middle Tennessee State University in Murfreesboro and the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa.
Rayfield earned a doctorate in leadership, policy and organizations from Vanderbilt University, a master’s in higher education administration, student affairs from the University of Alabama and a bachelor’s degree in political science from Rhodes College in Memphis, Tenn.

Thursday, December 7, 2017

RAIN, SNOW MIX POSSIBLE OVERNIGHT THURSDAY

MARTHA ANNE MACARTY—UPSON E.M.A. DIRECTOR SAID THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IS WARNING OF POSSIBLE SNOW SHOWERS OVERNIGHT, BUT GROUND TEMPERATURES SHOULD REMAIN ABOVE FREEZING, SO ANY FROZEN PRECIPITATION SHOULD MELT AWAY.


MARTHA ANNE SAID ONE CONCERN IS BLACK ICE ON ROADWAYS FRIDAY NIGHT. ANY WET PATCHES COULD FREEZE AND CAUTIONED MOTORISTS TO BE CAREFUL.

THOMASTON'S CITY MANAGER SEEKS GUIDELINES

AT TUESDAY'S MEETING----THOMASTON'S CITY MANAGER RUSSELL THOMPSON ASKED THE MAYOR AND COUNCIL FOR SOME GUIDELINES ON FREE ALCOHOL AS A HOSPITALITY GESTURE BY A RETAIL BUSINESS .

LAST WEEK HE DISPATCHED CODE ENFORCEMENT OFFICER BOBBY ELLINGTON TO A DOWNTOWN BUSINESS—RESCUE ME MARKET—TO STOP IT FROM SERVING FREE SAMPLES OF GA. CRAFT BEER AND GA. WINE -- AT A FARM TO TABLE HOLIDAY EVENT. THE OWNERS SAY NONE WAS SERVED .

TURNS OUT—CITY HALL HAS NOTHING ON THE BOOKS AGAINST IT—AND COUNCIL ATTORNEY JOEL BENTLEY SAYS STATE LAW IS VAGUE AND NOT WELL DEVELOPED.

THE MAYOR AND COUNCIL DIRECTED THE MANAGER, ATTORNEY AND SOLICITOR MARK IRVIN TO COME-UP WITH SOME REGULATIONS TO LIMIT FREQUENCY.


THERE WAS TALK OF A $25 PERMIT THAT WOULD ALLOW A RETAIL BUSINESS WITHOUT AN ALCOHOL LICENSE TO SERVE IT FREE ONCE OR TWICE A YEAR.

Friday, December 1, 2017

JERRY BISHOP OF THOMASTON WON A MILLION IN THE GA. LOTTERY

THE GA. LOTTERY HAS ANNOUNCED THE WINNER OF THE MILLION DOLLAR TICKET SOLD AT THE SUNOCO ON THE BARNESVILLE HIGHWAY—JERRY BISHOP OF THOMASTON CLAIMED A $1,087,219 PRIZE FROM THE NOV. 17 FANTASY 5 DRAWING.


FEW DETAILS ARE KNOWN, A LOTTERY SPOKESMAN SAID BISHOP DECLINED PUBLICITY.

Thursday, November 30, 2017

TWO DEFENDANTS BOUND OVER TO SPALDING CO. GRAND JURY

TWO DEFENDANTS CHARGED IN A 34 YEAR OLD RACIALLY CHARGED MURDER CASE IN GRIFFIN WERE BOUND OVER TO THE SPALDING COUNTY GRAND JURY ON MURDER CHARGES—THURSDAY—FRANK GEBHARDT AND WILLIAM MOORE SR.

THE VICTIM—TIMOTHY COGGINS WAS STABBED TO DEATH AND HIS BODY DRAGGED BEHIND A TRUCK WITH A LOGGING CHAIN IN SPALDING COUNTY IN 1963. THE MURDER CASE WENT COLD FOR DECADES UNTIL OCTOBER WHEN NEW WITNESSES CAME FOWARD—A MURDER COMMITTED ALLEGEDLY BECAUSE COGGINS, A BLACK MAN, WAS SOCIALIZING WITH A WHITE WOMAN.

GRIFFIN CIRCUIT DISTRICT ATTORNEY BEN COKER CALLED ONLY ONE WITNESS DURING THE PRELIMINARY HEARING BEFORE SPALDING COUNTY CHIEF MAGISTRATE JUDGE RITA CAVANAUGH---GBI SPECIAL AGENT JARED COLEMAN WHO TESTIFIED THEY HAD BRAGGED ABOUT THE MURDER FOR YEARS.


D.A. COKER SAID GEBHARDT AND MOORE COULD GO TO TRIAL IN THE SUMMER OF 2018.

THREE OTHERS WERE ARRESTED IN CONNECTION WITH THE CRIME—GREGORY HUFFMAN,LAMAR BUNN AND HIS MOTHER SANDRA BUNN.



S.C.T.C. GOAL WINNER

THE GRIFFN EXCHANGE CLUB HOSTED THE ANNUAL GOAL LUNCHEON AT SOUTHERN CRESCENT TECHNICAL COLLEGE AND A STUDENT FROM SPALDING COUNTY --- CHANEL NICHOLSON—A PARAMEDICINE STUDENT WAS SELECTED FOR THE GA. OCCUPATIONAL AWARD OF LEADERSHIP.

SHE W AS NOMINATED BY HER INSTRUCTOR JAMIE ANDERSON.

A SCREENING COMMITTEE OF S.C.T.C. ADMINISTRATORS SELECTED THE 4 GOAL FINALISTS FROM THE 33 NOMINATED AND A COMMITTEE OF COMMUNITY LEADERS CONDUCTED THE INTERVIEWS OF THE FINALISTS.



Wednesday, November 29, 2017

DAVID SCOTT BATCHELOR INDICTED ON 30 COUNTS

ACCORDING TO GRIFFIN JUDICIAL CIRCUIT DISTRICT ATTORNEY BEN COKER—THIS WEEK THE UPSON COUNTY GRAND JURY RETURNED INDICTMENTS FOR 30 COUNTS OF SEXUAL EXPLOITATION OF CHILDREN ON DAVID SCOTT BATCHELOR— RELATED TO IMAGES ON HIS COMPUTER--27 OF THE COUNTS BY SPECIAL PRESENTMENT .

BATCHELOR—AT THE TIME OF HIS ARREST IN FEBRUARY WAS REGION 4 VICE-PRESIDENT OF THE ADOPTIVE AND FOSTER PARENT ASSOCIATION OF GEORGIA.

HE WAS FREED AFTER HE POSTED BOND OF $15,000 BUT SUPERIOR COURT JUDGE FLETCHER SAMS REVOKED HIS BOND AFTER AN INVESTIGATION INTO HIS I-CLOUD ACCOUNT SHOWED HE HAD TRIED TO VIEW OTHER IMAGES.

D.A. COKER SAID ARRAIGNMENT FOR BATCHELOR WILL PROBABLY BE SCHEDULED DEC. 11TH IN UPSON SUPERIOR COURT.



Friday, November 24, 2017

CHRISTMAS FESTIVAL SAT. NOV. 25

CITY OF THOMASTON PRESENTS THE ANNUAL CHRISTMAS FESTIVAL AND PARADE SATURDAY 5 TO 9PM DOWNTOWN.


PARADE STARTS AT 7PM. THE FESTIVAL FEATURES LIVE MUSIC, CONTESTS, CRAFTS, VENDORS BOOTHS , INCLUDING FOOD AND OF COURSE SANTA

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

THOMASTON MUSIC LEGEND WAYNE COCHRAN HAS DIED

THOMASTON MUSIC LEGEND WAYNE COCHRAN DIED IN MIAMI TUESDAY FOLLOWING AN ILLNESS.

HE ROSE FROM GARBAGE COLLECTOR IN THOMASTON TO THE HEIGHTS OF FAME ON NETWORK TV AND ON STAGE AT THE LAS VEGAS CASINOS AS WAYNE COCHRAN AND HIS BAND THE C C RIDERS.

AFTER HE RETIRED FROM SHOW BUSINESS HE WENT INTO THE MINISTERY AND HAD PREACHED IN THOMASTON IN THE PAST.

WAYNE GOT HIS START PLAYING GIGS AT THE NATIONAL GUARD ARMORY ON SATURDAY NITE IN THOMASTON, WROTE AND PERFORMED A SONG CALLED “ LAST KISS”—ABOUT A FATAL TRAFFIC ACCIDENT—THAT HIT THE CHARTS AND HIS CAREER WAS OFF AND RUNNING.


LATER, HE MET FAMED ACTOR JACKIE GLEASON IN MIAMI AND APPEARED ON HIS NETWORK TV SHOW ON A REGULAR BASIS. THAT ASSOCIATION LEAD TO ANOTHER BIG HIT—“GOING BACK TO MIAMI. “ 

Monday, November 20, 2017

BIG LOTTERY WINNER IN THOMASTON

A convenience store in Thomaston sold a jackpot ticket worth $1,087,219 in the Nov. 17 Fantasy 5 drawing.

Sunoco Food Mart, located at 2235 Barnesville Highway in Thomaston, sold the jackpot ticket.

Winning numbers from the Nov. 17 Fantasy 5 drawing were: 8-13-14-16-39.

A winner has not yet come forward.

The winner has 180 days from the draw date to claim the prize.

Since its first year, the Georgia Lottery Corp. has returned more than $19 billion to the state of Georgia for education. All Georgia Lottery profits go to pay for specific educational programs, including Georgia’s HOPE Scholarship Program and Georgia’s Pre-K Program. More than 1.8 million students have received HOPE, and more than 1.6 million 4-year-olds have attended the statewide, voluntary prekindergarten program.

Friday, November 17, 2017

THOMASTON CHRISTMAS FESTIVAL SAT NOV. 25

THOMASTON POLICE CHIEF MIKE RICHARDSON SAYS GA DOT HAS GRANTED PERMISSION TO CLOSE OFF STATE ROUTES 36 AND 74—WEST GORDON STREET, FROM SOUTH CHURCH ST. TO SOUTH CENTER STREET—SATURDAY NOV. 25TH FOR THE CITY OF THOMASTON CHRISTMAS FESTIVAL.

THE STREETS WILL BE CLOSED FROM 3;30 UNTIL 9PM—THE FESTIVAL BEGINS AT 5 THE CHRISTMAS PARADE AT 7PM.


SANTA CLAUS AGAIN WILL BE ON THE SQUARE THANKSGIVING NIGHT AND WILL GREET CHILDREN TO HEAR THEIR CHRISTMAS WISHES AT THE UPSON COUNTY COURTHOUSE.

Thursday, November 16, 2017

UPDATE ON MANAGER HELP FOR UPSON CO.

UPSON COUNTY COMMISSION CHAIRMAN NORMAN ALLEN SAYS ITS BACK TO SQUARE ONE IN THE SEARCH FOR SOME MANAGEMENT HELP—WITH COUNTY MANAGER JIM WHEELESS OUT ON MEDICAL LEAVE PROBABLY TILL NEXT YEAR.

THE CHAIRMAN CONTACTED AN INDIVIDUAL RECOMMENDED BY THE ASSOCIATION OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS—BUT HE BACKED-OFF WHEN HE LEARNED IT WAS A 3-2 VOTE TO PURSUE HIM.

THE MAN HAS A WEALTH OF EXPERIENCE AS A COUNTY MANAGER AND CITY MANAGER—BUT HE TOLD THE CHAIRMAN HE WANTS TOTAL BUY-IN BY ALL MEMBERS OF THE BOARD IF HE COMES TO UPSON COUNTY ON AN INTERIM BASIS.

TWO MEMBERS OF THE COMMISSION -- FRANK SPRAGGINS AND LORENZO WILDER VOTED AGAINST THE MOTION BY COMMISSIONER JAMES ELLINGTON TO TALK WITH THE PERSON ABOUT WORKING FOR UPSON COUNTY.


CHAIRMAN ALLEN SAYS HE HAS REACHED OUT TO ACCG AGAIN TO SEE IF HE CAN GET ANOTHER RECOMMENDATION.  

SHERIFF DIX CALLS IT A MIRACLE

SPALDING COUNTY SHERIFF DARRELL DIX IS CALLING IT A MIRACLE—AN 81 YEAR OLD MAN, EDDIE OWENS WAS LOCATED AFTER BEING IN THE ELEMENTS FOR 26 HOURS—USING THE DEPARTMENTS NEW INFRA-RED CAMERA DRONE. HE WAS TRANSPORTED TO THE HOSPITAL SUFFERING FROM DEHYDRATION AND EXPOSURE TO THE COLD—AND WAS EXPECTED TO BE RELEASED OVERNIGHT.

MR OWENS –WHO SUFFERS FROM DEMENTIA -- DISAPPEARED FROM HIS HOME AROUND 5PM TUESDAY—AND A GROUND SEARCH WAS CONDUCTED WITH 30 TEAM MEMBERS AND THE GA. PIEDMONT K-9 UNIT.

A STRONG HEAT SIGNATURE WAS LOCATED BY THE DRONE ABOUT A HALF MILE FROM MILLER'S RESIDENCE—AND MR. OWENS WAS FOUND LYING IN A LOW AREA OF UNDERGROWTH.


SHERIFF DIX SAID THE DRONE WAS PROVIDED FOR FREE IN MARCH AS PART OF A CONTRACT WITH A JAIL VENDOR AND INVESTIGATOR ERASTE TREHAN HAS BEEN TRAINING TO PILOT THE UNIT. THE S.O. HAS BEEN GOING THROUGH THE PROCESS OF FAA LICENSING AND THIS WAS THE FIRST TIME IT WAS DEPLOYED.  

TECH COLLEGE SYSTEM HONORS FOR SCTC


Reports compiled and recently released by the Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG) examining graduate and placement rates for its 22 institutions revealed that Southern Crescent Technical College (SCTC) led the System in the percentage increase in graduating students for the academic year 2017.
TCSG’s Graduates and Placement Academic Year (AY) 2017 Report gathered by its Data, Planning, and Research Center is a system-wide glance at graduates, year-to-year comparisons, and placement rates. The AY 2017 version indicates that SCTC led the state with at 26.5 percent increase of the total number of unduplicated graduates, as well as a 33 percent increase in the number of associate degrees, diplomas and Technical Certificates of Credit (TCC) awarded. By comparison, the state average among all the technical colleges in Georgia for unduplicated graduates was 0.3 percent and awards conferred was 1.6 percent. In AY 2017 SCTC accounted for 1,740 graduates receiving 3,251 awards.
In addition, job placement rates among recent graduates were also analyzed in the report which showed that SCTC achieved a total of 98.4 percent in overall placement of graduates. Total placement and in-field placement rate calculate the number of students who graduate and are employed, choose to enter the military or continue their education, and the number of students who are employed directly in their field of study, respectively. These graduation and placement rates continue to have a significant impact on the College’s enrollment. Students are enrolling in programs to receive the hands-on training needed to successfully enter the area’s workforce.
SCTC’s current Fall semester is its largest semester enrollment in recent years with a credit enrollment of 4,766. Overall enrollment is up as well as the enrollment at our Jasper and Henry Centers and at our Flint River Campus.  High school dual enrollment is at an all-time high with 857 student enrolled this Fall.  The enrollment increase is attributed to several factors including the growth of high school dual enrollment programs, a strong commitment to service by faculty and staff, and the expansion of programs and facilities, as well as over 27 transfer courses with the University System of Georgia”   according to vice president of Student Affairs, Dr. Xenia Johns.
“Our mission at Southern Crescent Technical College is workforce development and it is evident that we are responding to the needs of our community.  When the numerous career options available in our region for graduates with the skills offered by SCTC are coupled with the low cost of attendance, there is no doubt why Southern Crescent Technical College continues to make such an impact on this area’s workforce," said SCTC President Dr. Alvetta Thomas. "It is encouraging to see more students taking advantage of the tremendous opportunities afforded because of the Hope Career Grant and increased financial aid options.  Additionally, with a job placement rate of 98.4% and the demand for SCTC graduates far exceeding supply, we are extremely optimistic that this enrollment growth will continue.”
The statewide Technical College System of Georgia encompasses 22 colleges with 85 campus locations and more than 600 degree, diploma and certificate programs.
About Southern Crescent Technical College:
Southern Crescent Technical College is a multi-campus unit of the Technical College System of Georgia and serves the workforce and community needs of Butts, Fayette, Henry, Jasper, Lamar, Pike, Spalding, and Upson counties. The College is a public, accredited, two-year post-secondary institution serving a diverse student population by offering academic credit programs and services, adult education, continuing education and programs customized for business and industry.  Southern Crescent Technical College is committed to excellence and is characterized by outstanding instruction, a comprehensive commitment to state-of-the-industry training and workforce development, and a close connection to the community. As the College grows, Southern Crescent Technical College will continue to expand its educational programs and facilities to provide students with enhanced opportunities for career success. For more information on Southern Crescent Technical College or its offerings, please visit www.sctech.edu.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

UPSON CO. MANAGER WHEELESS ON MEDICAL LEAVE

C OUNTY MANAGER JIM WHEELESS TOOK MEDICAL LEAVE LAST WEEK—AND UPSON COUNTY COMMISSION CHAIRMAN NORMAN ALLEN INDICATED HE COULD BE OUT UNTIL SOMETIME NEXT YEAR.

AT TUESDAY'S MEETING—CHAIRMAN ALLEN AND COMMISSIONER LORENZO WILDER WERE APPOINTED TO HIRE SOME MANAGER HELP DURING THAT PERIOD. THE CHAIRMAN SAID ACCG HAS RECOMMENDED AN EXPERIENCED INDIVIDUAL—THEY PLAN TO INTERVIEW ABOUT A CONTRACT TO HANDLE MANAGER DUTIES FOR NOW. HE HAS BEEN BOTH A COUNTY AND CITY MANAGER DURING HIS CAREER.

THAT CAME ON A 3-2 VOTE—WITH FRANK SPRAGGINS AND WILDER VOTING AGAINST THE MOTION

THEY WANTED TO HIRE SOMEONE LOCAL.

THE BOARD WANTED NO PART OF TRYING TO HANDLE MANAGEMENT DUTIES THEMSELVES. SPRAGGINS SAID THAT HAD BEEN TRIED BEFORE WITHOUT SUCCESS.

CHAIRMAN ALLEN SAID THE BOARD NEEDS HELP --- THINGS HAVE NEVER BEEN BUSIER WITH 2018 BUDGET PREPARATION, , CLOSING OUT THE 2017 BUDGET, AND THE EMPLOYEE SALARY STUDY ON THE TABLE.



CHAIRMAN ALLEN ADDED THE ACTION DOES NOT REFLECT ON COUNTY MANAGER WHEELESS --- HE STILL HAS A JOB AND HE'S WISHED A SPEEDY RECOVERY.

THE COMMISSIONERS ALSO APPROVED A HIRING FREEZE FOR COUNTY DEPARTMENTS FOR THE TIME BEING.



Tuesday, November 14, 2017

WED. NOV. 15 DEADLINE FOR UPSON AND LAMAR TAXES

WEDNESDAY NOVEMBER 15TH IS THE DEADLINE TO PAY PROPERTY TAXES WITHOUT PENALTY IN UPSON AND LAMAR COUNTIES.

UPSON COUNTY TAX COMMISSIONER ANDY CHASTAIN SAID THE COUNTY MAILED-OUT 18 AND A HALF MILLION DOLLARS IN TAX BILLS AND HIS GOAL FOR COLLECTION IS 85%. THE COUNTY SETS ITS BUDGET BASED ON 82% COLLECTIONS. THERE HAVE BEEN LINES AT HIS OFFICE FOR SEVERAL DAYS—FOLKS PAYING THEIR TAX BILLS AT THE UPSON COUNTY COURTHOUSE ANNEX.

COMMISSIONER CHASTAIN SAID AS OF TUESDAY $11.9 MILLION HAS BEEN COLLECTED AND THRU OCTOBER $950,000 IN DELIQUENT TAXES HAS BEEN COLLECTED AND BY THE END OF NOVEMBER HE EXPECTS THAT FIGURE TO BE A MILLION DOLLARS.


HE HAS SCHEDULED ADDITIONAL TAX SALES DEC. 5TH AND FEB. 6TH. ON PROPERTY WITH TAXES OWED.

Friday, November 10, 2017

ONE MAN WOUNDED IN A SHOOTING THURSDAY

THOMASTON POLICE CHIEF MIKE RICHARDSON SAID TWO SUSPECTS ARE IN CUSTODY FOR A SHOOTING INCIDENT THURSDAY AFTERNOON AT 427 G. STREET.

THE VICTIM, ERICK ATWATER OF THAT ADDRESS WAS WOUNDED IN THE ABDOMEN AND DROVE HIMSELF TO THE E.R. HE IS EXPECTED TO RECOVER.

A WOODBURY MAN WILL BE CHARGED WITH SHOOTING ATWATER AND A MOLENA WOMAN WAS BOOKED FOR DRIVING AWAY WITH THE ALLEGEDLY SHOOTER.


POLICE SAID THE TWO HAD A DISAGREEMENT AND THE SHOOTER PULLED TWO PISTOLS FROM HIS WAISTBAND AND FIRED THREE SHOTS.

DISTURBANCE ARREST AT VETERANS PROGRAM

UPSON COUNTY SHERIFF DAN KILGORE SAYS A MAN WAS ARRESTED AND CHARGED AFTER HE CREATED A DISTURBANCE AT THE UL ELEMENTARY VETERANS DAY PROGRAM, THURSDAY AT THE FINE ARTS CENTER.

THE SUSPECT—20 YEAR OLD CHANTZ ROCKEMORE OF 188 KENNEDY STREET WAS JAILED ON CHARGES OF DISRUPTING A PUBLIC SCHOOL.

THE SHERIFF TOLD ZOOM NEWS—ROCKEMORE STOOD-UP AND ADDRESSED THE CROWD WITH SOME INAPPROPRIATE REMARKS.

HE WAS GIVEN A PROVISIONAL BOND OF $5000 WITH THE STIPULATION HE STAY OFF SCHOOL PROPERTY.

ROCKEMORE REPORTEDLY HAD A RELATIVE IN THE PROGRAM.


SHERIFF KILGORE TOLD US THE SAFETY OF SCHOOL CHILDREN IS A TOP PRIORITY WITH HIS DEPARTMENT.

Thursday, November 9, 2017

HONORS FOR RHONDA GULLEY UL MIDDLE SCHOOL PRINCIPAL

Rhonda Gulley, Principal of Upson-Lee Middle School, received the Jerry Davis Georgia Distinguished Principal Award at Georgia Association of Middle School Principals (GAMSP) fall conference awards luncheon November 6 in Savannah, Georgia. 

This award is presented to a Georgia middle school principal who demonstrates strong leadership in guiding his or her school as an effective middle school, as defined by state and national standards. 

In addition, Upson-Lee Middle School received the Dr. Bob Puckett Effective Middle School Education Program designation, a three-year designation effective 2017-2020, and the Linda Hopping National Merit Award. 

Gulley, now in her fifth year as Principal of ULMS, recently led the school to its fourth re-designation as a Georgia Lighthouse School to Watch, a 3-year designation that extends through 2019. Gulley and ULMS were recognized at the GAMSP conference for this honor, as well.

MATT BENTLEY TU TEACHER OF THE YEAR

Congratulations to Matt Bentley, who was selected as the Thomaston-Upson School System's 2018-19 Teacher of the Year. Superintendent Dr. Maggie Shook made the announcement today (November 9). 

Bentley teaches social studies at Upson-Lee High School, where he also serves as Assistant Athletic Director and head coach of the boys' varsity soccer team. 

The System Teacher of the Year is selected from among the individual schools' Teachers of the Year by a panel of community and school district judges. Judging is based on an application packet submitted by the teacher, a classroom observation, and a teacher interview. 

Bentley will now represent the Thomaston-Upson School System in the Georgia Teacher of the Year competition. 

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

ISO RATING CITY OF THOMASTON FIRE DEPARTMENT

The Insurance Services Office (ISO) recently announced that the Thomaston Fire Department has received a much improved Public Protection Classification for underwriting and calculating fire insurance premiums for residential, commercial, and industrial properties.
The ISO analysis of the structure fire suppression delivery system serving the City of Thomaston resulted in a classification of Class 3/3X.  The Fire Department’s former classification was a Class 4/9.
The Public Protection Classification was assigned after a comprehensive review of our communities’ fire department, communication system and water supply.  The ISO Field Representative spent a full day reviewing the fire department, water department and Upson County Communications.
The new grading could result in a substantial savings to area homeowners and businesses with respect to what they currently pay for fire insurance.  Chief Renee Harris encouraged all homeowners and businesses to at least contact their insurance providers to inform them of the new classification.
I’m very proud of Thomaston Fire Department’s Officers and Firefighters for their efforts in obtaining such a positive reduction in the fire protection grading.   The fire department will continue to work diligently to make improvements necessary for the Citizens of Thomaston.

UL ELEMENTARY VETERAN'S DAY PROGRAM THURS.

Upson-Lee Elementary School would like to invite all veterans, active-duty military, their families, and the entire community to join them at the Upson-Lee Fine Arts Center on Thursday, November 9, at 6 PM for their annual Veteran’s Day program. 

Fifth grade students will recognize our community’s heroes with a collection of patriotic songs and words of appreciation. The event is FREE of charge, and the community is encouraged to join ULES staff and students for this very special patriotic program. All veterans and active duty service men and women in attendance will be recognized and celebrated during the program. 

The Upson-Lee Fine Arts Center is located at 268 Knight Trail on the campus of Upson-Lee High School.

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

UPSON CO. JOBLESS RATE SEPT. 5.1%

THE GA. DEPARTMENT OF LABOR HAS ISSUED THE UNEMPLOYMENT REPORT FOR SEPTEMBER .

COWETA COUNTY AND FAYETTE COUNTY HAD THE LOWEST JOBLESS RATE IN THE AREA 3.7%.

PIKE COUNTY 4.3%, 4.4 IN BUTTS AND HENRY COUNTY, 5 PER CENT IN MERIWETHER COUNTY. 5.1 IN UPSON COUNTY, 5.2 IN LAMAR COUNTY AND 5.6 PER CENT IN SPALDING COUNTY.

GEORGIA'S UNEMPLOYMENT RATE 4.2% AND THE NATIONAL RATE 4.1.



Monday, November 6, 2017

NEW RULES DOWNTOWN THOMASTON PARKING

Beginning November 6, 2017, the Thomaston Police Department will be enforcing the City parking ordinance in the down town area of the court house. 

If you are attending court please DO NOT park in the two hour parking areas or fifteen minute parking areas around the square. They are intended for customer use for businesses located on the square. Alternative court parking will be allowed in the First Baptist parking lot near Howell Street. 

Two hour and fifteen minute parking areas will be enforced.

Friday, November 3, 2017

BIG DRUG BUST IN SPALDING COUNTY

The Spalding County Sheriff’s Office, Special Operations Division, working in conjunction with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, concluded an in-depth investigation that lead to the arrest of two Spalding County residents.

On November 1, 2017, members of Special Operations and agents from Homeland Security arrested Cupertino Mendoza and Lartina Alvizo Zapata of 3812 High Falls Road, Griffin.

As a result of the investigation, 21 kilograms (approximately 54 pounds) of cocaine was seized. The cocaine has an estimated street value $1,500,000.00. Agents with Homeland Security also seized $532,190.00 in cash. During the investigation, members of Special Operations executed two search warrants. One search warrant was executed at 3812 High Falls Road, and the other was executed at 61 Head Road, a 96 acre farm. As a result of the search warrants, agents seized 4 vehicles, a skid steer and a cattle trailer. These items were found to be involved in the distribution of illegal narcotics.

Mendoza and Zapata are both being held in the Spalding County jail and are charged as follows: trafficking cocaine, possession of cocaine with intent to distribute, possession of cocaine, and possession of a vehicle with a false compartment. Both are awaiting their first appearance hearing.

The Spalding County Sheriff’s Office will continue to fight the war on drugs in every capacity. Sheriff Dix said, "We will continue to work cooperatively with local, state, and federal agencies to eradicate drugs from our county." If you are drug dealer in Spalding County, we look forward to seeing you soon.

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

SEWER OVERFLOW AT WALMART LIFT STATION

Public Notification Sanitary Sewer Overflow at Collection System Walmart Lift Station Force Main County: Upson Date of Release: 10/28/2017 Contact Person: Brian Kelly Phone: 706-646-8031 Mailing Address: 340 N Center Street City: Thomaston Zip: 30286 On October 28, 2017 ESG responded to a call from a customer stating there was a sewage leak behind the Walmart department store. After investigating we found the pipe leaving the Walmart lift station was compromised allowing sewage to leak when the pumps were running. We shut the lift station down and started repairs at 2:50 pm. We contacted Upson County Water and Sewer department asking if they could shut down their lift station that feeds the Walmart lift station to reduce the incoming flow to the lift station. They were able to comply. The repairs were made and the station was brought back on line at approx. 5:40 pm. Thanks to diligent work and cooperation from the County we were able to make the repairs without having an overflow at the Walmart lift station. There was a release of 2500 gallons due to the broken force main pipe with 2000 gallons reaching a tributary of Potato Creek and 500 gallons were able to be remediated. A spill notice sign has been posted at the site. The Georgia Department of Natural Resources has been notified and the affected area has been treated within the regulations of the Georgia Department of Natural Resources. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to call the above listed contact persons.

UPSON HISTORICAL SOCIETY VETERANS PROGRAM

PUBLIC INVITED TO THE UPSON HISTORICAL SOCIETY VETERANS PROGRAM SATURDAY NOV. 4TH 11AM AT THE THOMASTON UPSON SENIORS CENTER.


NATIONAL GUARD VETERAN OFFICER DAVID MCDONALD WILL BE THE GUEST SPEAKER ON THE HISTORY OF THE LOCAL NATIONAL GUARD.

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

30 NEW JOBS FOR THOMASTON UPSON

AT OCTOBER'S MEETING OF THE THOMASTON-UPSON IDA --TUESDAY--- THE INDUSTRIAL AUTHORITY ANNOUNCED ITS AGREED TO SELL THE SPEC BUILDING IN THE CENTRAL GA. BUSINESS AND TECHNOLOGY PARK NEAR THE AIRPORT FOR $600,000 TO GOLDEN STAR , A FIRM BASED IN OVERLAND PARK, KANSAS .

THE IDA APPROVED THE CONTRACT DURING THE MEETING TUESDAY AND THE DEAL IS SCHEDULED TO CLOSE IN 30 DAYS, A DEAL THAT INCLUDES 25 ACRES IN THE PARK.

GOLDEN STAR PLANS TO INVEST ABOUT $5 MILLION TO BUILD OUT THE FACILITY AND PURCHASE MACHINERY AND INITIALLY HIRE 30 EMPLOYEES. THE COMPANY MANUFACTURES INDUSTRIAL CLEANING SUPPLIES SUCH AS WET MOPS, DUST MOPS AND TEXTILE CLEANING SYSTEMS—A COMPANY IN OPERATION SINCE 1908.


THE SPEC BUILDING, BUILT IN 2004 HAS NEVER BEEN OCCUPIED-- AND THOMASTON MAYOR J.D. STALLINGS TOLD ZOOM NEWS HE'S DELIGHTED TO FINALLY GET IT ON THE TAX BOOKS. 

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

GUN FIGHT AT THOMASTON CONVIENCE STORE

A MAN WANTED IN THOMASTON AND ZEBULON IS ON THE RUN AFTER A GUN BATTLE WITH ANOTHER MAN OCT. 10TH AT THE QUICK MART ON TRIUNE MILL ROAD.

THOMASTON POLICE CHIEF MIKE RICHARDSON SAID 29 YEAR OLD TEREL MAURICE KING OF G. CIRCLE SHOT ANOTHER MAN, 37 YEAR OLD MARKEITH DERRELL REVIERE OF BUCKLES ROAD IN THE ABDOMEN, THEN FLED THE SCENE.

REVIERE WAS TRANSPORTED TO THE E.R. BY EMS AND UNDERWENT SURGERY AT URMC, AND ITS BELIEVED KING W AS SHOT IN THE LEG.

ACCORDING TO THE CHIEF, KING ALLEGEDLY REACHED IN REVIERE'S POCKET AND ROBBED HIM OF ABOUT $50 AND THAT TRIGGERED THE ALTERCATION--- BOTH FIRED HANDGUNS. A STRAY ROUND HIT A NEAR-BY CAR.

KING HAS OVER A DOZEN CRIMINAL WARRANTS FOR HIS ARREST IN THOMASTON AND ZEBULON—EVERYTHING FROM DRUG VIOLATIONS TO FIREARMS CHARGES.


CHIEF RICHARDSON SAID ANYONE WITH INFORMATION ABOUT KING'S LOCATION SHOULD CONTACT THE P.D.

TWO ARRESTED FOR FUENTES MURDER

ALBANY POLICE HAVE ARRESTED TWO SUSPECTS IN THE SHOOTING DEATH OF 27 YEAR OLD TOBY FUENTES OF THOMASTON AT AN ALBANY MOTEL, SATURDAY NIGHT.

CHARGED WITH MURDER---19 YEAR OLD DAVID QUIMBY AND 21 YEAR OLD COURTLAND HUGHLEY, IN WHAT POLICE ARE CALLING A DRUG DEAL GONE BAD.

A COMPANION OF FUENTES, 21 YEAR OLD KEDRAVIOUS WEB OF THOMASTON WAS ARRESTED FOR FELONY TAMPERING WITH EVIDENCE.

ALBANY P.D. SAID FUENTES WAS SHOT IN FRONT OF THE QUALITY INN IN NORTHWEST ALBANY SATURDAY NIGHT AROUND 7;30PM.


WITNESSES SAID THEY SAW A WHITE CHEVROLET IMPALA LEAVE THE SCENE MOMENTS AFTER SHOTS WERE FIRED AND THE CAR WAS FOUND ON THE CAMPUS OF ALBANY STATE COLLEGE THE NEXT DAY.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

MAN ARRESTED FOR SHOOTING AT PIKE DEPUTIES

Pike County Deputies responded yesterday afternoon to a report of a citizen’s car being shot on Bankston Road. Upon arrival it was learned that the victim had sustained a flat tire while driving on the roadway and had pulled over to change the tire on her vehicle. While outside of the vehicle gunshots were heard by the victim and a bullet struck her car going through a window and in to the interior of the car.

Investigators were able to narrow down the location from which the gun had been discharged to the area of 1927 Bankston Road. Initial attempts to contact anyone at this residence were unsuccessful. Several hours later two Deputies returned to the address to follow up on the initial complaint. 

Deputies observed a door standing open to the residence and tried to contact anyone inside the residence through the open door. During this time the resident , Timothy Jones (60 years of age), began to verbally threaten the Deputies and fired a rifle at the Deputies narrowly missing them.

The Deputies were able to get to a safer location and request for additional personnel to assist them. A stand off ensued during which Jones refused to come out of the residence and told Deputies that he was armed and ready to fight.

Jones eventually came out on to the front porch of his residence at which time Deputies were able to deploy a taser and incapacitate him. He was taken into custody and transported to the Pike County Jail.

A search warrant conducted in the residence resulted in numerous firearms being recovered. Several spent shell casing were recovered that are believed to be from Jones shooting the vehicle earlier in the day and at the Deputies.

Charges for Timothy Jones include the following : two counts of aggravated assault on law enforcement , aggravated assault and possession of a firearm during commission of a crime

Monday, October 16, 2017

TWO INJURED IN MONDAY ACCIDENT S. CHURCH

TWO FEMALE MOTORISTS INJURED, ONE TRANSPORTED TO THE E.R. AFTER A TWO VEHICLE ACCIDENT, AT LUNCHTIME MONDAY ON SOUTH CHURCH STREET, JUST PAST SOUTHSIDE BP.

THOMASTON FIRE CHIEF RENAY HARRIS SAID ONE CAR WAS ON ITS SIDE AND THE DRIVER WAS PULLED FROM THE WRECKAGE BY SOMEONE PASSING-BY. THAT FEMALE MOTORIST WAS TRANSPORTED TO THE E.R. BY EMS.

THE OTHER DRIVER WAS TREATED AT THE SCENE BY EMT'S.

THOMASTON POLICE, THE FIRE DEPARTMENT, AND EMS RESPONDED.


THE ACCIDENT IS UNDER INVESTIGATION BY THOMASTON P.D.  

A THOMASTON MAN SHOT TO DEATH IN ALBANY

A   THOMASTON  MAN  DIED  OF  GUNSHOT  WOUNDS  AT  AN  ALBANY  MOTEL  SATURDAY  EVENING  AND POLICE ARE  LOOKING FOR  THE   SHOOTER.

ACCORDING  TO  ALBANY  POLICE , ZEMAL  TOBEY  FUENTES, AGE   27  DIED  AT  THE  HOSPITAL  AFTER  THE  SHOOTING  AROUND  7;30PM  SATURDAY NIGHT  AT  THE  QUALITY  INN  IN  NORTHWEST  ALBANY.

HOTEL  GUESTS  SAID  THEY  HEARD  TWO  OR  THREE  GUNSHOTS  AND  WERE  NOT  ALLOWED  TO  LEAVE  THE  INN  FOR  TWO  HOURS  SATURDAY  NIGHT,  AS  POLICE   INVESTIGATED  THE  CASE.

POLICE SAID FUENTES  WAS  VISITING  FOR THE  HOMECOMING OF  ALBANY  STATE  COLLEGE.
A  THOMASTON  COMPANION, KEDRAVIOUS  DARNELL  WEBB,  AGE  21  IS   LISTED  IN  THE  ALBANY  JAIL  ON  CHARGES  OF  FELONY  TAMPERING  WITH  EVIDENCE.

THE  SUSPECTED  GET A  WAY  CAR,  A  LATE  MODEL  CHEVROLET  IMPALA  WAS  LOCATED  BY  POLICE  LATER  THAT  NIGHT  ON  THE  CAMPUS  OF  ALBANY  STATE.

  IN  HIGH  SCHOOL  TOBEY  FUENTES   PLAYED  FOOTBALL  FOR  UPSON-LEE.


Tuesday, October 10, 2017

TWO CONVICTED OF MURDER IN SPALDING CO.

BENJAMIN D. COKER
DISTRICT ATTORNEY
Griffin Judicial Circuit

October 10, 2017

PRESS RELEASE

On October 3, 2017, the State began trying a murder case against two defendants, William Moore and Todd Jones, in front of the Honorable W. Fletcher Sams. Both defendants were charged with Malice Murder, Felony Murder, Armed Robbery, Aggravated Battery, two counts of Aggravated Assault, and Possession of a Knife During the Commission of a Crime. On October 10, 2017, a Spalding County jury returned a verdict of guilty on all 7 counts against both defendants. Judge Sams sentenced the defendants to two sentences of life without the possibility of parole plus 25 years in prison. Moore and Jones will serve the rest of their lives in prison under this sentence.
The State in the case was represented by District Attorney Benjamin D. Coker and Chief Assistant District Attorney Marie Broder. The State tendered 296 exhibits over the 6 day trial. The jury deliberated for over two hours before reaching the guilty verdict, today.
The jury convicted Moore and Jones for brutally murdering Kevin Harmon in a vacant lot of Runaway Lakes subdivision back on February 14, 2011. According to testimony during trial, the victim sustained 58 injuries, 40 to his head and face. Moore and Jones used a knife and baseball bat to kill Harmon. Both defendants were convicted at a previous trial in front of a different judge. A new trial was ordered on July 13, 2017 after legal issues with the first trial became obvious. Moore and Jones were retried over the past several days. Cody Tuggle, another defendant was also convicted at a prior trial. His motion for new trial is pending in front of Judge Sams.
District Attorney Coker said of the verdict, “the retrial of Moore and Jones was a difficult task for my office, and I am proud of the way that they handled it. The Spalding County District Attorney’s Office proved to its community that despite adversity, it would stand strong, press on, and continue to fight against those that insist upon doing evil. We would like to thank law enforcement for their hard work, the citizens that testified, and the jury for what was a difficult trial and verdict. Together, we ensured that justice and good prevailed today. We will continue to fight for justice, every day, in Spalding County and throughout the circuit. Our hearts are with the Harmon family.”

Thursday, October 5, 2017

OFFICERS FOR THOMASTON KIWANIS 17-2018

Kiwanis Club of Thomaston
Officers and Directors


President Frank King

Vice President Ed Searcy, II

Secretary Mike Jones

Treasurer Mike Jones

Past President Mark Cotney


    Directors 2017-2018

Glenn Gilstrap

Jerry Helms
James McGill

Directors 2017-2019

     Ruth Hatchett
Ted Kandler
Lynwood Pressley


  



CONGRESSMAN FERGUSON VOTES FOR THE BUDGET

WASHINGTON D.C. –Congressman Drew Ferguson (R-Ga.), a member of the House Committee on the Budget, released the following statement after voting in support of the Fiscal Year 2018 budget resolution:

“This budget is a critical step to getting our economy growing and our national debt under control. Not only does it balance in ten years, provide an increase in funding to our nation’s military and put our country on the path to fiscal stability, it also lays the groundwork for tax reform. By passing this budget today, we are demonstrating that it is possible to have fiscal discipline and keep our promises to the American people.”

“We can no longer continue to kick the can down the road on our mandatory spending crisis. We are accumulating more and more debt for our children and grandchildren, and it is morally wrong. This budget doesn’t solve our mandatory spending crisis overnight, but it begins that process by calling for $203 billion in mandatory spending savings. Passing this budget also moves us one step closer to reforming our broken tax code. Meaningful economic growth is key to solving our budgetary challenges, and the best way to promote sustained economic growth and restore our fiscal health is comprehensive tax reform. I was excited to support this budget to build a better America.”

The budget resolution passed by a vote of 219-206.


ZEBULON P.D. NABS TWO THIEVES

On October 4, 2017 at approximately 4:00pm Officers with the Zebulon Police Department responded to a Theft in progress call at Eye Can See 2 located at 16004 Barnesville Street located on the square in Zebulon Georgia.  Pike County Dispatchers advised responding officers that a black male and black female had just fled the store and had taken approximately $2000.00 dollars in glasses from the store without permission of the owners and had fled the store in a Silver Crown Victoria and was headed out Highway 18 East towards Lamar County.  Lamar County Sheriff Department was notified on the radio and was advised of the incident and that the suspects were traveling on Hwy 18 towards Lamar County.  PFC Trustin Brazier and Officer Chad Morris caught up with the suspects about two miles inside of Lamar County on Highway 18 and initiated a traffic stop on the vehicle and was able to apprehend both subjects.  Lamar County Deputies was immediately on the scene and assisted the officers in the search of the suspect’s vehicle.   Five pair of sunglasses was recovered in the clothes of the female passenger by Sgt. Laura Clark with the Lamar County Sheriff Department.  Both subjects were placed under arrest at the scene and were transported back to the Zebulon Police department.  At the department they were identified and both gave a written confession to the incident and were charged with felony theft by taking.  The driver of the vehicle was Walter Lee Harden of Macon Georgia and the female passenger was Carolyn Stapleton of also of Macon Ga.  Due to such a timely response of the Zebulon Police Department and the Lamar county Sheriff Department both subjects was taken in custody just minutes after the crime was committed. 

Sincerely,
Chief Jonathan Hemphill

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

UPSON LEE GRAD RATE RISING

ULHS Graduation Rate Continues to Rise - T-U Among Highest in Griffin RESA District

The Georgia Department of Education has released graduation rate data for the class of 2017, and Upson-Lee High School has exceeded the state average for the third consecutive year. Upson-Lee High School posted a rate of 87.4%,significantly higher than the state of Georgia overall graduation rate average of 80.6%. Thomaston-Upson School System’s 2017 graduation rate came in as the third highest in our Griffin RESA district, with only Fayette County (89.3%) and Lamar County (87.9%) scoring higher.

Other 2017 graduation rates in the Griffin RESA District are:

Henry 86.3%
Butts 84.4%
Newton 83.5
Pike 83.3
Griffin/Spalding 81.5%

Monday, October 2, 2017

59 Dead 527 Injured

A shooter on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Casino in Las Vegas opened fire with an automatic weapon on the crowd at a Jason Aldean concert Sunday night.

The shooter, 64-year-old Stephen Paddock of Mesquite, Nevada, was identified by local police. Mesquite is located 82 miles northeast of Las Vegas along Interstate 15. More than ten weapons were discovered in the hotel room along with Paddock's body. Police have stated that reports of multiple shooters and explosives being involved are false.

The crowd was estimated at over 30,000 as the first rounds of fully automatic fire started. Witnesses stated that the shooting lasted approximately ten minutes as the shooter reloaded several times.

Aldean was on stage performing at the time of the shooting, he later tweeted that he and his crew were safe.

The FBI is assisting with the investigation that is now the deadliest mass shooting in American history.

This story is updated as information is released by local law enforcement.

Friday, September 29, 2017

T.P.D. METH TRAFFICING ARREST

ACCORDING TO POLICE CHIEF MIKE RICHARDSON---KELCEY ROCKEMORE , WHO HAS FILED A MILLION DOLLAR LAW SUIT AGAINST THE CITY OF THOMASTON OVER AN ARREST BY EX-OFFICER PHILLIP TOBIN , HAS BEEN ARRESTED FOR TRAFFICING IN METH.

EARLY WEDNESDAY, ROCKEMORE , AGE 31---WAS INVOLVED IN A RUMBLE WITH SEVERAL OTHER INDIVIDUALS AT FARVIEW APARTMENTS ON AVE. F. AND BOLTED OUT THE DOOR WHEN POLICE ARRIVED.

HE WAS CHASED DOWN AND ARRESTED AND 34 GRAMS OF SUSPECTED METH WAS FOUND IN SEVERAL PLASTIC BAGS.

HE FACES SEVERAL CHARGES INCLUDING OBSTRUCTION OF AN OFFICER. SEVERAL YEARS BACK , OFFICER TOBIN WAS TRYING TO ARREST ROCKEMORE ON DRUG CHARGES WHEN ROCKEMORE CONTENDS HE WAS ROUGHED-UP BY THE COP.

CHIEF RICHARDSON SAYS ROCKEMORE HAS ALWAYS CONTENDED HE IS NOT A DRUG DEALER.



OFFICER-INVOLVED SHOOTING IN SPALDING CO.

ACCORDING TO SPALDING COUNTY SHERIFF DARRELL DIX A DEPUTY INVOLVED IN AN OFFICER-INVOLVED FATAL SHOOTING IS ON PAID ADMINISTRATIVE LEAVE AS THE GBI INVESTIGATES THE INCIDENT WEDNESDAY ON COLLIER DRIVE OFF BIRDIE ROAD.

THE DEPUTY—BRYAN HEAD HAS BEEN WITH THE DEPARTMENT SINCE 2014 AND HAS HAD TRAINING IN CRISIS INTERVENTION. THE VICTIM—49 YEAR OLD GUY LYNN SCOTT JR. REPORTEDLY WAS THREATENING SUCIDE--- HAD A GUN –AND POINTED IT AT THE DEPUTY.


SCOTT ONCE WORKED AT THE SPALDING COUNTY JAIL 

UPSON SO; TEEN TREATED FOR METH O.D.

ACCODING TO THE UPSON COUNTY SHERIFF'S DEPARTMENT EMS RESPONDED TO A REPORT OF A JUVENILE DRUG OVERDOSE ON ROSE CREEK ROAD—AND THE TEEN WAS CHARGED WITH POSSESSION OF METH.

THE SUSPECT---17 YEAR OLD MATTEW TRENTON DANIEL ,THE ROCK --- WAS TREATED AT THE E.R. FOR CRAMPS TO HIS HANDS—AND DEPUTIES SAID HIS BEHAVIOR INDICATED METH USE. ANOTHER UN-NAMED MALE JUVENILE WAS APPARENTLY PRESENT.

A SEARCH OF THE HOUSE TURNED-UP , A GLASS SMOKING PIPE, SOME METH AND TWO MARIJUANA GRINDERS.

ONE OF THE TWO WHITE MALES SAID THEY HAD BEEN SNORTING METH FOR 3 DAYS.



Thursday, September 28, 2017

NEW VA HEALTH CLINIC FOR PIKE COUNTY


WASHINGTON D.C. –Congressman Drew Ferguson (R-Ga.) applauded the announcement by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) of its plans to build a new clinic in Pike County, Georgia to bring care to veterans in the Third District. Ferguson supported Congressional authorization for the new clinic that was included in the VA Choice and Quality Employment Act of 2017, passed by the House on July 28. He released the following statement:

“Our veterans sacrificed so much for our country, too often including their own health. We should work to ensure they have timely accessible care in their own communities. I was proud to vote to authorize funding for this new clinic.”

The new facility would provide VA outpatient primary care and mental health services to eligible veterans. Officials plan to lease a new, approximately 49,000 square foot building with about 350 parking spaces.


###


Tuesday, September 26, 2017

HONORS FOR A UL STUDENT

Jaquarius Raglin, a senior at ULHS, has been chosen for the National Society of High School Scholars Ambassador Leadership Program. NSHSS Ambassadors are student leaders within their high schools who exhibit academic excellence and strong commitment to community service. A role model to peers, Jaquarius, who is the son of Beverly Cromer and Octavius Raglin, was selected out of hundreds of applicants for demonstrating strong academic achievement and a commitment to community service.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

UPSON GRAND JURY RETURNS MURDER INDICTMENT

MONDAY THE UPSON COUNTY GRAND JURY RETURNED A MURDER INDICTMENT AGAINST BLAKE ASHLEY HANCOCK FOR THE SHOOTING DEATH OF HIS HALF-BROTHER TALVIN HAROLD ROBBINS ON B. STREET.

THOMASTON POLICE SAID A FAMILY DISAGREEMENT LEAD TO THE SHOOTING.


HANCOCK WAS TRUE BILLED FOR MALICE AND FELONY MURDER, AGGREVATED ASSAULT AND POSSESSION OF A FIREARM IN THE COMMISSION OF A CRIME.  

DR. RANDALL PETERS NEW CHAIR AIRPORT AUTHORITY

AT THE SEPTEMBER MEETING OF THE GRIFFIN-SPALDING AIRPORT AUTHORITY—WEDNESDAY NIGHT, CHAIRMAN DICK MORROW RESIGNED BUT WILL REMAIN ON THE BOARD, AND DR. RANDALL PETERS—RETIRED PRESIDENT OF SOUTHERN CRESCENT TECHNICAL COLLEGE WAS ELECTED CHAIRMAN..

MORROW SAID HE IS NOT SEEKING RE-ELECTION TO THE GRIFFIN CITY COMMISSION AND ALSO HIS SEAT ON THE AIRPORT AUTHORITY
EXPIRES DEC. 31ST SO IT WAS DECIDED TO MAKE THE TRANSITION NOW SO HE CAN MENTOR DR. PETERS ON THE PROCESS OF BUILDING THE NEW AIRPORT.

MORROW NOTED DR. PETERS KNOWS GOVERNMENT PROCEDURES AND METHODS FROM HIS EDUCATION AND MILITARY BACKGROUND AND ACTUALLY HAS SOME CONTACTS WITHIN THE GA. DOT AVIATION DIVISION.

CARL PRUETT WAS ELECTED SECRETARY-TREASURER REPLACING DR. PETERS IN THAT POSITION.


AUTHORITY MEMBERS PRAISED DICK MORROW FOR HIS SERVICE AND WITH G-DOT APPROVAL OF THE NEW AIRPORT LAY-OUT PLAN—THE FAA SHOULD O.K. THE A.L.P. IN THE NEXT 30 DAYS WHICH WILL STEP-UP THE FLOW OF FEDERAL DOLLARS.  

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

UL HOMECOMING PARADE THURSDAY AT 5PM

THE UPSON-LEE HOMECOMING PARADE IS THURSDAY AT 5PM THROUGH DOWNTOWN THOMASTON -- AFTER FORMING AT MATTEWS FIELD. THE KNIGHTS PLAY JORDAN FRIDAY NIGHT AT 7;30 ON THE ZOOM. -- WITH THE HOMECOMING QUEEN AND PRINCESSES TO BE CROWNED AT HALFTIME.

GA DOT EXPLORES BROADBAND

Increasingly, the world is dependent on high-speed internet and reliable cell phone service. But many throughout Georgia rely on spotty or inconsistent cellular and slow internet.

Better days may be ahead as Georgia DOT explores two initiatives—broadband and wireless—that use the state-owned right-of-way (ROW) to expand the 511 Navigator system statewide, as well as enhance telecommunications for all Georgians.

“We are looking at the potential to use cutting-edge technology to improve the everyday lives of Georgians - not only by expanding and enhancing statewide traffic communications, but also by improving cell phone and broadband internet options for the public,” GDOT Division Director of Operations John Hibbard, P.E. explained today in a presentation to the State Transportation Board. “Georgia DOT has no desire to get into the utility business. These are public-private partnerships—P3s—that would be financed, developed, managed and maintained by private contractors on state-owned property.”

The department is reviewing responses from the broadband and cellular industries to Georgia DOT’s requests for information (RFI) about two potential programs.

  • The broadband initiative would install conduit on the ROW along all Georgia interstates. The developer would sell or lease the conduit space to others who would install fiber-optic cable for private use. Fiber-optic technology transmits data through durable thin glass strands that carry a tremendous amount of data at exceptionally fast speeds. Installing this fiber would provide improved statewide internet coverage to meet the internet needs of rural communities while enabling GDOT to better connect all offices and improve traffic management throughout Georgia. 

    “80 percent of Georgians live within 20 miles of an interstate,” Hibbard said. “Installing this technology along the interstates should result in tremendous benefits for all Georgians, especially those in rural regions.”

     
  • The wireless initiative would utilize “small cell” poles on the ROW of state routes to facilitate the change from 4G technology to 5G, which offers far greater speed and capacity. The developer would sell or lease space on the poles for use by wireless communications providers. Existing poles would be used when possible. Where a new pole must be installed, its placement along the ROW would be carefully considered, with public safety being the primary consideration. While small cell poles are much shorter than traditional cell phone towers—50 feet versus 250 feet—more are required because 5G travels shorter distances. This technology would meet the wireless communications needs of Georgia DOT, as well as those of the public.
“The potential benefits are enormous, not only for transportation management in Georgia, but also for people in their homes and businesses, and for the economic development that could result from increased connections,” Hibbard said. “Several states have had varying degrees of success with similar programs. We are looking at all angles to come up with just the right model for Georgia.”

Gov. Nathan Deal and state legislators are supportive of initial concepts. The next step, after the first of the year, would be for Georgia DOT to solicit proposals.
 

Georgia Department of Transportation is committed to providing a safe, seamless and sustainable transportation system that supports Georgia’s economy and is sensitive to its citizens and its environment.