Georgia News Roundup
February 20, 2014 11:45 AM | 2936 views | 0 0 comments | 11 11 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Georgia man sentenced to 10 years in child sex sting

ATLANTA (AP) — Federal prosecutors say a man busted in an undercover child sex sting has been sentenced to 10 years in prison.

Authorities say 37-year-old Carl Skow of Norcross was sentenced Wednesday for enticing a child to engage in illegal sexual activity.

Prosecutors say Skow responded to an Internet ad and tried buying a girl he believed was from Guatemala from an undercover federal agent.

Authorities say Skow and the agent had several discussions and Skow eventually agreed to pay the agent $2,500 a year for the girl. Skow met the agent at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport in July of 2011 and was arrested.

Officials say they found child porn on the man's computer and a list of rules for the girl to follow posted on a wall inside his home.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.

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Price gouging reported for Georgia tree removal

ATLANTA (AP) — State Insurance and Safety Fire Commissioner Ralph Hudgens is warning of scammers targeting homeowners looking to remove tree limbs from their property after the last winter storm.

Hudgens says his office has been receiving calls from consumers complaining of higher than usual prices associated with tree limb removal.

Hudgens says homeowners should only deal with licensed and insured contractors and be skeptical of people who go door-to-door selling their services.

The commissioner says consumers should avoid rushing into signing contracts and should get written estimates from at least three firms before making any decisions. Hudgens says Georgians should also ask if there's a charge for an estimate before allowing contractors into their homes.

Consumers are also encouraged to only pay by check or credit card.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.

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Sentencing set for man in Home Depot fraud

FLINT, Mich. (AP) — A Michigan man is returning to federal court for his sentence in a scheme to get more than $300,000 in refunds from Home Depot stores across the country.

Larry Fields admits that he and others took bar code stickers off inexpensive items and placed them on goods that cost much more. The items were returned to Home Depot with the higher price bar code.

The refunds were put on Home Depot store cards that were peddled to others.

Fields is due in Flint federal court Thursday after pleading guilty to fraud. He could get three years in prison, although prosecutors are recommending he get some credit for taking responsibility.

A co-defendant, Christopher M. Smith, was sentenced to 3 ½ years in prison in December.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.

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Inmate recaptured after jail toilet escape 

DAHLONEGA, Ga. (AP) — Authorities have recaptured a north Georgia jail inmate who they say escaped by removing a toilet from a cell wall.

Lumpkin County sheriff's Lt. Wesley Burnett said Larry Lavaughan Farmer was apprehended late Wednesday. Burnett tells The Times of Gainesville that Farmer was captured just before 11 p.m., but was unable to provide further details.

Authorities say Farmer was one of two inmates who escaped Tuesday after a toilet was ripped from the wall of a cell at the Lumpkin County Detention Center. Sheriff's officials say the pair got through the hole left by the toilet, went to a mechanical area, broke a window and climbed outside.

Authorities say the other inmate, William Jeffrey Harris, turned himself in after he was injured trying to scale razor and barbed wire fences.

Information from: The Times, http://www.gainesvilletimes.com 

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.

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Driver charged after men hit while changing tire

DECATUR, Ga. (AP) — An East Point man is facing felony charges of homicide by vehicle and hit-and-run after police say he struck two men as they changed a tire on a metro Atlanta freeway.

DeKalb County police say 29-year-old Kleeon Cadogan was killed in the crash. His friend, Devon Witter, remained in critical condition at Grady Memorial Hospital.

Police say Jodi DaCosta of Stone Mountain got a flat tire on her Nissan Maxima and called two friends to come help her. Cadogan and Witter were struck as they changed the tire around 4:30 a.m. Wednesday on westbound Interstate 20, near Panola Road.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports hat 29-year-old Andrew James Spencer of East Point was being held in the DeKalb County Jail. It wasn't known early Thursday whether Spencer has an attorney.

Information from: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.

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Georgia forecast predicts thunderstorms, flooding

ATLANTA (AP) — Forecasters say storms expected to move into central and north Georgia bring the potential for severe thunderstorms and even isolated tornadoes.

The National Weather Service says the severe storms will be possible Thursday night into Friday morning, mainly north of a line from LaGrange to Atlanta to Gainesville.

Forecasters are also expecting the Altamaha river in southeast Georgia to rise to more than a foot above flood stage by early Thursday evening. Forecasters say they're expecting minor flooding in some areas of Baxley.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.

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State eyes plan to ease snow day requirements

ATLANTA (AP) — Georgia's state school board is considering how to ease the burden on school districts to make up days lost because of abnormally bad weather.

Districts statewide have been forced to cancel classes numerous times this school year because of ice and snow.

Under a plan that will be considered by the Georgia's State Board of Education on Thursday, districts would not be required to make up nine days lost to weather. Georgia schools are normally required to be open to students at least 180 days a year, although some districts receive special waivers to have a shorter school year.

Education board chairwoman Helen Rice tells The Atlanta Journal-Constitution students will still be required to take all standardized tests, despite spending less time in the classroom.

Information from: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.

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Morris Brown aims to sell most of its campus

ATLANTA (AP) — Morris Brown College wants to sell most of its 34-acre campus in Atlanta.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that the cash-strapped historically black institution is headed to bankruptcy court next month to start the process.

Court documents show that the college will be seeking the court's approval for a partnership with Jones Lang LaSalle Inc. to act as a real estate broker in marketing the property. If approved, the broker would receive a 5 percent commission, plus reimbursement for expenses up to $10,000.

The Atlanta newspaper reports that it is not clear how the sale would affect the college's remaining students and staff.

Morris Brown President Stanley Pritchett said no buyer has been found for the property. He declined to provide additional details about the sale.

Information from: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

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

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