Georgia News Roundup
May 15, 2014 03:35 PM | 1618 views | 0 0 comments | 7 7 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Georgia man gets 2 life sentences in rape, kidnapping

ATLANTA (AP) — Fulton County prosecutors say a man has been given consecutive life sentences in a March 2013 kidnapping and assault.

Prosecutors say 21-year-old Willie Devontae Tims was convicted of rape, aggravated sodomy, kidnapping, hijacking a motor vehicle and weapons offenses in the attack on a 26-year-old woman.

Authorities say Tims was one of four men who forced their way into the victim's car in Atlanta's Buckhead neighborhood and forced her to drive at gunpoint. Eventually Tims and an accomplice took turns sexually assaulting the woman in the backseat.

Prosecutors say Tims called the woman two weeks after the attack and was arrested after he sent a picture of himself to her phone.

Tims has been sentenced to two life terms plus 70 years. His co-defendant has yet to go to trial.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.


Georgia jobless rate remains unchanged at 7 percent

ATLANTA (AP) — State labor officials say Georgia's unemployment rate has remained unchanged at 7 percent from the previous month.

The Georgia Department of Labor on Thursday announced the new seasonally adjusted jobless rate for April, which was unchanged from March.

Labor officials said the 7 percent rate was significantly lower than in April a year ago, when it was 8.3 percent.

State Labor Commissioner Mark Butler said Georgia saw very strong job growth in April, with employers creating 41,300 new jobs.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.


FBI offers $20,000 reward in Lake Oconee slaying

EATONTON, Ga. (AP) — The Federal Bureau of Investigation is offering a $20,000 reward for information in the beheading of a central Georgia man and the feared abduction of his wife from their home on Lake Oconee.

Putnam County Sheriff Howard Sills tells The Telegraph that his office might arrange for more reward money.

Law officers have used sonar to search under the water in the lake and they've also combed wooded areas near the shore in their continuing search for 87-year-old Shirley Dermond.

Her husband, 88-year-old Russell Dermond, was found decapitated May 6 at the couple's home in their exclusive gated community on the lake.

Information from: The Macon Telegraph, http://www.macontelegraph.com 

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.


Heavy rain prompts school system to cancel classes

MACON, Ga. (AP) — Heavy overnight rains led a central Georgia school system to call off classes as crews cleaned up downed trees and power lines across the state.

Bleckley County schools Superintendent Charlotte Pipkin said school would not be held Thursday because of excessive rain and road conditions.

The Telegraph of Macon reports that Bleckley County was among the wettest spots in Georgia, with an estimated 4 to 5 inches of rain overnight.

Statewide, Georgia Power reported that around 260 customers were without power in the Eastman area in Dodge County shortly before 7 a.m. Thursday. Nearly 100 customers were without power in the Macon area.

In metro Atlanta, Gwinnett County firefighters say a lightning strike appears to be the cause of a fire that destroyed a Lawrenceville home Wednesday night.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.


Jurors continue deliberating in Donnan trial

ATHENS, Ga. (AP) — Jurors have resumed deliberations in the trial of former University of Georgia football coach Jim Donnan, who's accused of running a fraudulent investment scheme.

Jurors began deliberating Wednesday after about five days of witness testimony. They resumed deliberations Thursday morning.

Prosecutors say the 69-year-old and another man ran the scheme from September 2007 to December 2010 through GLC Limited, a West Virginia-based company dealing in wholesale and closeout merchandise. Prosecutors say the pair promised high rates of return but paid investors with other investor money.

Prosecutors have said Donnan used his extensive personal and professional network to lure investors.

Donnan's lawyers have said he thought he found a really good investment opportunity and wanted to share the good fortune with friends.

If convicted, Donnan could face a lengthy prison sentence.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.


Testing could cost Georgia $107 million by 2019

ATLANTA (AP) — According to contract documents, Georgia could pay about $107 million for a company to create a new statewide standardized test during the next five years.

The contract outline with CTB/McGraw-Hill released on Thursday isn't final. State law gives the companies that were not chosen 10 days to protest the decision.

State officials are on a tight deadline to select a company to write the new tests. Students are scheduled to begin taking tougher exams in line with Common Core standards during the 2015 school year.

Georgia dropped out of a consortium of states writing an exam in July. State officials said then that they could find a more affordable rate than the predicted cost of $29.50 per student. A per student cost for the contract proposal wasn't available on Thursday.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.


Georgia boy accidentally run over in family driveway

DOUGLASVILLE, Ga. (AP) — Douglas County authorities say a 4-year-old boy died after being accidentally run over in his family's driveway.

County Coroner Randy Daniel tells the Atlanta Journal-Constitution 4-year-old Messiah Huiel ran behind a car as his grandfather was backing out of the driveway Wednesday night and was taken to WellStar Douglas Hospital in Douglasville, where he was pronounced dead.

Daniel calls the incident a tragic accident and says the boy's autopsy is being conducted at the Georgia Bureau of Investigation's crime lab.

Douglasville is about 20 miles west of downtown Atlanta.

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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