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Wednesday, February 9, Eyewitness News at 11

8:42 PM, Feb 11, 2011   |    comments
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    GOOD EVENING AND THANKS FOR JOINING US..I'M LEAH JOHNSON..   AND I'M FRANK MALLOY..
  THIS IS EYEWITNESS NEWS AT 11.


     RAIN IS MOVING IN... AND THE SYSTEM COULD BRING SOME WINTRY WEATHER TO PARTS OF THE AREA AND THE STATE.
   CHIEF METEOROLOGIST BEN JONES HAS BEEN FOLLOWING THE WEATHER... HE'S JOINING US NOW TO LET YOU KNOW WHAT TO EXPECT.
   THANKS BEN.. WE'LL TALK WITH YOU AGAIN IN JUST A FEW MINUTES.


     THE POSSIBILITY OF WINTER WEATHER IS ALREADY AFFECTING SOME CENTRAL GEORGIA STUDENTS.
      BIBB COUNTY SCHOOLS... COVENANT ACADEMY... MONTESSORI OF MACON.... MOUNT DE SALES AND SAINT ANDREWS MONTESSORI WILL OPEN TWO HOURS LATE TOMORROW.
      BETHANY CHRISTIAN ACADEMY WILL OPEN AT 10-15 TOMORROW.
     CENTRAL GEORGIA TECHNICAL COLLEGE AND MACON STATE COLLEGE WILL OPEN AT 10 A-M.
      FOR A COMPLETE LIST OF DELAYED OPENINGS... VISIT OUR WEBSITE AT 13WMAZ DOT COM AND LOOK FOR THIS STORY ON OUR HOMEPAGE.


  TOUGHER LAWS GOVERNING ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION MAY BE ON THE MINDS OF SOME STATE LAWMAKERS.
  BUT THE PROPOSAL ISN'T SITTING WELL WITH FARMERS WHO SAY IMMIGRATION IS A FEDERAL MATTER.. NOT STATE..
   CRAWFORD COUNTY FARMER JIMMY MONCRIEF TELLS OUR RANDALL SAVAGE THAT FARMERS SAY THEY HAVE TOO MUCH PAPERWORK ALREADY.
<<I'm not a policeman, and I don't want to be.
  THAT'S JIMMY MONCRIEF.. A FARMER WHO OPERATES A SIXTEEN-HUNDRED ACRE FARM IN CRAWFORD AND ADJOINING COUNTIES.. MONCRIEF.. LIKE OFFICIALS WITH THE GEORGIA FARM BUREAU.. THINKS STATE LAWMAKERS NEED TO BACK OFF.
  12:36:29 Jimmy Moncrief, Crawford County Farmer: First of all, I don't think that bill should be coming from a state level. It should be coming from a national level. We don't need to put Georgia in an uncompetitive disadvantage, you might say, from our surrounding states.
    BESIDES THAT.. MONCRIEF SAYS FARMERS AREN'T TRAINED TO DETECT ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS.
    12:38:07 Jimmy Moncrief, Crawford County Farmer: I've always tried to be legal. But how do you know if you're legal or not. You're not allowed to ask questions. You're not allowed to question a guys information.
  MONCRIEF SAYS FARMERS GET  IMMIGRANTS TO COMPLETE THESE FORMS.. BUT DON'T KNOW IF THEY'RE ACCURATE. 
  12:37:39 Jimmy Moncrief, Crawford County Farmer: You ain't got time sometimes to go through a whole bunch of rigamarole. Farmers are not policeman. I don't see that farmers need to be involved in this at all. It shouldn't be our responsibility to find out whether a guy's legal or what.
  MONCRIEF SAYS HARVESTING CROPS ON TIME CONCERNS FARMERS MOST.
  12:37:22 Jimmy Moncrief, Crawford County Farmer: Rules and regulations are beyond our ability to deal with here. When an agriculture crop needs harvesting, it's kind of like dinner setting on the table waiting to be ate, if you don't eat it then, three hours later you come back it may not be fit to eat anymore.
  RANDALL SAVAGE.. 13 WMAZ.. EYEWITNESS NEWS.
>>  GEORGIA FARM BUREAU OFFICIALS DISCUSSED THE PROPOSED IMMIGRATION LAW WITH GOVERNOR NATHAN DEAL AND KEY STATE LAWMAKERS IN ATLANTA THIS WEEK..
  LATER.. DEAL ACKNOWLEDGED THE FARMERS' CONCERNS.. BUT ALSO SAYS HE HOPES IF LEGISLATION MOVES FORWARD.. PARTICULAR GROUPS AREN'T EXEMPTED.


PARENTS OF THE TWO LIZELLA TODDLERS ACCIDENTALLY SHOT ON TUESDAY COULD FACE NEGLIGANCE CHARGES IF ENOUGH EVIDENCE IS FOUND... 
THAT'S ACCORDING TO CAPTAIN MIKE SMALLWOOD WITH THE BIBB COUNTY SHERIFF'S OFFICE.
THE CHILDREN WERE SHOT WHEN THE THREE YEAR OLD FOUND THE GUN AND PULLED THE TRIGGER.
BRITTINY BARBER HAS MORE.
<< AN ACCIDENTAL SHOOTING AT THIS HOME ON TUESDAY... INJURED A THREE YEAR OLD BOY AND HIS ONE YEAR OLD SISTER.
Charles Dougherty, Neighbor: "I'm amazed that a child that small could get to a gun."
THE BIBB COUNTY SHERIFF'S DEPARTMENT SAYS THE BOY CLIMB UP ON A SHELF.. GRABBED A GUN AND SHOT IT.
THE BULLET GRAZED HIS THUMB AND HIS YEAR OLD SISTERS LEG.
BUT THE SITUATION COULD HAVE BEEN TRAGIC
Captain Mike Smallwood: "Luckily it wasn't for the family, the children and the community but this could have been a real bad tragedy."
SOME NEIGHBORS SAY THEY WERE SURPRISED BY THE SHOOTING.... ESPECIALLY KNOWING THE FAMILY.
Leonard Pless, Neighbor: "I think this was an accident I don't think there would have been any harm, him getting in trouble."
OTHERS SAY IT'S A REMINDER OF THE IMPORTANCE OF GUN SAFETY.
Dixie Adams, Neighbor: "With the freedom of being able to bear arms also come responsibility."
Captain Mike Smallwood, "EVery bit of it is common sense, but sometimes you have to be hit upside the head for common sense to dawn on you."
THAT COMMON SENSE INCLUDES KEEPING GUNS UNLOADED...  FAR AWAY FROM CHILDREN...  AND SECURING THEM WITH DEVICES LIKE THIS GUN SAFETY LOCK ....
NATS OF GUN LOCK
CAPTAIN MIKE SMALLWOOD SAYS THE SHOOTING IS STILL UNDER INVESTIGATION... BUT THE PARENTS COULD FACE NEGLIGENCE CHARGES..
Captain Mike Smallwood, Bibb County Sheriff's Department: "Once we get our CIS reports and all, we'll turn it over to the District Attorney. One of the assistant District Attorney's will go over it and decide whether charges can be filed."
BRITTINY BARBER 13WMAZ EYEWITNESS NEWS.
>> SMALLWOOD SAYS THE CHILDREN WERE TREATED AND RELEASED FROM THE HOSPITAL TUESDAY NIGHT....AND ARE HOME WITH THEIR PARENTS.
HE SAYS DE-FACS IS ALSO INVESTIGATING.


    TODAY'S 13 WMAZ DOT COM WEB POLL ASKS...
     SHOULD GUN OWNERS BE REQUIRED TO LOCK UP THEIR WEAPONS AT HOME?
     SO FAR 57 PERCENT OF YOU SAY NO.
     AND 43 PERCENT OF YOU SAY YES.
      TO VOTE NOW... VISIT OUR WEBSITE AT 13WMAZ DOT COM.
     YOU'LL FIND THE LINK TO THE WEB POLL QUESTION IN THE "DON'T MISS" BOX ON THE RIGHT SIDE OF OUR HOMEPAGE.


   A THIRTEEN YEAR OLD JONES COUNTY TEENAGER IS SAFE TONIGHT..
   ROBBIE WALKER WITH THE JONES COUNTY SHERIFF'S OFFICE SAID MATTHEW PRITCHETT RETURNED HOME TONIGHT..
   PRITCHETT HAD WALKED AWAY FROM CLIFTON RIDGE MIDDLE SCHOOL EARLIER IN THE DAY.. 


A STATE PANEL WILL DECIDE WHETHER TO SUSPEND JOHN WILLIAMS FROM WARNER ROBINS CITY COUNCIL .
SPOKESMAN FOR THE ATTORNEY GENERAL'S OFFICE... RUSS WILLARD SAYS THE COMMISSION APPOINTED BY THE GOVERNOR WILL MEET TOMORROW IN ATLANTA. 
WILLARD SAYS THE COMMITTEE... MADE UP OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL AND TWO PUBLIC OFFICIALS WHO HOLD THE SAME OFFICE AS WILLIAMS... WILL REVIEW HIS CASE.
A HOUSTON COUNTY GRAND JURY ACCUSED WILLIAMS OF MAKING FALSE STATEMENTS IN NOVEMBER.
WILLARD SAID BY PHONE FROM ATLANTA... THAT GOVERNOR SONNY PERDUE LAST YEAR ASKED THE ATTORNEY GENERAL'S OFFICE TO REVIEW THE CASE.... AND MAKE A RECOMMENDATION ON SUSPENSION. .
Russ Willard, Ga. Attorney General's Office: (:10) "After this case was indicted last fall, it came to the attention of Governor Perdue that the DA was not going to send this case up for consideration for suspension from office. At that point, Governor Perdue requested that our office get a copy of the indictment and begin the process of suspending that official from office."
THE REVIEW PANEL HAS TWO WEEKS TO MAKE A RECOMMENDATION.
THEN WILLARD SAYS...  GOVERNOR NATHAN DEAL WILL MAKE THE FINAL DECISION ON WILLIAMS' STATUS.
WILLIAM'S SAID TODAY... HE PLANS TO ATTEND THE HEARING.
HIS ATTORNEY CHARLES COX SAID HE EXPECTS THAT WILLIAM'S WILL NOT BE SUSPENDED... BECAUSE THE CHARGE DOESN'T RELATE TO WILLIAM'S POSITION AS A COUNCIL MEMBER.


TODAY MARKS THE FIRST ANNIVERSARY OF COURTNEY WHITE'S DEATH... SHE'S THE JONES COUNTY TEEN HIT AND KILLED BY A SCHOOL BUS LAST FEBRUARY.
  pause for nats
THOSE CLOSE TO HER GATHERED EARLY THIS MORNING LIGHTING CANDLES AND SHARING MEMORIES OF THE 14-YEAR-OLD HONOR STUDENT.
WHITE WAS HIT BY A BUS WHILE RUNNING DOWN CHAPMAN ROAD TO CATCH IT.
HER PARENTS VICKI AND DONALD WHITE SAY THEY DON'T HOLD HARSH FEELINGS TOWARD THE DRIVER... 63-YEAR-OLD WAYNE GRAHAM... BUT STILL HAVE UNANSWERED QUESTIONS.
Vicki White "I need some closure and I need to know how and why exactly."
  A JONES COUNTY GRAND JURY IS MEETING THIS WEEK TO DECIDE WHETHER TO INDICT GRAHAM.
AT THE TIME OF THE ACCIDENT - INVESTIGATORS SAID GRAHAM SAID HE HAD NO IDEA THE BUS HIT WHITE.


   A SECOND AMERICAN SHINGLE COMPANY EXECUTIVE TURNED HIMSELF IN TO FACE CRIMINAL CHARGES IN BIBB COUNTY.
  RICHARD JOHN STEFFY OF ALPHARETTA TURNED HIMSELF IN TO THE BIBB COUNTY JAIL  TUESDAY TO FACE 30 COUNTS OF THEFT BY CONVERSION.
THAT'S ACCORDING TO CAPTAIN MIKE SMALLWOOD.
   LAST WEEK.... THE SHERIFF'S OFFICE ISSUED ARREST WARRANTS FOR STEFFY AND TWO OTHER MEN. 
MACON POLICE LATER ADDED MORE CHARGES.
   ALL THREE ARE ACCUSED OF TAKING MONEY FROM DOZENS OF PEOPLE FOR ROOF WORK THAT WAS NEVER DONE.
   THE THREE MEN FACE UP TO 10 YEARS IN PRISON.
   STEFFY WAS BEEN RELEASED ON A 22 THOUSAND DOLLARS BOND.


     THE G-B-I HAS RELEASED THE NAME OF THE MACON NIGHT CLUB A TAYLOR COUNTY TEENAGER VISITED BEFORE SHE DIED THIS WEEKEND.
     G-B-I AGENT CRAIG ROTTER SAYS 17-YEAR-OLD JESSICA MORRIS AND THREE FRIENDS WERE AT ENVY NIGHTCLUB ON MARTIN LUTHER KING DRIVE SATURDAY NIGHT.
     ROTTER SAYS THE TEENS SOMEHOW GOT ACCESS TO PILLS AND ALCOHOL WHILE AT THE CLUB.     MORRIS DIED EARLY SUNDAY MORNING.
     AN AUTOPSY YESTERDAY COULD NOT DETERMINE WHAT CAUSED HER DEATH.


ONE WEEK AFTER BIBB COUNTY'S NEW SUPERINTENDENT TOOK THE JOB... ROMAIN DALLEMAND SAYS HE'S LEARNING ABOUT HIS POSITION... AND THE DISTRICT. DALLEMAND SAYS HE SPENT MOST OF THE PAST WEEK MEETING ONE-ON-ONE WITH ADMINISTRATORS.
HE SAYS STUDENT DISCIPLINE IS ONE OF HIS TOP PRIORITIES...SO HE REVIEWED GRADUATION AND EXPULSION RATES.
HE SAYS TOP ADMINISTRATORS ARE WORKING HARD....BUT THEIR EFFORTS NEED TO BE BETTER FOCUSED.
Romain Dallemand: "They're not all working toward the same goal or moving into the same direction, they're moving into different directions"
      DALLEMAND SAYS HE PLANS TO UNVEIL HIS 15-PAGE ENTRY PLAN AT TOMORROW'S SCHOOL BOARD MEETING.
      YOU CAN WATCH IT LIVE AT 2:30 P.M.  ON OUR WEBSITE.. 13WMAZ DOT COM.
     YOU CAN ALSO WATCH TODAY'S INTERVIEW ON OUR WEBSITE.. LOOK FOR THIS STORY ON THE HOMEPAGE.


       EVERY NIGHT... WE'RE FEATURING ONE OF YOU AS OUR FACEBOOK FAN OF THE DAY.
      TONIGHT'S WINNER...
    .... TED EAGY.
     CONGRATULATIONS TED... AND YOUR 13WMAZ MUG IS IN THE MAIL.
      IF YOU WANT TO BE OUR FACEBOOK FAN OF THE DAY... IT'S EASY.
      VISIT FACEBOOK DOT COM SLASH 13WMAZ AND CLICK THE "LIKE" BUTTON TO BECOME A FAN.
      THEN... JUST JOIN THE CONVERSATIONS.
      WE PICK OUR FAN OF THE DAY RANDOMLY.


  A Winter Weather Advisory for Central Georgia has now been extended south to include Macon, effective from 6 p.m. tonight until noon Thursday. 
The area could get rain changing to snow early Thursday morning. Accumulations in Central Georgia are forecast to be less than a half-inch. 
Central Georgia counties now included in the advisory are Bibb, Crawford, Twiggs, Monroe, Jones, Wilkinson, Taylor, Putnam, Jasper and Hancock.


STUDENTS AT ONE MACON SCHOOL ARE JUMPING THEIR WAY TO HELP RAISE MONEY FOR THE AMERICAN HEART ASSOCIATION.
IT'S A STORY THAT COMES STRAIGHT FROM THE HEART.
ALEXANDER TWO KICKED OFF ITS SEVENTH ANNUAL JUMP ROPE FOR THE HEART FUNDRAISER.
KINDERGARTEN BROKE INTO GROUPS AND ROTATED TO DIFFERENT STATIONS SETUP IN THE GYM.
THE STATIONS HAD EXERCISE ACTIVITIES FOR KIDS LIKE JUMPING ROPE, HULA HOOP, A BALANCING BEAM, AND HOP SCOTCH.
FIRST THROUGH FIFTH GRADES WILL ALSO PARTICIPATE THIS WEEK.
COACH JIM MILLS SAYS JUMP ROPE FOR THE HEART IS A GREAT WAY TO LEND A HAND TO A GOOD CAUSE.
JIM MILLS  "We've had kids that brought in money for today, brought in a dollar and fifty cents, seventy cents and that's really from the heart because they are not getting a prize for that, that is just what they had in their pockets and put it in envelopes.  So my heart goes out to them they gave as much as they can possible have give"
THE SCHOOLS RAISED MORE THAN THIRTY FIVE THOUSANDS DOLLARS OVER THE LAST SIX YEARS... THIS YEAR THEY SET A GOAL OF FIFTEEN DOLLARS A CHILD.
STUDENTS WHO GIVE FIVE DOLLARS OR MORE RECEIVE A THANK YOU GIFT FOR RAISING MONEY.
THE FUNDRAISER RUNS UNTIL FRIDAY.



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