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Monday, May 2, Eyewitness News at 11

10:13 PM, May 2, 2011   |    comments
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GOOD EVENING AND THANKS FOR JOINING US..
I'M FRANK MALLOY..
AND I'M LEAH JOHNSON..THIS IS EYEWITNESS NEWS AT 11.

TONIGHT... WE'RE STILL LEARNING NEW DETAILS ABOUT THE DRAMATIC OPERATION THAT KILLED THE WORLD'S MOST-WANTED TERRORIST.
U-S OFFICIALS RELEASED MORE INFORMATION ABOUT THE AMBUSH IN PAKISTAN... WHERE THEY SAY OSAMA BIN LADEN WAS ESSENTIALLY "HIDING IN PLAIN SIGHT."
SUSAN MC-GINNIS HAS THE LATEST FROM THE WHITE HOUSE.
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Under the cover of darkness, about two dozen Navy Seals slid down ropes from two helicopters. They arrived at the million-dollar compound of Osama bin Laden in Abbottabad, Pakistan --- with orders to capture or kill. The mission was SO top-secret, that during practice runs the Seals weren't even TOLD who the target was.


Once inside -- an intense firefight started .


((SOT)) John Brennan/White House Counterterrorism Advisor 24-31

"There was a female ... that reportedly was used as a shield, to shield bin Laden from incoming fire."


U.S. forces shot bin Laden - code name "Geronimo" - in the head and the chest. They took his body with them. (animation) But one of the helicopters carrying the SEALs stalled upon arrival, and had to be blown up .


((SOT)) John Brennan/White House Counterterrorism Advisor

" All of a sudden you had to go into plan B. And they did it flawlessly."

((white house pic))

The entire operation was monitored in real time by the President and his security team.

((STANDUP BRIDGE)) Susan McGinnis, The White House 52-1:01

"There were tense moments in the Situation Room. An advisor said the minutes passed like days, and then President Obama exclaimed 'We got him.'"


No contact was made with Pakistani officials until U-S teams were out of Pakistani airspace. Bin Laden was quickly buried at sea , but he was identified by one of his wives, DNA and facial recognition technology.


But the war on terror is far from over.

((SOT)) John Boehner/House Speaker 1:18-1:24

"It's important that we remain vigilant in our efforts to defeat terrorist enemies and protect the American people."


The U-S has not raised its terror threat level...but military bases are on alert...and the FBI is looking for evidence of new plots against America.
>> THE UNITED STATES TURNED OTHER DETAINEES FROM THE COMPOUND OVER TO THE PAKISTANI AUTHORITIES.
THE U-S IS STILL TRYING TO DETERMINE IF PAKISTAN MIGHT HAVE KNOWN ABOUT BIN LADEN'S WHEREABOUTS.

ROBINS AIR FORCE BASE STEPPED UP ITS SECURITY AFTER BIN LADEN'S DEATH.
SPOKESMAN JOHN BIRDSONG SAYS THE BASE IS IN FORCE PROTECTION CONDITION BRAVO. THAT'S THE THIRD OF FIVE SECURITY LEVELS..
BUT HE SAID THEY WILL NOT REVEAL WHAT STEPS THEY'RE TAKING TO INCREASE SECURITY.
HE SAYS TRAFFIC ALONG HIGHWAY 247 AND THE ENTRANCE TO ROBINS MAY BE AFFECTED WHILE THE ALERT REMAINS IN EFFECT.

A CENTRAL GEORGIA MUSLIM SPIRITUAL LEADER IS JOINING THE CELEBRATION OVER BIN LADEN'S DEATH.
IMAM ADAM FOFANA OF THE ISLAMIC CENTER OF MIDDLE GEORGIA IS CALLING TODAY A "DAY OF JUSTICE."
FOFANA SAYS BIN LADEN'S TERRORISTIC PLOTS TOOK MANY LIVES... AND DAMAGED ISLAM'S REPUTATION...
HE SAYS MOST MUSLIMS... DID NOT IDENTIFY WITH AL-QAIDA'S BELIEFS.
Fofana "They have hijacked Islam and they are responsible for many backlash, which Muslims have to endure and go through all over the world. And hearing that he's gone is a big relief for everybody."
SOME MUSLIM SCHOLARS SAY BIN LADEN'S BURIAL AT SEA GOES AGAINST THEIR RELIGION. FOFANA SAYS HE'S NOT AGAINST HOW AMERICAN FORCES HANDLED THE BURIAL... SAYING BURYING BIN LADEN ON LAND COULD LEAD TO SUPPORTERS USING THE TOMB AS A PLACE FOR PILGRIMAGE.

THE NEWS OF BIN LADEN'S DEATH BROUGHT PAINFUL MEMORIES FOR ONE MACON CITY COUNCILMAN....
COUNCILMAN LONNIE MILEY IS ALSO THE BIBB COUNTY DEPUTY CORONER.
HE AND HIS BROTHER WERE DEPLOYED TO GROUND ZERO AS PART OF A TEAM THAT IDENTIFIED AND PROCESSED BODIES.
MILEY SAYS BIN LADEN'S DEATH CAN'T ERASE ALL THE PAIN HE SAW.
Lonnie Miley, Macon City Councilman, Bibb County Coroner
"I really don't know if closure can ever be brought when you lose someone but it brings a degree of closure to the family memebers to know that the person responsible for their loved ones is now dead."

MANY OF YOU ARE ALSO SHARING YOUR THOUGHTS ON THE DEATH OF OSAMA BIN LADEN...
Drew Kempen, Duluth "I like knowing that no terroist is going to be gonna just lie back and say well I'll just hide the rest of my life that we will find you eventually you're going to pay for it"

Connie Turner, Monroe County "I'm just tickled to death and I really hate to say that over someone being killed but if anyone derserved it I think that he did."

Bob Morgan, Birmingham "I feel like its kinda like a mound of ants you know you kill the one ant and you think that's going to be it but there are so many new you know imitations."

Charmecia Anderson, Macon " I Kinda feel a little safer but then the world is really not safe."

Alicia Steckler, Macon "It made me feel relief like justice was served."
A MACON PASTOR SAYS THE DEATH OF OSAMA BIN LADEN SHOULD NOT JUST BE A CAUSE FOR CELEBRATION: IT SHOULD ALSO BE A TIME FOR PRAYER.
STACEY HARWELL, PASTOR OF CENTENARY UNITED METHODIST CHURCH IN MACON HOSTED A PRAYER VIGIL TONIGHT ON COLEMAN HILL TO PRAY FOR CONTINUED WORLD PEACE.
ABOUT A DOZEN PEOPLE ATTENDED THE SERVICE WHICH WAS DESIGNED TO HELP THE HEALING PROCESS..
Stacy Harwell Pastor; We recognize this day is a tragic day.Its bringing back alot of fresh memories for the family members of the victims that were lost on 911. Were praying for peace and over that situation as well.
THE EVENT WAS OPEN TO ALL DENOMINATIONS.

TODAY'S 13 WMAZ DOT COM WEB POLL ASKS...
DO YOU FEEL SAFER NOW WITH OSAMA BIN LADEN DEAD?
SO FAR 81 PERCENT OF YOU SAY NO.
AND 19 PERCENT OF YOU SAY YES.
YOU CAN FIND THE WEB POLL QUESTION ON THE RIGHT SIDE OF OUR HOMEPAGE INSIDE OF THE DON'T MISS BOX.

YOU MAY WANT TO KEEP AN EYE ON YOUR PLASTIC.
WHILE THEY HAVEN'T PINPOINTED A CASE IN CENTRAL GEORGIA... THE BETTER BUSINESS BUREAU SAYS POCKET SKIMMING IS GAINING POPULARITY... AND COULD LEAD TO STOLEN IDENTITY.
BOFTA YIMAM SHOWS YOU HOW THE HAND-HELD DEVICE IS USED---AND HOW YOUR ACCOUNT NUMBER COULD END UP ON THE BLACK MARKET.
NATS "This is like a credit card fraud"

INVESTIGATOR JEFFERY WOODARD DIGS INTO PROPERTY CRIMES... MOSTLY THOSE---THAT DON'T ADD UP.

NATS "Anything that happens financially cases come to us"

THE MACON POLICE DETECTIVE SAYS THAT INCLUDES MONEY FRAUD INVOLVING TECH GADGETS... LIKE THIS POCKET SKIMMER... WHICH CAN COPY YOUR CREDIT CARD ACCOUNT INFORMATION----IN SECONDS.

NATS
Woodard: "From that point within three hours a duplicate card could be on the market"
Bofta: Wow. Now, you would still be able to use your card so you may not know?
Woodard: You can use your card, the card would be valid, this card, that card, until you cancel it

WOODARD SAYS THERE ARE NO REPORTED CASES OF POCKET SKIMMER SCAMS IN MACON...BUT THAT DOESN'T MEAN SWINDLERS DON'T USE IT.... ITS JUST HARD TO PROVE. FOR EXAMPLE--

Woodard,
"People will look at their account and say 'I used my card two days ago at this convenient store for gas and now it's being compromised, that doesn't mean it was taken at that store, could have been taken months ago.'"

Bofta Yimam (at work desk)
Woodard says you should check your bank statements.. and credit reports. But that's not all. You may also notice suspicious account activity after you try to open a new account... like a cell phone or power bill. Bottom line... Be vigilant, if necessary contact your bank and-or file a police report.

NATS Kelvin Collins "If you're willing to pay the money, those things are out there online."

KELVIN COLLINS HEADS UP THE BETTER BUSINESS BUREAU OF CENTRAL GEORGIA. HE SAYS SMALL BUSINESSES OFTEN USE THE POCKET SKIMMER FOR LEGITIMATE REASONS. IT'S NOT ILLEGAL... .BUT USING IT TO STEAL YOUR IDENTITY IS.

Collins,
"They will come into town, they'll get jobs, at local restaurants they'll stick around for two, three weeks and then they are gone to target another area"

Bofta Yimam (at gas station)
"After they've swiped your credit card account information off the black magnetic stip, Collins says they place it onto a blank, white card that doesn't have a logo. He says they first test the card at a gas station, so they don't have to show it to a clerk. If the plastic works, they can start using it... or sell the account number on the black market. The price- unknown."

COLLINS SAYS THE SMALL DEVICE GAINED POPULARITY A FEW YEARS AGO... MOSTLY IN LARGER CITIES.

NATS Woodard (2 shot with Bofta)
" they actually have them now where you don't have to have a swipe it's actually the size of a credit card"

WOODARD SAYS THEY TRY THEIR BEST TO KEEP UP WITH THE LATEST GADGETS--

Woodard,
"You have to hunt stuff down"

BUT TYPICALLY BY THEN... THE SCAMMERS ARE.... WELL... ONTO THE NEXT BIG THING...

Woodard,
"It can be disastrous to someone"

BOFTA YIMAM 13WMAZ EYEWITNESS NEWS
COLLINS SAYS MOST CREDIT CARD COMPANIES OFFER A LAYER OF PROTECTION... WHERE YOU PAY 50-DOLLARS.
HE SAYS OTHERS MAY NOT REQUIRE THE 50-DOLLAR FEE AT ALL.

FOUR FIRE DEPARTMENTS STRUGGLED TO PUT OUT A FIRE IN EAST DUBLIN THIS AFTERNOON.
THE OLD FORSTMANN PLANT CAUGHT FIRE AT AROUND ONE P.M.
AS ELEANOR LISSITZYN EXPLAINS... FIRE OFFICIALS SAY SEVERAL THINGS MADE FIGHTING THIS FIRE DIFFICULT FOR THEM.
THICK PLUMES OF BLACK SMOKE FILLED THE AIR ON NATHANIEL DRIVE IN EAST DUBLIN MONDAY AFTERNOON.
AS FIREFIGHTERS TRIED TO PUT OUT THE FLAMES AT THE FORMER FORSTMANN PLANT FOR MORE THAN SEVEN HOURS.

LAURENS COUNTY EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT DIRECTOR DON BRYANT SAYS MORE THAN 40 FIREFIGHTERS WORKED ON THE FIRE...
"Theres a lot of combustible material in here, this is a very old building...."

A LOT OF THE DAMAGE TO THE BUIDING WASN'T FROM THE FIRE... ON MONDAY DEMOLATION CREWS WORKED TO TEAR DOWN THE BUILDING.

'EMA director Bryant says he's not positive but the thinks a spark from one of the crews tools could have started the fire. And since the building is already slated for demolition Bryant says he's not risking the saftey of any of his firemen.

"We're working form the edges on trying to separate little chunks of it so we can put it out."

THE THICK TAR ROOF MADE THAT MORE DIFFICULT ACCORDING TO BRYANT.
HE SAYS IT KEPT A LOT OF THE WATER FROM REACHING THE FIRE INSIDE THE BUILDING.
FIREFIGHTERS USED HEAVY MACHINERY TO SEPARATE THE BURNING DEBRY AND DOUSE IT WITH WATER.

"If we don't keep it contained this kind of fire could burn from days."

AT AROUND SIX P.M. PART OF THE ROOF CAVED IN.... SENDING UP EVEN MORE SMOKE...BUT FINALLY GIVING FIREFIGHTERS A CLEAR TARGET.
ACCORDING TO RED CROSS OFFICIALS - THE FIRE WAS STILL BURNING AROUND TEN THIRTY AND FIREFIGHTERS WERE STILL ON THE SCENE.
NO ONE WAS INJURED IN THE FIRE.

STATE REPRESENTATIVE DAVID LUCAS SAYS HE PLANS TO RESIGN FROM HIS SEAT TO RUN FOR THE DISTRICT 26 STATE SENATE SEAT HELD BY SENATOR ROBERT BROWN.
LUCAS SAYS HE'S RUNNING TO FILL THE UNEXPIRED TERM OF SENATOR BROWN...
BUT THAT WON'T HAPPEN UNTIL BROWN QUALIFIES IN HIS RUN FOR MACON MAYOR.
LUCAS SAYS IF HE WINS... HE'LL FOCUS ON BRINGING MORE JOBS TO ONE AREA IN GEORGIA THAT HAS A LOT OF POTENTIAL FOR BIG INDUSTRY.
"Right now, water resources are probably one of the biggest things in the state of Georgia. Twiggs and Wilkinson counties sit on the second largest water active ways in the world. I think that might be able to help them bring more industry into that area."
LUCAS SAY HIS THIRTY SEVEN YEARS OF EXPERIENCE IN THE LEGISLATURE MAKES HIM THE BEST QUALIFIED FOR THE JOB.

MANY OF YOU ARE SENDING US PICTURES OF THE STORM DAMAGE IN YOUR AREA.
OUR DIRECTOR CHRIS COLLINSWORTH TOOK THESE PHOTOS ON THE WAY TO ATLANTA.
THEY WERE TAKEN NEAR THE HIGH FALLS EXIT ON INTERSTATE 75 IN MONROE COUNTY... NEAR WHERE THE TORNADO CROSSED THE INTERSTATE.
TO SHARE YOUR PHOTOS... LOOK FOR PHOTO GALLERIES UNDER THE FEATURES TAB IN THE MENU BAR AT 13WMAZ DOT COM.

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VERONICA CLAYTON WILLIAMS!
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VISIT FACEBOOK DOT COM SLASH 13WMAZ AND CLICK THE "LIKE" BUTTON TO BECOME A FAN.
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