Wednesday, May 25, Eyewitness News at 11

10:19 PM, May 25, 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.

SOME OF THE PEOPLE WHO LOANED PERSONAL ITEMS FOR DISPLAY AT THE GEORGIA MUSIC HALL OF FAME... ARE RE-COLLECTING THOSE ARTIFACTS.
THAT'S AFTER THE MUSIC HALL OF FAME AUTHORITY VOTED TUESDAY TO CLOSE THE MUSEUM'S DOORS NEXT MONTH.
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR... LISA LOVE... SAYS THEY SHOWCASE 30 THOUSAND HISTORICAL ITEMS... 1 TO 2 PERCENT OF WHICH... ARE LOANED TO THE MUSEUM.
SHE SAYS THEY'VE BEEN WORKING FOR ABOUT THE PAST MONTH... TO GET THESE ARTIFACTS BACK TO THE ORIGINAL OWNERS.
JESSICA WALDEN SAYS HER FAMILY HAS DEEP ROOTS IN THE MACON MUSIC SCENE... AND RECOLLECTING DONATED ITEMS... MAKES THE MUSEUM CLOSING... A HARSH REALITY.
Jessica Walden, Macon: "Everything from family photos to big relics like this piano here, were all on display and it definitely was something that you could be proud of and say, 'hey go down to the music hall of fame and check out Dad's Lynyrd Skynyrd ring from 1970 somethin'. Everything has a story there, everything."
MOST OF THE MUSEUM'S ARTIFACTS WILL RELOCATE TO THE UNIVERSITY OF GEORGIA.

ONCE THE HALL OF FAME SHUTS DOWN - THE BUILDING COULD SIT EMPTY FOR A WHILE.
AFTER THE MUSEUM CLOSES ON JUNE 12TH... THE STATE PROPERTIES COMMISSION WILL BE IN CONTROL OF THE BUILDING .
KATIE PANDO.... A REPRESENTATIVE FROM THE COMMISSION.... SAYS ONCE THE MUSEUM MOVES OUT.... THEY'LL SEND CREWS TO ASSESS THE BUILDING AND DECIDED WHAT'S THE BEST OPTION FOR THE FUTURE.
NEWTOWN MACON PRESIDENT MIKE FORD SAYS ALTHOUGH THE MUSEUM CLOSING IS A LOSS FOR THE CITY.... HE'S EXCITED ABOUT OTHER PLANS TO BOOST THE DOWNTOWN AREA.
Mike Ford, President NewTown Macon: "We would prefer not to have another vacant building downtown, but it also makes us think that there are opportunities that we need to take advantage of about macon music."
FORD SAYS NEWTOWN STILL PLANS TO RE-OPEN THE OLD CAPRICORN RECORDING STUDIO.
HE SAYS THEY MAY ALSO OPEN A RETAIL STORE ON CHERRY STREET TO PROMOTE MACON'S MUSIC HERITAGE.

TODAY'S 13WMAZ DOT COM WEB POLL QUESTION ASKS... WILL YOU VISIT THE GEORGIA MUSIC HALL OF FAME BEFORE IT CLOSES?
RIGHT NOW... 83 PERCENT OF VOTERS SAY NO... THEY WON'T.
17 PERCENT SAY THEY WILL VISIT.
VOTE RIGHT NOW.... VISIT 13WMAZ DOT COM AND LOOK FOR THE QUESTION ON THE RIGHT SIDE OF THE PAGE.

EDWARD DUBOSE... PRESIDENT OF THE STATE'S NAACP CONFERENCE SAYS THE CONDITION OF GREEN MEADOWS TOWNHOUSES ISN'T HEALTHY FOR THE PEOPLE LIVING THERE.
HE SAYS PICTURES SHOW MOLD AND DISREPAIR AT THE LOG CABIN DRIVE COMPLEX.
TENANTS SAY THOSE PICTURES WERE TAKEN WITHIN THE LAST SIX MONTHS.
WE SPOKE WITH THE BEACH COMPANY... WHICH OWNS GREEN MEADOWS.
THEY DENY THE ALLEGATIONS... AND SAY THEY RECENTLY REMODELED THE COMPLEX.
SHAUNDRA JOHNSON LIVES AT GREEN MEADOWS... AND SAYS THAT'S NOT TRUE.
Shaundra Johnson: "When I came back after the renovation my ceiling had came down, my floor by my bathroom was falling down."
Edward DuBose: "Green meadows is probably one of the most egrigious housing areas that I've seen in a long time. Inhumane conditions. Health problems. We plan to go through the legal system."
BEACH COMPANY SPOKESMAN LEONARD WAY SAYS THE DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT INVESTIGATED COMPLAINTS FILED BY TENANTS LAST MAY... AND DISMISSED THEM.
DUBOSE SAYS THAT INVESTIGATION WAS FLAWED.

FORMER TENNIS PRO AND LEUKEMIA SURVIVOR JAIME KAPLAN IS IN LINE FOR A SEAT ON MACON CITY COUNCIL..
IN AN EMAIL... COUNCIL MEMBER LAUREN BENEDICT SAYS SHE AND NANCY WHITE AGREED TO PICK KAPLAN FOR THE SEAT RECENTLY VACATED BY BEVERLY BLAKE.
KAPLAN SPENT YEARS ON THE PRO TENNIS CIRCUIT... ONCE REACHING WIMBLEDON'S ROUND OF 16 IN DOUBLES PLAY.
SHE CURRENTLY SERVES AS TENNIS COACH AT STRATFORD ACADEMY..
FULL COUNCIL MUST VOTE TO APPROVE HER NOMINATION.

A SPECIAL CAMP IN CENTRAL GEORGIA WORKS TO GIVE GIRLS HANDS ON EXPERIENCE WHEN IT COMES TO CARS.
A GROUP OF STUDENTS CAME OUT TO THE FIRST ANNUAL GIRLS "AUTO KNOW" DAY CAMP AT THE HUTCHINGS CAREER CENTER..
THE CAMP IS PART OF A THREE DAY LEARNING SESSION DEVOTED TO HELPING GIRLS FIX CARS.
HIGH SCHOOL TENTH GRADERS FROM BIBB COUNTY GOT A CRASH COURSE IN FIXING A FLAT.
THE PROGRAM ALSO TEACHES GIRLS HOW TO CHANGE THE OIL IN THEIR CAR AND TROUBLESHOOT UNDER THE HOOD.
THE GIRLS WE TALKED WITH SAY THE COURSE GIVES THEM A SENSE OF INDEPENDENCE.
Ashanti Macon, Hutchings Career Center Student: "I love this program because now I know how to change tires by myself, I won't need anyone to help me."
Maria Paula-Rodriguez, Howard High Student: "You feel more confident and it's the kind of things you should know as a teenager."
THE CAMP IS FREE AND OFFERED ON A FIRST-COME-FIRST-SERVE BASIS.
IF YOU MISSED OUT THIS WEEK....YOU CAN SIGN UP FOR THE CAMP IN JULY WHERE GIRLS WILL LEARN ABOUT CONSTRUCTION TECHNIQUES.

HOUSTON COUNTY SCHOOL BELLS RANG FOR THE LAST TIME THIS SCHOOL YEAR.
STUDENTS ARE NOW OFFICIALLY ON SUMMER VACATION.
Nats of Kids Cheering
BEFORE CHILDREN A NORTHSIDE ELEMENTARY HEADED HOME... THEY PILED INTO THE CAFETERIA TO RECEIVE THEIR END OF THE YEAR AWARDS.
THAT INCLUDED CERTIFICATES FOR PERFECT ATTENDANCE AND OUTSTANDING ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENTS.
AT LAKE JOY PRIMARY... SECOND GRADE STUDENTS CHOWED DOWN ON BAR-B-QUE LUNCH ON THE PLAYGROUND.
TEACHERS ALSO THREW PARTIES IN THEIR CLASSROOMS.
ABOUT 16-HUNDRED-70 STUDENTS WILL GRADUATE FROM FIVE HOUSTON COUNTY HIGH SCHOOLS THIS FRIDAY AND SATURDAY. ALL CEREMONIES WILL BE HELD AT THE GEORGIA NATIONAL FAIRGROUNDS IN PERRY.

OPRAH'S 25 YEAR RUN AS A DAYTIME TALK SHOW HOST CAME TO AN END TODAY WITH HER FINAL EPISODE.
FOR SOME PEOPLE IN MACON... HER GOODBYE BROUGHT BACK MEMORIES OF HER 2007 SHOW TAPING.
nats full- Oprah show file "Ho, Ho, Ho, It's my favorite things 2007" (7 SECONDS)
OPRAH BROUGHT HER "FAVORITE THINGS" EPISODE TO THE MACON CITY AUDITORIUM.... STOPPING AT SEVERAL LOCAL LANDMARKS.
AT NU-WAY WEINERS... VERONICA SMITH SAYS A COLLAGE MARKS THE BOOTH WHERE OPRAH ATE ONE OF THEIR FAMOUSE HOTDOGS.
AT THE GINGER MICHELLE BOUTIQUE... THEY STILL SELL THE 125-DOLLAR BAG OPRAH BOUGHT.
SHE STAYED AT THE 1842 INN... WHERE EJ NOBLES SAYS OPRAH'S VISIT STILL ATTRACTS BUSINESS.
EJ Nobles, 1842 Inn: (20:40) "When someone calls to make a reservation, the want to stay in the room Oprah stayed in."
Veronica Smith, Nu-Way: (8:08) "When she came in, I froze. I just stopped doing what I was doing, just sat there. I was smiling. I couldn't believe it. I was like Lord have mercy. I was just smiling. I didn't know how to act."
OPRAH CALLED HER FINAL EPISODE A "LOVE NOTE" TO HER FANS.
SHE CALLED EACH EPISODE FOR THE PAST 25 YEARS... THE "GREATEST GIFT" HER FANS COULD GIVE HER.

HIKERS VISITING GEORGIA'S WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT AREAS WILL HAVE TO PAY A LITTLE MORE STARTING NEXT YEAR.
THE BOARD OF THE STATE'S DEPARTMENT OF NATURAL RESOURCES VOTED TO CHARGE VISITORS THREE DOLLARS AND FIFTY CENTS FOR A THREE-DAY PASS TO WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT AREAS AND FISHING GROUNDS.
IF YOU WANT AN ANNUAL FEE... IT WILL COST YOU 19 BUCKS.
THAT'S THE SAME FEE HUNTERS AND FISHERMEN ALREADY PAY.
THE NEW FEES GO INTO EFFECT JANUARY FIRST... 2012.

THE MACON-BIBB FIRE DEPARTMENT WILL PAY TRIBUTE TO ONE OF ITS OWN TOMORROW MORNING.
FUNERAL SERVICES FOR 24-YEAR-OLD MICHAEL DEWAYNE JONES...
WILL BE TOMORROW.... AT 11 A.M..... AT THE MACON CITY AUDITORIUM.
THAT'S ON FIRST STREET.... DOWNTOWN.
MICHAEL JONES DROWNED SATURDAY AT LAKE TOBESOFKEE WHILE SAVING THREE CHILDREN... TWO OF THEM HIS OWN.
HE WAS A FIRE DEPARTMENT TRAINEE.

THE MAN ACCUSED OF SHOOTING CONGRESSWOMAN GABRIELLE GIFFORDS AND 18 OTHER PEOPLE WON'T STAND TRIAL ANYTIME SOON. A JUDGE RULED TODAY THAT JARED LOUGHNER WAS NOT MENTALLY COMPETENT TO STAND TRIAL.
THE RULING CAME NOT LONG AFTER LOUGHNER LOWERED HIS HEAD AND STARTED MUMBLING LOUDLY.
LOUGHNER HAD TO BE REMOVED FOR DISRUPTING THE HEARING.
NOW... HE'LL GO TO A FEDERAL FACILITY... WHERE DOCTORS WILL WORK TO RESTORE HIS ABILITY TO UNDERSTAND THE CASE.
ARIZONA'S U-S ATTORNEY SAYS THEY PLAN TO MAKE SURE THAT LOUGHNER STANDS TRIAL ONCE HE'S DEEMED MENTALLY COMPETENT.
SHOOTING VICTIM ERIC FULLER SAYS HE WASN'T SURPRISED BY LOUGHNER'S MENTAL STATE.
Eric Fuller - Shooting Victim
"...HE WAS VERY DISORGANIZED, YOU DON'T HAVE TO BE A PROFESSIONAL PSYCHIATRIST
TO KNOW THAT THE BOY IS DISTURBED..."
Dennis Burke - U.S. Attorney for Arizona
"...WE'RE GOING TO MAKE EVERY STEP WE CAN TO ENSURE THAT THIS INDIVIDUAL GOES
TO TRIAL FOR THE CRIMES THAT THE GRAND JURY FOUND HE COMMITTED..."
TODAY'S RULING MEANS THE CRIMINAL CASE AGAINST LOUGHNER IS ON HOLD INDEFINITELY.

THE MAN CONVICTED OF KIDNAPPING ELIZABETH SMART WAS SENTENCED TO LIFE IN FEDERAL PRISON TODAY.
NEARLY NINE YEARS AFTER SHE WAS TAKEN AT KNIFEPOINT... RAPED AND HELD HOSTAGE... SMART TOOK THE STAND TO PUBLICLY CONFRONT BRIAN DAVID MITCHELL FOR THE FIRST TIME.
SHE TOLD HIM THAT HE TOOK AWAY NINE MONTHS OF HER LIFE THAT CAN NEVER BE RETURNED.
MITCHELL SANG QUIETLY DURING THE SENTENCING.
TODAY'S PROCEEDING CLOSES A MAJOR LEGAL CHAPTER IN THE CASE... WHICH STALLED FOR YEARS AFTER MITCHELL WAS DECLARED MENTALLY ILL AND UNFIT TO STAND TRIAL.
SMART WAS 14 WHEN SHE WAS SNATCHED FROM THE BEDROOM OF HER HOME IN SALT LAKE CITY.

THIS IS THE DEADLIEST TORNADO SEASON IN MORE THAN FIFTY YEARS.
TONIGHT... THE COUNTRY'S MIDSECTION IS TAKING A BEATING... AND THE LOSSES ARE MOUNTING.
THE DEATH TOLL IN JOPLIN, MISSOURI HAS RISEN TO 125.
JOEL BROWN HAS MORE.

MANDATORY CREDIT HOLYTORNADO.COM -(00-13)
((NARR-1))

It's a sight and sound that's all too familiar this spring.



((NATS)) tornado winds



((NARR-2))

Storm chasers kept pace with this fast-moving twister in Chickasha, Oklahoma, Tuesday evening.



((NATS)) "Oh, it was a trailer!"

((NARR-3))

More than a dozen people have died in storms in Oklahoma, Arkansas and Kansas since Tuesday.

(Locator: Piedmont, OK 19-28)

Most of two subdivisions in Piedmont Oklahoma were flattened.


This was Jamey Zimmerman's dream home. It was gone in just 15 seconds.

((SOT)) Jamey Zimmerman, Piedmont OK Resident

" I know it's gonna be a year before I get to live in it again. " ( chokes up)

((NARR- 4 )) (Sedalia, MO 33-37 )

Another line of storms moved through the midwest Wednesday. Sedalia, Missouri, was hit - and so was Greensburg, Indiana.

((STANDUP BRIDGE)) Joel Brown, Joplin, MO (40-48)

In Joplin, Missouri, it was the first day with no live rescues since Sunday's massive tornado. But the city isn't giving up.



(Mark Ballmann / Missouri Regency K9 team )



"There's always hope that you can find someone alive."



((NARR-6))

As the shock here wears off, the reality sets in.

((SOT)) Heather Copeland/15 Years Old, Joplin Resident (:55-1:01)

"Nobody's promised tomorrow. So you just need to treasure every moment you have and people you're with."

((NARR-7))

Family, friends and neighbors are pitching in to help each other.

St. Mary's church building is gone...but its members are ministering --- with money.



(nat sequence handing out checks)

JOHN OLSON: could you use 100 dollars?

DOUG KEENEY: oh man, you wouldn't believe it.

JOHN OLSON: who do i make it out to?

DOUG KEENEY: doug keeney... d-o-u-g... k-e-e (starts crying) n-e-y.

((NARR-8))

Survivors have a message for the world... They may be down, but they're not out.

TONIGHT'S FACEBOOK FAN OF THE DAY....
KIMBERLY SOLES STORY!
CONGRATULATIONS KIMBERLY... YOU'LL GET A 13WMAZ COFFEE MUG!
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.

SOME OF YOU ARE HEADING OUT TO YOUR FLOWERBEDS WITH CAMERA IN HAND TO SNAP PHOTOS OF THE FLOWERS IN YOUR YARD.
LET'S LOOK AT A COUPLE THAT HAVE FOUND THEIR WAY INTO OUR NATURE'S BOUNTY GALLERY.
THE CAPTION ON THIS ONE SAYS... "PURPLE PINWHEEL."
AND THIS IS ANOTHER FLOWER FROM THE SAME COLLECTION... THE CAPTION HERE SAYS "PASSION FLOWER."
SEND US YOUR PHOTOS...LOOK FOR *PHOTO GALLERIES* UNDER FEATURES IN THE MENU BAR ACROSS THE TOP OF OUR HOMEPAGE...

THANKS FOR JOINING US.... FIRST MORNIN COMES YOUR WAY AT 5 A-M.
THE NEWS IS ALWAYS ON AT 13WMAZ DOT COM.
ON LETTERMAN TONIGHT: KEVIN BACON
HAVE A SAFE NIGHT EVERYONE.

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