<<opening for eyewitness news at six>>
Sheryl Bagget: This is about her
Kathy MAnn, "somebody killed Lauren and so we're going to be here."
EMOTIONAL WORDS FROM LAUREN GIDDINGS' COUSINS.... AFTER LEARNING THAT THE MURDER CASE AGAINST STEPHEN MCDANIEL WILL MOVE FORWARD.
HELLO EVERYONE AND THANKS FOR JOINING US.I'M LORRA LYNCH JONES.
AND I'M FRANK MALLOY..THIS IS EYEWITNESS NEWS AT SIX.
A JUDGE THIS MORNING RULED THERE IS ENOUGH EVIDENCE TO SEND THE CASE AGAINST STEPHEN MCDANIEL TO A GRAND JURY.
MCDANIEL ARRIVED AT THE BIBB COUNTY COURTHOUSE THIS MORNING IN SHACKLES... FOR THE NINE THIRTY COMMITMENT HEARING.
FAMILY AND FRIENDS OF LAUREN GIDDINGS' SAT IN THE GALLERY... WEARING PINK... HER FAVORITE COLOR.
ALSO THERE... MCDANIEL'S MOTHER AND FATHER.
THEY SAT TOGETHER... HANDS TIGHTLY CLASPED.
HIS MOTHER SEEMED TO MAKE A SILENT PRAYER BEFORE THE JUDGE ENTERED THE COURT ROOM.
MCDANIEL SAT AT THE DEFENSE TABLE... SILENT... AND STARING STRAIGHT AHEAD.
ELEANOR LISSITZYN ATTENDED THIS MORNING'S HEARING.
SHE HAS MORE ON WHAT IT WAS LIKE INSIDE THE COURTROOM.
THERE WAS A KIND OF TUG OF WAR GOING ON BETWEEN THE PROSECUTION AND DEFENSE.
DISTRICT ATTORNEY GREG WINTERS WAS THERE TO ESTABLISH PROBALE CASE... TO SHOW THAT THERE'S ENOUGH EVIDENCE TO TAKE THIS TRIAL... BUT NOT TO LAY OUT HIS WHOLE CASE.
DEFENSE ATTORNEY FLOYD BUFORD ON THE OTHER HAND... WAS TRYING TO GET THE D-A TO SHOW ALL HIS CARDS.
HE QUESTIONED MACON POLICE LEAD INVESTIGATOR DAVID PATTERSON EXTENSIVELY ABOUT EVIDENCE... AND PROTOCOL... AND EVEN SAID TOWARD THE END... THAT HIS OWN INVESTIGATOR FOUND SOME NEW EVIDENCE AS WELL.
BUT THE CASE WINTER LAID OUT...BOILED DOWN TO FOUR KEY POINTS.
LEAD INVESTIGATOR DAVID PATTERSON DESCRIBED THE SCENE ON JUNE 30....WHEN OFFICERS STARTED LOOKING FOR LAUREN GIDDINGS
HE SAYS HE CALLED FOR CADAVER DOGS ... AFTER NOTICING A BAD SMELL... AND AN OFFICER FOUND HER TORSO IN A TRASHCAN.
HE SAYS THE DOGS SEARCHED MCDANIEL'S APARTMENT...AND SMELLED SIGNS OF A BODY.
'In what area did they alert.
In the bathroom area and the back bedroom area.
That was inside the accused apartment?
DEFENSE ATTORNEY FLOYD BUFORD ASKED HOW HIS CLIENT REACTED .
he was concerned because he had been in Lauren's apartment the night helping with the search, and he was concerned that he might had picked up something on his clothing."
BOTH SIDES ASKED PATTERSON ABOUT A HACKSAW DISCOVERED IN A LOCKED ROOM IN THE COMPLEX'S LAUNDRY AREA.
"Was there anything of note on the hacksaw?"
"There was what appeared to me to be blood."
BLOOD THAT WAS LATER IDENTIFIED AS GIDDINGS'.... BUT PATTERSON SAYS THERE'S NO SIGN....YET....OF MCDANIEL'S DNA.
PATTERSON SAYS THEY ALSO FOUND PACKAGING....THAT MAY HAVE COME WITH THE SAW...IN MCDANIELS' APARTMENT.
HE ALSO NOTED THEY OPENED THE LOCKED LAUNDRY DOOR WITH A KEY FOUND THERE.
IN CROSS EXAMINING PATTERSON.... BUFORD ASKED ABOUT DAVID DOORER....A LAW STUDENT AND MAINTENANCE WORKER WHO LIVED AT THE APARTMENT COMPLEX...AND ALSO HAD A SET OF KEYS.
As part of his rent he was allowed to work out there as a maintenence man
From what I understand.
And he had a master key?
He had a lot of keys.
BUFORD ASKED PETERSON ABOUT A CONVERSATION McDANIEL HAD IN 2008.... WITH A ROOMMATE.
"Stephen used to talk about Zombie invasions and how he could committ the perfect murder and what he woudl do to cover up the perfect murder."
PATTERSON SAYS MCDANIEL'S 'PERFECT MURDER' INVOLVED TAKING THE VICTIM BY SURPRISE AND OVERPOWERING THE VICTIM USING CHOLOROFRM.
"Was there any cholorform found in Stephen McDaniel's apartment?"
BOTH SIDES WENT BACK AND FORTH SEVERAL TIMES... BUFORD TRYING TO GET THE PROSECUTOR TO LAY OUT THE EVIDENCE... THE D-A TRYING TO KEEP DETAILS UNDER WRAPS.
DURING THE HEARING.... WINTERS OBJECTED TO ONE OF BUFORD'S QUESTIONS.
BUFORD ASKED PATTERSON ABOUT A PAIR OF BLOODY BLUE PLASTIC GLOVES... THAT HE SAYS A DEFENSE INVESTIGATOR DISCOVERED THIS WEEK INSIDE THE LAUNDRY ROOM.
I object, The purpose of the hearing is not to investigate the investigation."
BUT JUDGE WILLIAM SHURLING LET BUFORD CONTINUE.
"Are you aware of that?
BUFORD ALSO ASKED PATTERSON ABOUT A PATTERN... HE SAYS INVESTIGATORS SEEMED TO TAKE EVERYTHING BLUE OR BLUE TINGED FROM MCDANIEL'S APARTMENT.
PATTERSON DIDN'T EXPLAIN... BUT SAID THAT SEEMED CORRECT.
ANOTHER UNEXPLAINED DETAIL...IN A HEARING THAT HELPED ANSWER SOME QUESTIONS ABOUT THE GIDDINGS CASE....BUT ALSO RAISED SOME NEW ONES.
BUFORD ALSO TRIED TO GET THE CHARGES DISMISSED... SAYING PROSECUTORS HADN'T PROVIDED ENOUGH INFORMATION ON THE ARREST WARRANT.
HE SAYS IT DOESN'T DESCRIBE WHY MCDANIEL IS CHARGED WITH FELONY MURDER.
WINTERS SAYS THAT'S INFORMATION THAT SHOULD GO BEFORE A GRAND JURY.
BUT SEVERAL FAMILY MEMBERS OF LAUREN GIDDINGS ATTENDED THE HEARING... AND SAY THEY'RE ENCOURAGED.
Kathy MAnn, Giddings COusin: "WE would have been very sad to think we were startign all over again so we're pleased with the progress. We're pleased with the DA."
MANY RELATIVES WORE PINK SHIRTS AS THEY SAT IN THE SECOND ROW OF THE COURTROOM.
THEY SAY THE COLOR REMINDS THEM OF LAUREN.
Kathy MAnn, Cousin: "Pink was one of Lauren's favorite colors and she actually had a tradition at one of the law firms where she worked where they wore pink on Wednesday and if you wore pink on Wednesday you got to have cake for dessert, so Wednesday is really her pink day, but Lauren had so much pink that it is her color, so we will wear pink for her."
TODAY.. STEPHEN MCDANIEL WAS DENIED BOND.
HE'S BEING HELD IN THE BIBB COUNTY JAIL.
TOMORROW...FORMER HOUSE SPEAKER NEWT GINGRICH... AND A HOST OF OTHER POLITICAL LEADERS... WILL BE IN CENTRAL GEORGIA FOR THE G-O-P FISH FRY.
THERE, REPUBLICANS WILL VOTE IN A STRAW POLL FOR PRESIDENT.
YOU'LL SEE RESULTS SATURDAY EVENING ON EYEWITNESS NEWS... BUT RIGHT NOW...WE HAVE A QUESTION OF OUR OWN.
OUR 13-W-M-A-Z-DOT-COM WEB POLL ASKS...
DO YOU THINK FORMER SPEAKER GINGRICH IS STILL A VIABLE CANDIDATE FOR PRESIDENT?
SO FAR 88 PERCENT OF YOU SAY NO.
AND 12 PERCENT OF YOU SAY YES.
THERE'S STILL PLENTY OF TIME FOR YOU TO VOTE...
VISIT OUR WEBSITE AT 13-W-M-A-Z-DOT-COM.. AND LOOK FOR THE WEB POLL QUESTION ON THE RIGHT SIDE OF OUR HOMEPAGE.
NINE YEARS AGO... MACON'S TERMINAL STATION WAS SUPPOSED TO BECOME CENTRAL GEORIGA'S TRANSPORTATION HUB.
BUT THE PROJECT IS CLOSE TO RUNNING OUT OF STEAM... AND COUNTING ON NEW FUEL FROM THE CITY TO KEEP THE ENGINE GOING.
THE CITY ALREADY SINKS MILLIONS INTO KEEPING THE CENTREPLEX AND CITY AUDITORIUM ON TRACK..
AND ONE COUNCIL MEMBER SAYS HE'S WORRIED TERMINAL STATION WILL TURN INTO THE NEXT SINKHOLE FOR CITY DOLLARS.
ELEANOR LISSITZYN HAS MORE.
WHEN THE CITY BOUGHT TERMINAL STATION FROM GEORGIA POWER IN 2002...
MAYOR C. JACK ELLIS...HAD BIG DREAMS...
Once we have the trains coming here, but we'll have the buses before the trains, we'll have intercity buses as well as intracity buses. We'll have shops, we'll have restaurants, we'll have office space."
FAST FORWARD ALMOST TEN YEARS... MOST OF THE TENANTS ARE CITY DEPARTMENTS... AND MOST OF THE BUILDING IS EMPTY
THE CITY'S BUS LINE IS THE ONLY TRANSPORTATION COMING THROUGH.
AND THE BUILDING OPERATES AT A LOSS.
ACCORDING TO AN INTERNAL AUDIT... THE BUILDING COSTS THREE HUNDRED AND FORTY THOUSAND DOLLARS A YEAR TO OPERATE... AND TOOK IN ABOUT THREE HUNDRED AND TWENTY THOUSAND... A LOSS OF ABOUT TWENTY TWO THOUSAND DOLLARS.
COUNCIL MAN RICK HUTTO SAYS... THEY'RE GOING TO LOSE MORE
."I'm really concerned that this is the thing that could put us under."
STAND UP:"Up until November of 2010, this was the building's best tenant, the United States Census Bureau. They were paying about $9,000 a month in rent, according to New Town Macon. When they left, that's when the city took a big financial hit. Hutto says from here on out they'll be losing about $10,000 a month."
A SUBSIDIARY OF NEWTOWN MACON MANAGED THE BUILDING SINCE 2008... AND MAYOR ROBERT REICHERT SAYS IT MAY BE TIME FOR A CHANGE.
"We need people who know what they're doing, and do it for a business, to market, maintain,and manage the building."
"New Town currently dosn't even have a maketing plan for the building, we need somebody who can market it and bring in new tenants."
THE MAYOR SAYS HE STILL HOPES TERMINAL STATION WILL BE THE TRANSPORTATION HUB ELLIS ENVISIONED MORE THAN TEN YEARS AGO...
HUTTO SAYS HE JUST HOPES IT DOENS'T BANKRUPT THE CITY... BEFORE THEIR TRAIN COMES IN.
STD CITY FINANCE DIRECTOR DALE WALKER SAYS MACON HASN'T PAID OFF THE BUILDING.
IT COST ABOUT TWO MILLION DOLLARS IN 2002... SIX HUNDRED THOUSAND DOLLARS CAME FROM A FEDERAL GRANT... THE REST WAS BOND MONEY.
THE CITY TOOK OUT A TEN MILLION DOLLAR BOND IN 2002... TO PAY FOR TERMINAL STATION AND SEVERAL OTHER PROJECTS.
WALKER SAYS SIX POINT FOUR MILLION OF THAT IS STILL UNPAID.
IT SOUNDS LIKE WE CAN LOOK FORWARD TO SOME GREAT WEATHER THIS WEEKEND... SO YOU MAY BE LOOKING TO GET OUTDOORS.
IF YOU'RE PLANNING ON DINING OUT... SEE HOW YOUR FAVORITE RESTAURANTS DID... WHEN THE HEALTH INSPECTOR DROPPED IN.
AMY AUBERT JOINS US WITH THIS WEEK'S RESTAURANT RATINGS.
WE'RE BACK IN HOUSTON COUNTY THIS WEEK...STARTING OFF WITH OUR LOWEST SCORES FIRST....
FRIENDS BAR AND GRILL TWO... AT 12-29 RUSSELL PARKWAY IN WARNER ROBINS... SCORED AN 81... THAT'S A B... COMING AFTER A 79... OR "C" ON THE INSPECTION BEFORE.
ACCORDING TO THE INSPECTION REPORT... ADEQUATE HANDWASHING FACILITIES WERE NOT SUPPLIED AND ACCESSIBLE... IT NOTES THAT AS A RISK... FOR FOODBORNE ILLNESS.
THE REPORT ALSO SAYS GARBAGE WAS NOT PROPERLY DISPOSED... AND FACILITIES WERE NOT MAINTAINED.
MARTIN'S BARBEQUE AT 1-02 SOUTH FIRST STREET IN WARNER ROBINS... GOT AN 83... THAT'S A "B".... COMING AFTER A 95 OR "A"... LAST TIME.
THE HEALTH INSPECTOR SAYS STORED FOOD WAS NOT COVERED... AND FOOD WAS NOT HELD AT THE PROPER HOT AND COLD HOLDING TEMPERATURES.
AND WAFFLE HOUSE AT 12-87 SOUTH HOUSTON LAKE ROAD IN WARNER ROBINS... ALSO GOT AN 83... A "B"... AFTER SCORING A 96... OR "A" LAST TIME.
THE INSPECTION REPORT SAYS TOXIC SUBSTANCES WERE NOT PROPERLY IDENTIFIED... STORED... AND USED.
IT ALSO SAYS PROPER DATE MARKING... WAS NOT FOLLOWED.
NOW FOR A LOOK THE TOP SCORES OF THE WEEK... AND THIS WEEK'S GOLDEN SPATULA NOMINEES.
AMERICAN DELI AT 13-65 SAM NUNN BOULEVARD IN PERRY... SERVED UP A 99... AN "A"...COMING AFTER A 98... ANOTHER "A"... LAST TIME.
CHICK-FIL-A AT 13-63 SAM NUNN BOULEVARD IN PERRY... WHIPPED UP TWO PERFECT 100'S... ON ITS LAST TWO INSPECTIONS.
AND SUBWAY AT AT 4-99 HIGHWAY 2-47 SOUTH IN BONAIRE... ALSO SCORED A 100... AFTER GETTING A 98... LAST TIME.
FOR ALL YOUR BIBB AND HOUSTON COUNTY RESTAURANT RATINGS... GO TO OUR WEBSITE 13WMAZ DOT COM.
HOVER OVER THE FEATURES TAB... AND SCROLL DOWN TO RESTAURANT RATINGS.
OUR FACEBOOK FANS ARE GETTING GEARED UP TO SUPPORT THEIR FAVORITE TEAMS THIS FOOTBALL FRIDAY NIGHT...
SHIRLEY SAID... "I CAN'T WAIT FOR PEACH COUNTY FOOTBALL!"
DESEAN COMMENTED... "IT'S GREAT TO BE A NORTHSIDE EAGLE... BEAT THOSE DEMONS!"
CINDY WROTE... "I WANT TO BE EXCITED FOR HAWKINSVILLE. HOPING THEY WILL GIVE IT ALL THEY'VE GOT THIS YEAR! GO BIG RED!"
MILTON REPLIED... "CAN'T WAIT. LOVE ALL OF THEM. PARTIAL TO WESTSIDE."
AND DEBBIE'S REPRESENTING... "NORTHSIDE FOREVER!!! GO EAGLES! "ONCE AN EAGLE, ALWAYS AN EAGLE"
REPRESENT YOUR TEAM AT FACEBOOK DOT COM SLASH 13WMAZ.
AND WE KNOW YOU WON'T FORGET... BUT WE'LL REMIND YOU ANYWAY.
WEEK ONE OF FOOTBALL FRIDAY NIGHT IS COMING YOUR WAY TONIGHT AFTER EYEWITNESS NEWS AT 11.
THANKS FOR JOINING US.... WE'LL BE BACK TONIGHT AT 11.
BUT REMEMBER...THE NEWS IS ALWAYS ON AT 13WMAZ.COM !
THE EVENING NEWS IS UP NEXT.
HAVE A GOOD NIGHT.