HELLO EVERYONE AND THANKS FOR JOINING US.
I'M LEAH JOHNSON..
AND I'M FRANK MALLOY..THIS IS EYEWITNESS NEWS AT SIX.
A MACON-BIBB FIRE CAPTAIN WILL BE DEMOTED TO LIEUTENANT AS THE FALLOUT FROM THE HOAX SHOOTING VIDEO FILMED AT A FIRE STATION CONTINUES.
MAYORAL SPOKESMAN CLAY MURPHEY SAYS LIEUTENANT STEPHANIE BURKE....WILL ALSO BE SUSPENDED FOR 20 SHIFTS. THAT'S THE EQUIVALENT OF 60 DAYS.
BURKE'S PUNISHMENT IS MUCH MORE SEVERE THAN WHAT FIRE CHIEF MARVIN RIGGINS ANNOUNCED LAST WEEK. ORIGINALLY SHE RECEIVED A TWO-SHIFT SUSPENSION.
MURPHEY COULD NOT EXPLAIN THE HARSHER PENALTIES FOR BURKE...EXCEPT TO SAY THAT RIGGINS HAD RECEIVED NEW INFORMATION SINCE LAST WEEK.
RIGGINS' STATEMENT TODAY ALSO UPHELD THE FIRING OF FIREFIGHTER CHRISTOPHER HUGHES....EFFECTIVE TODAY... AND SUSPENSIONS FOR SEVERAL OTHERS.
THEY ALL HAVE THE RIGHT TO APPEAL RIGGINS' DECISION TO AN ADMINISTRATIVE LAW JUDGE AND THEN TO MAYOR ROBERT REICHERT.
CHIEF RIGGINS COULD NOT BE REACHED FOR COMMENT.
AN ATLANTA-AREA FAMILY IS BATTLING MACON'S CANNONBALL HOUSE MUSEUM... OVER SOME 150-YEAR-OLD CIVIL WAR ARTIFACTS.
THEY INCLUDE A SWORD... A FLAG.... MEDALS... PINS AND BOOKS... REPORTEDLY LOANED DECADES AGO... TO THE GROUP THAT RAN THE CANNONBALL HOUSE.
AMY AUBERT HAS MORE ON THAT STORY
Amy Aubert. Eyewitness News: "I spoke to Lee Dunn, who says the Cannonball House won't hand over more than 5 historical artifacts passed down through her family. The lawsuit against the Macon Museum states that family members loaned the items years ago and Dunn wants them on display elsewhere.
Lee Dunn: "to another accredited institution where it would more properly fit their mission. The mission of the cannonball house is to display items from Georgia serviceman and give the money to cannonball house."
Amy Aubert: She says the Cannonball House quote, willingly handed over a Civil War era sword, sash and ambrotype she says belongs tot he family. But according to Dunn, most of the family's artifacts were missing. The lawsuit states that some of the items the family did get were in poor condition. Dunn filed this police report back in November stating at least 5 collectables were missing--including this picture of Admiral James Juett and the report says the director of the cannonball house was looking for those items.
Six months after Dunn filed the report, Cannonball house director cheryl aultman filed a police report against Dunn's husband, stating he stole the items Dunn says were willingly returned to the family.
Dunn: 'we were shocked. absolutely shocked that the D-A would even consider an investigation of this type. This is a criminal investigation. We have been living in fear for about 4 or 5 months that they're goint to arrest my husband.
Dunn says D.A. Greg Winters threatened her husband this week saying he would take the case to Grand Jury. In Macon, I'm Amy Aubert, 13 WMAZ, Eyewitness News.>>
THE MUSEUM'S EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR EARL COLVIN SAID HE COULD NOT COMMENT... AND REFFERED US TO WINTERS.
WE COULD NOT REACH THE DISTRICT ATTORNEY FOR COMMENT.
SCHOOL NUTRITION WORKERS AROUND THE STATE... MET AT THE MACON CENTREPLEX FOR THEIR ANNUAL LUNCHEON WITH THE GEORGIA STATE SCHOOL NUTRITION ASSOCIATION.
THE CONFERENCE GOERS ARE GIVEN THE OPPORTUNITY TO SWAP COOKING TECHNIQUES AND TEACHING TOOLS THAT THEY CAN USE IN THEIR SCHOOL CAFETERIAS.
THE GOAL IS TO SERVE HEALTHY MEALS... AND TEACH STUDENTS ABOUT NUTRITION.
SEVERAL SCHOOLS AND MEDIA REPRESENTATIVES WERE RECOGNIZED FOR THEIR WORK IN PROVIDING INFORMATION ON HEALTHY FOOD CHOICES.
MEREDITH POTTER... COORDINATOR FOR SCHOOL NUTRITION IN HOUSTON COUNTY SAYS THEY ACTIVELY PRACTICE GOOD NUTRITION IN THEIR LUNCH ROOMS AND CLASSROOMS.
Meredith Potter, Coordinator for Houston County School Nutrition: "We also have fresh fruit and vegetables everyday on the line
and our nutrition managers actually teach classes whether in the classroom or in the lunchroom that encourage fresh fruit and vegetables consumption as well as exercise."
WMAZ'S LORRA LYNCH-JONES WAS RECOGNIZED FOR WINNING THE MEDIA AWARD FOR HOUSTON COUNTY....FOR REPORTING ON SCHOOL NUTRITITION.
CHRIS FLOORE... SPOKESMAN FOR BIBB COUNTY... WON THE OVERALL AWARD.
AN OLD FAVORITE IS MAKING IT'S WAY BACK TO WARNER ROBINS.
THE INTERNATIONAL CITY FESTIVAL KICKS OFF SATURDAY MORNING... WITH BIG PLANS TO RAISE MONEY TO REDEVELOP DOWNTOWN.
COMMERCIAL CIRCLE BOUTIQUE OWNER... GENA DUBOSE... PREPPED SOME FINISHING TOUCHES FOR SATURDAY'S FESTIVAL ON COMMERCIAL CIRCLE.
SHE SAYS THE DOWNTOWN DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY BROUGHT BACK THE EVENT... AFTER A TEN YEAR HIATUS.
DUBOSE.. WHO IS A D-D-A BOARD MEMBER.. SAYS THE FESTIVAL IS INTENDED TO GENERATE MONEY TO PAY FOR DOWNTOWN PROJECTS.
THE ORGANIZATION DOES NOT RECEIVE FUNDING FROM THE CITY.
Gena Dubose, Downtown Development Authority: (4:10) "This should be a really thriving part of the community with the amazing impact the base has here on our community. Over four billion dollars in economic impact. This is where our community should be thriving."
THE FESTIVAL STARTS AT NINE AT COMMERCIAL CIRCLE. ADMISSION IS FREE.
THE WARNER ROBINS POLICE DEPARTMENT SAYS THERE WILL BE SOME ROAD CLOSURES
SOUTHEAST COMMERICAL CIRCLE WILL BE CLOSED FROM SOUTH DAVIS DRIVE TO WATSON BOULEVARD BEGINNING AT 7 A-M SATURDAY.
AND AT 7:30... SOUTH DAVIS FROM WATSON TO SOUTHEAST COMMERICAL CIRCLE WILL BE CLOSED AS WELL.
GEORGIA VOTERS WILL BE AMONG THOSE HEADING TO THE POLLS ON SUPER TUESDAY FOR THE PRESIDENTIAL PRIMARY IN 2012.
SECRETARY OF STATE BRIAN KEMP MADE THE ANNOUNCEMENT THIS MORNING.
SUPER TUESDAY IS THE BIGGEST DAY OF THE PRESIDENTIAL PRIMARY CAMPAIGN TRAIL... WITH TWO DOZEN STATES ELECTING HUNDREDS OF CONVENTION DELEGATES.
UNDER REPUBLICAN NATIONAL COMMITTEE RULES... ONLY IOWA... NEW HAMPSHIRE... NEVADA AND SOUTH CAROLINA CAN HOLD A PRIMARY BEFORE SUPER TUESDAY.
STATES THAT DON'T COMPLY... RISK LOSING CONVENTION DELEGATES.
AND TODAY'S 13 WMAZ DOT COM WEB POLL ASKS... IS MARCH TOO EARLY TO VOTE FOR NEXT YEAR'S PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES?
SO FAR 50 PERCENT OF YOU SAY YES
AND 50 PERCENT OF YOU SAY NO
VOTE NOW... LOOK FOR THE QUESTION ON THE RIGHT SIDE OF OUR HOMEPAGE AT 13WMAZ DOT COM.
A NEW YORK PROSECUTOR WHO CHARGED SEVEN TEENAGERS IN AN S-A-T CHEATING SCANDAL SAYS MORE CAN BE DONE TO SECURE THE TESTS.
SHE SAYS PHOTOS SHOULD BE TAKEN OF EVERYONE WHO TAKES THE EXAM... AND COLLEGES SHOULD BE NOTIFIED WHEN STUDENTS ARE CAUGHT CHEATING ON THE S-A-T.
SIX CURRENT OR FORMER STUDENTS AT A NEW YORK HIGH SCHOOL ALLEGEDLY PAID AN EMORY UNIVERSITY STUDENT TO TAKE THE S-A-T FOR THEM.
THE COLLEGE STUDENT... SAM ESHAGHOFF... WENT TO THE SAME HIGH SCHOOL.
OFFICIALS AT THE COMPANY THAT ADMINISTERS THE S-A-T SAY THEY DON'T BELIEVE CHEATING IS WIDESPREAD.
THE AMERICAN HEART ASSOCIATION IS CHALLENGING CENTRAL GEORGIANS TO GET MOVING AND IMPROVE HEART HEALTH... WITH THE ANNUAL CENTRAL GEORGIA HEART WALK.
HEART DISEASE SURVIVORS AND THEIR SUPPORTERS GOT STARTED ABOUT A HALF AN HOUR AGO.
AMY AUBERT IS AT THE WALK AT TATTNALL SQUARE PARK... AMY?
MONEY RAISED FROM TODAY'S WALK WILL BENEFIT THE AMERICAN HEART ASSOCIATION.
IN MARCH LIEUTENANT COLONEL CHARLES ERICSON... WAS SUDDENLY CALLED TO ACTIVE DUTY WITH THE U-S AIR FORCE.
HE LEFT HIS FAMILY WITH ONLY DAYS NOTICE.. AND NO CERTAINTY OF WHEN HE WOULD COME HOME..
BRITTINY BARBER SHOWS US HOW ERICSON MADE HIS GRAND ENTRANCE BACK IN TO THE LIVES OF THOSE CLOSEST TO HIM.
LT. COL. CHARLES ERICSON STAND AT THE FRONT OF AN EIGHT GRADE CLASSROOM AT NORTHSIDE MIDDLE SCHOOL.... BUT HE'S NOT HERE TO TEACH A LESSON.
Ericson: "Nobody trains a fourteen year old girl for how to prep for her dad disappearing to go and not knowing when he's coming back."
ERICSON SPENT SIX MONTHS IN THE NORTH AFRICA REGION WITH THE 116TH AIR CONTROL WING ... HIS UNIT SUPPORTING AIR STRIKES IN LIBYA.
BUT ON FRIDAY.... BACK IN WARNER ROBINS... HE HELPED PULL OFF A SPECIAL SURPRISE FOR DAUGHTER.
Olivia: "Him not being here, I had to do a lot of stuff on my own and go through a lot of stuff on my own."
CLASSMATES WATCHED AS OLIVIA ERICSON GOT TO SEE HER DAD FOR THE FIRST TIME.... SINCE MARCH.
THE SELF PROCLAIMED DADDY'S GIRL SAYS IT WAS A STRUGGLE WITHOUT HIM.
Olivia: I had just started track season here and like me and my dad we always ran and we were getting ready for it. And I had no idea he was going to have to leave. Then when he had to leave I was like, I went all of track season without him here.
AND DAD SAYS HE PLANS TO GET RIGHT TO WORK MAKING UP FOR LOST TIME...
Ericson: I have a feeling we may be lacing up some tennis shoes this afternoon and getting back in to it."
FOR THE ERICSON'S... THEY SAY NOW THAT THEIR AIRMAN'S HOME... IT MAKES THEM A FAMILY AGAIN.
Olivia: "Complete like everything's in place and everything's here so I'm not missing nothing."
NOW WITH A SPECIAL MEMORY TO LAST A LIFETIME....
BRITTINY BARBER 13WMAZ EYEWITNESS NEWS
>> ERICSON SAYS HE PLANS TO GRILL OUT AND SPEND TIME WITH HIS FAMILY IN THE NEXT FEW DAYS.
HERE'S A CORRECTION TO A STORY WE BROUGHT YOU EARLIER.
THE EIGHT MACON-BIBB FIREFIGHTERS FACING DISCIPLINE IN THAT HOAX SHOOTING CAN APPEAL TO AN ADMINISTRATIVE LAW JUDGE... BUT ONLY CHRISTOPHER HUGHES... THE ONE FACING TERMINATION... CAN APPEAL TO THE MAYOR.
THAT'S ACCORDING TO THE MAYOR;S SPOKESMAN...CLAY MURPHEY.
HE SAYS FOR ALL OF THE OTHERS... IF THEY APPEAL... THE JUDGE'S DECISION... WOULD BE FINAL.
TODAY IS NATIONAL COFFEE DAY... AND OUR FACEBOOK FANS ARE CELEBRATING THEIR DAILY CAFFEINE FIX.
COLBYE SAYS SIMPLY... "COFFEE-- THE GASOLINE OF LIFE."
NICHOLAS WROTE... "I STILL DRINK GOOD OLD MAXWELL HOUSE COFFEE EVERY MORNING... BLACK WITH SUGAR."
SAVANNAH WROTE...... "WELL, MY HUSBAND AND FATHER DRANK ALL THE COFFEE SO... NO COFFEE FOR ME TODAY."
BUT THINGS ARE LOOKING UP FOR GEORGE... "I AM DRINKING HOT CHOCOLATE AND COFFEE MIXED."
AND SARAH COMMENTED.. "I'M EIGHT MONTHS PREGNANT SO I CAN'T CELEBRATE NOW BUT COME NOVEMBER I'LL HAVE A BIG MUG FULL WITH PEPPERMINT MOCHA CREAMER!"
JOIN THE COFFEE CONVERSATION AT FACEBOOK DOT COM SLASH 13WMAZ... AND WE WANT TO SEE YOUR PHOTOS AS YOU CELEBRATE NATIONAL COFFEE DAY.
JUST EMAIL THEM TO EYEWITNESS NEWS AT 13WMAZ DOT COM.
AND WHILE YOU'RE ONLINE...WHY NOT ADD SOME PHOTOS TO OUR GALLERIES AT13WMAZ DOT COM?
HERE ARE A COUPLE OF NEW ADDITIONS TO THE "AREN'T MY KIDS THE CUTEST" GALLERY.
AND THIS IS PROUD NEW BIG BROTHER CHRISTIAN WITH LITTLE SISTER CHELSEA.
ADD YOUR PHOTOS TO THE GALLERIES AT 13WMAZ DOT COM.
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 SAFE NIGHT EVERYONE.