Thursday, December 29, Eyewitness News at 11

11:39 PM, Dec 29, 2011   |    comments
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HELLO EVERYONE AND THANKS FOR JOINING US....I'M FRANK MALLOY.
THIS IS EYEWITNESS NEWS AT 11.
LEAH JOHNSON HAS THE NIGHT OFF.

AFTER MORE THAN 35 YEARS AT THE MACON MALL.. THE SEARS STORE IS SCHEDULED TO CLOSE.
THAT'S ACCORDING TO THE STORE'S PARENT COMPANY.

SO FAR....SEARS IS NOT SAYING WHEN THE STORE WILL SHUT DOWN.... OR HOW MANY PEOPLE WILL LOSE THEIR JOBS.
THE STORE MANAGEMENT...AND COMPANY SPOKESMEN...DECLINED COMMENT TODAY.
THE COMPANY SAID EARLIER THIS WEEK THAT IT WOULD CLOSE UP TO 120 SEARS AND K-MART STORES NATIONWIDE DUE TO POOR HOLIDAY SALES.
TODAY...THEY RELEASED A LIST OF 79 STORES...INCLUDING THE ONE OFF EISENHOWER PARKWAY.
SOME MACON MALL SHOPPERS TOLD US THEY WERE SURPRISED BY THE NEWS..

Denise Benifield, Macon: (00:19)I think it will be a hardship for us. Um, it's the only sears that we have here in Macon. It's a department store, a store that carries a lot of items. I think it will be a hardship for us.
Sam Wright, Knoxville: I stood there with my mouth opened because this is the place I come to get all of the kids clothes and you get a really good price at it, you know and Sears has been around forever.

SEARS HAS BEEN AN ANCHOR STORE AT MACON MALL SINCE THE MALL OPENED IN 1975.

TODAY'S 13 WMAZ DOT COM WEB POLL ASKS... WILL CENTRAL GEORGIA'S ECONOMY BE BETTER OR WORSE IN 2012?

SO FAR 18 PERCENT OF YOU SAY BETTER
43 PERCENT OF YOU SAY WORSE
AND 39 PERCENT OF YOU SAY ABOUT THE SAME.

TO VOTE NOW.. VISIT OUR WEBSITE AT 13 WMAZ DOT COM.. AND LOOK FOR THE WEB POLL QUESTION ON THE RIGHT SIDE OF OUR HOMEPAGE.

CITY LEADERS.. MINISTERS... AND PEOPLE WHO CALL WARNER ROBINS HOME GATHERED TODAY TO WELCOME THE NEW YEAR WITH PRAYER.

THEY MET AT CITY HALL THIS MORNING FOR THE SECOND ANNUAL PRAYER SERVICE...
IT'S HOSTED BY THE JEFFERSON HILLS COMMUNITY...
ALL THREE NEWLY ELECTED COUNCIL MEMBERS ATTENDED...
CAROLYN ROBBINS AND MIKE BRASHEAR SAY THE PRAYER VIGIL SHOWS UNITY WITH THE CITY'S LEAERS...AND ITS PEOPLE.

Carolyn: "It's important that this whole community is a community of christians and I think getting together and praying for our city and our country is very important."
10 Brashear: "It's just agreat opportunity for our city to come together to show unity across our communities."

BRASHEAR.. ROBBINS AND MIKE DAVIS WERE ALL SWORN INTO THE COUCNIL THIS AFTERNOON.

FRIENDS AND FAMILY MEMBERS LOOKED ON... AS THE NEW MEMBERS OF COUNCIL TOOK THE OATH OF OFFICE...
THEY PLACED THEIR HAND ON THE BIBLE... AND SWORE TO UPHOLD THE LAW.
ALL THREE NEWLY ELECTED COUNCIL MEMBERS SAY COMMUNICATION IS KEY TO MOVE THE CITY FORWARD.

brASHEAR: "It's the lines of communication. I tend to think as long as you're communicating with each other and talking with each other you can find a way to reach agreements."
7
Davis: "I may not agree with what's being said, but I need to communicate that in a gentlemanly manner in a manner that can be respectful."
WE're going to have differences in opinions but we can respect the differences in opinions

CITY ATTORNEY JIM ELLIOT TELLS US EVEN THOUGH THE NEW COUNCIL MEMBERS WERE SWORN IN TODAY.... THEY DON'T OFFICIALLY TAKE OFFICE...UNTIL NEW YEAR'S DAY.

TOMORROW... A MACON GROUP PLANS TO WELCOME HOME VETERANS OF THE IRAQ WAR.

THEY'VE SCHEDULED THE MACON ONE IRAQI FREEDOM RETURN CELEBRATION FROM 2 TO 4 P.M. AT CENTRAL CITY PARK.
FRANK DIXON WITH MACON ONE COMMUNITY CONNECTIONS SAYS THE EVENT WILL FEATURE MUSIC... SPEAKERS... REFRESHMENTS.. AND PRIZES FOR TROOPS IN UNIFORM.

GOSPEL... HIP-HOP AND ROCK MUSICIANS WILL ALSO PERFORM.
THE MACON VETERANS CENTER WILL OFFER ON-SITE POST-TRAUMATIC STRESS COUNSELING... SOMETHING DIXON SAYS IS A SIGN OF SUPPORT FOR THE RETURNING TROOPS.

Frank Dixon Organizer :"We have to acknowledge that that have troops; men and women that go out and there families have to sacrifice. They go overseas and risk bodily harm and emotional trauma. And we should do something to show them that we are here for you, we care. A lot of times people say that the conflict is over, but the conflict is not over for the troops sometimes.

FOR MORE INFORMATION YOU CAN CALL DIXON AT (478) 258-9949 AGAIN THAT NUMBER IS 478-258-9949

TWO MEN ROBBED A WARNER ROBINS STORE CLERK AT GUNPOINT.

POLICE SPOKESWOMAN TABITHA PUGH SAYS IT HAPPENED AROUND 7-40 TONIGHT AT THE STOP AND SHOP ON NORTH HOUSTON ROAD.. THATS NEAR ELBERTA ROAD.

PUGH SAID TWO MEN WALKED INTO THE STORE - THREATENED THE CLERK WITH A GUN AND LEFT WITH AN UNKOWN AMOUNT OF MONEY.
SHE SAYS IF YOU HAVE ANY INFORMATION YOU CAN CALL 478-929-1169... AGAIN THAT'S 478-929-1169.

AN EAST DUBLIN MAN IS ACCUSED OF SHOOTING HIS EX-GIRLFRIEND.
LIEUTENANT GREG DOMINY OF DUBLIN POLICE SAYS IT HAPPENED JUST BEFORE 7 P-M WEDNESDAY AT THE EMERALD POINT APARTMENTS ON WOODLAWN DRIVE.
DOMINY SAID WITNESSES TOLD THEM

LAMONTE HARVEY SHOWED UP OUTSIDE OF HIS EX-GIRLFRIEND'S HOME... SMASHED A WINDOW IN HER CAR... HIT HER... AND THEN SHOT HER IN THE ABDOMEN.
DOMINY SAID TAKEISHA BUTTS IS NOW IN STABLE CONDITION AT A MACON HOSPITAL.

HE SAYS HARVEY IS IN THE LAURENS COUNTY JAIL FACING SEVERAL CHARGES INCLUDING AGGRAVATED ASSAULT.

A DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTION BUS CARRYING 13 PEOPLE... INCLUDING 11 PRISONERS OVERTURNED ON 1-16 TODAY.

ACCORDING TO CORPORAL LEE WEAVER WITH THE GEORGIA STATE PATROL THE BUS WAS ALSO CARRYING 2 OFFICERS WHEN IT FLIPPED OVER..
WEAVER SAID THE BUS WAS TRAVELING IN THE RIGHT HAND LANE ON I-16 TOWARD SAVANNAH WHEN A CAR MOVED INTO THE LANE.
HE SAID THAT CAUSED THE BUS TO SWERVE OUT OF THE WAY.... AND ONTO THE GRASS.
THE DRIVER LOST CONTROL AND THE BUS OVERTURNED.
WEAVER SAID EASTBOUND TRAFFIC ON I-16 WAS BACKED UP FOR 2-HOURS.

THE BUS WAS TRANSPORTING PRISONERS FROM JACKSON TO SAVANNAH.
WEAVER SAY THAT NO ONE WAS SERIOUSLY HURT..
EVERYONE ON THE BUS WAS SENT TO THE MEDICAL CENTER OF CENTRAL GEORGIA TO GET CHECKED OUT.

WE HAVE A CORRECTION ON A STORY WE BROUGHT YOU LAST NIGHT.
A FEDERAL JUDGE THIS SPRING PUT PART OF GEORGIA'S TOUGH NEW IMMIGRATION LAW ON HOLD..
THAT'S THE PART THAT ALLOWS LOCAL ENFORCEMENT TO VERIFY SOMEONE'S IMMIGRATION STATUS...AND ARREST THEM...IF THEY SUSPECT THEY'RE AN ILLEGAL ALIEN.
THAT WON'T TAKE EFFECT UNTIL FEDERAL JUDGES RULE ON WHETHER IT'S LEGAL.
BUT THE SECTION THAT REQUIRES MANY EMPLOYERS TO USE THE E-VERIFY SYSTEM TO SEE IF NEW EMPLOYEES ARE LEGAL CITIZENS...IS STILL SCHEDULED TO BECOME LAW ON SUNDAY.

TONIGHT... MOSTLY CLEAR WITH LOWS IN THE MID 30S.
FRIDAY... MOSTLY SUNNY WITH HIGHS IN THE MID 60S.
FRIDAY NIGHT... PARTLY CLOUDY WITH LOWS IN THE MID 40S. ¤A64 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THANKS DAVID.. WE'LL TALK WITH YOU AGAIN IN JUST A FEW MINUTES.

ITS ANOTHER BUSY WEEKEND IN CENTRAL GEORGIA AS WE APPROACH THE END ON 2011.
I'LL RUNDOWN A LIST OF SOME OF THE EVENTS THAT CAN HELP YOU RING IN THE NEW YEAR.... SCENE 13 IS UP NEXT.

<<
IT'S BEGINNING TO LOOK AT LOT LIKE...TWO-THOUSAND-TWELVE! I ACTUALLY HAVE NO IDEA WHAT THE NEW YEAR'S GONNA LOOK LIKE, BUT IF THIS WEEKEND IS A FORESHADOWING OF THINGS TO COME - THIS IS GONNA BE ONE FANTASTICALLY ENTERTAINING YEAR IN THE MIDSTATE!

THIS NEW YEAR'S EVE - EVE, THAT WOULD BE THE DAY BEFORE THE DAY BEFORE NEW YEAR'S DAY - FRIDAY FOR ANY YE WHO ARE CONFUSED - THE COX CAPITOL THEATRE INVITES YOU WITNESS THE JUXTAPOSITION OF COMEDY AND SLEEP IN ONE FANTASTIC SHOW! SO THERE'S THIS GUY - GARY CONRAD - WHO'S ACTUALLY QUITE THE HYPNOTIST! THE COMEDY FACTOR COMES IN...WELL, REALLY, HOW COULD IT NOT BE HILARIOUS WHEN FOLKS GET HYPNOTIZED AND ACT LIKE THIS!

ALRIGHT - CHECK THIS OUT. THERE ARE THREE SHOWS THIS FRIDAY! FIRST - TAKE THE KIDS OUT AT TWO P-M FOR THE G-RATED SHOW. THEN AT EIGHT O'CLOCK, THE HYPNOTIC ACTION'S BACK FOR A PG KINDA THING. FINALLY, IF YOU DARE - AND IF YOU'RE OF AGE - YOU CAN CHECK OUT THE "ONLY FOR THE VERY, VERY GROWN FOLKS" SHOW AT TEN P-M. SERIOUSLY - ADULTS ONLY! GET TICKETS FOR ANY OF THE THREE RIGHT NOW AT COX-CAPITOL-THEATRE-DOT-COM.

NOW - I'VE GOT A SLEW OF GOOD TIMES FOR YOUR NEW YEAR'S EVE CELEBRATIN'! BUT FIRST - LET'S ALL MAKE A SOLEMN VOW TO BE SAFE AND SMART AS WE RING IN THE NEW YEAR. GOOD? OKAY - LET'S GO...

THE CHERRY BLOSSOM BALL DROP IS GOIN' DOWN - HA-HA - IN CHERRY STREET PLAZA IN DOWNTOWN MACON THIS SATURDAY NIGHT! AT NINE P-M, THE PAR-TAY BEGINS. D-J LAURA STARLING PROVIDES THE MUSIC AND ENTERTAINMENT FOR THE EVENING. STICK AROUND FOR THE STROKE OF MIDNIGHT - AND WATCH THE SKIES OVER MACON LIGHT UP WITH A FANTASTIC FIREWORKS DISPLAY!

GET YOUR NEW YEAR'S EVE PARTY STARTED A BIT EARLIER WITH ONE OF THESE ROCKTASTIC CONCERTS...

FIRST, GRANT'S LOUNGE PLAYS HOST TO CONNOR CHRISTIAN AND SOUTHERN GOTHIC! THESE COUNTRY-BLUESY BOYS - AND A GIRL - ROCK THE NEW YEAR IN AT ONE OF THE COOLEST, MOST LEGENDARY VENUES AROUND. MYSTERY ROAD OPENS THE NIGHT AROUND SIX O'CLOCK.

AND SPEAKING OF LEGENDARY...AND COOLEST...THE KING OF BLUES IS COMING TO TOWN! YEP, YES - YOU HEARD CORRECTLY. B-B-KING IS COMING TO RING IN THE NEW YEAR IN MACON! THE MACON CITY AUDITORIUM SHALL BE FILLED WITH THE SOUNDS OF BLUES THE LIKES OF WHICH - IF YOU HAVEN'T SEEN THE KING OF BLUES LIVE BEFORE - YOU'VE NEVER SEEN! GET YOUR TICKETS SOON - THEY'RE GOING FAST! IT ALL STARTS AT SEVEN-THIRTY. GET TO TICKETMASTER-DOT-COM TO GRAB TICKETS NOW.

IF YOU'RE LOOKIN' TO SHAKE YOUR TAILFEATHER ON NEW YEAR'S EVE - THEN PERHAPS A BIG DANCE IS WHAT YOU NEED?! WELL, IF YOU GET YOURSELF DOWN TO THE TERMINAL STATION IN DOWNTOWN MACON AT EIGHT O'CLOCK P-M ON SATURDAY NIGHT - THEN A BIG DANCE IS EXACTLY WHAT YOU'RE GONNA GET! THE GRAPEVINE SETS THE NIGHT TO MUSIC. IT'S GONNA BE GOOD - CALL 477-7764 FOR ALL YOUR BIG DANCE INFO.

WE WRAP THIS NEW YEAR'S WEEKEND OF INCREDIBLE GOOD TIMES WITH A DEBUT CONCERT OF SORTS! FUTURE LOCAL SUPERSTARS - BIG DADDY AND COMPANY - TAKE THE STAGE AT WILD WINGS CAFÉ AND SET THE NIGHT ON FIRE! TAKE THIS AWESOME CONCERT - ADD A HUGE PARTY - AND YOU'VE GOT YOUR PERFECT NEW YEAR'S EVE COMBO. BIG DADDY AND COMPANY HITS THE STAGE AT TEN...IT'S ALL HAPPENIN' AT THE WILD WINGS CAFÉ AT THE SHOPPES AT RIVER CROSSING IN MACON.

ALRIGHT - YOU'RE SET FOR THE ROLLIN' IN OF THE NEW YEAR. JUST BE SURE TO KEEP IT SAFE, FOLKS! LOTS OF FAMILIES, LOTS OF KIDS...LOTS OF SOMEBODIES THAT ARE LOVED BY LOTS OF OTHER SOMEBODIES WILL BE OUT ON THE ROADS, SO BE SMART! LET'S KICK OFF TWO-THOUSAND-TWELVE WITH NOTHIN' BUT GOOD TIMES FOR EVERYBODY! THAT'S A WRAP FOR TWENTY-ELEVEN...WE'LL CATCH YOU ON THE FLIP SIDE.
>>

FOR ENTERTAINMENT NEWS.
GO TO OUR SCENE 13 PAGE AT 13 WMAZ DOT COM
(AD LIB TOSS TO DAVID)






TONIGHT'S FACEBOOK FAN OF THE DAY IS MEGAN SLAUGHTER.
MEGAN... YOU'LL NEED TO EMAIL FAN OF THE DAY AT 13WMAZ DOT COM TO CLAIM YOUR COFFEE MUG.

NOW... GETTING INTO THE RUNNING FOR FAN OF THE DAY IS AN EASY THREE-STEP PROCESS.
ONE... VISIT FACEBOOK DOT COM SLASH 13WMAZ.
TWO... BECOME A FAN... AND THREE... GET IN ON THE CONVERSATIONS.
WE PICK OUR FAN OF THE DAY RANDOMLY.

WE'RE TAKING A LOOK AT SOME OF YOUR PICTURES FROM OUR 13 WMAZ DOT COM PHOTO GALLERIES.
THESE ARE FROM THE AREN'T MY KIDS THE CUTEST GALLERY.

HERE'S ONE OF CALI RIDING HER PANDA ROCKER ON HER FIRST CHRISTMAS.

AND THIS ONE SAYS ROCKING OUT ON MY 3RD BIRTHDAY.

SEND US YOUR PHOTOS...LOOK FOR *PHOTO GALLERIES* UNDER FEATURES IN THE MENU BAR ACROSS THE TOP OF OUR HOMEPAGE...

AND ONE LAST QUICK LOOK AT TOMORROW'S FORECAST WITH METEOROLOGIST DAVID ERNST.

TONIGHT... MOSTLY CLEAR WITH LOWS IN THE MID 30S.
FRIDAY... MOSTLY SUNNY WITH HIGHS IN THE MID 60S.
FRIDAY NIGHT... PARTLY CLOUDY WITH LOWS IN THE MID 40S.


THANKS FOR JOINING US.... FIRST MORNIN COMES YOUR WAY AT 5 A-M.
THE NEWS IS ALWAYS ON AT 13WMAZ DOT COM.

LETTERMAN'S NEXT.
HAVE A SAFE NIGHT EVERYONE.

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