Eyewitness News at 11, November 9, 2012

11:52 PM, Nov 9, 2012   |    comments
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 Good evening.   Thanks for joining us.
   I'm Leah Johnson..
   Frank Malloy will join us later on for Football Friday Night.
  Our top story tonight..
An east Macon Woman has to find a new home after her apartment caught fire today. 
Candace Adorka spoke with her to see how she's holding up.
Arkneeia Chandler says Friday morning, she got a call that ruined her entire day. 
<saying that the house was on fire. When I came, the fire people were here the police were here and the house was up in flames.>
Smoke was pouring out the top floor of her apartment. Luckily, she'd left for the day when the fire started, and her two sons were in school.
<I was scared. I was crying and scared, I didn't know what to do.>
<it was doing a lot of crackling you couldn't see because the smoke was black.>
Calvin Stephens, her step-father only lives three doors down--- he discovered the fire.
<I was wondering where the smoke was coming from, so I looked at my step daughter's apartment, and I seen smoke coming out of her vent.>
He says the two apartments between his and Chandler's are vacant, sitll he started to worry about the whole building including his own apartment, but minutes later, 
<fire department was already coming. I already heard them. They wer ehere and they jumped right to work.>
Officials say the fire started in Chandler's heating unit.    
<my furnace was a little taller than this, They say it started at the top part of the furnace because my furnace goes all the way up.>
That small closet claimed  much of her belongings. 
<i'm not sure everything that I lost yet, but I know I lost some of my clothes, all my furniture, all that everything.>
She'll have to start from scratch, but at least she's under a familiar roof while she gets back on her feet. 
Candace Adorka 13 WMAZ eyewitness news. 
Chandler says she got a clothing and a food voucher from the Red Cross. She say's she'll start looking for a new home after the holiday weekend. 
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A couple accused of killing an 18-month-old girl  ...will be held without bond.
The girl's father, 20 year old Antwon Davis and her stepmother 36 year old Amanda Davis are charged with felony murder.
 they made their first court appearance today.
Bibb County coroner Leon Jones said the girl was unconscious Wednesday when EMTs brought her to a hospital.
She died later that day. the couple was arrested Thursday.
Jones said authorities are not releasing the girl's cause of death... but says she showed clear signs of trauma.


--------------------------


   A homeless family has found shelter inside a vacant home...
   They say they had not choice after being out of work and losing their apartment.
     A Macon pastor who lives next door to the family is trying to help them get back on their feet. 
     We went to the home to meet the family who says their only choices are squatting or living on the street. 
<Andrea Wingfield: it started raining so we came in on the porch and I seen the door was cracked so we walked right in >
For Andrea Wingfield... Keeping a roof over his family's head has been a challenge. With no other option he says.... He and his wife ignored the sale sign posted in front of this Macon home and moved right in.
<Andrea: This is not something that I wanted to do. This is not something as being a man that I wanted to take my famiyl through.>
<Renay Wingfield: At night when everyone goes to sleep I just go in my little corner in there and cry and just pray and ask God to help me and to help me to be strong and help me get through this and I know he will. >
The Wingfields say they never thought that they would ever be squatters... living  in a house that's not theirs. But Andre says after losing his job this is the life that he, his wife and children are forced to live now.
<Renay Wingfield: For dinner we have food that we cook on a propane heater and it also heats up the hous>
The family also shares this mattress.. and use black trashbags for curtains... and suitcases for all the clothes that they own. 
<Andrea Wingfield: I didn't want my family to be homeless I didn't want them to be living in an abandoned house I didn't want them to have go through and see me struggle like I've been struggling. I want something better for my kids and I want them to see their father be something better. >
The Wingfields say making things better for their children is always on their mind. 
<Andrea Wingfield: They tell me daddy it's okay you did your best so as long as they know I am doing my best really that's all that matters to me so this is I will keep going for them. >
The Wingfield's story inspired an action by a neighbor...who smoothed things over with the property owners. 
<and asked them if they would give me just a moment to help work with this family and help get them out of this situation.>
So the Wingfield are staying in this Macon home until...they can get the help to get out. 
<Renay Wingfield:Some might look at me and say you know oh that's terrible but I got good spirits and I know that something good is going to happen.>
  The Wingfields are a family of seven... the other three children are older and were in school when we did our interview. 
The Wingfields moved to Macon from New Jersey to care for a sick family member who later passed away.
They say that was followed by job loss... Then homelessness.
     For more information on how you can help this family... go to our wesbite and look for this story... At 13WMAZ.com. 
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   People who took advantage of early voting  in Bibb County found themselves waiting in long lines.
  Now... some Macon officials want to change that..
Council member Elaine Lucas proposes adding one or two more polling places... And at least one more Saturday.
She ran her ideas past State Representative Tyrone Brooks from Fulton County.
Brooks says he wants to change the early voting period back to 45 days instead of 21.
Lucas says she thinks many voters got discouraged by the long lines... So she's drawing up a resolution asking Bibb County to make changes before next year's elections.
<since we will be electing people to a new consolidated government, I expect there will be huge turnouts, and during those early voting days, we want to make sure that people are comfortable, that they have an opportunity to vote, that they are not at a disadvantage, that they are not held up in line, or miss work, or any of those kinds of things.>
   If Macon city council passes Lucas' resolution... It'll also need approval from county commissioners.
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     The election is over and now the difficult work of closing the gap between the Republicans and Democrats begins..
   One of the big issues is sequestration.. massive budget cuts that are scheduled to kick in at the end of the year.
    According to a new report from the Congressional Budget Office... the economy could fall into recession.
     That was the focus today when President Obama made his first major remarks since being elected to a second term..
<Our work is made that much more urgent because at the end of this year we face a series of deadlines that require us to make major decisions about how to pay our deficit down; decisions that will have a huge impact on the middle class both now and in the future. Last year I worked with Democrats and Republicans to cut a trillion dollars worth of spending that we just couldn't afford.  I intend to work with both parties to do more.>
   Without an agreement. .the average American could see a tax increase of 35 hundred dollars...
   According to Senator Saxby Chambliss of Georgia.. that shouldn't be a surprise..
   He addressed sequestration and the fiscal cliff during a phone interview with 13WMAZ's Kenny Burgamy.
<well the problem we've got now Kenny..is the election's over.  The President got re-elected.  He got re-elected on a platform of raising taxes.  And we're going to haveour hands full trying to stop that cause what Speaker Boehner said and what I've been advocating for the past couple of years is tax reform and increasing revenue through reforming a complicated tax code.>
   Chambliss says nearly 50 percent of those cuts from sequestration involve the Department of Defense.
    Bibb County Commissioners and Peach County Chamber of Commerce have sent resolutions to Georgia's congressional delegation asking them to find a solution... because they're concerned about how the issue could affect Robins Air Force base.


----------------------


  Former President Jimmy Carter has joined Mercer University as the newest member of its Board of Trustees.
   The 88-year old president says he hopes to bring his experience to the Macon school to expand its programs. Carter joined 44 other trustees at the semi-annual meeting.
<I saw the potential for Mercer's continued growth and for the importance of Macon, Georgia, to be increasingly, I would say influential not only throughout Middle Georgia but throughout the state, I thought I might add a little bit to the trustees, so I've known some wonderful people  that have been on the Board of Trustees earlier and so because of those reasons, I decided I would try and accept the honor. >
Mercer President Bill Underwood says he hopes Carter, who won a Nobel Peace Prize in 2002, will be able to bring his international expertise to some of Mercer's global initiatives.
<well for example we have water purification projects in Africa, WE have projects in Africa designed to develop new protocols to prevent mercury poisoning in gold miners in Africa, rebuilding a K thru 12 school in  Liberia that was destroyed by the Civil War, all of those projects are consistent with the work of the Carter Center, and I think there may be some real opportunities for us to do some things together that are really important. >
Carter and Underwood also share Southern Baptist roots ... Carter teaches Sunday School at a Baptist church in his hometown of Plains, and Mercer University has a historic Baptist affiliation.
------------------------------


   13 WMAZ's Randall Savage and Tom George were the only television reporters who spoke with President Carter..
<You have time for a couple questions?  Who do you represent?  WMAZ>
    He talked about several issues.. And offered some advice for our current President and another Carter who made headlines during the Presidential campaign.
  His grandson James Carter uncovered Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney's remarks about "the 47 percent."
     The video was a blow to Romney.
<James Carter was born, his parents were living in the White House, and he was born the first month I was president, so he's one of the White House babies, he grew up the first four years living the White House, but James is master of researching the intricate mechanisms of Internet all its aspect and so he was able to see some little snippets of Governor Romney's 47 percent speech and he finally mastered the entire process and identified the recorder of that speech and made it public through Mother Jones magazine as you know, so I would say that if anybody in the nation caused President Romney to have serious troubles during his campaign, it would be my grandson James. >
   While Carter has already served as President and governor and won a Nobel Peace Prize, he says serving on Mercer's board of trustees will present a new challenge.


------------------------
 Welcome back...
    The CIA is looking for a new chief... after director David Petraus resigned...
   The retired four-star general admitted to having an affair... and that he was the focus of an FBI investigation.
   Tara Mergener has more from the White House.
CBS News has learned an FBI investigation led to the discovery of the affair by the 60 year old CIA director David Petraeus.


Officials say the FBI was concerned about emails Petraeus was exchanging with someone outside the CIA... That someone was identified as 39 year old Paula Broadwell--who published a book last year about Petraeus' time leading the war in Afghanistan.
ources tell CBS News the cryptic nature of the emails the two exchanged raised red flags...launching the investigation.


White House sources say Petraeus met Thursday with President Obama and offered his resignation.


The President considered it for a night, then accepted the resignation in a phone call Friday afternoon.


Patraeus- who has been married for 38 years, said he showed extremely poor judgement by engaging in the affair.


In a letter to CIA employees, Petraeus wrote (graphic) quote: "Such behavior is unacceptable, both as a husband and as the leader of an organization such as ours."


Standup: (Tara Mergener/The White House) "President Obama issued a statement-- saying Petraeus has provided extraordinary service to the US for decades. He also called him one of the oustanding General officers of his generation."


Petraeus' wife Holly was by his side - holding the bible, as he was sworn in as director of the CIA last September.


She works in the Obama administration's consumer Financial Protection Bureau.


The President has named Michael Morell Acting Director of the CIA.  Morell has been Deputy Director under Petraeus. The White House says it did not learn of Petraeus's affair until AFTER the election.


  Petraeus was scheduled to testify in congressional hearings about the terrorist attack in Libya...
  Morell will appear in the closed door hearings.
------------------------


  Mercer music students have reason to celebrate a new accomplishment for their program.
     The McDuffie Center for Strings now has a new home in the Bell House... On College Street.
     Renovations for the facility is funded through a 1.5 million dollar grant from the Robert W. Woodruff Foundation.
     Violinist and founder... Robert McDuffie took a tour of the facility with his students today.
     He says he's happy that the foundation will allow the center to be located in downtown Macon.
<I think it's a testament to their own belief in the city of Macon, that they've reached this far down college street. Again, it shows their confidence and their own mission.>
     McDuffie says the new center will open by August 2013.
----------------------
  If you're looking for something new at the movies... Bond is back..
   The latest installment in the double oh seven saga.. has the secret agent working to prove that he's still alive.
    "Skyfall" is a test of Bond's loyalties and the stakes have never been higher..
   Daniel Craig is back in the lead role...and Judi Dench is back as "M."
   "Skyfall" is rated PG-13.
 An all-star cast and director Steven Spielberg take on the story of our nation's 16th President...
"Lincoln" chronicles the President's leadership during the Civil War...and takes an inside look at his decision to free the slaves.
   Daniel Day Lewis does a historical turn as President Abraham Lincoln..
  He's supported by Sally Field, Tommy Lee Jones, James Spader and Joseph Gordon-Leavitt.
    Lincoln is rated PG-13.

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