Eyewitness News at Six, 12-4-12

7:08 PM, Dec 4, 2012   |    comments
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Our top story tonight on Eyewitness News at Six...

 

A Jones County woman shot and killed in broad daylight ..at an East Macon gas station. The alleged shooter... a man in a wheelchair .. I'll tell you what happened and what charges he'll face.

Plus...why hundreds of Georgia teachers are retiring mid year...Jennifer Moulliet breaks down the explanation.

Eyewitness News at Six is next.

Good evening, everyone.

I'm Leah Johnson.

Thanks for joining us for Eyewitness News at Six.

Frank Malloy has the night off.

Our top story tonight, a Jones County woman is dead after being shot at a gas station in East Macon ...

Tom George joins us in the 13WMAZ Eyewitness Newsroom with more, Tom?

Leah, Police say 65-year old Linda Hunnicutt was at the Murphy Gas Station on Gray Highway around 1 this afternoon when a man in a motorized wheelchair struck her car.

 

Police say she and the man....73-year old Frank Louis Reeves of Macon... began arguing.

They say Reeves pulled out a gun at shot her in the chest.

Hunnicutt died less than an hour later...at the Medical Center of Central Georgia.

Police took Reeves into custody and confiscated his weapon and wheelchair ...

13WMAZ's production manager Barbara Temple was at a nearby shopping center...and arrived just after the shooting.

She says Reeves was sitting next to the car... while others tried to help the woman laying on the ground.

< The people that were already there when I showed up, they were aware that he had done something. And he was calm, he didn't move, he didn't say anything, but I think their more concern was her at the time. >

Macon Police are charging Reeves with involuntary manslaughter ...Spokeswoman Jami Gaudet said that's because police believe Reeves didn't intend to kill her.

The search is on tonight for a man involved in a shootout in west Macon..

Rashad Akeem Williams is on seven counts of armed robbery and two counts of criminal attempt to commit murder.

Police say it all started with a robbery at a business off Columbus Road.

Judy Le talked to witnesses who said it left the whole neighborhood shaken.

Autoworld Mechanics...off Columbus Road...is hidden in the back... behind a couple of other businesses. You really have to know where you're going to find it. I talked to an employee who was robbed Monday night..He says three men in black ski masks demanded money...and then took off onto Montpelier Place....a neighborhood behind the business.

Macon police say when two detectives arrived on scene, the robbers took the first shot. The detectives fired back and started chase.

<(Keisha Thomas) its sounded like a war zone with so many bullets that was going back and forth and ricocheting across the street>

<(Tracy Dumas) 8 gunfire shots it sounded like so we kind of hit the deck in the back room. My mother was standing on the front porch and she saw the detective run that way, shooting at I guess, the suspects>

Witnesses say Macon police quickly flooded the neighborhood...

<(Thi'ShiLyn Burke) At least 10, probably more cars blocking the streets off and walking back and forth with shotguns>

<(Tracy Dumas) you couldn't get in or out>

Keisha Thomas...who lives on the corner of Summer and Montpelier Place... says she had to crawl over the fence to get home because of the congestion.

<(Keisha Thomas) It looked like Christmas lights. There was so many lights around here. It was bouncing off the houses, reflecting off the trees. The whole neighborhood was lit up blue.>Police arrested 22-year-old Antaveyo Clark and 27-year old Jarvis Childs. Both are charged with two counts of criminal attempt to commit murder and seven counts of armed robbery.

--

Witnesses say police scoured the neighborhood for about 4 hours...even sending up a helicopter. Police say theres no injuries...Judy Le 13wmaz...eyewitness news

Polls will close in about two hours for voters in Taylor County and Wilcox County ... Who have a runoff to decide and a tie to break.

The tie is the race for county commissioner in Taylor County... where incumbent Jerry Albritton... a Republican... and his Democratic challenger, Russell Pounds, both nailed down exactly 343 votes.

Also today... Wilcox County is choosing its next sheriff.

The candidates are Mike Martin and Lonnie Curry...

They came out of the November election with Martin holding 44 percent and Curry close behind with 37.

We'll report on those results on Eyewitness News tonight at 11 and on 13wmaz-dot-com.

U.S. Sen. Saxby Chambliss could lose his seat to a more conservative Republican opponent, according to a poll released Tuesday.

Public Policy Polling surveyed 729 Georgia Republican primary voters.

43 percent say they prefer someone more conservative than Chambliss, who plans to seek re-election in 2014.

Thirty-eight percent of the Republicans want Chambliss to be their nominee next election.

University of Georgia Political Scientist Charles Bullock says conservative Republicans are upset that Chambliss works with a group trying to balance the federal budget.

< Charles Bullock, Political Scientist: These are individuals, and it's a bi-partisan group, who are trying to come up with a solution to avoid the fiscal cliff. Now what the gang, this bi-partisan group has come down on, still working out specifics, but saying yes there needs to be a cut in entitlements, a cut in federal spending, but there are also going to have to be some revenue increases. Now being willing to support revenue increases, yes that puts you at cross purposes with Grover Norquist and with his signed pledges that you would not vote for any kind of tax increase. >

While most of those surveyed want someone more conservative than Chambliss, the poll also showed Chambliss would defeat those mentioned as possible challengers.

For example, two Georgia congressmen Tom Price and Paul Broun trail Chambliss in the poll. Chambliss leads Broun 57 to 14 percent, and he leads Price 50 to 22 percent.

He also leads former gubernatorial candidate Karen Handel 52 to 23 percent.

But the poll also shows that former GOP presidential hopeful Herman Cain leads Chambliss 50 percent to 36 percent. The poll also shows that 68 percent of the Republican primary voters view Cain favorably.

In a recent interview with 13WMAZ, Chambliss said he preferred his country over his 1992 pledge to never support a tax increase.

The poll says 16 percent say the pledge is important, 35 percent believe it's not important and 50 percent weren't sure.

The outgoing majority leader of the Georgia Senate is resigning from the chamber to take a public television post.

Sen. Chip Rogers just won reelection as a senator... but the Woodstock Republican dropped out of the race to keep his post as majority leader.

Now, he's headed to Georgia Public Broadcasting... where his new position will include leading a statewide weekly radio program on economic development.

That's starting next spring.

Rogers has served in the Senate since 2002.

Last term, he captured statewide attention, after leading a majority that essentially stripped the Lieutenant Governor, Casey Cagle, of much of his control over the senate.

The outgoing majority leader of the Georgia Senate is resigning from the chamber to take a public television post.

Sen. Chip Rogers just won reelection as a senator... but the Woodstock Republican dropped out of the race to keep his post as majority leader.

Now, he's headed to Georgia Public Broadcasting... where his new position will include leading a statewide weekly radio program on economic development.

That's starting next spring.

Rogers has served in the Senate since 2002.

Last term, he captured statewide attention, after leading a majority that essentially stripped the Lieutenant Governor, Casey Cagle, of much of his control over the senate.

School was back in session today...without any mishaps as students and staff at Atlanta's Finch Elementary returned to classrooms.

Now school officials are discussing whether to install carbon monoxide detectors after a leak send 42 students and 7 staff members to the hospital Monday, and forced the entire campus to be evacuated.

The gas was found at potentially unsafe levels.

investigators think an aging furnace may be to blame.

Georgia law does not require carbon monoxide alarms for public buildings.

But two states, Maryland and Connecticut, have passed laws requiring them in schools.

Several teachers in Houston county retired halfway through the year ... Like many others around the state.

Jennifer Moulliet explains the increase in retirements.

<"It was about time and this made it time." >

Rick Unruh(Un-Roo) decided to retire after spending 33 of 37 years In the Houston County School system... he had stints at Houston County High and spent the last few years of his tenure as Northside High School's Media specialist.

<"thought it was my thirty-sixth but I miscounted" 1.54-1.56>

Unruh... wasn't the only one to retire in the middle of the school year... across the state over 17-hundred school personel put in to retire December 1st... fourteen in Houston County alone.

<"there was a financial incentive for those eleigible to retire which would equate to approximately $94 dollars a month for the rest of their lives if they went ahead and went out early." >

Georgia teachers currently get a 3 percent boost in their retirement benefits...but that ends January first...after the Georgia Teacher Retirement System made changes to educators' pensions.

Teachers who retired by December first will still get those benefits. That could be worth a thousand dollars a year or more.

Superintendent Robin Hines says... it poses a problem when employees retire or leave in the middle of the school year but says Houston County is fortunate

<" we have a great pool of applicants all the time and we were able to easily fill the positions.".38-.46>

He says it provided a benefit for their employees to leave early.

<"they're valued employees and they've done a great job for a long time, but it's always exciting to get new ideas and young vibrant teachers in.">

<"I could not have spent the bulk of my career any place that I would have enjoyed it more."2.14-2.18>

In houston county jennifer moulliet 13wmaz eyewitness news.

Unruh says he plans to spend his retirement volunteering in the district... and getting more involved in his church.

Bibb County campus police continue their campaign to keep parents informed about bullying and gang activity.

They're hosting sessions to help parents know if their child is a victim of bullying.

Tonight's session will be at Howard High School on Forsyth Road...

It begins at 7 o'clock.

There will also be another one Thursday night at Westside High on Heath Road.

Today's web poll asks...Is bullying in schools getting worse?

So far...84 percent of you say Yes...and 16 percent say No..

To vote now... Visit 13WMAZ.com.

Look for the question on the right side of the homepage.

Thanks for joining us, everyone. We'll be back tonight at 11.

Until then...we've got your latest news, weather, and sports at 13wmaz.com.

Good night everyone.

 

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