Eyewitness News at 6, 3-29-2013

5:56 PM, Mar 29, 2013   |    comments
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<Yeah we know life know goes on and God gives us the strength to carry on, but at the same time, it's a vital point missing out our life.>
    A central georgia family looks back at the life of a daughter.. Mother.. And friend... Cut too short one year ago.
    Hello and thanks for joining us.
    I'm Leah Johnson.
     Frank Malloy has the night off.

   It's been one year since a Macon woman was found shot to death inside a burned home.
   Police and the family of Yvonne Jackson told 13WMAZ's Tom George they won't rest until they find her killer.
< She in heaven ... I know where she at, it's alright...>

That's Joshua Jackson a year ago ... After his mother, 40-year old Yvonne Jackson was found dead in her Patterson Street home....

One year later ... It's still not easy for her family...
< Yeah I think about it every day .. Yeah we know life know goes on and God gives us the strength to carry on, but at the same time, it's a vital point missing out our life.>
Firefighters were called to the home around 10 in the morning on March 30th, 2012...
After putting out the flames..they found Jackson's body..
  She had been shot in the head..and police say they believe her killer set the apartment on fire ...
  So far, Macon Police have been unable to find Jackson's killer... But Lead Detective Alex Rozier says the case is still very much open ... And they're looking for anyone that might have helpful information.
< The biggest thing is we haven't stopped working this case.  We're not going to stop working it.. But we are asking for the public's help in this case >

After one year ... A day to remember their mother....
< Her voice .. How she sang .. And how she was loving towards us.>
< And she was fun .. And she always smiled, smiled, just to smile.>

But also look for justice...
< This is my family .. We still love and we still miss Yvonne.. We miss her daily, we miss her forever. And you cowards out there who did it .. Hey, just a matter of time.>
    Rozier says the Police Department is offering a $1,000 reward from Crimestoppers as well as a ten thousand dollar reward for the arson for anyone with information on the crime.
   The Jackson family says they'll also offer their own reward.
    You can call Macon Regional Crimestoppers at 1-877-68-CRIME.
    Again.. that's 1-877-68-crime

   Some last minute changes to the Macon-Bibb consolidation bill... Before the close of the 2013 session left two Macon city council members questioning the motives behind them.
    Katelyn Heck joins us now with more on their concerns.
   Last night... Legislators approved a change that would take away the rule... requiring a candidate to live in their district for one year before qualifying for elections.
   That only applies to this year's race.
    But Macon council members Elaine Lucas and Henry Ficklin say they believe it's part of a long-term plot by republican legislators.
<with those changes, the legislators have effectively joined the fight to remove me and some other folks from council, those folks who time after time after time have demanded to know what's going on as far as taxpayer's money, what's going on with consolidation>
But state representative Nikki Randall says they made the change... Because the new consolidated districts did not exist a year ago.
<when you're embarking on something new like this, there may have to be special circumstances in the beginning. Honestly, like I said, how can we expect someone to have lived in a district that didn't even exist a year ago?>
Another change allows the consolidation transition task force to go-ahead with projects without the approval of the new government.
<i think that is dangerous, dangerous. What are the limits on this money that can be spent? Who do these folks answer to? They're not elected locally, they're not local elected officials, so who do they answer to? And they're not answerable to the taxpayers of course, so we're very disturbed about that>
Randall says anything involving taxpayer money will still have to be approved by both the Macon city council and Bibb County commission.
The change just allows them to get work done before the consolidated government takes over in January... Like laying cables for the new technology system.
Randall says the charter previously said that would need approval from the new elected officials... But that body does not exist yet.
Leah?
Lucas says she and others plan to find legal counsel... and send a petition to the Department of Justice... Asking for an investigation.

     Some Robins Air Force Base employees say a reduction in furlough days is good... But not good enough.
     The Department of Defense announced yesterday that its 700-thousand workers will take 14 furlough days... Instead of 22.
     A budget bill passed by Congress last week gave the department some flexibility in how across-the-board budget cuts.. Known as the sequester... are applied.
     Lorra Lynch Jones explains workers reaction.
At the local union hall.. Robins workers say there's only one thing for sure these days for federal employees... And that's uncertainty.
<just about everybody you talk to. Everybody is concerned about it. Everythings still up in the air.>
<when? When is it going to happen? How is it going to happen?>
Heather Campbell... a Robins electrical technician... And David Jones... A weight and balance technician... Say the information constantly changes about furloughs.
The news this week of reduced days provided little relief.
<that's a cut, but they couldve worked to get it lower or none.>
<he's going to get 14 days. I'll get 14 days. That's going to be a huge cut.>
Union president Tom Scott says many of his 4,000 members work pay check to pay check. Two days without pay... Each pay period from June through September will hurt.
Plus.. He says the sequester that prompted the furloughs cuts spending for a decade.
<Conserve their money in case the furlough still exists. Again, this is a ten year issue, not a one year issue.>
And Jones says the struggle for civil service workers didn't start this year either.
<no raises for three years. Pay freezes for two years. Ive suffered already. Now you're going to tell me I gotta suffer for another 14 days? At some point, it gets ridiculous.>
It leaves them wondering when the guessing game will end.
In Warner Robins Lorra Lynch Jones 13wmaz Eyewitness News.>
     A statement from Robins Air Force Base said the furlough reduction is good news for civilian employees.
     Ceo of the 21st Century Partnership.. Retired General Bob McMahon Said the same... But added the impact will still be significant to workers.
     He asked the community to be ready to help those impacted.
     The Department of Defense said furlough notices will go out in early May.    

   The man known as the "officer Creeper" has struck again.. this time.. at the Ronald McDonald House in Macon.
  According to a police news release.. around ten this morning.. the man walked in and asked to speak with someone at the facility.
  The employee went to look for that person.
   Investigators say when she returned.. the man was gone and so was her wallet.
   This is a surveillance photo of the suspect... who is also wanted for similar crimes in Perry, Byron, Cordele  and the Atlanta area.
   Perry police Captain Heath Dykes says the man is 54-year-old Antonio Hornsby.
   If you can help police find Hornsby.. contact Crimestoppers at 1-877-68-CRIME.. again that number is 1-877-68-CRIME.

    From egg hunts to special services.. There are lots of easter activities going on around central georgia.
    You can get the highlights in the 13 things going on in central georgia story on our website.. 13wmaz dot com.
    And while you're there.. Don't forget to vote in our web poll.
    today we want to know if you will attend easter services?
    Right now... 66 percent say yes.. You will.. And 34 percent say you will not.
      Look for the question on the right side of our homepage.

     Next week you can get a jump on your garden by making your way to Mary Persons High School.
     The Future Farmers of America have put on a spring sale for the last ten years.
     Suzanne Lawler gives you a preview of what you can find and shows you how tomatoes can teach life's little lessons.
<I am picking off any of the leaves that look unhealthy or dead and give the plants an extra chance to grow.>
<you can take home and show your parents and be like this is what I get to do in school.>

   Stormy Stuart... and no her name doesn't have anything to do with gardening.
<my daddy just wanted something different...>

definitely gets something different in this micro classroom full of plants.
It's light on the bookwork... And heavy on the seed starting.
<who has the hose?>
<there's only two of them everybody wants it at one time so we have to call spots before we get it.>

They shout dibs... And compete with each other to have the biggest baskets.
Each students has a table.
And when the yearly plant sale hits on the calendar it's game on.
<we compete at the end like who's gonna buy stuff  off my table they bought more off my table than your table because mine looked better.>

They all look good... After all that's a kid's grade laying out for everyone to see... And this blue water helps a bit too.
Agriculture teacher Bill Waldrep figures every student is a potential seed... He's sprouting future leaders with a business sense.
<we approach it as a mini business where they learn the economics of growing these plants in the greenhouse and when we lost a plant that affects our money.>

But sometimes emotions can affect the bottom line.
<the purple flowers I raised them from little seeds and I don't want anyone to buy them like I want to take them home and keep them for myself.>

Stormy's protective but when it's all said and done... She's just proud.
<the peppers and tomatoes I buy these every year like me and my Dad have a garden at home.>
<hello little peppers would you like a new home in the channel 13 backyard garden.  You know you have to talk to your plants.  The folks here at Mary Persons say if they don't sell out the greenhouse they will have a follow up sale May 10th right before Mother's Day.  Reporting in Monroe County Suzanne Lawler 13WMAZ Eyewitness News.>
   By the way.... the teacher in Suzanne's piece.... Bill Waldrep is the reigning FFA teacher of the year for the nation.
    Don't forget the plant sale is next Tuesday morning and it begins at seven am at Mary Person's high school.
    Just pull around the very back of the campus to find the greenhouse.
    Waldrep says it varies year to year.... but many times the ferns sell out by nine.
    He also warned that they only have what's laid out on the tables so they can't restock when things sell out.

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