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Articles by Section - LOCAL


Champion for change

From the base of a rural Georgia court room, Judge Sheri Roberts carries a message across her home state and the nation: we can do a lot better by the young people served by our courts.

March 02, 2015 | Staff Report | LOCAL


Proclamation signed for Youth Art Month

Members of the Arts Program at GFWC Service Guild of Covington gathered at Covington City Hall to have Mayor Ronnie Johnston sign a Proclamation partnering the National Council for Art Education and the National Council for the Arts with Covington and Newton County schools, encouraging public support of quality student art programs.

March 02, 2015 | Staff Report | LOCAL


Closing the child pornography loophole

Kelsey Upton was just 15 years old when she received a terrifying text from a registered sex offender in another state. The middle-aged man had seen a pornographic image of another woman that had been posted online along with Kelsey's name, phone number and address in Oxford.

March 01, 2015 | Meris Lutz | LOCAL


Covington looking at utilities changes

The Covington City Council will vote on amending provisions of the electric system and water system ordinances during Monday's council meeting, possibly reducing city revenue by approximately $700,000.

March 01, 2015 | Bryan Fazio | LOCAL


Sarah Frances Hardeman to be honored

A long time Covington citizen, Sarah Frances Hardeman, born to George Washington Thompson and Lillie Davis- Thompson in 1918, is being recognized and honored for her legendary acts and community service in Covington.

March 01, 2015 | | LOCAL


Celebrating Black History

During its 5th Annual Black History Program Covington held a celebration, themed "A Century of Black Life, Culture & History" in the Newton County Historic Courthouse.

February 28, 2015 | Staff Report | LOCAL


Man convicted of 2001 Newton County murder scheduled for execution

Brian Keith Terrell, the man convicted of killing 70-year-old John Watson in his Covington home in 1992 is scheduled to be executed March 10 at 7 p.m., Georgia Attorney General Sam Olens announced Friday.

February 27, 2015 | Staff Report | LOCAL


Their last meal

More than one in five children in Newton County do not know where their next meal will come from, according to the most recent study by food bank umbrella group Feeding America.

February 26, 2015 | Meris Lutz | LOCAL


Newton County Schools closed Wednesday

Newton County Schools will be closed for both students and staff Wednesday due to predicted inclement weather.

February 24, 2015 | Staff Report | LOCAL


Covington Police Explorers enjoy national success

The Covington Police Explorers recently participated in a national competition designed to showcase their law enforcement skills and placed third in one category.

February 24, 2015 | Staff Report | LOCAL


Deputies arrest armed robbery suspect

Sheriff's deputies arrested 17-year-old Ladarius Lockhart and charged him in connection with an armed robbery at the Oak Hill BP station that occurred Saturday morning.

February 24, 2015 | Meris Lutz | LOCAL


NCSO to host Citizen's Firearm Safety Course

The Newton County Sheriff's Office will hold its Citizen's Firearm Safety Course March 28, teaching the public on laws governing use of deadly force, firearm safety, at and away from the firing range, nomenclature of the basic revolver and semiautomatic pistols and giving citizens a chance to complete a course of fire at the Newton County Sheriffs Office Firing Range.

February 24, 2015 | Staff Report | LOCAL


Winter Storm Watch for Wednesday

The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Storm Watch in effect for Newton, Rockdale and surrounding counties from Wednesday through Thursday.

February 24, 2015 | Staff Report | LOCAL


Problem lies in water management, not supply: Water Authority

On November 5, 2014, County Attorney Tommy Craig posted an alarming series of photographs at a work session for the proposed Bear Creek Reservoir.

February 23, 2015 | Meris Lutz | LOCAL


Alcovy names Val and Sal, Top 10

With the Class of 2015's graduation approaching Alcovy High School announced its top 10 graduates, and Valedictorian and Salutatorian Friday.

February 21, 2015 | Associated Press | LOCAL


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Archive By Section - LOCAL


Man sentenced to life for murder of his girlfriend

It took a Newton County jury less than an hour to convict 56-year-old Rick Ray Breedlove of the death of his former girlfriend Pamela Spencer. Judge John Ott then sentenced him to life in prison plus five years for malice murder and possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony.

On Nov. 6, 2007, a call came in to Newton County 911. No one spoke on the tape, but what could clearly be heard were three piercing screams from Spencer and then two loud gunshots. After there was silence, save for the heavy breathing and groaning coming from ...

October 21, 2009 | Amber Pittman | LOCAL


Harristown to get senior living facility

 The Harristown Neighborhood will be getting a $9 million affordable senior housing facility in late 2010 or early 2011.

October 21, 2009 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


Walton County Sheriff's Office employee dies at DeKalb Tech

A Walton County Sheriff's employee died Friday during training at the DeKalb Technical College's law enforcement academy.

October 21, 2009 | Staff Report | LOCAL


Breedlove found guilty on all charges

A jury found Rick Ray Breedlove guilty of murder in the 2007 death of his then-girlfriend Pamela Spencer. Judge John Ott sentenced him to life in prison plus five years on the charges of malice murder and possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony.

October 20, 2009 | Staff Report | LOCAL


Vioces from the past

On a damp, dreary mid October evening, visitors to the Historic Covington Cemetery were treated to more than tombstones and flowers. At nine selected graves around the cemetery, voices from the past told the story of each site's occupant. From preachers to gypsies, they told a variety of stories that all ended in death.

October 18, 2009 | Tyler Smith | LOCAL


Sen. Douglas seeks funding for recent Crowell Road damage

Sen. John Douglas recently began talks with state and federal Department of Transportation (DOT) officials in order to receive vital funds needed to repair the damage to Crowell Road in Newton County. A section of the essential access road to Interstate 20 at exit 88 was washed out in the recent flooding which devastated many communities in Georgia. Like many areas in Georgia that are facing significant budget shortfalls, Newton County was not able to foresee the need in this year's budget for the type of funds needed to fix severe damages associated with this natural disaster.

October 18, 2009 | Staff Report | LOCAL


Benson found guilty

A jury found Franklin Elliott Benson guilty of murder Saturday evening and Judge Horace J. Johnson, Jr. sentenced the 49-year-old to life plus 11 years, as family members of both Benson, and the victim, cried.

October 17, 2009 | Amber Pittman | LOCAL


Benson takes the stand in murder trial

Franklin Elliott Benson took the stand Friday afternoon to defend himself against charges that he murdered Leslyan Williams nearly two years ago, and the inconsistencies jurors had been hearing throughout the prosecutions case were explained away by Benson who admitted to lying to anyone who asked about his whereabouts on Oct. 29, 2007.

October 16, 2009 | Amber Pittman | LOCAL


Trial begins for Franklin Benson

It was like a macabre Halloween prank when Brandy Snellgrove came home to her secluded house at around 2:45 a.m. Oct. 30, 2007, and found that her dog Foxy had brought a human foot on her porch. But within the hour she would find out that what she thought may be a joke was anything but funny.

October 16, 2009 | Amber Pittman | LOCAL


Prosecution calls witnesses in Benson case

The last time Leslyan Williams was heard from was Oct. 29, 2007, according to Franklin Benson when she called him with a flat tire in Tennessee. More than a week later it was her son Charles who reported her missing to DeKalb County police - not the man who witnesses say lived with her at least part time.

October 16, 2009 | Amber Pittman | LOCAL


H1N1 vaccine available Saturday at health center

Newton County's Health Center, located at 8203 Hazelbrand Road, will be open Saturday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. to offer the nasal spray H1N1 vaccine. No appointment is necessary and the vaccine is free of charge.

October 16, 2009 | Staff Report | LOCAL


Porterdale to hold public hearing on preliminary comprehensive plan

At Tuesday night's Porterdale work session, consultant Chris McGahee presented council members with an outline of a 25-year comprehensive plan.

October 16, 2009 | Jennifer T. Long | LOCAL


The state of the county

The top leaders of the county and cities within it met at the Newton County Library Wednesday to give an overview of their jurisdictions at the annual State of the County address. The Chamber of Commerce sponsored the event and moderator Danny Stone asked leaders about their biggest opportunities and challenges, other top issues and how the business community can help.

October 16, 2009 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


FBO decision still not reached

The Covington City Council had an airport work session Thursday, but an hour and a half later no consensus had been reached on the airport's future.

October 16, 2009 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


Short list out for fifth Alcovy judge

The Judicial Nominating Commission has chosen three finalists for the newly created fifth judgeship for the Alcovy Judicial Circuit:

October 16, 2009 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


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