Local News


Transit bill could mean Gwinnett MARTA vote this fall

Gwinnett County residents could vote on joining MARTA this fall under a provision of a transit bill that passed a key legislative hurdle late Thursday. House Bill 930 passed the House Transportation Committee by a unanimous vote. Among numerous amendments the committee approved is one that would allow Georgia’s second-largest county to join a MARTA system it has resisted joining for decades...


Inside Gwinnett’s quest to find 350 Spanish-speaking poll workers

Inside Gwinnett’s quest to find 350 Spanish-speaking poll workers

Gwinnett County’s elections office is holding its first-ever “hiring events” for poll workers this week and, to be honest, Lynn Ledford isn’t quite sure what to expect. Ledford, Gwinnett’s elections director, knows she needs north of 2,000 poll workers before (and after) May’s primaries — and that, thanks to a federal mandate, about 350 of them should...
Atlanta transit bills headed for votes this week

Atlanta transit bills headed for votes this week

Two bills that could reshape mass transit in metro Atlanta are headed for key votes in the General Assembly this week. The Senate Transportation Committee today will take up Senate Bill 386, which would create a new board to oversee transit planning and construction in a 13-county region. The House Transportation Committee is expected to take up similar legislation – House...
Nearly a decade later, Gwinnett begins $75M courthouse expansion

Nearly a decade later, Gwinnett begins $75M courthouse expansion

It’s been a long time coming — but it’s finally coming. “We’re moving forward,” Gwinnett County Chief Superior Court Judge Melodie Snell Conner said Tuesday. Gwinnett officials broke ground Tuesday afternoon on the first phase of the county’s long-delayed, $75 million courthouse expansion, a project that was planned nearly a decade ago but postponed...
Gwinnett holding poll worker hiring events, needs Spanish speakers

Gwinnett holding poll worker hiring events, needs Spanish speakers

Gwinnett County is holding a pair of hiring events this week for poll workers — and especially ones that speak Spanish. The first event will be held from 4 to 7 p.m. Wednesday at OneStop Norcross, 5030 Georgia Belle Court, Norcross. The second will be from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday at OneStop Centerville, 3025 Bethany Church Road, Snellville. Officials are looking for potential poll workers of...
Stockbridge leaders seeking help from higher power in Eagle’s Landing fight

Stockbridge leaders seeking help from higher power in Eagle’s Landing fight

Stockbridge leaders, fearing the effort to carve a city of Eagle’s Landing from parts of Stockbridge is gaining momentum, held a candlelight prayer vigil Monday seeking help from a higher power to nix the move and asked residents to sign a petition against separating the community from the city.   “We continue to need your support to save your city, our city,” Stockbridge...
Future of South Downtown galleries uncertain after fire

Future of South Downtown galleries uncertain after fire

One of the most enduring and resilient independent Atlanta art institutions, the non-profit gallery and performance space Eyedrum Art and Music, has survived the kind of trials that would sink lesser organizations. It has weathered recessions; Atlanta’s rapid gentrification; three location changes; personnel flux and just about everything else fate can dish out. For 20 years the peripatetic...
DeKalb pays former CEO Burrell Ellis $1.1 million for defense costs

DeKalb pays former CEO Burrell Ellis $1.1 million for defense costs

DeKalb County taxpayers paid a final tally of $1.1 million to reimburse former CEO Burrell Ellis for the legal fees he incurred defending himself against charges of corruption before his conviction was overturned. That amount is roughly 50 percent higher than the payout amount initially anticipated by the Board of Commissioners, which signed off on a $755,561.98 payout for Ellis’ legal...
DeKalb commissioners will receive update on high water bills

DeKalb commissioners will receive update on high water bills

DeKalb County commissioners will hold an evening meeting  on Tuesday where they will hear from the public about the county’s lingering issues with costly -- and often inaccurate -- water bills. At this regularly scheduled “committee of the whole” meeting, the Board of Commissioners will hear from two advisory groups: one that is studying water billing issues and another...
Is being creepy enough to be banned from youth sports?

Is being creepy enough to be banned from youth sports?

Georgia’s mandatory reporting laws protect anyone who reports suspected child abuse to law enforcement from being sued for defamation. But what about when someone’s behavior is simply, well, creepy? Or what if police find insufficient evidence to build a criminal case? Legal experts say coaches, administrators and others in positions of responsibility can and should limit a person&rsquo...
Eagle’s Landing friction: 5 things to know about new proposed Henry County city

Eagle’s Landing friction: 5 things to know about new proposed Henry County city

Leaders of the city of Stockbridge are in a battle with some of their constituents over an effort to form a separate town by breaking away from a portion of the Henry County community. Residents of Eagle’s Landing, comprising a number of largely wealthy neighborhoods in southern Stockbridge, are trying to break away and form a separate city. They say they want better control over their...
Who’s among the new faces on the Atlanta City Council?

Who’s among the new faces on the Atlanta City Council?

With so many contenders in the 2017 Atlanta mayoral race, a fair amount of City Council seats turned over to new representatives. See who’s returning to the Council get to know the new members and see who was replaced, all listed below. PHOTOS: Find your Council member here, too Moore, a real estate broker and resident of northwest Atlanta's Collier Heights neighborhood, was elected...
New Orleans lawyer to lead investigation of Georgia Tech’s Josh Pastner

New Orleans lawyer to lead investigation of Georgia Tech’s Josh Pastner

A New Orleans-based lawyer is leading an investigation into allegations that Georgia Tech men’s basketball coach Josh Pastner sexually assaulted an Arizona woman. Tech hired attorney Scott Schneider of the law firm Fisher Phillips to lead the review, announced last week after the woman, Jennifer Pendley, and her boyfriend, Ron Bell, sued Pastner. The coach had earlier sued Pendley and Bell,...
Ethics Board to investigate former DeKalb director Marcus Kellum

Ethics Board to investigate former DeKalb director Marcus Kellum

Marcus Kellum is no longer a DeKalb County employee, but the Ethics Board is moving forward on investigating him on a variety of issues raised during his tenure. Kellum, the county’s former beautification director, first drew attention when Channel 2 Action News reported that he did work for his private consulting business while still collecting government checks. He was later sanctioned...
Will Presidents Day affect Gwinnett’s trash collection schedule?

Will Presidents Day affect Gwinnett’s trash collection schedule?

No. No it will not. The majority of Gwinnett’s county offices will be closed Monday for the Presidents Day holiday, but your local garbage men and women won’t be so lucky. Presidents Day is not a trash and recycling holiday in unincorporated Gwinnett, which is most of the county. Pickup will not be affected Monday or the rest of the week. Those who live within the limits of a city should...
DeKalb CEO Thurmond leaves his mark on county budget process

DeKalb CEO Thurmond leaves his mark on county budget process

DeKalb CEO Mike Thurmond likes to tell people that he inherited last year’s budget since he only had 15 days to make tweaks before it was submitted to the Board of Commissioners. But he takes full credit for the 2018 proposal now under review. In this year’s plan, Thurmond eliminates deficit spending. The $603.3 million in general fund expenditures is a $3.2 million decrease...
Some Atlanta libraries find ‘lease’ is more in meeting demand for books

Some Atlanta libraries find ‘lease’ is more in meeting demand for books

When Fire and Fury hit the shelves, nearly 200 people turned to the Atlanta-Fulton Public Library system to get their hands on the gossipy look inside the Trump White House. Despite the clear demand, the library system didn’t want to buy dozens of copies of the book, which would sit on its shelves long after the public’s attention moved on to the next tell-all. Instead, it leased...
DeKalb takes next step in decriminalizing marijuana

DeKalb takes next step in decriminalizing marijuana

DeKalb commissioners have agreed to ask the General Assembly for flexibility to decriminalize marijuana. Cities like Clarkston and Atlanta have already done so, making possession of less than an ounce of marijuana no longer subject to arrest and reducing fines from a maximum of $1,000 to $75. Counties can’t do the same unless laws are changed at the state Capitol. The board voted 6-1 on Tuesday...
Tiny Paine College in Augusta is looking for a lifeline

Tiny Paine College in Augusta is looking for a lifeline

Paine College’s new president is a religious man who’s attempting a Hail Mary to keep his school afloat. Jerry Hardee’s plan includes an unusual recruiting tool: freshmen pay nothing for room and board. Hardee also wants to build new dorms for 750 students, although he said Paine’s enrollment is 425. “It’s a chance, but it’s a good chance on my part,&rdquo...
Ga. doctor under DEA scrutiny over prescribing of weight-loss drug

Ga. doctor under DEA scrutiny over prescribing of weight-loss drug

A high-profile Georgia weight-loss doctor is closing her practice and facing scrutiny from federal authorities following an Atlanta Journal-Constitution investigation of the sale of a prescription diet drug over the internet. A spokesman for the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration in Atlanta said the agency is looking closely at Dr. Jan McBarron as a result of the newspaper’s December...
Ga. Legislature: Child sex abuse bill fails to make it out of subcommittee, again

Ga. Legislature: Child sex abuse bill fails to make it out of subcommittee, again

Adults who believe they were molested as children could sue later in life under legislation debated by Georgia lawmakers again Wednesday. The bill that would extend the statute of limitations for adults to file lawsuits against their abusers and the institutions that failed to protect them as children. The sponsor of House Bill 605, Rep. Jason Spencer, R-Woodbine, said the law needs to be amended...
Gwinnett chair: ‘Significant’ transit expansion is ‘next big decision’

Gwinnett chair: ‘Significant’ transit expansion is ‘next big decision’

Perhaps the biggest indicator of Gwinnett County’s readiness to consider expanding its transit options is the increasing willingness of its leaders to advocate for it without fear of political repercussions. In her 2016 state of the county address, Commission Chairman Charlotte Nash noted Gwinnett’s growing need for more transit options, flashing images of new-age buses and other...
MARTA paratransit drivers stage one-day strike

MARTA paratransit drivers stage one-day strike

5:20 p.m. update: MARTA spokeswoman Stephany Fisher said the agency was able to provide more than half of its scheduled paratransit trips Wednesday.A spokesman for MV Transportation said the company was not aware of any safety concerns with MARTA paratransit vehicles. He said if any concerns are raised, vehicles are pulled from the road and inspected. He said they are not returned to the road until...
Strike affects nearly half of MARTA paratransit trips

Strike affects nearly half of MARTA paratransit trips

5:20 p.m. update: MARTA spokeswoman Stephany Fisher said the agency was able to provide more than half of its scheduled paratransit trips Wednesday. A spokesman for MV Transportation said the company was not aware of any safety concerns with MARTA paratransit vehicles. He said if any concerns are raised, vehicles are pulled from the road and inspected. He said they are not returned to the road until...
Cobb approves Sheriff’s Office pay raises as budget crisis looms

Cobb approves Sheriff’s Office pay raises as budget crisis looms

The Cobb County Commission narrowly approved pay raises for some senior members of the Sheriff’s Office Tuesday, in a split vote that highlighted divergent opinions on the county’s looming budget crisis. Cobb is facing a $30 million shortfall in its 2019 budget. Some blame a new salary scale approved last year that included raises for about half of the county’s 5,000 employees. Criticism...
Fulton County could expand transit under proposed legislation

Fulton County could expand transit under proposed legislation

Fulton County could raise more money to expand MARTA under proposed legislation that would pave the way for more transit in the metro area in the coming years. The proposal would let Fulton County increase sales taxes that go to MARTA by up to a quarter of a penny per dollar spent, if voters approved the plan.  For more than a year, Fulton has been studying transit expansion. Mayors and other...
Construction starts on College Park arena for Hawks development team

Construction starts on College Park arena for Hawks development team

The new arena in College Park, which will host the Atlanta Hawks development team, will bring a “whole new tone” to metro Atlanta cities south of I-20, mayor Jack Longino said at a Monday groundbreaking. The facility will be known as the Gateway Center at College Park, and is scheduled to open in the fall of 2019. The 5,000-seat arena will cost $42 million. For Hawks development...
Driver’s attorney ‘relieved’ new charges sought for ex-Gwinnett cops

Driver’s attorney ‘relieved’ new charges sought for ex-Gwinnett cops

Gwinnett County’s district attorney intends to seek new felony charges against the now-former police officers caught on camera striking a motorist during a 2017 traffic stop. And the attorney representing that motorist is “relieved.” “We are relieved to hear that the District Attorney's Office is taking the necessary steps to address the criminal aspect of the behavior...
Free Atlanta Streetcar rides? MARTA considers changes

Free Atlanta Streetcar rides? MARTA considers changes

Riding the Atlanta Streetcar may be free again when MARTA takes over its operation later this year. The transit agency also may reduce the streetcar’s operating hours but run it more frequently along its 2.7-mile route through downtown. And it may align transit schedules to make it easier for passengers to hop off a MARTA train and use the streetcar for the last legs of their journeys. Those...
Georgia Tech to investigate sexual assault allegations against coach

Georgia Tech to investigate sexual assault allegations against coach

Georgia Tech opened an investigation Friday into accusations that its men’s basketball coach sexually assaulted an Arizona woman. After refusing to comment on allegations against second-year coach Josh Pastner, Tech released a statement saying it will hire an “outside, independent” investigator to look into the matter. “We expect every member of our community to practice...
New budget deal to extend tax credits for Georgia Power’s Vogtle

New budget deal to extend tax credits for Georgia Power’s Vogtle

Consumer advocacy groups in the state argue the extension of the nuclear production tax credits would not be necessary for Plant Vogtle had the project been completed on time. Georgia Watch and the Southern Environmental Law Center said although the extension would provide ratepayers with much needed cost relief, Georgia Power continues to benefit from its mismanagement of the project. “The...
Fayette 911 center controversy debated in marathon meeting

Fayette 911 center controversy debated in marathon meeting

Fayette County administrators are standing behind their embattled 911 director, Bernard “Buster” Brown following a 7-hour meeting Thursday where current 911 employees defended him against charges of harassment. Others, including former center employees, restated their complaints against Brown, signaling the controversy is not over yet. The meeting came amid complaints from former...
Gwinnett mails bilingual voter cards; 1,600 have new polling place

Gwinnett mails bilingual voter cards; 1,600 have new polling place

Gwinnett County voters can say goodbye to those little postcards from the Georgia Secretary of State’s Office, the ones that come from time to time to remind — or inform — them of their polling place. Gwinnett’s elections office recently mailed out its own versions of those precinct notification cards. Part of a federal mandate for the county to offer bilingual voting...
A Georgia mother’s struggle to unmask a beloved coach as a predator

A Georgia mother’s struggle to unmask a beloved coach as a predator

At first, she thought of Ron Gorman as a godsend.  They met when she was recently separated from her husband and new to Cobb County. Her son, who was starting middle school, had joined the wrestling team on which Gorman was a volunteer coach. Immediately, the sympathetic Gorman seemed to adopt her son into his own brood, including him in family dinners and day trips, paying for things she couldn&rsquo...
Tech coach Pastner accused of sexual assault in court filing

Tech coach Pastner accused of sexual assault in court filing

At least 14 times in 10 months, Georgia Tech men’s basketball coach Josh Pastner sexually assaulted or harassed the girlfriend of his self-described biggest supporter, the woman alleges in court papers Thursday. Jennifer Pendley, 45, of Tucson, Arizona, said Pastner tried to force her to engage in a sex act and repeatedly groped her against her will. She claimed the sexual misconduct...
Fulton County inmate threatens jail employee in coded letter

Fulton County inmate threatens jail employee in coded letter

When a letter was found in an inmate’s cell at the Fulton County jail, there was no indication that there was anything out of the ordinary about it. But on a hunch, the chief jailer sent it to a cryptographer who found a death threat that was hidden in plain sight. The letter, found in the jail cell of Janorris Spears, wasn’t what it seemed, Fulton chief jailer Mark Adger said. It...
PHOTOS: New renderings of Gwinnett’s $75 million courthouse expansion

PHOTOS: New renderings of Gwinnett’s $75 million courthouse expansion

New renderings released this week paint a better picture of what Gwinnett County’s long-awaited, $75 million courthouse expansion will look like when it’s completed in 2020. The Gwinnett Justice and Administration Center opened in 1988 and houses courtrooms and other criminal justice operations, as well as administrative offices like the Board of Commissioners and the tax assessor...
Decatur solicits input on United Methodist Children’s Home property

Decatur solicits input on United Methodist Children’s Home property

The city of Decatur will hold a kick-off celebration and workshop on Sunday to gather public input on the United Methodist Children’s Home property purchased last year. The event will be held from 1 to 5 p.m. at the main building at 500 S. Columbia Drive and will include remarks from Mayor Patti Garrett around 2 p.m. and self-guided tours of the 77-acre site. The visioning process is...
Fayette commission to discuss allegations of 911 director’s conduct

Fayette commission to discuss allegations of 911 director’s conduct

Former employees of the Fayette County 911 Center have come forward with claims of verbally abusive, harassing and degrading treatment they received at the hands of the center’s current director, Bernard “Buster” Brown. The controversy around Brown’s management of the center became public in December when former employees brought their complaints to the Board of Commissioners...
Gwinnett DA to seek indictment, new charges in traffic stop beating

Gwinnett DA to seek indictment, new charges in traffic stop beating

The Gwinnett County District Attorney’s Office intends to pursue new felony charges against two former police officers when it presents its case to a grand jury later this month. The charges, which will be pursued against now-former Gwinnett police Sgt. Michael Bongiovanni and Master Officer Robert McDonald — who were fired and arrested last April after striking...
Fulton County fixing elevators, leaky atrium, after years of problems

Fulton County fixing elevators, leaky atrium, after years of problems

On rainy days, like Wednesday, trash cans and rain barrels are dragged to strategic locations in the lobby of the Fulton County Government Center. Industrial fans are positioned around the area, caution signs are carefully placed and whole areas of the floor are covered with bright yellow absorbent pads — or diapers, as they’re called within the county. The glass atrium in the government...
Henry County adding bus service in public transportation trial

Henry County adding bus service in public transportation trial

What might have seemed far-fetched a decade ago will soon become a reality in Henry County: buses. The south metro community, which for the past 10 years has been among the nation’s fastest-growing counties, will begin a soft launch this week of a trial bus route that leaders hope will be a hit among seniors and could lead to a more robust system. The official launch of the route is Monday...
Gwinnett commissioner returns from heart attack, greeted by protesters

Gwinnett commissioner returns from heart attack, greeted by protesters

On Tuesday afternoon, Gwinnett County Commissioner Tommy Hunter attended his first meeting since a late December heart attack — and he was greeted by a familiar sight.  A small band of protesters.  It has been more than a year since Hunter, who suffered a heart attack on Dec. 30, used his personal Facebook page to call civil rights hero and U.S. Rep. John Lewis a "...
NC woman wins $1 million scratch-off jackpot

NC woman wins $1 million scratch-off jackpot

Winner, winner, before that chicken dinner. A North Carolina woman is $1 million richer after buying a scratch-off ticket while purchasing her meal, WRAL reported. Sayanna Bragg bought a dozen chicken wings and a soft drink at a Durham convenience store and decided to purchase a Million Dollar Fever scratch-off ticket.  When she got to her car, Bragg began to scratch the ticket. “When...
Georgia dad, daughter sing their way to more Girl Scout cookie sales

Georgia dad, daughter sing their way to more Girl Scout cookie sales

Who knew Childish Gambino’s “Redbone” would make good Girl Scout cookie-selling music? A father and daughter team from Georgia created a viral video in which they ride in the car while subbing out the song’s original lyrics to push Girl Scout cookies. The song is performed by Grammy-winning Georgia artist Childish Gambino aka Donald Glover. Seymore Harrison Jr. and his...
67-year-old Jane Seymour poses for ‘Playboy,’ ‘I feel much sexier now’

67-year-old Jane Seymour poses for ‘Playboy,’ ‘I feel much sexier now’

Elegant actress Jane Seymour is about to grace the pages of “Playboy” magazine at 67-years-old. >> Read more trending news  The former Bond girl took to social media Wednesday to share a modest photograph from her upcoming spread in the iconic men’s magazine. “I’m thrilled to finally share this with you! I was recently photographed and interviewed in my home...
Here are tips on keeping a snake-free yard

Here are tips on keeping a snake-free yard

Forget about "Snakes on a Plane," we're more concerned with snakes in the yard. Even though snakes are nowhere near as prevalent as our irrational fears would have us think (assuming you don't live smack dab in the middle of rattlesnake territory), if you're a homeowner with a bit of landscape or yard under your direction, you may encounter snakes on occasion. That should be no biggie...
Douglas town hall: 'We’re not a generation to stay silent'

Douglas town hall: 'We’re not a generation to stay silent'

Nicholas Hernandez was recounting the frightening moment he heard knocking on the door of his classroom at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School on Valentine’s Day. “When we found out, this is not a drill,” Hernandez said late Wednesday night, “it’s almost like the world came crashing down and souls died in a way. It was a near-death experience. I’d like to think...
Seasonal allergies could be affecting your pets

Seasonal allergies could be affecting your pets

The weather in some parts of the country is not helping people with allergies, and your pets could also be feeling the effects of the high pollen (and other allergens) count.  >> Read more trending news  Pets are often sniffling grass, other pets and the ground. They are also much closer to where the allergens can sit, so they could be more exposed to more allergens, such...
Jennifer Aniston and Justin Theroux's relationship had issues before marriage, report says

Jennifer Aniston and Justin Theroux's relationship had issues before marriage, report says

Jennifer Aniston and Justin Theroux may have been doomed from the start. A new report in People claims that the celebrity couple’s relationship was riddled with issues even before they got married. “Ever since they became serious, the living issue often made them bicker. It was always hard for Jen to understand why Justin didn’t like, or at least could learn to like...
Tennis champ Serena Williams reveals she ‘almost died’ after giving birth to first baby

Tennis champ Serena Williams reveals she ‘almost died’ after giving birth to first baby

Tennis champion Serena Williams revealed she “almost died after giving birth” to her first child, daughter Olympia, last fall, according to a column by Williams on CNN.com.  >> Read more trending news  Williams had a relatively easy birth Sept. 1, 2017, delivering her daughter by C-section, but two hours later, she was in a fight for her life that lasted six days,...
Sneaky ways to save money on your next road trip

Sneaky ways to save money on your next road trip

You hop in the car with a few friends or the family and a mere 1,000 miles later you're down $400 when you only intended to spend $150. What happened? Probably just a few overruns on the road trip budget. With a little effort, you'll find it's just as simple and sometimes even more pleasant to take a road trip that will save you hundreds. Credit Donkey shared the secret to saving money on road trips...
Don't try this at home: Top home repairs that aren't DIY

Don't try this at home: Top home repairs that aren't DIY

Everyone wants to feel self-sufficient, and even those with deep pockets find it's a good idea to stick to some kind of home maintenance budget. If you chuckled at the thought of having "deep pockets," you're probably even more concerned with controlling costs on the home front. But frugal isn't always better, even if you have monster DIY skills. "When it comes to doing your own home...
Michelle Obama praises 'Black Panther' on Twitter: 'I loved this movie'

Michelle Obama praises 'Black Panther' on Twitter: 'I loved this movie'

Former first lady Michelle Obama tweeted a shoutout Monday to the new Marvel superhero film, “Black Panther.” “Congrats to the entire #blackpanther team!” she tweeted. “Because of you, young people will finally see superheroes that look like them on the big screen. I loved this movie and I know it will inspire people of all backgrounds to dig deep and find...
'I am not a crisis actor': Florida teens fire back at right-wing conspiracy theorists

'I am not a crisis actor': Florida teens fire back at right-wing conspiracy theorists

Welcome, Parkland shooting survivors, to the ugly world of politics in 2018. In the aftermath of last week's school shooting in Parkland, Florida, some of the most powerful testimonies have come from the teenagers who survived the rampage. They have repeatedly detailed their harrowing experience to national news networks, many calling for stricter gun control laws while decrying President Donald Trump...
The 9 affordable buys that make every first home look expensive

The 9 affordable buys that make every first home look expensive

Whether you’re moving into your first apartment or a new rental, there’s always a myriad of things to consider. But perhaps the first and foremost is your budget. While your stylish eye wants all the designer pieces, your frugal purse is looking at those luxury look-alikes with an affordable price tag. But you don’t have to declare war with your bank account — it is possible...
Bring your personality to life in your decor

Bring your personality to life in your decor

The secret to creating a beautiful home isn’t in cloning a big-name designer’s style, or washing a room in the latest trend. It’s about thoughtfully constructing a space that celebrates the people who live there. Our design choices should not only be inspired by today’s “it” color palettes or furniture styles, but by the opportunity to bring to life the story of...

Set of chairs is attractive and functional, but not antique

Dear Helaine and Joe: I am looking for information about a set of chairs I purchased a few years ago. They were found in a barn, covered with layers of dust, and the owners sold them to me. The seats appear to have been recovered at some point. One is a captain’s chair, and there are five others without arms. There is a paper label on one that reads, “Square Brand, Burlington, Iowa.&rdquo...
Weeping yaupon, like a living piece of art

Weeping yaupon, like a living piece of art

The weeping yaupon holly is beyond stunning right now. No, the weeping plant wasn’t nuked or genetically modified to obtain that graceful appearance. It was found naturally and native and then simply propagated vegetatively by cutting. Yaupons are native geographically in almost a third of North America. Botanically speaking they are Known as Ilex vomitoria with the weeping type known as Ilex...
Insider secrets to online design — and an awesomely eclectic home

Insider secrets to online design — and an awesomely eclectic home

SEATTLE — Granted, Hayley Francis holds a couple practical advantages over the rest of us run-of-the-mill do-it-ourselves-ers. Professionally, Francis is the Trend & Design manager of The Mine, a Kirkland-based online home-furnishing company with an uncanny knack for … well … trends and design. It’s fair to assume she is rather plugged-in to cool things. Genetically, her...
How fungi grow in forest, lawns

How fungi grow in forest, lawns

I discovered fungi in the coastal forests of Northern California. There I came to recognize the mushrooms, lichens and liverworts, all small primitive plants you might not notice. What makes fungi different is they cannot photosynthesize like green plants because they lack chlorophyll. That’s why edible mushrooms are cultivated in darkness. Due to the primitive nature of fungi, it’s doubtful...
Queen Elizabeth surrounded by fashion royalty at her first London runway show

Queen Elizabeth surrounded by fashion royalty at her first London runway show

This year’s London Fashion Week ended with the biggest name in fashion meeting the biggest name in London. >> Read more trending news  Queen Elizabeth II made quite the splash Tuesday as she sat next to Vogue’s infamous editor-in-chief Anna Wintour in the queen’s historic appearance at a fashion show. Her Majesty came dressed to impress in a pastel blue coat and jacket...
Missing Uber, Lyft driver found at LA hospital

Missing Uber, Lyft driver found at LA hospital

A California man who worked for two ride sharing services and had been missing for more than a week was found Monday night in a Los Angeles hospital, KABC reported.  Joshua Thiede, an Uber and Lyft driver, was last seen around 11:30 a.m. Feb. 11 in Los Angeles, KABC reported. The next day, his mother said a 911 call had been made from his home but the caller had hung up. On Monday,...
911 dispatcher dies in crash; husband hears emergency call on scanner 

911 dispatcher dies in crash; husband hears emergency call on scanner 

A Minnesota man listening to emergency dispatch audio learned that his wife, a 911 dispatcher, was killed in a crash with a wrong-way driver as she headed for work, the Star Tribune reported. Jenna L. Bixby, 30, died Saturday night in the head-on crash in the Minneapolis suburb of Brooklyn Park, authorities said. Her husband, Daniel Bixby, was listening to the audio that first reported the crash...
Texas jail guard thanks inmates who aided him during heart attack 

Texas jail guard thanks inmates who aided him during heart attack 

A former Texas jail guard still becomes emotional when he thinks about the day several prisoners helped save his life when he suffered a massive heart attack. “Instead of overtaking me and taking my gun, and killing me or taking a hostage and escaping, they looked at me as a human being,” Gary Grimm told WFAA.  Grimm, 52, was guarding prisoners in a basement holding cell at the...
Police: Ohio 7th-grader suffers self-inflicted wound after bringing gun to school

Police: Ohio 7th-grader suffers self-inflicted wound after bringing gun to school

A seventh-grader was hospitalized after suffering an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound at an Ohio middle school, police said Tuesday. Shortly before 8 a.m., the boy shot himself in a restroom at Jackson Memorial Middle School, Jackson Township police Chief Mark Brink said. Superintendent Christopher DiLoreto said middle school officials will decide later whether classes will be held Wednesday...
'Kill the NRA' written across billboard on Louisville interstate

'Kill the NRA' written across billboard on Louisville interstate

A vandalized billboard on a major interstate highway in Kentucky has become a focal point for both sides of the gun control debate in the wake of last week’s shooting at a high school in Parkland, Florida, that left 17 people dead. A sign along I-65 in Louisville reads “Kill the NRA,” the Louisville Courier-Journal reported. On its official Facebook page, the NRA posted a photograph...
Sylvester Stallone assures fans he is 'alive and well' after death hoax goes viral

Sylvester Stallone assures fans he is 'alive and well' after death hoax goes viral

Actor Sylvester Stallone is the victim of a death hoax. A rumor claiming that the 71-year-old actor had passed away recently surfaced on social media — and he was not happy about it. >> Read more trending news  Stallone took to Twitter to express his annoyance. “Please ignore the stupidity,” the “Rocky” star tweeted Monday. “Alive...
Court: Woman who faked being federal agent to get Chick-fil-A discount indicted

Court: Woman who faked being federal agent to get Chick-fil-A discount indicted

A Georgia woman was indicted Thursday for charges alleging she claimed to be a federal law enforcement agent to get a discount for her Chick-fil-A meal. Tara Marie Solem, of Marietta, faces two felony counts of impersonating an officer, according to court documents. Police said the incident happened July 5 at the Macland Cross Circle location in Marietta. She initially tried to convince...
Magically delicious: Unicorns added to Lucky Charms lineup

Magically delicious: Unicorns added to Lucky Charms lineup

Unicorns are now magically delicious as Lucky Charms has introduced the first permanent change to its product in 10 years. General Mills, the parent company for the cereal, announced in a news release that magical unicorn marshmallows will be a permanent part of the breakfast food. It replaces the hourglass marshmallow that was retired earlier this month. General Mills went on social media...
NC woman thanks 'guardian angel' after huge tree crashes through bedroom 

NC woman thanks 'guardian angel' after huge tree crashes through bedroom 

Three people living in a North Carolina home are grateful to be alive after a massive tree crashed through their house overnight. The enormous tree fell about 3:45 a.m. on the northwest Charlotte home. The force of the impact flattened a portion of the house and sheared off a section of roof. Three cousins who were renting the house were inside when the tree fell, police said. They...
6-year-old boy, 3 family members shot outside Texas steakhouse

6-year-old boy, 3 family members shot outside Texas steakhouse

Police are investigating after a 6-year-old boy and three of his family members were shot Sunday evening in the parking lot of a Texas Roadhouse steakhouse in San Antonio. Police Chief William McManus said Sunday that the shooting, which happened as people were waiting outside the restaurant to eat, left the 6-year-old with a gunshot wound to his leg. Police said two of the boy’s three injured...
Parkland teacher gave fiancée instructions in case he died in a shooting

Parkland teacher gave fiancée instructions in case he died in a shooting

One of the teachers killed in last week’s mass shooting at a Florida high school once told his fiancée what to say at his funeral if he ever was killed in a school shooting, the New York Post reported. Scott Beigel, who was watching coverage of a school shooting on television with his fiancée, said her “Promise me if this ever happens to me, you will tell them the...
12-year-old sister of murder victim reported missing in Florida 

12-year-old sister of murder victim reported missing in Florida 

Police in Florida are searching for a 12-year-old girl who was reported missing early Monday, seven months after her sister went missing and was found dead several days later, the Bradenton Herald reported. The Manatee County Sheriff’s Office said Jalyssa Shannon left her home around 9 p.m. Sunday. Her mother, Michelle Mosley, called deputies around 1:30 a.m. when the girl did not come...
Teen arrested in connection with Instagram death threat aimed at S. Florida school

Teen arrested in connection with Instagram death threat aimed at S. Florida school

A 15-year-old Florida boy was arrested after posting a message on Instagram threatening to kill people at several Broward County schools, authorities said.  Just after midnight Friday, Broward Sheriff's Office detectives were notified about the online post from a Fort Lauderdale teen. He posted it one day after 17 people were killed during a mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School...
President Trump expresses support for senators' gun bill

President Trump expresses support for senators' gun bill

President Donald Trump signaled support for one piece of gun control legislation on Monday, five days after a mass shooting at a Florida high school left 17 people dead and scores injured. "The president is supportive of efforts to improve the federal background check system," Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the White House press secretary, wrote in a statement Monday morning. Sanders said the president...
BAFTA Film Awards 2018: See the complete winners list

BAFTA Film Awards 2018: See the complete winners list

Check out which films, stars and directors won big Sunday at the 2018 British Academy Film Awards in London.  Best film: "Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri" Outstanding British film: "Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri" Outstanding debut by a British writer, director or producer: "I Am Not a Witch," Rungano Nyoni (writer/director), Emily Morgan...
WATCH: Fergie's national anthem performance at the NBA All-Star Game baffles viewers

WATCH: Fergie's national anthem performance at the NBA All-Star Game baffles viewers

Grammy award-winning recording artist Fergie was tasked with the pre-game national anthem for the NBA All-Star Game on Sunday night. On paper, that sounds like a great choice, but many viewers thought it could have gone better. Critics pointed out that Fergie’s voice was oddly erratic during the anthem. One sequence even led Warriors forward Draymond Green to burst out in laughter...
Third-graders in Missouri selling raffle tickets for AR-15 weapon

Third-graders in Missouri selling raffle tickets for AR-15 weapon

Selling raffle tickets to benefit an athletic team is not new, but having an AR-15 semiautomatic weapon as the prize is drawing heavy criticism in the wake of the shooting at a Florida high school that killed 17 and injured dozens, The Kansas City Star reported. Third-graders in the southern Missouri city of Neosho were selling the tickets to benefit their traveling baseball team. Levi Patterson...
John Kasich rips Congress, urges 'common-sense gun laws'

John Kasich rips Congress, urges 'common-sense gun laws'

Ohio Gov. John Kasich, who signed laws making it legal to carry concealed weapons at daycare facilities and college campuses, said he has “no confidence” Congress will approve what he called “common-sense gun laws” in the wake of a mass shooting last week at a Florida high school. During an interview Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union,” Kasich, who earned...
2 kids dressed as 'tall man' unable to gain admission to 'Black Panther'

2 kids dressed as 'tall man' unable to gain admission to 'Black Panther'

Two kids decided they wanted to go to the new Marvel superhero film “Black Panther,” but they didn’t want to pay for two movie tickets. So, they tried to dupe the movie theater’s manager. The duo went to the theater disguised as one “tall man” under a trench coat, but unsurprisingly, their plan didn’t work. However, despite their unsuccessful attempt...
No charge: JetBlue offers to fly Parkland victims' families to South Florida

No charge: JetBlue offers to fly Parkland victims' families to South Florida

JetBlue is offering to fly families of victims of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High shooting free to the South Florida area. The company announced that it would fly families free via its Family Assistance Center, and would also provide access to free ground transportation with Lyft. Last Wednesday, 17 people were killed Wednesday by a 19-year-old gunman. “This week’s events are...
Stoneman Douglas High School will reopen Feb. 22 to staff

Stoneman Douglas High School will reopen Feb. 22 to staff

Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, where 17 people were killed Wednesday by a gunman, will reopen Thursday, according to a statement from Broward County Public Schools. Only staff members will be allowed back on the sprawling campus in northwest Broward County. There is no mention in the statement when students will be permitted to return. The school remains a crime scene and will...
Pennsylvania teen rescued from wind caves

Pennsylvania teen rescued from wind caves

A Pennsylvania teen who was trapped inside wind caves in Lancaster County was rescued after eight hours, WHTM reported Sunday. Dispatchers said the 15-year-old boy, who was with a group of friends and adults, became trapped about 250 feet into the wind caves in Martic Township around 5:30 p.m. Saturday, Lancaster Online reported. Tony Williams, a spokesman for the Rawlinsville Volunteer...
Walkouts planned in March in aftermath of Parkland shooting

Walkouts planned in March in aftermath of Parkland shooting

Support continued to grow over the weekend for a planned March 14 National School Walkout protest in the aftermath of the Valentine’s Day school shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, that left 17 people dead. Meanwhile, students at the South Florida school planned a separate walkout on March 24, ABC News reported. Organizers of the Women’s March...
Australian priest reacts to Parkland shooting with swipe at US on church marquee 

Australian priest reacts to Parkland shooting with swipe at US on church marquee 

A rector at a church in Australia sent a pointed message to the United States this week in the wake of the shooting deaths at a high school in Parkland, Florida, on Feb. 14, The Washington Post reported. On the marquee outside the Gosford Anglican Church, the Rev. Rod Bower posted the message, “When will they love their kids more than their guns.” In a Facebook post of a photo of...
News of coach killed in Parkland shooting hit former player 'sideways'

News of coach killed in Parkland shooting hit former player 'sideways'

As the investigation into the Parkland High School mass shooting continues in South Florida, more people in the Jacksonville, Florida, area with connections to the school are coming forward to talk about the people they lost, including like assistant football coach Aaron Feis. “Hearing the stories about Coach Feis, it just, it just totally hit me sideways,” Kaden Culpepper said. Feis is...
Tennessee authorities arrest 'King Pin Granny'

Tennessee authorities arrest 'King Pin Granny'

Authorities said they have caught the “King Pin Granny” in Tennessee. A 75-year-old woman was arrested Feb. 9 in a large drug bust in Decatur County, police said. Police raided the home of Betty Jean Jordan in Parsons and allegedly confiscated more than 1,000 prescription pills, including morphine, Xanex and Oxycodone, WZTV reported. Law enforcement officials nicknamed Jordan...
Presidents Day 2018: When is it and how did the holiday get started?

Presidents Day 2018: When is it and how did the holiday get started?

To many Americans, Presidents Day means retail sales and discounts or even a day off, if they’re lucky. But what is the holiday really about? Even before then, Washington was revered as one of the most important figures in American history and his birthday became a perennial day of remembrance, according to History.com. Sen. Steven Wallace Dorsey of Arkansas was the first to propose the...
Kentucky second-grader with Down syndrome qualifies for regional spelling bee

Kentucky second-grader with Down syndrome qualifies for regional spelling bee

A Kentucky girl with Down syndrome qualified for a regional spelling bee, WLKY reported. Sosie Smith, a second-grader at Christian Academy of Louisville's Providence School, qualified after winning the bee in her class, with “joyous” the word that gave her the championship. She will compete in a regional event next week, WLKY reported. Sosie’s mother, Tara Smith, told WLKY that...
Texas school marshals allowed to carry guns on campus

Texas school marshals allowed to carry guns on campus

Officials in two school districts in Texas believe they have a deterrent for incidents like this week’s shooting at Parkland High School in Florida. Selected employees are allowed to carry guns on campus, WFAA reported. The Argyle Independent School District implemented the rule in 2014, and the Keene Independent School District followed suit the following year. Teachers packing heat is...
New York dad emerges from 61-day coma

New York dad emerges from 61-day coma

The last thing Robert Crain remembered was visiting the emergency room to have his nagging cough checked out. That was on Oct. 3, 2017. Sixty-one days later, the 47-year-old woke from a medically induced coma. And on Feb. 14, 2018, he was discharged from Upstate University Hospital in Syracuse, New York. "For me, it just seemed like I woke up from a nap,'' Crain told Syracuse.com. "...
Man who falsely claimed to represent Migos, scammed Emory University indicted

Man who falsely claimed to represent Migos, scammed Emory University indicted

A man who claimed to be a booker for musicians including Migos, Lil Yachty and Lil Uzi Vert is facing federal fraud charges, the U.S. Department of Justice said. Octaveon Woods, 26, of Decatur, Illinois, was indicted on money laundering and wire fraud charges Feb. 6. Woods allegedly operated companies, including Global Talent Agency and GTA Bookings, which claimed to represent “dozens of...
'Thoughts and prayers' check goes viral on Facebook

'Thoughts and prayers' check goes viral on Facebook

A Facebook post with a picture of a check without any money has gone viral on Facebook. Fern Malila, from Michigan, posted the picture Thursday afternoon. The post is a picture of a letter and the check to Michigan Rep. Jack Bergman -- which has “thoughts and prayers” written where the money amount should be. "Dear Rep. Bergman," the letter begins. "Since...
Why car horns, planes and sirens might be bad for your heart

Why car horns, planes and sirens might be bad for your heart

The roar of a jet plane, the rumble of a big rig, that shrill scream from the siren of a speeding emergency vehicle: The common but loud noises that keep you awake at night and agitate you throughout the day may have a notable effect on your cardiovascular health, experts say. Researchers say noise pollution may increase the risk of heart disease, such as coronary artery disease, hypertension and...
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