Rhonda Cook

Reporter for Enterprise

Rhonda Cook is a native Georgian. She began reporting in 1978 with United Press International and joined the AJC in 1989 with the assignments to cover the Georgia Legislature, politics, state government, prisons and criminal justice matters. In the years since, she has specialized on the criminal justice system.

Latest from Rhonda Cook

Georgia bill aims to keep guns from mentally ill — critics say it won’t
 A new Republican House bill, purported to make it harder for mentally ill people in Georgia to have access to guns, would do little to prevent them from obtaining firearms, judges and law enforcement officials said. Under Georgia law, the names of those committed to hospitals for mental health treatment or to address alcohol or drug addictions...

Posted: an hour ago

A new Republican House bill, purported to make it harder for mentally ill people in Georgia to have access to guns, would do little to prevent them from obtaining firearms, judges and law enforcement officials said. Under Georgia law, the names of those committed to hospitals for mental health treatment or to address alcohol or drug addictions...
Georgia’s ‘Stocking Strangler’ serial killer set for March execution
 One of Georgia’s most notorious serial killers, Carlton Gary, is scheduled to be executed March 15 for murdering three elderly women in Columbus in the late 1970s. Known as the “Stocking Strangler,” seven deaths were attributed to Gary even though he was ultimately tried for the murders of only three women. For seven months...

Posted: 2 hours ago

One of Georgia’s most notorious serial killers, Carlton Gary, is scheduled to be executed March 15 for murdering three elderly women in Columbus in the late 1970s. Known as the “Stocking Strangler,” seven deaths were attributed to Gary even though he was ultimately tried for the murders of only three women. For seven months...
Georgia serial killer set to die for strangling elderly women
 An execution date has been set for one of Georgia’s most notorious serial killers. Carlton Gary is scheduled to die by lethal injection on March 15 at 7 p.m. Known as the “Stocking Strangler,” Gary, now 67, was convicted of raping three elderly women and then strangling them with their own pantyhose. The three...

Posted: 3 hours ago

An execution date has been set for one of Georgia’s most notorious serial killers. Carlton Gary is scheduled to die by lethal injection on March 15 at 7 p.m. Known as the “Stocking Strangler,” Gary, now 67, was convicted of raping three elderly women and then strangling them with their own pantyhose. The three...
Inmate sentenced for running ‘taxi service’ for escaped prisoners
 An inmate already in prison for conspiring to launder money and to distribute cocaine was sentenced to an additional 1 1/2 years Thursday for running a contraband smuggling operation and operating a “taxi service” for escapees with his fiancee. Deldrick Jackson, already serving 10 years and 10 months for a 2013 conviction, pleaded...

Posted: a day ago

An inmate already in prison for conspiring to launder money and to distribute cocaine was sentenced to an additional 1 1/2 years Thursday for running a contraband smuggling operation and operating a “taxi service” for escapees with his fiancee. Deldrick Jackson, already serving 10 years and 10 months for a 2013 conviction, pleaded...
Former postal worker sentenced to 70 months for delivering drugs
 A former postal worker was sentenced Thursday to almost six years in federal prison for taking a bribe from a purported drug dealer and intercepting and redirecting packages she believed to contain cocaine. Cydra Rochelle Alexander was the second to be sentenced out of 17 former metro Atlanta postal workers accused of using their...

Posted: a day ago

A former postal worker was sentenced Thursday to almost six years in federal prison for taking a bribe from a purported drug dealer and intercepting and redirecting packages she believed to contain cocaine. Cydra Rochelle Alexander was the second to be sentenced out of 17 former metro Atlanta postal workers accused of using their...
Sheriff who likened governor to ‘Lucifer’ won’t apologize
 The law enforcement official who compared Gov. Nathan Deal to “Lucifer” resigned from the Georgia Sheriffs’ Association after the group disavowed his criticism of the Republican’s proposal to overhaul the state’s cash bail system. Putnam County Sheriff Howard Sills said Thursday he told the group he was willing...

Posted: a day ago

The law enforcement official who compared Gov. Nathan Deal to “Lucifer” resigned from the Georgia Sheriffs’ Association after the group disavowed his criticism of the Republican’s proposal to overhaul the state’s cash bail system. Putnam County Sheriff Howard Sills said Thursday he told the group he was willing...
Legislature may be ready to tighten Ga. gun law, but just a little
 State lawmakers on both sides of the gun debate will soon decide if the time is right to take steps to tighten Georgia’s gun law. Under a long-standing law, the records of thousands of Georgians who were involuntarily committed for mental health treatment have been removed from a national database that gun dealers use to run background...

Posted: 2 days ago

State lawmakers on both sides of the gun debate will soon decide if the time is right to take steps to tighten Georgia’s gun law. Under a long-standing law, the records of thousands of Georgians who were involuntarily committed for mental health treatment have been removed from a national database that gun dealers use to run background...
Georgia’s law allows mentally ill to buy guns after 5 years
 After the shooting deaths of 17 high school students in Parkland, Florida, on Feb. 14, the public’s attention has once again shifted to the role mental illness plays in mass shootings and the role the government can play in restricting gun sales to those with mental illness. >> Read more trending news  Each year...

Posted: 2 days ago

After the shooting deaths of 17 high school students in Parkland, Florida, on Feb. 14, the public’s attention has once again shifted to the role mental illness plays in mass shootings and the role the government can play in restricting gun sales to those with mental illness. >> Read more trending news  Each year...
Georgia’s law allows mentally ill to buy guns after 5 years
 After the shooting deaths of 17 high school students in south Florida a week ago, the public’s attention has once again shifted to the role mental illness plays in mass shootings, and the role the government can play in restricting gun sales to the mentally ill.   Each year, Georgia provides the FBI with the records of thousands...

Posted: 2 days ago

After the shooting deaths of 17 high school students in south Florida a week ago, the public’s attention has once again shifted to the role mental illness plays in mass shootings, and the role the government can play in restricting gun sales to the mentally ill.   Each year, Georgia provides the FBI with the records of thousands...
Court upholds young mother’s conviction for killing newborn
 The Georgia Supreme Court on Monday upheld the murder conviction of a 26-year-old Athens woman who stabbed to death her newborn son just minutes after she delivered him in her bedroom. The court wrote that Cassandra Norwood’s right to remain silent was not violated when she “freely and voluntarily” told the police twice...

Posted: 4 days ago

The Georgia Supreme Court on Monday upheld the murder conviction of a 26-year-old Athens woman who stabbed to death her newborn son just minutes after she delivered him in her bedroom. The court wrote that Cassandra Norwood’s right to remain silent was not violated when she “freely and voluntarily” told the police twice...
Former GBI official misused state purchasing card in plain sight
 Former inspector Sandra Putnam had a long, successful history at the Georgia Bureau of Investigation and had earned the trust of her superiors. That’s part of the reason she was able to spend tens of thousands of dollars on herself and her friends, using a purchasing card paid for with taxpayer dollars. According to records obtained...

Posted: 4 days ago

Former inspector Sandra Putnam had a long, successful history at the Georgia Bureau of Investigation and had earned the trust of her superiors. That’s part of the reason she was able to spend tens of thousands of dollars on herself and her friends, using a purchasing card paid for with taxpayer dollars. According to records obtained...