Imagine if I reported that a county commissioner was really a moonshiner and a polyamorous, devil worshipping, mob hitman with ties to international bankers set on taking over the world.
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I met a somewhat famous writer recently, and when he learned what I do for a living, he said, “That’s a good place to start.” This kind of made me chuckle, because I wondered if he noticed all my gray and whether he was at all aware of the bit of insult that carried. I’m hardly “starting out.” I didn’t mention that I’ve been at the same company for 20 years — exactly 20 years.
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A Hull man was sentenced to life in prison for the rape and brutal treatment of a 25-year-old woman in February.
Joseph Jay Jones, 47, of Gray Drive in Hull, was found guilty last week after a week-long jury trial of rape, false imprisonment, aggravated assault with a knife and aggravated assault with intent to rape.
Judge Jeffery Malcom imposed a sentence of life in prison without the possibility of parole. Jones had a previous sex offender conviction of aggravated assault with intent to commit rape. He had recently been sentenced to probation for failure to register as a sex offender.
District attorney Parks White said the victim, who had severe substance abuse issues, was treated brutally.
“When law enforcement responded, she was imprisoned in a trailer that was chained and shut with a lock on the chain,” said White of the victim. “The jury found that she was raped at knife point. When law enforcement responded, she was found naked and obviously extremely distraught. She was covered head to toe in urine from a bucket that he had dumped on her head.”
White said the case is another example of the horror of methamphetamine in the Northern Judicial Circuit. The victim testified in the case. [Full Story »]
I recognize my good fortune in never having to serve in war. The closest I came was a gathering of fellow 18-year-olds at a pool table at a classmate’s house with the Desert Storm bombing happening on TV. We all talked about a draft and what it would mean for us. But it didn’t come.
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Donald Trump is the next president of the United States of America.
The Republican won the key battleground states of Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania, with 50.5 percent of the vote nationally to 46.7 percent for Hillary Clinton. He climbed over the needed 270 electoral college votes with a win over Clinton in Wisconsin.
The new president dominated Madison County and Georgia. Locally, Trump had 9,195 votes (77 percent) to Hillary Clinton’s 2,423 (2,423 percent) and Gary Johnson’s 327 (2.7 percent). In Georgia, Trump had 51.2 percent of the votes to Clinton’s 45.7 percent. Libertarian Gary Johnson had three percent.
Madison County was once again resoundingly Republican on every front, with many voting straight-ticket GOP. The Republican Party held a nearly 4-1 advantage in Madison County in every contested race.
Republican John Scarborough beat Democrat Cedric Fortson for the county commission chairman’s seat 9,182 (79 percent) to 2,435 (21 percent)
In the District 2 county commissioners’ race, Republican Tripp Strickland defeated Democrat Conolus Scott 1,889 (80 percent) to 468 (19.9 percent).
Scarborough and Strickland will join new District 1 BOC member Lee Allen, who earned his seat in the primaries, at the county commissioners’ table at the first of the year.
In the Georgia U.S. Senate race, Republican Johnny Isakson defeated Jim Barksdale 8,821 (77.2 percent) to 2,162 (18.9 percent). Allen Buckley finished with 441 votes (3.8 percent)
Tim Echols was favored in Madison County for the Public Service Commission District 2 seat by an 83.1 percent to 16.2 percent margin over Eric Hoskins.
Others on the ticket who won their races unopposed included Allen for the BOC District 1 seat; Doug Collins, U.S. representative for District 9; Frank Ginn, state senator for District 47; Alan Powell, state representative for District 32; Tom McCall, state representative for District 33; Parks White, district attorney for the Northern Judicial Circuit; Michelle Strickland, clerk of court; Michael Moore, sheriff; Lamar Dalton, tax commissioner; and Julie Phillips, coroner.
Madison County’s votes on four constitutional amendments on the ballot fell in line with the overall state vote — no, yes, yes, yes.
Constitutional Amendment 1, which would allow the state to takeover “failing” school systems was not embraced locally, with 2,995 voters (25.4 percent) saying “yes” to 8,796 saying “no” (74.6 percent).
Constitutional Amendment #2 to authorize penalties for sexual exploitation and assessments on adult entertainment to fund child victims' services was approved in Madison County with 80 percent of the vote.
Constitutional Amendment #3 to “reform and re-establish the Judicial Qualifications Commission and provide for its composition, governance, and powers” was favored locally with 56.9 percent of the local vote.
Constitutional Amendment #4 that “dedicates revenue from existing taxes on fireworks to trauma care, fire services, and public safety” was favored locally with 78.1 percent of the vote.