Georgia uses DNA sample and genealogy to solve 1999 rapes
MARIETTA, Ga. (AP) — A prosecutor in Georgia says advanced genetic genealogy testing helped authorities solve three rape cases from 1999. Cobb County District Attorney Joyette Holmes said in a press release Tuesday that the three rapes happened between June and October 1999 within a three-mile radius of each other. The district attorney's office began looking into the cold case again in late 2018 and advanced testing techniques led them to a man in Arkansas. They got a DNA sample from the man, 48-year-old Lorinzo Novoa Williams, and it matched the DNA in the 1999 rape kits. Authorities in Arkansas said Williams went missing after the DNA sample was taken and turned up dead.
Georgia governor, first lady unveil anti-trafficking plans
ATLANTA (AP) — Georgia’s Republican governor and first lady have announced a slate of legislative measures they want to see enacted to combat human trafficking. Gov. Brian Kemp and first lady Marty Kemp unveiled the proposals on Tuesday. The legislation would make it easier for victims of human trafficking to restrict access to their criminal records. It would also add several felonies to the list of crimes that require registration as a sex offender. One of those is keeping a place of prostitution when the victim is less than 18. The legislation will be formally introduced next week and require lawmaker approval.
Georgia governor wants more money to address harassment
ATLANTA (AP) — One of Republican Brian Kemp’s first acts as Georgia governor involved revamping the state's handling of sexual harassment complaints and placing State Inspector General Deborah Wallace as his point person on the issue. Now, Kemp wants to expand Wallace’s office by adding $435,000 to fund five new positions in his proposed fiscal 2021 budget. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports the proposed 43% expansion for the small agency comes as other state agencies are being asked to trim their budgets amid a revenue shortfall. Kemp’s budget proposal must be approved by lawmakers for it to take effect.
Kemp looks to efficiency, pay raise in Georgia budget talk
ATLANTA (AP) — Georgia’s governor isn’t seeking another income tax cut in the upcoming budget. Republican Gov. Brian Kemp spoke to lawmakers Tuesday about his proposed budget, focusing on efforts to cut spending without harming state services. He's highlighting spending priorities such as $2,000 raises for teachers. State economist Jeffrey Dorfman tells a legislative budget committee that Kemp's budget omits a planned state income tax cut. Dorfman says another tax cut would cost $500 million. Kemp is seeking state budget cuts in many agencies and highlights efficiencies. But agency directors say some cuts will curtail services.
WINTRY WEATHER-DEEP SOUTH
Cold air invades South, bringing below-freezing temperatures
A blast of cold air drove temperatures below freezing in many southern states. In Atlanta, the weather system brought temperatures down to the mid-20s early Tuesday and prompted a warming shelter to open. In the north Georgia mountains, the temperatures were even more frosty: A U.S. Forest Service weather station near Brasstown Bald, the state's highest peak, recorded a low temperature of 16 degrees early Tuesday morning. In Alabama, Auburn was among the coldest cities in the state early Tuesday with a low temperature of 22 degrees just before dawn. Forecasters said it was 23 degrees in Birmingham and 24 in Huntsville as the sun was coming up.
GEORGIA SLAYING-ALABAMA ARREST
Man arrested in Alabama agrees to return to Georgia
SELMA, Ala. (AP) — A man arrested in Alabama after a slaying in south Georgia has agreed to return to Georgia for prosecution. A prosecutor says 23-year-old Demonte Everette Mayes Jr. waived extradition during a hearing Tuesday in Selma. He says Mayes will be sent to Americus, Georgia, to answer charges including murder and kidnapping. Mayes was arrested in west Alabama on Saturday in the shooting death of 21-year-old La’Warrior Gardener. Mayes had his 2-month-old baby with him at the time, and the child was placed into the custody of child welfare officials in Alabama.
WHITE SUPREMACISTS ARRESTED
Documents: Extremist group wanted rally to start civil war
COLLEGE PARK, Md. (AP) — Authorities say a hidden camera captured members of a violent white supremacist group expressing hope that violence at a gun rights rally in Virginia this week could start a civil war. A federal prosecutor disclosed the existence of the video in a court filing Tuesday. The prosecutor said former Canadian Armed Forces reservist Patrik Jordan Mathews also videotaped himself advocating for killing people, poisoning water supplies and derailing trains. Assistant U.S. Attorney Thomas Windom is urging a judge in Maryland to keep Mathews and two other members of The Base detained in federal custody.
LATEX FACTORY REOPENING
Shuttered latex plant to reopen on Alabama-Georgia line