Suspect Wounded In Shootout With Floyd County Law Enforcement Thursday Morning

Hometown Headlines in Rome is reporting that a suspect sought by the Rome Floyd Metro Drug Task Force has been wounded following a gunfire exchange with law enforcement this morning, that according to Sgt. Chris Fincher of the Floyd County Police Department.

SWAT was mobilized off Ga. 293. As the confrontation continued, the suspect fired on officers and they returned fire,  Fincher said. No officers were wounded but the suspect did sustain non-life threatening injuries, he said.

The GBI has been called in to investigate the officer-involved incident as is procedure.  The officer involved has not been identified at this time.

Continuing updates later today.

Ga. 293 is open or soon will be.

Hometown Headlines

Red Cross Installs Over 3,400 Smoke Alarms Across Georgia

Participants in the “Sound the Alarm” event in Chattooga County earlier this month installed 52 smoke alarms in area homes.  The Georgia Red Cross says statewide, over 3,400 alarms were installed as a result of the effort.

Nearly 900 volunteers statewide participated in the Sound the Alarm home fire safety initiative in more than 14 at-risk communities across the state—surpassing a lofty goal of installing 3,000 free smoke alarms between April 20th and May 11th. Fire departments, local community groups and seasoned Red Cross volunteers went door-to-door in Albany, Athens, Atlanta (Dekalb County), Augusta, Barnesville, Bowdon, Columbus, Conyers, Hampton, Savannah, Summerville, Tifton, Thunderbolt and Valdosta.

“We thank everyone who joined in to Sound the Alarm and help save lives from home fires,” said Georgia CEO Jennifer Pipa. “Because of an outpouring of support from volunteers, partners and generous donors, more than 1,700 homes across the state are now safer from these all too common and often tragic local emergencies.”

Throughout the nation during April and May 2019, more than 29,000 volunteers stepped up to canvass neighborhoods with community partners to make more than 50,000 households safer with free smoke alarms and home fire escape plans. All in, the total number of alarms installed nationwide exceeded 120,000.

Xtreme Football Camp At Trion High School

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The 12th Annual Youth Xtreme Football Camp will be held at Trion High School coming up next month.

The camp will take place Monday, June 3 – Thursday, June 6 from 9 AM until noon each day.  Trion Head Coach Justin Brown says that all paid campers will receive a special prize at the conclusion of the camp.

The cost of the camp is $40.

Registration forms can be picked up at Trion City Schools or the Trion High Schoo  website. For more information, call (770) 367-2013 or email justin.brown@trionschools.org.

The camp is being sponsored by Chattooga County Farm Bureau Insurance.

Trion Native Serves Aboard Virginia-class Submarine

A Trion High School graduate and Trion, Ga. native is currently serving aboard a U.S. Navy Virginia-class nuclear-powered fast-attack submarine.

Treavor D. Flannigan is an Information System Technician (Submarine) 3rd Class serving aboard USS New Hampshire (SSN 778).

As an Information System Technician (Submarine), Flannigan is responsible for computer network system administration, which is essential for the day to day operations of the submarine.

“I joined the Navy because I wanted to serve my country and do my part,” said Flannigan.

As the most modern and sophisticated attack submarine in the world, it can operate in both littoral and deep ocean environments and presents combatant commanders with a broad and unique range of operational capabilities.

“I support my boat’s mission in maintaining the non-tactical data processing network as well as supporting the ship’s self-defense force and the forward duty section in port watches,” said Flannigan.

The submarine is 362 feet long and 32 feet wide and weighs nearly 7,800 tons, powered by a nuclear reactor to push the boat through water at speeds of more than 30 knots while submerged.

“My favorite part about what I do is maintaining the network because it’s fascinating how it works and I am constantly learning,” said Flannigan.

As one of 134 crew members aboard the submarine, Flannigan and other Sailors are building a legacy that will last beyond their lifetimes. Crew members know how important it is for the Navy to develop new war fighting capabilities to continue their success on the world’s oceans.

“My proudest accomplishments are winning Blue Jacket of the Year and earning my ‘dolphins’—the submarine qualification,” said Flannigan.

New Hampshire is a flexible, multi-mission platform designed to carry out the seven core competencies of the submarine force: anti-submarine warfare, anti-surface warfare, delivery of special operations forces, strike warfare, irregular warfare, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance and mine warfare.

Chattooga County Tax Office Switching To "Georgia Drives" System Starting Today

Later this afternoon, the Chattooga County Tax Office will start switching over to the new “Georgia Drives” system and Tax Commissioner Joy Hampton says that her office will not be able to process tags and titles during the switch-over. The new “Georgia Drives” system will begin implementation statewide today and will be replacing a computer software system that is over twenty-years-old.

The new system is a web-based system and Tax Commissioner Hampton says that it will allow for an easier process for both her office and tax payers.

Today, the Chattooga County Tax Office will not be able to process tags and titles after 3 PM.  They will open from 9 AM until 3 PM tomorrow but the office will only be able to take property tax payments on Friday.  The office will be open from 10 AM until 2 PM on Memorial Day as the state begins implementation of the new computer system.  Tuesday, the tax office will return to normal hours.

 

 

Summerville Woman Reports Prowler

Summerville Police were called to a Bellah Avenue address on Monday of this week after a woman reported hearing a prowler in her house.

When officers arrived they spoke with the complainant who told them that she was in the living room of the residence with her children when they heard the back door open. She went to the back door and found the door was propped open.  Thinking that her husband may have come by the house for something, she called him but found out that he was in Dalton at the time of the incident.

Officers could find no signs of forced entry into the residence but promised extra patrols for the area for the next several days.

Georgia Joins Voter Information Sharing Organization

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported that Georgia joined a group of twenty-five other states Wednesday that shares voter information and cancels registrations of voters who moved out of state or died.

Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger said Georgia’s participation in the Electronic Registration Information Center will keep voter lists accurate and prevent election fraud.

ERIC is a nonprofit organization that flags voters who may have registered in multiple states, moved or died. Then election officials must attempt to contact flagged voters, and officials can cancel registrations of inactive voters who don’t participate in two federal election cycles.

Raffensperger signed up with ERIC after the Georgia General Assembly passed a bill that called for the state to join a nongovernmental entity, share confidential voter information and update voter registration lists.

States that participate in ERIC contribute driver’s license numbers and the last four digits of Social Security numbers, according to the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University School of Law. Information received by Georgia from ERIC will be exempt from the Georgia Open Records Act.

Nine Illegal Immigrants Detained On I-59 IN DeKalb County, AL

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Tuesday night at approximately 11 PM Central time, a DeKalb County Sheriff’s Deputy along with a K-9 unit stopped a vehicle from Texas on I-59 in neighboring DeKalb County, Alabama. The stop resulted in federal immigration officials being called.  DeKalb County Sheriff Nick Weldon says those detained were part of a “human smuggling operation.”

According to Sheriff Weldon, nine occupants were inside the vehicle and it was determined that the occupants were in the United States illegally.  Department of Homeland Security Investigators were called, and Immigration and Customs Enforcement detainers were placed on the subjects.

Sheriff Weldon said that it is likely that human traffickers use I-59 going through Dade County, Georgia and DeKalb County, Alabama on a frequent basis.  Weldon added, “We have an opportunity to do our part as a department and help curb this illegal activity. Pro-active law enforcement can not only build a better county, but also help clean up our country,” he said. “I’d like to commend these deputies on their dedication to this.”

Federal charges are pending against the nine people detained in DeKalb County on Tuesday night.

Woman Says Car Was Struck At Local Gas Station

Summerville Police say that a woman reported a hit and run and a local gas station recently. 

Officers were called to the Pure Stop station on the Lyerly Highway last Friday after Cindy Carter, of a Back Valley Road, Summerville address, reported that her car had been struck by another vehicle.

The responding officer said that it appeared that another vehicle had struck Ms. Carter’s black, 2011 Ford Escape causing damage to the right tail light and scratching the vehicle.  No witnesses saw who struck the vehicle.

The incident was turned over to an investigator with the Summerville Police Department.

Dry & Hot For Memorial Day Weekend

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Memorial Day weekend is known as the “official kick-off of summer” and it’s going to feel like summer as we head into our holiday weekend.  High temperatures in the mid to upper 90’s will be the rule for much of Northwest Georgia.

An upper-level high-pressure system will begin building over the area on Thursday that is expected to be unseasonably strong.  The National Weather Service says that their model analysis is predicting this ridge to be the strongest we’ve seen over the last 70 years (which is the period of record for upper-air measurements in this area) this early into the summer season.

Temperatures are currently about 10 degrees above normal, by Friday through early next week we’re expecting High and Low temperatures to be ten to fifteen degrees above normal. 

It’s not clear when the heatwave will break, but slight relief may come by late next week.

 

Calhoun Man Charged With Child Porn

A forty-year-old Calhoun man was booked into the Floyd County Jail Monday on charges of aggravated child molestation and computer pornography.

According to Floyd County Jail records, 40-year old Gary Cleveland Fuller Jr. furnished obscene photographs of himself to a person he believed to be 14-years old.

Fuller also allegedly gave a vivid narrative of sexual acts he wished to perform on the child.

The incident occurred on May 1, according to the arrest report.

Fuller is also charged with enticing a child for indecent purposes, obscene internet contact with a child, electronically furnishing obscene materials to a child, and the use of a computer to solicit a child to commit an illegal act.

WRGA

Money For Political Group Stolen From Woman's Car

This past Saturday a woman reported the theft of a donation jar from her vehicle.

Brandy Roe told a responding deputy that she had money that was intended to be deposited for “The Concerned Citizens Of The Five Day School Week.”  The money was in a clear jar that Ms. Roe says she put in her vehicle around 3 PM the day before.  Ms. Roe said that the jar contained about $178.

When Ms. Roe got to the bank to deposit the money around 10:30 Saturday morning, she discovered that the jar was missing from her vehicle.

Ms. Roe said she did not know where or when the money had been taken from her car and requested that a report be filed.

Coosa Valley Habitat For Humanity Needs Volunteers This Saturday

The Coosa Valley Chapter of Habitat for Humanity needs one or two additional volunteers to do exterior home painting this Saturday, May 25, from 9 – Noon.

There are a couple of volunteers already committed. However, to finish the project we need a couple of volunteers to join them. If you would like to help, please call Kim at 706-252-0878.

Through A Brush with Kindness, Habitat paints and does minor repairs for homeowners who are physically or materially unable to maintain their homes. Most of our projects are done for elderly homeowners who do not want a new home. They simply need help with the home they love. Such projects are referred to as “aging in place.”

To learn more about ABWK or to sign up to help this Saturday, call Kim as soon as possible at 706-252-0878.

Trion Woman Cited For Sunday Accident

A Trion woman was cited in connection with a Sunday morning accident that left Allgood Street in Trion closed for a period of time.

According to the Georgia State Patrol, sixty-four-year-old Ann Cummings Fowler of a Seventh Street, Trion address was traveling eastbound in a black, 2001 Pontiac Grand Prix GT shortly after 3 AM when she crossed over the center line into the westbound lane and hit a blue, 2007 GMC Envoy head-on.  The GMC was driven by thirty-five-year-old Polly Ellen Kerr of a NW Congress Street, Summerville address.

Fowler, the driver of the Pontiac, was taken to Floyd Medical Center by Redmond EMS with minor injuries.

Ann Fowler was cited by the Georgia State Patrol for failure to maintain a single lane, insurance requirements and a seat belt violation.

 

 

 

Finster Fest This Weekend In Pennville

Howard Finster’s Paradise Garden hosts its annual Finster Fest art and music extravaganza on Memorial Day weekend, on Saturday and Sunday, May 25 and 26.

Organizers say that the 2019 Finster Fest has something for everyone.

The folk and fine artist market this year has expanded with 68 artists from 9 states. The largest contingent of artists are from Georgia (41), followed by Alabama (10). In fact, 18 of the 41 Georgia artists are from Northwest Georgia region. Finster Fest will have three live music areas in Paradise Garden with a busy concert schedule of 18 roots, blues, country, bluegrass, gospel and alternative music artists during the two-day art festival with musicians from Austin to Los Angeles, Nashville to Rome.

Other festivities include a book signing and lecture, spoken word performance, and art presentations/tours. Showcasing southern cuisine, the Finster Fest Big Top Tent will provide a true southern food fare with barbecue chicken, ribs, beef with all the fixings and the local Garden Club gourmet tomato/pesto/pimento cheese sandwiches and homemade pound cake. Of course, visitors will have the chance to tour Howard Finster’s famous folk art environment.

Look for updates at Howard Finster’s Paradise Garden on Facebook. More information on Paradise Garden can be found at paradisegardenfoundation.org.

GDOT Scaling Back Construction Work For Holiday

The Georgia Department of Transportation will scale back its construction work across northwest Georgia – suspending construction-related lane closures on all interstate and major state system highways to ease Memorial Day weekend traffic congestion.

Beginning at noon on Friday, May 24 and extending to 5 a.m. Tuesday, May 28, 2019, there essentially will be no construction-related scheduled lane closures on any Georgia interstate highway or primary state route that directly serves Georgia’s major tourist and recreation centers.

“We hope this suspension of major construction work will allow motorists to get to and from their holiday destinations with less congestion and less aggravation,” said Grant Waldrop, district engineer at the DOT office in White. “We understand that a lot of people are hitting the road for Memorial Day, the first holiday of the summer travel season, and we would like to make it a little easier for them to go through northwest Georgia”.

The Department notes that some work may continue on lesser-traveled state and local system roads and that incident or emergency maintenance-related lane closures could become necessary on any route.

Georgia’s Move-Over Law—aka the Spencer Pass Law—says drivers must move over one lane or slow down and be prepared to stop when approaching a stationary law enforcement, emergency vehicle, construction crew or utility service vehicle utilizing traffic cones or flashing emergency lights. These include Georgia DOT’s HERO and CHAMP units. While the fine for breaking the law can be stiff, the consequences can be far more serious.

 

Teacher Arrested For Drugs At Cedar Bluff High School

A Cedar Bluff High School Math Teacher was arrested at the school on Tuesday morning on a number of drug charges.

According to arrests records, 38 year old Dustin Ray Duncan was booked in at the Cherokee County Detention Center shortly after 1:00 p.m. on charges of Unlawful Possession of Controlled Substance, Unlawful Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, Public Intoxication and the Illegal Possession of Prescription of Drugs.

According to the official Cedar Bluff School website, Duncan is listed as a 9-12 grade Math Teacher at the school. He was also recently named as 2018 Teacher of the Year at the school.

Cedar Bluff Police and Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office deputies were called to the school.

Cedar Bluff Principal Rusty Thrasher declined to comment on the matter.  Superintendent of Education Mitchell Guice told WEIS Radio News that in accordance with School Board Policy, he could not comment on any details regarding personnel issues. He did confirm that Mr. Duncan has been terminated as an employee of the Cherokee County Board of Education.

This is an ongoing investigation and no additional details are being released at this time.

WEIS Radio

Join Chris Janson For Memorial Day On WZQZ

Chris Janson to Host Westwood One’s Memorial Day Weekend Special

With fun-in-the-sun tunes like “Good Vibes,” “Fix a Drink” and “Buy Me a Boat,” it’s no secret Chris Janson loves the summertime. To help usher in the unofficial start to the summer season over Memorial Day weekend (May 25–27), Chris will team with stations across the nation, including WZQZ, to host a four-hour Summer Kick-Off special.

The four-hour broadcast, airing nationwide, will feature summer-themed music from Chris and his friends, including Luke Bryan, Florida Georgia Line, Kenny Chesney, Keith Urban, Jason Aldean, Carrie Underwood and more. In addition, many of the artists will share their favorite summer memories and activities.

Westwood One’s Summer Kick Off With Chris Janson will also remember the men and women who died while serving in the U.S. Armed Forces. After all, Memorial Day is an opportunity to pay tribute to all of the veterans who died serving our great nation.

As we relax with family and friends over the Memorial Day weekend, let’s be sure to remember those who lost their lives protecting our freedom and thank those who serve or have served in our Armed Forces.

WZQZ will broadcast Summer Kick Off With Chris Janson at these times this weekend:

Saturday at 7 PM

Sunday at 8 PM

Monday at 1 PM

Arrest Report - Tuesday - May 21, 2019

Here is the latest arrest report from the Chattooga County Sheriff’s Office for Tuesday, May 21, 2019:

Tax Commissioner Releases Office Schedule During Transition

Chattooga County Tax Commissioner Joy Hampton has released an office schedule for the Chattooga County Tax Office while they transition to the new “Georgia Drives” system.

Hampton says that if  your birthday is in May or June- come in today or Wednesday before her office starts the conversion to the new system.  Hampton says, “Our current system will start shutting down Thursday and we won’t be up and running again full force until Tuesday after Memorial Day.”

Here are the operating hours for our office during the next few days:


Tuesday May 21- 8:30-5:00
Wednesday May 22- 8:30-5:00
Thursday May 23- 8:30-3:00 (property tax only after that)
Friday May 24– 9:00-3:00 (property tax only)
Monday May 27 (Memorial Day)- 10:00-2:00 (First day with new Motor Vehicle system/property tax)
Tuesday May 28 and after, regular business hours 8:30-5:00.


After the Memorial Day conversion, here are some of the coming changes according to the tax commissioner:

  • Conditional titles offered for vehicles 1962 and older
  • New web services for citizens: pay insurance fines, cancel registration and more online. If you need to cancel a tag or put it on hold, you can do this in person in the office or use the web services portal – the tax office won’t be able to do this by phone.