Theft rampage ends with arrests

Staff Written News

By Sidhartha Wakade staff writer A man and woman were arrested last Sunday morning around 7a.m. on June 16, 2019, on marijuana and prescription drug charges after being tied to a spree involving 31 cases of burglarized cars across Morgan and Newton counties. Nicholas Hall, 31, and Erica Babcock, 22, both from Newton County, were arrested after deputies from the Madison Police Department responded to a call about a suspicious vehicle , according to reports.  Madison Police Department officers allegedly found the two in a Nissan Altima with a damaged …

‘They had a gun pointed right at us’

Staff Written News

By Sidhartha Wakade staff writer If you walked into Happy China for a meal or some takeout on Saturday evening, nothing would give away the fact that a 90-year-old man was pistol-whipped across the head, a woman in her 60s was hospitalized after being shoved and struck over the head or that the store and its customers were robbed last Monday night. The restaurant was open again after closing for one day after the robbery. Music played over the sound system, a mix between Asian and instrumentals of Western classics …

mcc

Foster house sold

Staff Written News

Sarah Wibell staff writer One of Madison’s historic gems that fell into disrepair years ago has been sold, giving hope that the Foster Thomason Miller House will be restored to its former glory once again.  The Foster-Thomason-Miller House is scheduled to close on Thursday, June 20, according to Madison-Morgan Conservancy Executive Director Christine McCauley. McCauley presented plans for the house and property to the Historic Preservation Commission on June 11 to make sure no future problems could be discerned before showing the plans to the Georgia Trust for the same …

mcc

HPC struggles with application to place ‘saddlebag’ house

Staff Written News

By Sarah Wibell staff writer The Historic Preservation Commission (HPC) was asked to comment on a zoning matter by the Morgan County Planning and Zoning Commission. Applicant Alex Newton is seeking a variance in order to move an accessory building onto his property. In January of this year, Newton informed the HPC members of his mission to move a late 19th century cabin onto a lot he owns on 4th Street in Madison. This lot retains a late 19th century saddlebag house – “A two-room house with a central chimney …

City/ County working on 2020 Census

Staff Written News

By Tia Lynn Ivey manging editor  Morgan County government and the City of Madison are joining forces to get the word out about the upcoming 2020 Census.  Every 10 years, the United States conducts a census to count every person living in America in “the right place” as prescribed in the United States Constitution.  “This is a very important time for us to be engaged civically,” said Janet Lee, a partnership specialist for the Atlanta Regional Census Center. Lee appeared before the Morgan County Board of Commissioners and the Madison’s …

Madison Police Department

Madison Police Department

Staff Written Law Enforcement

On June 15 Alex Craig Waterman, 23, Macon was arrested and charged with hit and run, driving while license suspended and possession of open container. According to reports, an officer was called to the intersection of U.S. 441 and the Madison by-pass at 8 a.m.and spoke with two persons who alleged that their vehicles had been struck from behind by a black Hyundai Accent driven by a white male. The Hyundai fled, reports state, towards Monticello Highway after the incident. At 6:10 p.m. the same day an officer observed a …

Morgan County Sheriff's Office

Morgan County Sheriff’s Office

Staff Written Law Enforcement

On June 16 an information report was filed at a Atlanta Highway location. According to reports, a woman said while she was following a truck towing a pontoon boat, a piece of aluminum came loose and struck her vehicle in the front grill. The piece of aluminum knocked the grill loose. On June 15 Jildo Edgardo Pinto Mejia, 34, Baltimore was arrested and charged with driving while license suspended and improper passing of an emergency vehicle. According to reports, a deputy said while he was on a traffic stop on …

mcc

Morgan County prepares for Fourth of July

Staff Written Community

By Tia Lyn Ivey managing editor  There is no shortage of patriotic celebrations around Morgan County to commemorate America’s Independence Day.  This Fourth of July weekend, get ready to wave your flags and dress in red, white and blue to huddle next to your loved ones beneath the fireworks.  On Wednesday, July 3, the Madison-Morgan Cultural Center will hold its annual Independence Day Concert and Picnic on the front lawn from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. The event is free.  “Join us as we paint Madison RED, WHITE, AND BLUE …

Good week for Dogs at UGA 7-on-7 camp

Staff Written Sports

By R. Alan Richardson sports editor Kirby Smart is… well, pretty smart.  He and his staff hold football camps for youth through college transfers throughout the summer.  Make no bones about it.  This is not just about letting some kids have a little fun.  It’s a high-dollar way of finding the best talent at the youngest age to bring into the stable of The University of Georgia. One of those camps involves only skill positions.  Quarterbacks, receivers, safeties, running backs, corners, defensive ends, and linebackers come together to play in …

Another week of Recreation camp success

Staff Written Sports

By R. Alan Richardson sports editor The MCRD summer fundamentals camps continue to be a resounding success.  Here are a few reports from the coaches who ran the weekly clinics. Coach Jacquelyn Whetzel said, “Despite the gloomy forecast for most of last week, the MCRD Cross Country Camp participants hit the trail with me and Kathi Edwards- rain or shine. This year, camp focused on conditioning for the upcoming season through running games, hill drills and sprints. Runners finished the week with confidence, knowing they had more stamina than they …

MCRD Boys win District

Staff Written Featured, Sports

By R. Alan Richardson sports editor The Morgan County Recreation Department hosted the 7-8 All-Stars District Playoffs this week with the Morgan boys coming out on top.  Head Coach Andy Frost guided the young guns to a 20-16 shootout victory of Jasper to propel them into the State Playoffs in Calhoun starting Tuesday, June 25 at 3:30 pm.  Frost has been a long-time coach and volunteer for the MCRD for many years. The veteran coaching staff consisted of Frost, Wes Jackson, Lyndsi Jackson, and Merritt Ainslie.  According to a report …

Humane Society hosts Puppy Bowl

Staff Written Featured

By Sidhartha Wakade staff writer The Humane Society of Morgan County (HSMC) held its third annual Puppy Bowl Cornhole Tournament and after party in an effort to raise money for the shelter.  “We had about 25 teams and everybody had a ball,” said Celia Visscher, the chair for the event. “It was hot, but it wasn’t too hot.” Pat Stokes, the secretary for the HSMC board of directors, thought the event was successful. “We had great participation,” Stokes said. “ It could not have been successful if not for the …

Chamber celebrates local government

Staff Written Featured, News

By  Sarah Wibell staff writer “It didn’t just happen.” This sentiment referencing the growing local economy and business environment was reiterated by Chamber President Bob Hughes and Congressman Jody Hice during the Madison-Morgan County Chamber of Commerce 65th Annual Meeting at Empire Mills on Thursday, June 13. The Chamber of Commerce seeks to “promote a suitable climate for quality economic development in all its forms; industrial, commercial, agricultural, institutional and residential,” according to their website. During the meeting, Excellence in Government Awards were presented to Morgan County and the City …

Armed gunmen terrorize diners during robbery

Staff Written News

By Patrick Yost editor Armed men burst through an unlocked back door at Happy China Resaturant, Eatonton Highway, Monday night and beat and whipped elderly employees before forcing four customers to the ground during a robbery. According to Sgt. Jeremy Hoffman, Madison Police Department, the two men entered the restaurant sometime before 9:40 p.m. and struck a 90-year-old man on the head with the pistol.  They then threw a woman in her 60s to the ground, he said, before striking her with a pistol.  Hoffman said the men were both …

mcc

Complaints compel county to consider ambulance options

Staff Written News

By Tia Lynn Ivey managing editor After the latest round of complaints over ambulance service in Morgan County, county officials are planning to host a public presentation later this summer from National EMS Director Huey Atkins, who oversees ambulance service in Morgan County. The Morgan County Board of Commissioners has not settled on a date for the presentation, but are hoping to host it in mid-July.  “We are exploring our options,” said County Manger Adam Mestres, after a public comment from Paula Sellers criticizing ambulance service at the last Board …

mcc

BOE budget set at $35.5 million

Staff Written News

by Sidhartha Wakade staff writer The Morgan County Board of Education (MCBOE) approved an increased its projected total budget expenditures to about $35.5 million, an increase of about $700,000, a 2 percent increase from the 2018-2019 fiscal year (FY) Part of the expenditure increase has to do with a $3,000 pay increase to teachers and staff per certified position, an increase in the Teacher Retirement System (an employer paid pension system) funds to about 21 percent and a 2 percent pay raise for classified staff, according to School Superintendent Dr. …

Humane Society having huge fundraiser

Staff Written Biz Buzz, News

Whew! I’m just so flat happy! That gullywashin’ rain we had last week is finally OVER! The grass is green, the birds are chirppin’, the squirrels are stealin’ food outta Momma’s birdfeeder … WHACK! What the? Who knocked that squirrel unconscious with that ding dang beanbag? Momma! What in the Sam Hill do you mean you’re practicin’? Oh me! Y’all Momma is plannin’ on becomin’ the champion to end all champions of the annual Corn Hole Tournament this Saturday, June 15 at the Madison Airport! Specifically, it’s all goin’ down …

mcc

‘This is a good, responsible budget’

Staff Written News

By Tia Lynn Ivey managing editor The Madison Mayor and City Council adopted a new budget for the upcoming 2019-2020 Fiscal Year. The new budget is about $2 million more than this year’s budget, but the council still fully expects to adopt the rollback millage rate later this summer. “This is a good, responsible budget,” said City Manager David Nunn after the council unanimously voted to adopt.   Karen Stapp, the city’s chief finance officer, crafted the new budget.  According to Stapp, the 2020 Fiscal Year budget will come in at …

mcc

Council struggles with ATV, bike sales

Staff Written News

By Tia Lynn Ivey managing editor  “Instead of thinking about our gateway in 20 years and what we have to do to reclaim it, let’s think about our gateway now and what we have to do to preserve it.” That is what Madison City Councilman Joe DiLetto urged his fellow council members to consider about a proposed text amendment that would allow car lots to sell recreational vehicles, such as motorcycles and ATVs, in the Commercial 2 (C2) District of Madison, which is a “transitional” zone comprised of residential and …

Madison Police Department

Madison Police Department

Staff Written Law Enforcement

On June 7 an entering auto complaint was filed at a Highland Avenue residence. According to reports, a man told an officer that someone had removed his 9mm Taurus pistol from a book bag in the back seat of his vehicle. The man said he last saw the pistol on May 24. On June 6 Tonya Briscoe Willis, 38, Madison was arrested and charged with simple assault. According to reports, officers were called to a Morgan Circle residence regarding a woman allegedly pointing a gun at a man. Reports state …