Spalding County 4-H Awards from Northwest 4-H District Project Achievement



Six Hundred Seventy Five 4-H members from 36 counties in northwest Georgia competed against each other at Rock Eagle 4H Center during District Project Achievement. This was the culmination of project work done during the last 12 months. 4-H members gave oral presentations and completed project portfolios for this competition. Spalding County took 34 participants. Carrianna Simmons, 2014-2015 Senior District Board Officer served in a leadership capacity during the weekend. Isabel Rutledge was a candidate for Northwest District Senior Board of Directors which she won and will serve on this board for the 2015-2016 school year. Eight 4-H members won the opportunity to compete, in their project areas, on the State level during 4-H State Congress in July: Dani Gibson, Isabel Rutledge, Hannah Rutledge, Tyler Gibson, Elizabeth Evans, Abigail Rutledge, Nathaniel Haulk, and Annabeth Branton.

Those placing in project competition are as follows.

1st place winners:

Name                                                 Project

Isabel Rutledge                                Companion Animal

Hannah Rutledge                            Food Safety & Preservation

Dani Gibson                                     Veterinary Science

Tyler Gibson                                    Outdoor Recreation

Elizabeth Evans                               Health 

2nd place winners:

Abigail Noulis                                   History

Nathanial Haulk                               Physical, Biological, Earth Science

Addy Burrow                                     Target Sports

Will Alexander                                  Science of Engineering & Mechanics

Gabriel Whitlock                               Plant and Soil Science

Anna Mayo                                       Environmental Science

Emily Resmondo                             General Recreation

3rd place winners:

Jessie Bohler                                    Performing Arts Vocal

Jenna Mae Paz                                Sports

Korre Trimble                                    Cat Care

Rebecca Haulk                                Crafts

Emily Ruiz                                         Veterinary Science



Units of the Spalding Sheriff’s Department, Spalding Fire Department, Troopers from the Griffin Post of the Georgia State patrol, and Spalding EMS responded to the scene of a one vehicle accident at 3841 Newnan Road. The accident occurred about 12:45 am Wednesday morning.

Upon arrival Sheriffs Deputies found that the driver was still inside the overturned Oldsmobile vehicle.  The Spalding Fire Department had to use the Jaws of Life to extricate the driver from the vehicle. Initial reports indicated that the driver had lacerations on his face and hands.   He was alert and talking with EMT and Investigators when he was taken to Spalding Regional for treatment. The accident was close to Jacquelyn Lane and about 20 feet off the roadway.

The accident remains under investigation by Troopers from the Griffin Post of the Georgia State Patrol, and more information is expected to be released later.



Two suspects wanted in connection with a murder in Kansas from 1992 were arrested in Monroe County on Thursday, March 26, 2015. Authorities in Kansas obtained a lead that Kelly J. Jones and Roger Jones, Sr. were living and working at a local campground. Last Thursday, an investigator from the MCSO along with an investigator from the Ford County, Kansas Sheriff’s Office (FCSO) made contact with a female employee at the KOA Campground named Jan Garner. Garner matched a description given in the lead of Kelly J. Jones obtained by FCSO and investigators confirmed that Garner was an alias being used by Kelly Jones. Her arrest yielded information leading to the arrest of her husband, Roger. The couple had been employed by and living at the KOA Campground since sometime in 2014. A search warrant was also served on March 26 on the camper and vehicle owned by the couple and investigators discovered evidence of multiple identities being used by the couple during their years as fugitives. All evidence was turned over to the Ford County Sheriff’s Office in Kansas.

In 2011, America’s Most Wanted featured a story on the fugitives. A description of the incident can be found at amwfans.com. A excerpt from the site is included below:

“Roger and his wife Kelly Jones are wanted in connection with a 1992 murder in Kansas. They were aired as BOLO alert cases in 2011.On April 13, 1992, a survey crew found the body of 25-year old Patrick Howe on a roadside ditch just west of Dodge City, Kansas. An investigation determined that Patrick was beaten and strangled to death and that the murder took place at the motel where he worked. The motel was run by Roger and Kelly Jones, Roger had met Patrick in Colorado and brought him to Dodge City to help manage his motel. Investigators believed that Roger killed Patrick in a rage when Patrick told Roger that he wanted to move in with family in Oklahoma.  Arrest warrants were issued in 1996 when investigators had enough evidence to charge Roger and Kelly in connection with the murder.


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Marlene and Thomas Proctor dance at their 50th wedding anniversary in 2009. The two happened upon a wreck where Thomas saved a truck driver from his burning truck cab and Marlene wrapped him in blankets to keep him from going into shock.

Marlene and Thomas Proctor dance at their 50th wedding anniversary in 2009. The two happened upon a wreck where Thomas saved a truck driver from his burning truck cab and Marlene wrapped him in blankets to keep him from going into shock.


A Pike County man saved a truck driver’s life after he wrecked his tractor trailer into the woods near the Flint River bridge on Highway 362 and the cab caught on fire. According to Cpl. D. Stewart of Georgia State Patrol Post 34, the driver was Decota Thomas, 25, of Griffin. Cpl. Stewart said the wreck caused lacerations to his face, a bloody nose and an injured shoulder after his truck left the roadway, hit several trees, buckled the vehicle’s frame and punctured the fuel tank – but he was lucky to be alive.

“After the truck rammed into the woods, the trees caught the cab and rolled the tractor trailer on its left side and at some point, the diesel tanks were punctured and came in contact with the heat from the engine compartment,” said Cpl. Stewart. “The driver was entrapped by his seat belt.”That’s when 76-year-old Thomas Proctor of Williamson stepped in. According to his wife Marlene Proctor, when they arrived at the scene of the wreck, others had gathered around the truck’s cab and the driver was shouting for help as the fire crept toward him.

Her husband gave the driver a knife to cut the seatbelt that was holding him in but he was unable to cut the safety belt free.

“When we arrived, the truck had started blazing and smoking and I didn’t know if my husband was going to be blown to bits, but I was yelling, ‘You’ve got to save him, you’ve got to save him.’ It was frightening. He was screaming for his life,” she said. “My husband went into the truck and cut the seatbelt off him and drug him out of the window.”

Cpl. Stewart said it appeared the driver may have fallen asleep at the wheel, especially since he did not remember how the wreck occurred and there were no indications that he applied the brakes at all before hitting the trees. He said there were also no indications of mechanical malfunctions that would have led to the wreck. Cpl. Stewart said he has no doubts that Proctor saved the young man’s life.

“The entire cab was engulfed in flames; it burnt everything in the cab and even melted the engine components,” he said. “Mr. Proctor was a genuine hero. If it hadn’t been for him stepping in and helping out, it would have been a tragic wreck.”

Marlene Proctor said she is always prepared with supplies and since they were returning from a test run to Roanoke, Alabama to find the best route to carry cattle to a sale yard there, she had blankets in their vehicle.

“We put blankets around him to try to keep him from going into shock and stayed with him to try to keep him awake and alert,” she said. “My husband will be 77 on his birthday in June, but he is still very strong and very active and he works hard all the time. When his girls found out what he did, they were really proud of him. He got some burns on his hands and he is keeping antibiotics on them but when it comes to saving a life, of course most anybody is going to do what they have to.”



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robbery suspect

On March 17, 2015, Officer’s with the Griffin Police Department responded to 837 Experiment Street, Griffin, GA (Amin’s Food Mart) in reference to an armed robbery in progress.  According to the clerk, a black male wearing all black and a black ski mask entered the store and brandished what appeared to be a silver semi-automatic pistol and demanded money.  The suspect then locked the clerk in the office and fled the scene on foot.  The Griffin Police Department Crime Scene Unit and Investigator Sgt. Sommer Bales responded to the scene and took over the investigation. After further investigation Sgt. Bales was able to identify the suspect as Jermaine Lawrence, aka Jermaine McKibben, and determined that he lived at 503 Hallyburton St. in Griffin.  A search warrant was obtain for the residence and during the execution of the warrant the weapon used during the robbery was recovered along with additional evidence from the scene of the robbery.  Unfortunately Lawrence was not present.  Based on the evidence Sgt. Bales obtained arrest warrants for Jermaine Lawrence.  He is currently wanted for Armed Robbery and Aggravated Assault with several additional charges pending.  Jermaine Lawrence is considered to be armed and dangerous.  Anyone with information on the whereabouts of Jermaine Lawrence should contact 911 immediately or Sgt. Bales at 770-229-6450, ext. 507.

SPALDNG SHERIFF WENDELL BEAM BADGE 2   barnesville captain maggie moreland

Following a presentation by Spalding Sheriff Wendell Beam on Gang activity in the Spalding County area recently, now Lamar County has announced increasing gang activity there.

At the Lamar County Family Connection Collaborative meeting March 12 th Collaborative team members heard from Barnesville Police Department Captain Maggie Moreland who asked for help combating local gang activity. Several people signed up to be contacted for upcoming meetings and others are asked to join as well.

She stated at the meeting “We have three gangs trying to form here in Lamar County and these gang members are going out and jumping on and beating up kids who have said they don’t want to join the gangs. She also said we have got to find an answer and figure out how to save these kids because they are our future. Also, we are looking to be more involved in community events and if anyone would like to have an officer present, please call us.”

Lamar County School Superintendent Jute Wilson said the problem with gangs is starting as early as middle school aged kids.

Gangs are a Georgia Wide problem and agencies are now working to combat further growth and prosecute those hat break the law.

If your Civic Club, Church, or group meeting would like more information about Gang Activity in the area you may contact Sheriff Wendell Beam of the Spalding County Sheriff’s Department for further information.

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Fake $20.00 bills have surfaced in the area.  The Barnesville Police Department and United Bank announced the fake currency surfacing in the Barnesville area. The two agencies are teaming up to warn local merchants and other businesses, not only in Barnesville, but throughout the area about counterfeit $20 bills being circulated.

The serial numbers on the bogus bills are   JF16480530 E   and   JF59184119 B.

If you receive a counterfeit bill call your local police agency or 911, in Barnesville call the Police Department at 770 – 358 – 1244 or  911.

WKEU would like to thank The Barnesville Herald Gazette and Walter Geiger for their assistance in this news story.

You can subscribe to the Herald Gazette on line at barnsville.com.







Friday afternoon about 5:30 units of the Griffin :Police Department, Spalding Regional EMS, and Helicopter Air Ambulance from Emory Air  Flight, based at the Griffin Spalding Airport,  Responded to the scene of a shooting incident at the Triple K Grocery on north 9 th street. Witnesses said that two black males got into a altercation and went outside the business. When the individuals got outside one of the men pulled a hand gun and fired 3 shots, striking the other individual in the leg area.  A landing zone was established and airlifted the individual to the Atlanta Medical Center. . It was belied the individual was  in stable condition when take to the Atlanta Hospital. The name of the individual that was shot is being withheld at this time  pending notification of his next of kin. The shooting incident remains under investigation and more information is expected to be released later by the Griffin Police Department.

atf   griffin pd badge  SPALDING SHERIFF 1

Agents of the Griffin Police Department, Spalding Sheriff Department and the Department of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) have arrested suspects following an investigation into alleged illegal gun dealing.

Rashard Jones, Octavious Hasting, Xzavius Ogletree, Tony Anthony Goodman, David Combs, Demetrice Coggins and Shedrick Howard have been charged in two separate federal indictments with illegal firearms dealing, possession of firearms by convicted felons, illegal possession of “sawed-off” shotguns and rifles and distribution of narcotics.

The indictments are the result of an undercover investigation, of federal and local law enforcement to work together to address the problem of illegal guns and drugs in our communities,” according to  Acting U.S. Attorney John Horn.

Both Chief Steve Heaton of the Griffin Police Department and Sheriff Wendell Beam said that they both were appreciative of the cooperation between the departments and ATF.”

The ATF and Griffin Police, as well as the Spalding Sheriffs Department said that as the result of the investigation removed several dangerous people and illegal weapons from the local community.

According to Acting U.S. Attorney charges and other information presented in court included the following:

After learning that several Griffin men were allegedly involved in the illegal sales of firearms, ATF and the Griffin Police Department, and Sheriffs Depart met launched an investigation.  The investigation led to the identification of two groups of defendants who allegedly were involved in the illegal sales of firearms and narcotics. Each of the defendants is a convicted felon and as a result was prohibited by federal law from possessing a gun, including unregistered “sawed-off” shotguns and rifles, in violation of the National Firearms Act.

Rashard Jones, Octavious Hastings and Xzavius Ogletree are charged in one indictment with illegal firearms dealing.  Defendant Jones allegedly sold guns directly to a confidential informant in addition to serving as a middle man between the confidential informant and Octavious Hastings and Xzavius Ogletree.

In total, the defendants allegedly sold and possessed seven different firearms, including five hand guns, an assault rifle and a shotgun – many of which had previously been reported stolen. In addition to dealing in firearms, Defendant Jones is charged with distribution of cocaine.

A second indictment charges Tony Goodman, David Combs, Demetrice Coggins and Shedrick Howard with illegal firearms dealing. Tony Goodman, aided and abetted by Demetrice Coggins, Combs and Howard, allegedly was involved in the sale of ten different firearms including three “sawed-off” shotguns and a “sawed-off” rifle.

Howard allegedly sold nine different firearms including a “sawed-off” shotgun.  In total, the defendants allegedly sold and possessed 22 firearms, many of which had previously been reported stolen.

Goodman and Howard are also individually charged with the distribution of MDMA.

Defendants from Griffin include Rashard Jones, a/k/a Bulldog, age 26; Octavious Hasting, a/k/a Tay Lay, age 29; Xzavius Ogletree, a/k/a Zay, age 35; Tony Anthony Goodman, age 50; David Combs, a/k/a Bishop, age 24; Demetrice Coggins, a/k/a Meechie, age 37; and Shedrick Howard, a/k/a Petro, age 24.

Ogletree, Combs and Coggins were arraigned before Chief U.S. Magistrate Judge Janet F. King on March 18. Goodman was arraigned before Judge King on March 20.

After detention hearings, Ogletree, Combs, Coggins and Goodman were detained pending trial.

Jones, Hastings and Howard are awaiting arraignment.

All were indicted by a federal grand jury in two separate indictments on March 4.

Members of the public are reminded that the indictment only contains charges.  The defendant is presumed innocent of the charges and it will be the government’s burden to prove the defendants’ guilt beyond a reasonable doubt at trial.

This case is being investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and Griffin Police Department.

Assistant United States Attorney Matthew S. Carrico is prosecuting the case.

Mark your calendars on April 2 for The 2015 Bunny Hunt. We will be set up once again at First National Bank Main Branch located at 318 South Hill Street. We will have 6 Bunnies hidden in and around Griffin and Spalding County. WKEU’s  Tony Broski and Ted Taylor will be hosting The Bunny Hunt, and will be giving out clues to the whereabouts of the bunnies. If you find one of the bunnies return it to us at First National Bank, along with keeping the bunny we will also issue you your prize package for that bunny. The 2015 Bunny hunt is brought to you in part by WKEU, The Griffin Police Department D.A.R.E. Program, and the Griffin Downtown Counsel. Be sure to tune into WKEU AM 1450, or our live stream on wkeuradio.com click on listen live AM 1450, or on our free app for all smartphones and tablets. We will kicking off the Bunny Hunt at 7:30 Thursday evening. Good Luck and Happy Easter!