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Updated: Tue, 05 Aug 2014 01:15:21 EST


Plane lands in Liberia for 2nd American with Ebola, who will be flown to Atlanta for treatment

MONROVIA, Liberia (AP) — The Liberia airport authority says a chartered evacuation plane that will fly a second American sick with Ebola to Atlanta has landed at the capital airport in that West African nation.

Binyah Kesselly, chairman of the Liberia Airport Authority's board of directors, told The Associated Press that the plane arrived late Monday afternoon in Monrovia.

It is scheduled to take off early Tuesday with American missionary Nancy Writebol aboard. Writebol, a long-time missionary from North Carolina, will be treated at the same Atlanta hospital where an American doctorm Kent Brantly, was taken. Brantly, who worked at the same Liberian hospital compound as Writebol helping Ebola patients, arrived at Atlanta's Emory University Hospital for treatment Saturday.

Writebol's son, Jeremy, said his mother "is still struggling" but that "there seems to be improvement" and that the family is optimistic she will recover amid a spreading Ebola outbreak in West Africa. Ebola has killed at least 887 people in four West African countries.


Son: Mother's Ebola should spark push for cure for often deadly disease

ATLANTA (AP) — Nancy Writebol, a missionary from North Carolina, certainly wasn't planning for her 15 years of mission work to result in contracting the Ebola virus in West Africa.

But now that she has, her son says he wants the attention on the case to spur development of a cure.

Writebol is one of two members of the same hospital mission team who contracted Ebola in Liberia after treating patients suffering from the dangerous virus. Dr. Kent Brantly is the other.

Writebol's home congregation is Calvary Church in Charlotte, North Carolina. Brantly is with the international relief group Samritan's Purse with headquarters in Boone, North Carolina.

Authorities say a medical plane that has already arrived in Liberia will transport Writebol from West Africa to the Georgia hospital on Tuesday.


Number of black GA inmates hit 25-year low in 2013

ATLANTA (AP) — Data from the Georgia Department of Corrections says the number of black inmates in 2013 reached its lowest level since 1988.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports state corrections data shows the number of black men sent to prison in the past five years declined by 19 percent and the number of black women sent to prison in the same time period dropped by 33 percent.

Georgia Bureau of Investigation Deputy Director Russell Andrews says the drop may be linked to a large decline in crack cocaine use and Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard says improving economic conditions may also be a factor.

GBI Director Vernon Keenan says the change in incarceration statistics is linked to acceptance of drug courts and rehabilitation initiatives for drug addicts instead of harsh sentences.


Stadium opponents want referendum on tax spending

ATLANTA (AP) — Opponents of public dollars going toward new stadiums for the Atlanta Braves and Atlanta Falcons want lawmakers to require referendums for public-private partnerships.

A coalition of black clergy, neighborhood associations and Tea Party groups says it plans to seek legislation this year. At a Monday news conference, organizers say residents should decide when public money goes toward private projects but didn't name a dollar amount triggering a vote.

Atlanta Tea Party co-chair Debbie Dooley says the coalition will not stop fighting despite the construction underway at a Falcons stadium in downtown Atlanta and a Braves stadium in nearby Cobb County.

Opponents have separately challenged bonds on both projects and say they plan to appeal lower court decisions in favor of the city and the county to the state Supreme Court.


Man dies after shooting outside nightclub

SANDY SPRINGS, Ga. (AP) — Police in an Atlanta suburb say a man has died after an early morning shooting outside a nightclub.

Sandy Springs police say the 38-year old man was shot around 2 a.m. Monday in the parking lot behind the Taboo 2 on Roswell Road.

Police said he died at North Fulton Hospital of multiple gunshot wounds.

His name was not immediately released.

Sandy Springs police said in a statement that he at least one suspect fled the scene in a sedan. They said the motive for the shooting was not known early Monday morning.


Man charged with impersonating firefighter

AUGUSTA, Ga. (AP) — Authorities say a 19-year-old Appling man is accused of pulling over a 16-year-old girl and pretending to be a firefighter in east Georgia.

Columbia County sheriff's officials say the suspect turned on sirens and red lights to stop the girl and then waved a radio that read "Columbia County Fire" on the side after she had stopped.

The Augusta Chronicle reports that the girl later reported the incident, which happened Thursday night.

Sheriff's officials said the 19-year-old was booked into the Columbia County Detention Center on charges of impersonating a firefighter and false imprisonment.


21 people displaced after fire near Savannah

SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) — Fire officials say 18 adults and three children have been displaced from their homes after fire ripped through an apartment complex in Georgetown, near Savannah.

The Savannah Morning News reports that Southside Fire crews were called to the Georgetown Woods Waterford Plantation complex on St. George Drive around 2:30 a.m. Sunday.

Southside Fire Assistant Chief Gary Jarriel said a storm cell was moving through the area at the time, bringing intense lightning.

Jarriel said the fire began in a common area between apartments before spreading to the attic and roof.

The American Red Cross is assisting those displaced by the fire.

Georgetown is about 12 miles southwest of downtown Savannah.


Vandals topple gravestones in Forsyth County

ALPHARETTA, Ga. (AP) — Authorities are investigating after the gravestones of some of Forsyth County's founders were vandalized at a small cemetery just north of Atlanta.

Donnie Munda tells WSB-TV that headstones of family members were toppled and destroyed.

Munda said 24 graves mark his relatives in the cemetery, and that nearly all of their headstones were damaged. They include a constable for Forsyth County and a sheriff for Forsyth County in the 1960s.

Cumming Sons of Confederate Veterans Commander Cliff Roberts said the people buried in the cemetery are pioneers who were living in the county in 1834 when the first census in the area was done.

Roberts said he's hopeful that the damaged headstones can be replaced and a fence can be installed around the cemetery.


GA officials host criminal justice clergy workshop

DECATUR, Ga. (AP) — A metro Atlanta district attorney's office is hosting an annual event meant to educate clergy members on the criminal justice system.

DeKalb County District Attorney Robert James and county Sheriff Jeff Mann are hosting the sixth annual faith leaders day Aug. 14. The event includes a tour of the county jail, police headquarters, the juvenile court and the county medical examiner's facility.

James says faith leaders are often faced with serious and occasionally life-threatening situations involving members of their congregations and the event is meant to empower them.

Organizers say the event also includes workshops on victim services, anti-recidivism programs, neighborhood watch and more.


No Manziel? No Clowney? SEC says no problem

The Southeastern Conference will try to climb back to the mountaintop minus some of its biggest stars.

Top contenders like Alabama, South Carolina, Georgia and LSU are breaking in new quarterbacks. Gone are high-profile players like Jadeveon Clowney and Johnny Manziel, along with Heisman Trophy finalists AJ McCarron and Tre Mason.

The wild 2013 season is also giving other teams around the league hope. Few could have imagined Missouri and Auburn playing for the SEC title last season — much less a Kick-6 settling the Western Division and the Iron Bowl.

Florida cornerback Vernon Hargreaves III says: "You never know who's going to be the best, and that's why the SEC is the best conference in college football."

Florida State ended the SEC's streak of seven straight national titles, though.

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