published Thursday, January 3rd, 2013

Man charged with sex abuse and other news from areas around Chattanooga

Man charged with sex abuse

GADSDEN, Ala. — Authorities say a 30-year-old traveling carnival worker from Georgia has been indicted on charges of sexually abusing a child under the age of 12.

AL.com reports George Michael Smith, of Eatonton, was indicted by a grand jury on charges stemming from alleged sexual abuse July 17 in Gadsden, Ala. It is unclear when Smith was arrested.

Officials say the carnival Smith worked for moved frequently, and the U.S. Marshals helped find him. Authorities say Smith knew his victim.

Smith is being held in the Etowah County Detention Center on $10,000 cash bond.


Holiday wrecks kill 6 statewide

ATLANTA — The Georgia State Patrol says six people were killed in traffic crashes during the New Year's holiday travel period, which began at 6 p.m. Friday at 6 p.m. and ended at midnight Tuesday.

State troopers investigated 585 crashes during the holiday period, with 266 injuries reported.

The state patrol announced the numbers Wednesday.

Authorities say the deadly wrecks were reported by the Georgia State Patrol posts in Athens, Madison and Valdosta, as well as Cobb County police, Perry police and Macon police.

State troopers also arrested 321 people on charges of driving under the influence during the holiday period. That compares to 262 arrests for impaired driving during the New Year's holiday period a year ago.


Hartsfield tops in gun seizures

With 100 guns confiscated in 2012, Atlanta's Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport leads the nation's airports in the number of guns that have been confiscated.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports the Dallas-Fort Worth Airport is second on the list, with 75 guns being confiscated, according to Transportation Security Administration officials.

The newspaper reports Chick-fil-A executive administrator Sheryl Rexrode and Harold Duncan, a member of the rap group Travis Porter, are among those who have been arrested for carrying a gun in the airport.

TSA officials say a total of 1,500 firearms were confiscated in airports across the country in 2012. The figure is up from 1,300 in 2011.


Burglar drowns puppies in home

MOULTRIE, Ga. — Police in south Georgia say a residential burglar apparently drowned three puppies inside the house before fleeing the scene.

WALB-TV reports a Moultrie man who returned home over the weekend and found evidence of a burglary eventually stumbled upon the bodies of the puppies.

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