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AP-Deep South News Digest

July 14, 2018

Good afternoon! Here’s a look at how AP’s news coverage is shaping up today in the Deep South. Questions about today’s coverage plans are welcome and should be directed to:

The Atlanta AP Bureau at 404-522-8971 or apatlanta@ap.org

The Montgomery AP Bureau at 334-262-5947 or apalabama@ap.org

The New Orleans AP Bureau at 504-523-3931 or nrle@ap.org

The Jackson AP Bureau at 601-948-5897 or jkme@ap.org

For up-to-the minute information on AP’s coverage, visit Coverage Plan at newsroom.ap.org.

Deep South Editor Jim Van Anglen can be reached at 1-800-821-3737 or jvananglen@ap.org. Administrative Correspondent Rebecca Santana can be reached at 504-523-3931 or rsantana@ap.org. A reminder this information is not for publication or broadcast, and these coverage plans are subject to change. Expected stories may not develop, or late-breaking and more newsworthy events may take precedence. Advisories and digests will keep you up to date.

Some TV and radio stations will receive shorter APNewsNow versions of the stories below, along with all updates.

GEORGIA (All times Eastern):

AP is moving election test reports for the July 24 Georgia runoff election on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays from 1:30 p.m. - 2:30 p.m. ET. These tests are NOT for publication, broadcast or use online. Additional information is available in the election testing advisory sent Mondays prior to testing, found in advisory queues: BC-GA_Georgia Runoff Election Testing / AP-GA_Georgia Runoff Election Testing.



KINGSLAND, Ga. — Anthony Dammond says the two gunshots sounded close enough that he jumped up from watching TV and stepped outside, where he peered into the darkness and saw a man running and clutching one leg as if he was wounded. As the runner turned a corner and bolted from sight, Dammond said, a police car came into view following his trail. By Russ Bynum. SENT: 955 words.

AP Photos GARB105-0709181154, GARB104-0709181908, GARB106-0709181916, GARB103-0709182033, GARB102-0709181838.


ATLANTA — Most of the people killed by Georgia police officers in 2017 and 2018 had drugs in their system, including cocaine, meth and marijuana, state officials say. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports data obtained shows that out of 61 people killed by officers, 40 tested positive for a variety of drugs. SENT: 365 words.



SAVANNAH, Ga. — A tortoiseshell kitten named Zoe is more than a pet for Cheri Mueller and Chris Gunter. She’s a symbol of the couple’s ongoing recovery from opioid addiction. “They told us we had to have an animal and a plant, and we’d be doing good in our sobriety if they were still alive after a year,” Mueller said. By Mary Landers, The Savannah Morning News. SENT: 1,828 words.


— POLICE BIKES — A Georgia police department is getting more bicycles for its officers.

— GIRL SCOUTS-SAVANNAH — Thousands of Girl Scouts are converging on Georgia’s oldest city to undertake a competitive “quest.” City officials in Savannah say they expect up to 5,000 Girl Scouts this weekend for the event known as QuestFest.



ATLANTA — Zack Greinke, who was added to the NL All-Star team on Thursday, will look for his 10th win when the Diamondbacks face Sean Newcomb and the Atlanta Braves on Saturday. By Charles Odum. UPCOMING: 650 words, photos. Game starts at 4:10 p.m.


ATLANTA — Braves outfielder Nick Markakis has more than 2,000 career hits but had to wait until this summer to finally receive his first All-Star selection. It came with the added affirmation of leading NL outfielders in the voting and earned him applause both from the Braves, Orioles manager Buck Showalter and others who say the honor was overdue. By Charles Odum. SENT: 650 words, photos


UNDATED — Former California wide receiver Demetris Roberston says he is transferring to Georgia, returning to his home state. Roberston was a five-star recruit out of Savannah, Georgia, in 2016 who chose to head west to play his college ball, picking Cal over Georgia, Notre Dame and others. By The Associated Press. SENT: 141 words.

ALABAMA (All Times Central)

AP is moving election test reports for the July 17 Alabama runoff election on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays from 12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m. ET. These tests are NOT for publication, broadcast or use online. Additional information is available in the election testing advisory sent Mondays prior to testing, found in advisory queues: BC-AL_Alabama Runoff Election Testing / AP-AL_Alabama Runoff Election Testing.



BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — Only a handful of statewide races are on the ballot in Alabama’s runoff election on Tuesday, and all that action is on the Republican side. Most attention nationally will go to the U.S. House race in southeastern Alabama between Rep. Marta Roby and former congressman Bobby Bright. By Jay Reeves.

AP Photos NYHK504-0608181500, NYHK502-0702130929, ALMON503-0712180839, NYHK501-0418180602, ALMON301-0530182010, ALMON302-1009080834.


MONTGOMERY, Ala. — Attorney General Steve Marshall and former Attorney General Troy King make their final pitches to voters ahead of Tuesday’s GOP runoff. By Kim Chandler. UPCOMING: 450 words. AP Photo.


TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — An Alabama college has launched a program to strengthen the state’s efforts to educate gifted students. The Tuscaloosa News reports the University of Alabama launched the program and will be working with the Gifted Education and Talent Development Office. The office wants to identify students who show potential to develop beyond traditional benchmarks set for children at their age level, but this method varies from state to state. SENT: 248 words.



MONTGOMERY, Ala. — A tourist approaches the artist beside the fountain with a camera and a curious expression. Bob Adams sticks to his work, but he peers over his glasses with smiling eyes. He’s ready. Ready to talk about what he’s doing, why he’s doing it, even why he left his job at the craps table in Reno, Nevada, if she wants to go that far. Adams has been sculpting and painting in the Montgomery area for nearly 30 years, a lot of that along Dexter Avenue. He’s done paintings of local business owners and milestone events. He covered the empty buildings along the street with murals years ago, before a recent wave of construction. “For 15 or 20 years, I had lower Dexter Avenue as my private gallery,” Adams said. By Brad Harper, The Montgomery Advertiser. SENT: 502 words.


ENID, Okla. — In the southeast corner of Enid, Bennie’s Barn Equine Therapy and Riding Facility is described by many families as the place where miracles happen. “After facing years of physical and mental challenges when it comes to caring for loved ones, these families went searching for ways to create a better quality of life and they found their answer at the barn,” said Executive Director Chip Baker. “One family in particular is the Talley family. Maj. Pete Talley and his wife, Amanda, moved to Enid in 2015 when Pete was assigned to Vance Air Force Base.” By Cass Rains., Enid News & Eagle. SENT: 939 words.


— BOATING CRASH-ARREST — A man faces charges in a west Alabama Fourth of July boating crash that killed two people and injured five others.

LOUISIANA (All Times Central)



LAKE CHARLES, La. — The City of Lake Charles is seeking volunteers for a free health clinic planned for the fall. The American Press reports Operation Healing & Restoration, planned for Sept. 15-16 in the Civic Center, needs both medical and non-medical volunteers for the event to be successful. Coordinator Emily Ashworth says they need dentists, dental hygienists, optometrists, ophthalmologists, doctors and support staff. SENT: 265 words.


SULPHUR, La. — Southwest Louisiana officials are looking at bike-sharing. Bike-sharing programs use computers and GPS to track bicycles, rented through a smartphone app by the hour or half-hour. Baton Rouge and St. Tammany Parish are investigating whether to start such programs. New Orleans has one with about 400 bicycles. SENT: 278 words.


BATON ROUGE, La. — A Louisiana high school has been fined and banned and all of its coaches suspended for a year after an in-depth audit of paperwork/compliance requirements found a number of infractions. The Advocate reports the Louisiana High School Athletic Association ruled Wednesday against McKinley High, giving it $41,968 in penalty fines and a two-year post-season ban in all sports beginning in 2018-19. SENT: 334 words.



NEW ORLEANS — In the days and weeks after Gilbert “Manny” Ceaser woke in a hospital unable to move, his body paralyzed from the neck down by gunfire from another man’s violent rampage through New Orleans, Ceaser did something that surprised his loved ones: he forgave the shooter. Nearly two months after the shooting, Ceaser did something that surprised medical staff: he started to take a breath on his own. By Laura McKnight, NOLA.com ′ The Times-Picayune. SENT: 1,043 words.


BATON ROUGE, La. — Alyssa Carson, 17, is your typical Southern girl. She loves crawfish, music, festivals, hanging with her friends and watching cooking shows on Netflix. By Shari Puterman, The Daily Advertiser of Lafayette. SENT: 1,089 words.


— JAGUAR ESCAPES ZOO — A jaguar escaped from its habitat at the Audubon Zoo in New Orleans and killed six animals.

— COURTHOUSE SEX — A couple caught having sex in the stairwell of a Louisiana courthouse is facing obscenity charges.

— LAWMAKER-CANCER — A lawmaker in the running for Louisiana’s secretary of state post says she’s cancer free after her latest procedure.

— REMAINS IDENTIFIED — Human remains found in the trunk of a burning car in Shreveport in late January have been identified.

MISSISSIPPI (All Times Central)



ITTA BENA, Miss. — Mississippi and U.S. Marine Corps officials are helping dedicate a monument to a plane crash that killed 15 Marines and a U.S. Navy corpsman last year. The military transport plane, flown by a New York-based Marine Reserve unit, was carrying special forces Marines from North Carolina to California for training when it crashed July 10, 2017. SENT: 142 words. Will be updated. With AP Photos.


MERIDIAN, Miss. — Taxpayers in one Mississippi county spent more than $15,500 to send 11 people to Washington to visit Congress. The Meridian Star submitted a public records request to find out how much the February trip cost Lauderdale County. The group included four of the five Lauderdale County supervisors, the county administrator, two board attorneys, a representative from Yates Construction, two representatives of LPK Architects and the CEO and president of East Mississippi Business Development Corporation. SENT: 328 words.



PEARL, Miss. — There is an almost 100,000 square foot glass building off the beaten path in Pearl, Mississippi. It’s complete with some of the most expensive crime analysis equipment you will find. By April Thompson, WREG-TV. SENT: 807 words.


JACKSON, Miss. — U.S. Sen. Doug Jones introduced a bill this month that would clear the way to open records from civil rights cold cases — a bill written by high school students. The Alabama Democrat, who was joined on Capitol Hill by 18 of the students who helped craft it, knows these cases well. In the early 2000s, he led the successful prosecutions of Bobby Frank Cherry and Thomas Blanton in connection with the Ku Klux Klan’s bombing of a Birmingham church that killed four girls in 1963. By Jerry Mitchell, The Clarion Ledger. SENT: 958 words.


— MOSS POINT-POLICE ACCOUNT — A state auditor has ended an investigation of a Mississippi Police Department accused of misusing taxpayer money.

— JAIL CONTRABAND ARREST — A northeast Mississippi jail guard is herself in jail, charged with trying to smuggle contraband to prisoners.

— HIGHER EDUCATION COMMISSIONER — Mississippi’s new commissioner of higher education plans a listening tour to meet with students, faculty, staff and others.

— ANIMAL RESCUE — Animal welfare groups say 55 dogs and 34 cats are receiving care after being removed from a property in southern Mississippi.

— SAFE ROOMS — The federal government is providing $7.3 million to build safe rooms where people can gather during severe weather.

— VICKSBURG-POLICE DRONE — A Mississippi police department is buying a drone to keep an eye on the city.


If you have stories of regional or statewide interest, please email them to

The Atlanta AP Bureau: apatlanta@ap.org

The Montgomery AP Bureau: apalabama@ap.org

The New Orleans AP Bureau: nrle@ap.org

The Jackson AP Bureau: jkme@ap.org

If you have photos of regional or statewide interest, please send them to the AP state photo center in New York, 888-273-6867. For access to AP Newsroom and other technical issues, contact AP Customer Support at apcustomersupport@ap.org or 877-836-9477.

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