In the Loop

  • Police Identify Men Involved in Fatal Downtown Stabbing


    Photo Credit: Kelly Hart/file

    The 909 Broad apartment building.

    Police identified this morning the two men who were involved in a fatal stabbing at a downtown apartment building Friday.

    Robert E. Bryan, 21, stabbed his roommate, Wesley Ford, 24, during a dispute about Bryan moving out of their apartment at 909 Broad, according to Athens-Clarke County police.


  • Podcast: Alternative Voices Are Silenced

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    On this week’s special episode, co-host Marc Steiner and Baynard Woods are joined by Baltimore City Paper and Democracy in Crisis editor Brandon Soderberg and City Paper staffer Lisa Snowden-McCray to discuss the impending doom that is facing both "The Marc Steiner Show" and the City Paper.

    Democracy in Crisis is a weekly podcast hosted by Baynard Woods and Marc Steiner, produced and engineered by Imani Spence for The Center for Emerging Media. Theme music by Ruby Fulton and the Rhymes with Orchestra.

    The podcast will take a two-week break and return Aug. 10.


  • Kelly Girtz Is Finally Officially Running for Mayor, Almost

    Girtz medicaid protest.jpg

    Photo Credit: Joshua L. Jones/file

    Commissioner Kelly Girtz speaks at a rally to expand Medicaid in 2015.

    Athens-Clarke County Commissioner Kelly Girtz has already told Flagpole, the Banner-Herald and WXAG 1470 AM, among others, that he plans to run for mayor in 2018, but he hasn't done much, you know, actual campaigning. That will change soon.

    Girtz announced a campaign kickoff event this morning, scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 9 from 10 a.m.–noon at the Lyndon House Arts Center. 

    "We can build a strong foundation that will support Athenians of every walk of life, one that will set the stage for great lives for generations ahead,” Girtz said in a news release. “A safer, healthier, more prosperous Athens is awaiting, and I can't wait to work with you to build it.”


  • Kemp Hits Back at Abrams' Voter Suppression Jab


    Secretary of State Brian Kemp's feud with House Minority Leader and Democratic candidate for governor Stacey Abrams continued this week after Abrams accused Kemp of voter suppression at an Athens campaign rally.

    For Kemp, "voter suppression is a way of life," Abrams said Saturday, criticizing Georgia's aging electronic voting machines and photo-ID requirement.

    Monday, Kemp released a statement in response to the AJC's summary of Flagpole article:


  • Oconee County Considers Plan to Demolish Old Jail, Expand Courthouse

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    Photo Credit: Lee Becker

    The old jail in downtown Watkinsville currently sits vacant.

    Oconee County commissioners are considering a plan to tear down the old, unused jail tucked at the rear of the existing courthouse in Watkinsville and to build an addition to the courthouse where the old jail now sits.

    Oconee County Board of Commissioners Chairman John Daniell announced the proposal at the end of a town Hall meeting held by the commissioners Thursday night at the Community Center in Veterans Park.

    Eighteen people other than the commissioners attended the meeting, which covered a range of topics, including the Animal Shelter, Mars Hill Road, the proposed widening of U.S. 441 and the possibility of a property tax rollback.


  • Democratic Candidate for Governor Stacey Abrams Talks Saving HOPE, Voter Suppression at Athens Rally

    Stacey Abrams web RH.jpeg

    Photo Credit: Richard Hamm

    House Minority Leader Stacey Abrams smiles during a speech at Pulaski Heights BBQ on Saturday.

    In 2011, when Republicans voted to cut the HOPE Scholarship that, until then, had provided free college tuition to every Georgia high-school student with a B average, they had help from an unlikely place: Stacey Abrams, the highest-ranking Democrat in the state House.

    Abrams made an agreement with Gov. Nathan Deal that, if he removed a provision tying HOPE to test scores and included low-interest loans for students who would no longer have their full tuition covered by HOPE, she’d back the bill. The move split her caucus, and could come back to bite her as she runs for governor. One of those who criticized her actions was state Rep. Stacey Evans (D-Smyrna), who’s now her opponent in the May 2018 primary.

    “The argument that we should let the HOPE Scholarship die so we could use it as a political tool four years later is absurd, because students don’t have the luxury of a do-over, especially four-year-olds who’d lose access to pre-K,” said Abrams (D-Atlanta).


  • Podcast: Trump's Mob Ties

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    On this week’s episode, co-hosts Baynard Woods and Marc Steiner talk with Baltimore City Paper's Edward Ericson Jr. about the way President Donald Trump's old mob ties might affect special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation.

    Democracy in Crisis is a weekly podcast hosted by Baynard Woods and Marc Steiner, produced and engineered by Imani Spence for The Center for Emerging Media. Theme music by Ruby Fulton and the Rhymes with Orchestra.


  • Doug McKillip and Houston Gaines Are Running for State House


    Photo Credit: Joshua L. Jones/file

    Houston Gaines.

    Two familiar faces in local politics will vie for an Athens seat in the state House of Representatives.

    Houston Gaines—the grandson of the late Judge Joseph Gaines, Mayor Nancy Denson's campaign manager in 2014 and last year's UGA Student Government Association president—announced his candidacy this morning for the District 117 seat. Flagpole profiled him three years ago.

    Gaines said in a news release that he is running as a "new, conservative voice."


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