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How to Help Hurricane Victims in GA and Beyond


Hurricane Matthew tore its way through Southern Georgia late last week, leaving disaster and turmoil in its wake. Residents continue to face challenges that a storm such as Matthew can bring. Power outages and flooding have changed the lives of Georgia residents, even if temporarily. Unfortunately, Matthew did claim four lives in Georgia. As people are able to assess damage, it is clear that some relief is needed. If you are interested in helping victims in Georgia, here are several options. American Red Cross The Red Cross set up 18 shelters in Georgia providing temporary housing to more than 2,000 people. The...

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What Constitutes Arson


Most people know that arson involves fire, but many don’t know exactly what constitutes arson. There are many types of crimes that fall under the “arson” umbrella. These include setting fire to your own property with the intent to commit fraud. In most cases, arson is a felony due to its serious nature and the risk of injury or death. Degrees of Arson There are different degrees of arson. The manner in which a person is charged depends on several factors, including whether or not the structure was occupied and whether fraud was the intent. Lesser degrees of arson may be subject...

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How and When to File a Temporary Protective Order


October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. One of the most important tools in the fight against domestic violence is the temporary protection order, or TPO. There are different types of family violence protective orders available in Georgia. These orders are meant to protect the people named therein; as such, when violations result in a criminal charge. If you are considering filing a protective order in Atlanta, here is what you should know. Types of Orders There are two types of protective orders in Georgia. A temporary ex parte order protects you from an abuser before you go to court. This is an order...

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How the State Patrol Stepped Up for the UGA Game


The Georgia State Patrol ramped up its DUI enforcement efforts in Athens this past Saturday as fans by the thousands flocked to the city for the Georgia vs. Tennessee game. Prior to the game, the public was warned that if they chose to drink and drive, they would be arrested. Troopers from the Nighthawks Task Force took to the streets Saturday afternoon in preparation for the game and stayed on the streets as revelers headed for home. The elite law enforcement task force has specialized training in DUI enforcement and put it to good use Saturday. Prior to the game, the Governor’s...

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A Rundown of Georgia Gun Laws


Every state in the nation has laws surrounding firearms, and Georgia is no different. State laws dictate when you need a license, where you are permitted to carry your weapon and the different consequences of breaking any gun laws. Here is what the state of Georgia has to say about your right to own and carry a firearm. Licensure Any adult in Georgia who is legally able to do so may store a firearm in their home, business or motor vehicle without having to hold a valid license. Any person who intends to carry their firearm outside of those places is required...

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A Brief Look at Federal Drug Classification


Drugs, certain chemicals and some substances are divided into categories. These five categories are divided in such a way that each drug in the category has the same acceptable medical use, potential for abuse and possible dependency. The most important factor in determining which category a drug will be placed in is its potential for dependency. Here is a brief outline. Schedule I Schedule I drugs, chemicals and substances have no accepted medical use. They also have a high potential for abuse. Some of the drugs listed in this category are: heroin, marijuana, ecstasy, LSD, peyote and methaqualone. Schedule II Schedule II drugs, chemicals...

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Not All Domestic Violence is the Same


Domestic violence is a serious crime. Victims of abuse may deal with lifelong issues, both mental and physical, after suffering at the hands of a batterer. Those charged with the crime may spend time in prison, pay thousands in fines, and find it difficult to find future employment. Many have a picture that appears in their mind when someone talks about domestic violence. These images may or may not be correct. The fact is that “domestic violence” is a term that covers a variety of abuses. The crime does not always involve physical contact. As such, many alleged perpetrators may...

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The Difference Between Assault and Battery


In Cobb County, like all other areas of Georgia, assault and battery are two separate crimes, despite many using the terms synonymously or in conjunction with one another, as in “assault and battery.” Either crime can be classified as a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on the circumstances surrounding the incident. Simple Assault Simple assault is described under O.C.G.A. §16-5-20. It is the attempt to commit a violent injury upon another person or placing a person in a situation where a there is a reasonable chance for harm. There is no need to actually touch another person to be charged with...

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Woman with History of DUI Strikes Cyclist


Police say that a woman who was arrested for causing the death of one cyclist and injuring two others has been arrested twice for driving under the influence of drugs in the past three months. The most recent arrest was just under three weeks ago. According to reports of the accident, Whitney Baker Howard, 31, was driving on Athena Drive when she crossed the centerline and hit a group of cyclists head-on. The cyclists were traveling on a group ride. Killed was Ashley Block, 25, a student at the University of Georgia. Brian Molloy, a second rider, sustained minor injuries. The...

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HSK Driving High? The Potalyzer Can Tell


More states today are legalizing the use of marijuana, either for medical or recreational purposes. As the legal use of the drug grows, lawmakers and enforcement officials worry about what will happen when more people drive under the influence of marijuana. Up until now, there was no reliable test to determine whether someone had levels of THC in their system. The Potalyzer is setting out to change that. Researchers from Stanford University created the device. It is mobile, making it easy for police to use. Small magnetic biosensors can detect THC molecules in the saliva of a person suspected of driving...

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