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General news and features

Counterfeit merchandise ring busted in Jasper


Scores of contraband watches and purses were seized from an Acworth man who planned to sell the fake goods to buyers he contacted through Craigslist.  From left, Sgt. Pat Seals, Corp. Brandon Duncan, Sheriff Donnie Craig, and Det. Marc Phipps look over the merchandise at the Criminal Investigation Division office.




People hoping for a fake Rolex or Louis Vuitton purse this Christmas may be disappointed after Pickens Sheriff officers working with corporate investigators took a large haul of the counterfeit luxury items off the streets last week. See complete story in our e-edition.



Hiking Safety Tips from Georgia’s State Parks




ATLANTA, October 5, 2012  --  No one ever plans to get lost in the woods, but it does sometimes happen.  Each year, Georgia’s park rangers spend numerous hours searching for hikers who did not return on time, slipped on waterfalls, got off the trail or encountered other problems.  

“Most of the time, our guests are just running late or they’ve gotten slightly off course,” said Danny Tatum, manager of Tallulah Gorge State Park and chief of the Department of Natural Resources’ Search and Rescue Team.  “And sometimes they’ve forgotten to call home.  But occasionally people really are in a bad situation and need help from rescue personnel.”

With so many people heading to the mountains for leaf watching this fall, park rangers have offered the following tips for a fun and safe journey.  To find trails ranging from easy, paved paths to more challenging hikes,

Zaxby's reopens following fire damage


   Licensee Steve Cockerham re-opened the doors to Jasper’s Zaxby’s restaurant Monday, Oct. 29. The restaurant has been renovated after a kitchen fire in May, pictured above. In advance of the official public reopening, Zaxby’s  invited local first responders to a private appreciation party on Sunday for their quick-response time in putting out the fire.

Bumper stickers considered “campaigning”

Voters angered over enforcement of polling place law


    The owner of this vehicle was asked to move when a poll worker spotted the Romney/Ryan bumper sticker. According to the elections officer, bumper stickers are considered “campainging” at polling places.

     Early afternoon on Thursday, Oct. 25, a voter squealed his car out of the gravel parking lot at the Pickens Elections Office after being told his Romney/Ryan bumper sticker was considered campaigning and he would have to either cover it up or move the vehicle. 

Superintendent’s contract renewed by school board



By Alex Goble

            The Pickens County School Board held a meeting on Thursday, Oct. 25, in which Superintendent Ben Desper’s contract was renewed in a unanimous 5-0 vote. The vote took place following a private executive session that lasted for much of the meeting.

            All five members of the board (Wendy Lowe, Byron Long, Ervin Easterwood, John Trammell and Dan Fincher) voted in favor of extending the contract.           

            The executive session lasted a little over an hour and included the two incoming board members (Mike Cowart and Peggy Andrews) who will take office in January.

            According to Wendy Lowe, the board’s chair, Superintendent Desper wanted to be assured that he had a position in the future if he decided to stay on as superintendent instead of retiring, because there are incentives right now for him to retire early.

“We think he’s headed in the right direction and we don’t want to go on a superintendent search right now,” said Lowe, reinforcing the board’s confidence in their choice.