Originally created 05/29/03

Across Georgia



Suspect is cleared in Athens slaying

ATHENS -The man suspected in the killings of five Louisiana women has been eliminated as a suspect in the unsolved 1992 slaying of a University of Georgia student, authorities said Wednesday.

DNA obtained earlier this month from Derrick Todd Lee, 34, was compared to DNA recovered from the crime scene where Jennifer Lynn Stone, 22, was raped and strangled in her downtown Athens apartment, according to Georgia Bureau of Investigation spokeswoman Vicki Metz.

The DNA patterns of Mr. Lee and Ms. Stone's killer did not match, Ms. Metz said.

Officials settle suit over university names

SAVANNAH -School officials have settled a name dispute between the University of the South in Sewanee, Tenn., and South University in Savannah.

The Tennessee school filed a lawsuit in October alleging that the Georgia school was infringing on its trademark. The Savannah university had filed a separate, related lawsuit requesting trademark rights.

Under the settlement, the University of the South has agreed that South University, which is named after its founder, can continue to use its name. In return, South University has acknowledged the validity of the University of the South's trademark.

Vote would increase tax on mixed drinks

SAVANNAH -Despite complaints from bar owners, the Savannah City Council is expected to vote for a 3 percent tax increase on mixed drinks today.

The increase, which is scheduled to start July 1, is expected to generate more than $200,000 for the rest of the year and then about $540,000 in future years. Mercury Lounge owner James Rowell estimated that the tax will cost him about $10,000 a year.

Witness is arrested after mistaken release

ATLANTA -A key witness in a 1999 killing in Atlanta's Buckhead district was arrested Tuesday night after he was released from jail by mistake.

Earlier this month, Terrence Tutman, 22, talked his way out of Fulton County Jail, where he was being held as a material witness in the death of Gordon Bynum Jr. He was arrested in Madison.

Mr. Bynum, a 44-year-old business executive, was shot June 9, 1999, after leaving a MARTA station. Mr. Tutman is the brother of Anthony Tutman Jr., 26, who is charged in the murder.

Fulton County Sheriff Jackie Barrett blamed Mr. Tutman's release on a problem with the jail's computer record system.