Originally created 05/26/05

Across Georgia



Martin seeks post as lieutenant governor

ATLANTA - Former state Rep. Jim Martin of Atlanta said Wednesday he is planning to seek the Democratic nomination for lieutenant governor next year.

Mr. Martin, who resigned last week from his post on the Public Defenders Standards Council, would be the second Democrat in the race. Former Sen. Greg Hecht of Jonesboro has said he will seek the post.

Officials investigate claims of nepotism

ATLANTA - The state attorney general's office is investigating allegations that an official of the Department of Technical and Adult Education hired her sister's boyfriend for a $72,000 job he described as "Christmas in July."

Jean DeVard-Kemp, an assistant commissioner in the department, resigned May 17 after the allegations of nepotism, mismanagement, improper hiring, abuse of position and falsification of records, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported Wednesday.

Ms. DeVard-Kemp's sister, Atlanta Technical College professor Audrey Fisher, was fired. So was her former boyfriend, Grailyn Wells.

Man sentenced in friend's decapitation

MARIETTA - A Marietta man who drove for miles, then went to sleep with the body of his decapitated friend in his truck, was sentenced Wednesday to five years in prison.

John Kemper Hutcherson, 21, pleaded guilty to vehicular homicide charges in the Aug. 29 death of 23-year-old Frankie Brohm, said Cobb County District Attorney's spokeswoman Kathy Watkins.

Mr. Hutcherson and Mr. Brohm were on their way home from a bar after a night of drinking when Mr. Brohm leaned his head out of the car window because he was feeling ill. Mr. Hutcherson veered off the road, grazing a telephone pole support wire that severed Mr. Brohm's head. Police found the head at the accident site.

Prosecutor might take case to special jury

LAWRENCEVILLE - A county prosecutor is considering whether to bring the case of a jailed man who died after he was stunned with a Taser to a special grand jury.

Gwinnett County District Attorney Danny Porter said the proposal came out of a Tuesday meeting with officials from the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.

Frederick Williams died in May 2004 after deputies used a Taser on him while in jail. Mr. Porter brought the case on April 27 before a grand jury, which did not hand down any indictments.

But the 31-year-old Lawrenceville man's family members say those involved in the incident should be brought to court.