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Georgia Briefs - Jan. 9, 2014

Honey Boo Boo and family involved in traffic crash

MILLEDGEVILLE — Family members of reality TV star Honey Boo Boo were involved in a traffic crash Monday night in Milledgeville.

A vehicle driven by David Thompson, father to Alana “Honey Boo Boo” Thompson, was headed north on North Columbia Street about 8 p.m. when Thompson attempted a left turn onto Hammock Road. Meanwhile, another vehicle was headed south on North Columbia Street, said Milledgeville Police Maj. John Davis.

The vehicles collided and both were towed from the scene inoperable. No one was issued a citation, Davis said.

June Shannon, Honey Boo Boo’s mother, complained of a neck injury. One of her daughters, not Honey Boo Boo, also complained of shortness of breath and chest pain. Although an ambulance responded to the crash, no one was taken to the hospital, Davis said.

Davis said David Thompson told police the other vehicle was driving without headlights. The other driver said his lights were set on automatic and he wasn’t sure if they were on.

By the time police arrived they couldn’t check to see if the lights were on because the vehicle was inoperable. The lights were set to automatic, Davis said.

Man tells girlfriend to 'go to sleep' as he chokes her

COLUMBUS — “Go to sleep” — that’s what a reportedly abusive boyfriend told his 27-year-old girlfriend as he was choking her Tuesday night, according to a Columbus Police report.

The victim told police her night began at about 11 p.m. when her boyfriend allegedly began a fight with her on the 6000 block of Nassau Circle. The suspect began arguing with her about a male friend she had on Facebook. At some point during the argument, he began hitting her on the left side of her face and began choking her. He allegedly told her during this instance that he intended to kill her.

She threatened to call police, which allegedly only made him more irate. However, the woman was able to escape and ran until she flagged down a man on the street. After imploring him for help, he took her to a friend’s house. Before they could get inside, however, the boyfriend cut them off in the woman’s green Mercedes-Benz.

The boyfriend began demanding that she get in the car with him. When she refused, he began choking her and pushing her into the car. He allegedly whispered “Go to sleep,” before repeating his intention to kill her.

The suspect transported the victim back to the Nassau Circle address, where he continued to choke her.

She was able to get away a second time, this time running to her stepmother’s home on Doyle Avenue. She ran out of gas along the way and flagged down an officer. That officer was able to document her injuries and take her to her stepmother’s home.

Online programs in Georgia colleges and universities rank high

ATLANTA — Online graduate programs at Georgia colleges and universities ranked high on lists compiled by U.S. News & World Report and released Wednesday.

The magazine separated its undergraduate and graduate rankings. Graduate rankings were further separated by program type, including business, computer information technology, education, engineering and nursing. Hundreds of institutions were included in each program listing, and in some cases several schools tied for the same ranking in each program.

Among the online graduate programs, the University of West Georgia’s Richards College of Business — ranked 4th and tied with the University of Texas at Dallas — received the highest ranking among national public and private colleges for its business program.

Marietta’s Southern Polytechnic State University, ranked eighth, was the highest-ranked Georgia institution for its computer information technology program. The University of Georgia’s education program received the highest state ranking at 22nd. The University of West Georgia also received Georgia’s highest ranking, at 48th, for its nursing program.

For undergraduate online programs, Savannah College of Art and Design, ranked 25th, was the highest-ranked Georgia school. The University of West Georgia, tied for 69th, was the next highest-ranked Georgia undergraduate program.

The rankings can be found at www.usnews.com.

Photos of convicted felon with .357 revolver results in arrest

LIZELLA — Photographs of a convicted felon holding a .357 revolver probably didn’t help his case.

John Edward Baker, 42, of Lizella, was sentenced Tuesday to serve 30 months in prison on a charge of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, prosecutors said in a statement. U.S. marshals serving a warrant on another person hiding at Baker’s home found the gun and pictures of Baker holding it, according to the statement. Baker had been convicted of two felony drug offenses in Putnam County in 2004.

The case was investigated by the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, the U.S. Marshals Service and the Bibb County Sheriff’s Office.

Baker pleaded guilty to the charge in September.