Ga. police seek man cracking safe with power saw
MILTON, Ga. (AP) -- Police in metro Atlanta are hunting a thief who broke into a store's safe using a power saw.
Police in the north Fulton County city of Milton said Saturday they're offering a reward of up to $2,000 for help capturing the suspect, who stole cash from the safe at a Dollar Tree store last month.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports a security camera filmed the thief entering the store's shopping center late at night on Feb. 11. He's described as middle-aged and heavyset, about 5 1/2 feet tall.
Police believe the same man burglarized another Dollar Tree store in nearby Forsyth County.
Newspaper finds suspicious test scores nationwide
ATLANTA (AP) -- An investigation by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution shows that hundreds of school systems nationwide exhibit suspicious test scores pointing to the possibility of cheating.
The newspaper examined results on standardized achievement tests for 70,000 public schools. It uncovered high concentrations of suspect scores in school systems from coast to coast.
The analysis doesn't prove cheating. It reveals that scores in hundreds of cities followed a pattern that, in Atlanta, indicated cheating in multiple schools.
The newspaper used statistics to identify unusual score jumps and drops on state-mandated math and reading tests.
The AJC reported in 2008 about statistically improbable jumps in test scores within the Atlanta Public Schools system. A subsequent investigation by Georgia officials found that at least 180 principals, teachers and other staff took part in test-tampering.
Ga. lawmakers look at expanding voucher program
ATLANTA (AP) -- Special-needs children in Georgia may soon be able to forgo the required year of enrollment in a public school before they can receive a voucher that uses taxpayer dollars to pay for a private school.
State lawmakers are considering a bill that would allow children with severe disabilities to begin receiving a voucher without ever attending a public school. The bill is part of a push by GOP leaders to expand the state's voucher program, which is only for special-needs children.
GOP leaders said the bill is aimed at cutting red tape for children who aren't able to attend public school and need the help of private programs.
But opponents say the bill only opens the door to the state handing out vouchers to any child who wants one, siphoning money from cash-strapped districts.
Vidalia hosts 200 players in cornhole tournament
VIDALIA, Ga. (AP) -- Georgia's sweet onion capital is taking on the game of cornhole.
The American Cornhole Organization is holding its first tournament of 2012 this weekend in Vidalia -- a first for the southeast Georgia city. More than 200 ranked players from across the U.S. are scheduled to compete in both singles and doubles matches.
The game of cornhole resembles a cross between a bean bag toss and shuffleboard. Players throw bags filled with dried corn at an opponent's slanted board. Bags score points by landing on the board, and ring up maximum scores by going through a hole near the top.
The Vidalia tournament goes through Sunday, with a total of $20,000 in prize money up for grabs.
Albany police seeking smashers of power meters
ALBANY, Ga. (AP) -- Police in southwest Georgia are seeking would-be burglars who tried unsuccessfully to disable the alarms of three convenience stores by smashing their electric meters.
Instead of giving the crooks a chance to break in unnoticed, smashing the meters tripped alarms that called police. Lorie Farkas of the local Water, Gas & Light Commission says whoever's behind the crimes must be "the dumbest burglars ever."
Dumb or not, the culprits got away. The Albany Herald reports police have made no arrests in the crimes. Though nothing was stolen from of the stores, the crimes could be punished as felonies because the vandals did about $3,000 in damage to the meters.
Farkas says the culprits got off easy -- they could have been electrocuted.
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