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Athens News Courier: Thursday, May 14, 2009 - Page 1

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   Athens News Courier (Newspaper) - May 14, 2009, Athens, Alabama                                 ABS runner-up in^ft ^ state tour  The Ne  AGE IB  ourier  Serving Athens and Limestone CowitÿÂAj Community oí Tradition and  re  50 cents  Thursday, May 14, 2009  Visit us online   www.enewscourler.com   Inside  Today  No avian flu found here  Ag officials make rounds in Limestone after strain found in neighboring Giles  Alabama poultry is free of avian flu or bird flu, a state agriculture official said Wednesday after disproving a report that a limestone County breeder farm had avian flu.  “Alabama has not had a case of avian flu since 1977,” said Ray Hilbum, poultry program director for the Alabama Department of Agriculture. “We are constantly out  there looking and we haven’t found any cases here.”  About two weeks ago, the Tennessee Department of Agriculture had to kill approximately 15,000 birds at two poultry bams found to have a strain of avian flu virus.  After receiving a report that a Limestone Countv farm might have  avian flu, the agriculture department investigated and found the report was without merit.  “We checked with the company and they test every two weeks voluntarily and it is negative.” Hilbum said.  See Flu, page 3A  Hubble  grabbed  Atlantis astronauts, with telescope on board, gear up for difficult, dangerous spacewalk repairs.  PAGE 2A  Join us across from The News Courier from 8:30 a.m.-2 p.m.  today for food, fun, music and prizes. Rain or shine!  DETAILS, PAGE 9A  Refugees  capsize  At least 10 people are dead after overloaded boat carrying Haitian migrants sank off the Florida coast.  PAGE 3A  Index  Business ........5A  Classifieds 4B  Comics..........3B  Ledger ..........8A  Lottery  ....3A  Obituaries 2A  Thomas J. Bloodworth Walter Wilson Davis Donald Gilbert Owen Wilson Glen Roberts Jeffery Allen Stewart  Sports...........IB  Weather.........2 A  Valley...........5 A  Woods to get life sentence at 3 today  By Kelly K vzi k  l\( il\ "fit utliensnt 'u s-courii r.coni On Wednesday, the day after Madison County prosecutors made the decision not to seek the death penalty for a man convicted of killing two Athens residents because a juror died before "  j3malWoo(js  sentencing, the  judge hastily set a hearing in Madison County Circuit Court.  you saw  at  www.enewscourier.com   .At 3 p.m. today, Judge Laura Hamilton is expected to rule that Jamal Woods, 25. of Huntsville will spend the remainder of his life in prison without the possibility of parole for the Dec. 17, 2(KK1 shooting deaths of Tanqueray “lank” Beavers and Thurston Turner, cousins from Athens, and wounding of Toiy Rogers of Athens and bystander William Timothy Reliford of Hazel Green. The men were shot in T.G.I. Friday’s restaurant on University Drive in Huntsville when Woods opened fire because Beavers and Turner “disrespected” Woods’ wife and Beavers distant cousin — Rotesia Horton Woods of Athens — by continually waving at her.  Because a juror who helped convict Woods fell ill in the span between the conviction on Friday, Feb. 13 and sentencing on Monday, Feb. 16, the sentencing was postponed indefinitely. The juror, whose identity was not released, died about a week ago.  Alternate jurors had been dismissed at the end of the trial, at which time they were told they were free to watch televi-  See Sentence, page 3X  > breaking news  BP plans to analyze pipe that leaked 2,000 gallons of xylene  By Jean Cole  jean@athensnews-courier.com  BP plans to remove and microscopically analyze the section of pipe that failed in December, causing about 2,000 gallons xylene to leak into a ditch and pond off Alabama 99, an official said.  Ron Rybarczyk of Toledo, Ohio, the public affairs director supporting the pipeline business, said the cleanup crew has collected about  200,000 gallons of liquid from a drainage ditch — about 99 percent of which is ground and surface water from rainfall.  “The remaining one percent collected, about 2,000 gallons, is xylene that we assume was released from the pipe before it was shut down and repaired,” Rybarczyk said.  See Leak, page 3A  Calhoun shifts to four-day week  From stnll reports While Calhoun Community College will hold a four-day-week class schedule for the summer to save resources, Athens State University plans to keep its typical schedule, officials say.  Calhoun officials announced the  college will go to a four-day summer schedule beginning June 1 in an effort to conserve energy and college resources.  The schedule, however, does not apply to night classes. Evening class-  See Calhoun, page 3A  Jailhouse memories  Honoring law officers in Ardmore  NEWS COURIER/ JENNIFER R. HILL  Law enforcement officials from four counties and two states were represented and honored at the annual Ardmore Police Memorial Day service "In memory of our fallen brothers and sisters,” held Wednesday in Ardmore. The ceremony, part of the National Police Week, was hosted by Ardmore Police Chief William “Doc” Oliver and the Ardmore Police Department. Speakers included Oliver, Arthur W. Wolde Sr., Congressman Parker Griffith's representative Alex Igou, Circuit Judge Robert Baker, and Circuit Judge Jimmy'Woodruff. Above Woodruff presents Oliver with a framed story about his career written by News Courier reporter Karen Middleton.  1  NEWS COURIER/KAREN MIDDLETON  Former Limestone County sheriff Buddy Evans stands at the checkout counter of the Greenbrier Restaurant with his son, Jerry, and wife Bobbie.  Former sheriff reminisces before old jail demolished  Most people driving past the old Limestone County jail see an abandoned structure of sand-colored brick soon to go under the wrecking ball and don’t feel nostalgic.  But restaurant owner Jerry Evans sees a former home in which he readily admits he spent “the best days of my youth.”  I guess his perception is colored by from which side of the bars he viewed life in the old jail.  Jerry saw it as the younger son of former sheriff Buddy Evans, who served from 1963 to 1978. During part of that time a portion of the jail on Green Street served as the Evans family residence.  “Even after we moved to Brookwood Drive, I’d go back to the jail,” said Evans. “There was just always something to do there.”  Jerry was just 3 when the family See Evans, page 7A  PHOTO FROM "ETCHED IN LIMESTONE: VOL. I  Then-Sheriff Buddy Evans, who would go undercover in women’s garb, dressed up as "homecoming gueen" during halftime of a 1970s benefit football game between Athens firefighters and city and county law officers.  By Karin Middieton  karen@athensne\\ s-i mini rami   

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