Company recalls meat in 4 states

FOREST PARK - A meat company in Forest Park is recalling 1,900 pounds of ground beef sent to restaurants in Georgia and three other states, saying it may be contaminated with E. coli.

Arko Veal Co. officials say the company distributed only a small amount in Georgia, sending it to two restaurants in DeKalb County, one in Cherokee County and one in Carroll County. He declined to name the restaurants.

The company also distributed the 50-pound cases of beef patties mix in Alabama, North Carolina and South Carolina. The company says there was no retail distribution of the products.

Judge extends injunction closing waste recycling plant

TALMO - A Jackson County judge has ordered a waste recycling plant blamed for foul odors to stop accepting waste until it can prove it is not a threat to public health or safety.

The order extends an injunction that shut down the private Agri-Cycle wastewater recycling plant on Sept. 7, two days after a treatment pond caught fire and burned through the night.

Jackson County Superior Court Judge David Motes wrote in a nine-page court order filed Monday that the plant's operation 'constitutes a clear and present danger to the citizens of Jackson County and the state of Georgia.'

The plant, which opened in 2005, collects waste from chicken plants and restaurants, decomposes it using bacteria and then processes the remaining wastewater by spreading it onto fields.

Man sentenced to death for killing wife, stepdaughter

MILLEDGEVILLE - A Baldwin County jury sentenced a 36-year-old man to death Tuesday for killing his wife and teenage stepdaughter two years ago.

The jury returned its verdict against Brian Duane Brookins after almost eight hours of deliberations over two days.

The same panel convicted Brookins on Saturday, the day before the second anniversary of the shooting of 44-year-old Suzanne Brookins and her 15-year-old daughter, Samantha Giles. Sheriff's deputies found the two in their front yard with multiple gunshot wounds.

Fulton settles harassment case

ATLANTA - Fulton County has agreed to settle a lawsuit and pay $210,000 to a former clerk of Superior Court employee who claimed he was harassed and forced out of his job after supporting a political opponent of the former clerk.

Under the terms of the settlement, obtained by the Fulton Daily Report under an Open Records Act request, neither the county nor the three defendants admit to any wrongdoing.

Jerome Calvert had filed federal civil rights claims against former clerk Juanita Hicks; her former deputy and now the current clerk, Cathelene 'Tina' Robinson; and another employee, Phyllis Brown.

Calvert claimed his public support for Hicks' 2004 election opponent, Lewis Pittman, had resulted in Calvert being reprimanded for tardiness, absenteeism and insubordination, and eventually dismissed for 'disloyalty.'