Thanks for joining us.
I'm Leah Johnson.
And I'm Frank Malloy.
This is Eyewitness News at 11.
The school day ended early on the campus of Georgia College And State University after someone called in a bomb threat this afternoon.
Baldwin County Sheriff Bill Massee said his department received the call around 2:17 p.m.
It came from a caller who said there was a bomb -- quote-- "on the entire campus," and that they had an hour to evacuate.
Candace Adorka spoke to students about how they got that message.
For a Thursday at 4 p-m in the middle of fall semester, the GCSU campus was desolate.
Law enforcement agencies were scouring campus... and emergency alert sirens had gone off just a couple hours before
<you could hear over the siren that it was a bomb threat>
<no one knew what to think we just all know that we had to evacuate>
<I I kinda got into survival mode. I didn't even take a shower, I just put on anything and I just walked out.>
They also sent out texts, tweets, e-mails and facebook updates-- but it wasn't until 45 minutes later that Freshman history major logan thompson got the message.
<I picked up the phone and it was laura and she was calling me asking me where I was, and I was like oh I'm in my room painting my nails. She was like there's a bomb threat you need to get out of the building. And so I didn't hear anything I didn't know what was going on. I grab my phone and my keys and I walk out into the building and it's completely silent. And it was freaky. I thought like the building is gonna blow up and I'm gonna be the only one in it and it's gonna be terrifying.">
Thompson and her friends say all is well that ends well...
<we went to the mall and went shopping>
But they did come away with lessons learned
<now I know what to look out for and I know if something happens to check my email and listen for the siren.>
<I have to sign up for the texts now.>
And also a few suggestions
<maybe if they could have alerts inside of the buildings it would be a lot more helpful, like the fire alarms, that's what I would expect because again, I originally thought it was an event going on.>
It's an experience they can afford to laugh about now...since at least this time, no one was hurt, Candace Adorka 13 WMAZ eyewitness news.
Local law enforcement officers searched the campus room by room.
Around six o'clock tonight.. they gave the all-clear.
School officials aren't saying if anything suspicious was found, but they did say school and other activities will be back to normal Friday.
Fort Valley State University will be looking for new president soon..
Current president, Larry Rivers, says he plans to s down effective next June.
Rivers will have served as president for seven years when he leaves next June..
According to a university news release... Rivers plans to return to the classroom and teach history..
The Georgia Department of Education created a new award this year... Encouraging family-friendly schools.
Out of all the applicants from around the state... Two of the three awards issued went to Houston County schools.
State school Superintendent John Barge recognized Miller Elementary in Warner Robins... And Morningside Elementary in Perry.
A selection committee chose the schools based on their customer service to families... Over the phone... Through the Internet and in person.
They looked for how the schools encouraged parental involvement.
For example.. At Morningside... principal Pat Witt says they go the extra mile with in-home tutoring sessions... For parents who don't have reliable transportation.
At Miller... Principal Gwen Pearson-Kilgore says they invite parents to come into the classroom during the school day once a month.
<we realize the parent is the first teacher. That's what we always say to our parents. We always say it takes a village to raise a child. That is one of our favorite expressions here.>
<having two of three schools in Houston County really speaks volumes to the work we all do in Houston County and how important customer service is across the entire school system.>
The state chose the winners based on school walk-throughs...Phone calls and visits from department staff posing as parents.
A group of advocates toured Macon by bike today... In support of animals who need your help.
The Central Georgia CARES Homeless Pet Club spent the day visiting charter members... To say thanks.
Members of the club include businesses and schools.
Each member sponsors a homeless dog or cat... and helps the animal find a permanent home.
The club made seven stops... And presented each member with a certificate.
< It is a great way to take community responsibility and community involvement to help address a problem that is significant in the community. >
CARES representatives says they're already accepting new pet advocates.
The northeast is slowly recovering from superstorm Sandy tonight..
Millions of people are still without power across the Northeast...many of them are in New Jersey.
The state was the hardest hit when Sandy came ashore Monday night.
Wendy Gillette has the latest from the Jersey shore.
RESIDENTS OF MOONACHIE, NEW JERSEY REACHED OUT TO GOVERNOR CHRIS CHRISTIE THURSDAY. FOR HELP. FOR SUPPORT... AND BECAUSE THEY HAVE LITTLE ELSE TO HOLD ONTO AFTER SUPERSTORM SANDY.
CHRISTIE VISITED THE FLOODED-OUT COMMUNITY AS THE U.S. MILITARY BEGAN DELIVERING MUCH-NEEDED SUPPLIES. HE SAYS IT'S TIME FOR THE STATE TO STAND BACK UP.
(SOT - Christie)
"we're in the triage and attack phase now of the storm. So we can restore power, reopen the schools, bring public transportation systems back online, and allow people to return to their homes if they've been displaced."
PEOPLE TRYING TO RETURN TO THEIR *JOBS* FACED TWO CHALLEGES: FIRST, HAVING ENOUGH GAS FOR THE CAR. NO POWER MEANS MOST GAS PUMPS DON'T WORK. STATIONS THAT CAN PUMP GAS HAVE LINES HOURS LONG. THE SECOND CHALLENGE:
HAVING ENOUGH PEOPLE TO ENTER NEW YORK. SINCE MOST MASS TRANSIT IS DOWN, CARS WITH FEWER THAN THREE PEOPLE TRYING TO CROSS INTO MANHATTAN ARE TURNED AWAY.
HERE IN STAFFORD TOWNSHIP IN OCEAN COUNTY- THE STORM SURGE WASHED MOUNTAINS OF DEBRIS INTO THIS HOME. THERE ARE WOOD BEAMS PILED HALF A FOOT HIGH IN THE LIVING ROOM AND CLEAR EXAMPLES THIS IS A BOATING COMMUNITY...THERE'S A LIFE PRESERVER... EVEN A CHILD'S LIFE JACKET.
90324 nat sot "That is the roof of raouls house."
JOHN MANGINO CAME HOME THURSDAY - THREE DAYS AFTER ESCAPING THE FLOOD THAT SWEPT AWAY NEARBY HOMES.
(Guy yelling out his back porch)
90411 a lot better than my neighbors. Gone and gone!
(90218 snaps photo- rotary dial telephone! Laughs)
SANDY LEFT A NEIGHBORHOOD FULL OF CONTRASTING IMAGES. AS THE WATER PEACEFULLY LAPS ASHORE - THERE'S NO HINT OF THE DESTRUCTION IT BROUGHT HERE JUST DAYS AGO.
So far more than 90 deaths have been blamed on Sandy.
In New York ..things are looking up..
The area's main utility.. Con Edison says it should have power restored to Manhattan by Saturday.
Georgia's only independent state legislator is facing a re-election fight...
Representative Rusty Kidd and Milledgeville business owner and Democrat Quentin Howell are competing for the District 145 seat currently held by Kidd..
Howell says he'll bring his experience as a business owner to the capital if he is elected.
He says his plan to grow jobs in District 145 includes refocusing on education...and tackling an unfair tax structure.
<Quentin Howell: We are giving billion dollar companies million dollar tax incentives and these same companies are leaving going to Mexico, China wherever the case may be small business owners like me and others throughout this community we live in Milledgeville, we live in Putnam County, when we start business here we're gonna stay here cause this is our home. >
State Representative Rusty Kidd says he thinks that being independent makes him more likely to represent the Georgia middle.
Kidd says he's focused on bringing more jobs to Baldwin and Putnam County.
<Rusty Kidd: Like this past session the governor set aside 100 million dollars for the entire state for 159 counties and we were lucky enough here to get 27 million out of the 100 so we got over a fourth of what the governor set aside>
House District 145 covers all of Baldwin County...and part of Putnam.
Early voting statewide...ends tomorrow.
For the past two nights..we've shown you why your lost baggage may not be missing...but actually stolen..
Tonight Ross McLaughlin from our sister station WXIA1 Alive in Atlanta...shows you where some of those bags ended up..
Our investigation into theft at Hartsfield Jackson Airport hadn't even hit the air yet when we got the call. Someone saw our promos about stolen luggage at Hartsfield Jackson Airport and was outraged about what they found in an open field right near the airport. Take a look.
Trashed 4 15:55:57 "You haven't even seen all the stuff over here in the woods"
"Look at all this. 1,2,3 bags.
Shawn: "That one has ID on it."
15:56:02 Ross: "It's pretty easy to figure out whose bag this is."
Just across from the airport off Roosevelt Highway.
Trashed 7 15:59:37 (Nats)
Looted luggage, lying in a field. All from Delta flights this past weekend. Found on Monday by Lea McCombs. This lot is right behind her office.
Trashed 4 15:57:08 Lea "This is Val's bag each of them has a marker."
It was the second time in 3 days bags were found. Lea discovered 2 last Friday. All from Delta Flights. So did Delta know about it?
Trashed 01 15:49:44 Lea McCombs: "As of Friday afternoon they would have known because we called the cops and building management actually took the luggage over to. .. to Delta and dealt with their security people."
(nats going inside)
Some valuable Lea took inside to protect them.
Trashed 01 15:48:39 Ross: This is your stuff?
Traveler: "Well he actually left my laptop, he kept my camera, kept my blackberry."
He didn't want to give his name. His bag was gone, so how did Lea find him?
Trashed 01 Lea McCombs: 15:50:12 "Well his business cards were strewn in the parking lot." "
Finding was as easy as dialing his number.
And we said, 'hey, did you actually lose something?', and he said, 'no it was stolen'."
Trashed 01 15:49:34 Ross: "What did Delta do to find your luggage?
Traveler: "Absolutely nothing."
Trashed 01 15:50:27 Ross: "It got scanned in?"
Ross: "And did it beat you to the carousel?
Traveler: "It did."
Just like this bag seen here on security camera video that beat Jacob Giannantonio to Delta's carousel in August. See this man? He's walking away with Jacob's bag. Airport police say they've had 30 baggage theft complaints so far this year and have made 10 arrests, but it appears the problem is much bigger.
15:51:58 Lea McCombs: "I would think people don't know any better, they think it's lost. They don't know it's stolen. How are you going to know?"
They know now...
Trashed 7 15:58:34 Ross: "Guess where you luggage is?"
because we called all the people whose names were on the bags that were found here. Lea called us because after waiting for 3 hours for Delta to show up she wanted action.
"Taking this one to Johns Creek."
A couple passengers wanted us to deliver their bags to them.
Trashed 16 18:24:05 Ross: "See your bag in there?"
David Noren: "I believe this one right here yup."
18:25:08 Trashed 16: Ross: "Well the baggage arrived a little late wouldn't you say?"
David: "Yeah just a little late?"
David Noren's bag disappeared from the carousel after his Vegas flight landed on Saturday.
18:26:42 So, I got a call from Delta. They actually didn't say anything about it being stolen or lost, they just said we apologize.
We took 3 other bags back to the airport to turn into police.
"This one is Sky Priority."
So what is Delta saying? The airline wouldn't do an on camera interview sending us this statement.
Delta is disheartened by the discovery of what appears to be stolen bags in a vacant lot. Theft in any form is unacceptable and Delta is investigating the incident in cooperation with law enforcement. We will work with our customers on a case by case basis to make this right and certainly apologize to them for the inconvenience.
We have shown you how uniformed security officers do random tag checks in the North terminal but Delta that controls the South terminal doesn't do that.
Trashed 16 (angle shot)18:25:50 "Always thought it was interesting everybody could grab anything they want."
18:28:44 Glad you got your bag back.
David: Thank you!
According to the Federal Aviation Administration...Airlines handled more than 121 thousand claims of mishandled baggage..in September...
That's down from nearly 128 thousand a year ago.
Southwest Airlines had the most with more than 23 thousand claims.
Delta Airlines had more than 13 thousand mishandled baggage complaints.
Volunteer Macon along with 13WMAZ is making a difference..through reading..
Today volunteers gave out hundreds of new and gently used children's books to kids at the Boys and Girls Club of Central Georgia on Anthony Road.
Children had their pick of books...all thanks to you..
Individuals and businesses donated books and cash during last week's literacy drive.
Hundreds of books were also handed out this past Saturday on Make a Difference Day during the Susan G-Komen Race for the Cure in Byron and the Jay's Hope Trek or Treat 5-K in Macon.