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Fake Facebook page sends Georgia city into tizzy over snakes

When most of northwest Georgia was preparing for severe storms, one city had to contend with the idea that snakes are lurking in sewers — or so they thought. 

Calhoun mayor Jimmy Palmer said ­the “City of Calhoun, Gordon County GA” Facebook page — where a post about a snakes originated — is fake. 

“My wife saw it and actually called me,” Palmer told Channel 2 Action News. 

The post, which has been up since 2:27 p.m. Monday, alleges a Calhoun police officer killed the “copperhead as it came out of the sewer in front of the courthouse” and urges residents to avoid the sewers, which may have more snakes. The post has garnered 19,000 reactions and more than 123,000 shares on Facebook — and it still has some panicked. 

RELATED: Satirical City of Atlanta page has people riled up again for post about Alabamians

“I’ve had comments like ‘Is it safe to walk down the street’ and those things,” Palmer said. “I don’t think the people who put it on there realize the impact.” 

The page, which has more than 12,000 followers, has been so believable other law enforcement agencies have tagged the page or shared its posts, Channel 2 reported. Police say it’s been difficult finding the owner since the page is usually taken down before the person is caught. The page was still open just after 8 p.m. Tuesday. 

The city attorney plans to send a notice to Facebook notifying them of the fake page. The notice reads in part: “The objection is that this Facebook page impersonates and misrepresents to be the City’s official page by displaying a version of the official municipal seal and describes itself clearly as a “government organization.”

Fake city pages are hardly new. 

In October 2016, comedian Ben Palmer created a fake city of Atlanta Facebook page, poking fun at the city’s crime and public safety efforts. The city, however, responded to the Facebook page’s use of the trademarked Atlanta City Seal, which was used without proper use. Creative changes were made to the satirical page’s seal to avoid trademark conflicts. 

MORE: Comedian’s fake Facebook page pokes fun at city of Atlanta

But while the fake city of Atlanta page is still going strong (it has more than 154,000 followers), some are hoping the fake Calhoun page is removed from Facebook. 

Calhoun Resident Matt Wiley told Channel 2 he is happy the city is adamant about the page’s removal: “For the sake of the city, that’s not a bad move just to make sure the people are informed. If you start spreading misinformation, panic might ensue, especially if it’s an alligator or a giant snake.”

Monday traffic shift on Mars Hill Road

A heads up for drivers in Oconee County: The Georgia Department of Transportation says it will begin updating the traffic pattern on Mars Hill Rd. between Daniels Bridge Rd. and State Route 53 on Monday, Mar. 19, 2018 at 9:00 a.m. They say the shift will allow the construction of the median, curb and gutter and the final paving of the driving surface. Traffic will flow on both sides of the median with this update. This pattern will continue for four weeks.

Hall County landfill helps locate $100K in jewelry mistakenly discarded

Approximately $100,000 in jewelry was recovered from the Hall County Landfill last week after it was mistakenly thrown away by a citizen.

"I just felt sick to my stomach when I realized what had happened," the owner of the jewelry told Hall County officials. "I thought there was no way it would ever be recovered, but it was."

Johnnie Vickers, Hall County Solid Waste Director, said a friend of the owner called the landfill, asking for help after realizing the mistake.

"We did what we always do in cases like this," Vickers said. "We tracked down when the trash came in, the color of the bag, what other contents the bag might carry, and we started looking."

Vickers said several members of his staff joined in the search, going through the trash on the tipping ground floor, dumping the bags out one by one until the missing jewels were located.

"I can't tell you how grateful I am to have these recovered," said the citizen, who asked to remain anonymous. "These landfill employees, who have thankless jobs, went above and beyond in this case, and I can't thank them enough."

Vickers said this is not the first instance of valuables being recovered by his staff.

"It seems like every Christmas, someone accidentally throws away a child's gifts or we are sent looking for a precious keepsake during another time of year that somehow ended up in the trash," he said. "We are happy to help, and it's just a part of what we do."

The landfill is open Mondays through Fridays from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. and on Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.

UGA alums, Lady Antebellum singers to deliver commencement address

University of Georgia alumni Charles Kelley and Dave Haywood of multi-platinum trio Lady Antebellum will deliver the spring undergraduate Commencement address May 4 at 7 p.m. in Sanford Stadium. 


Denise Spangler, the Bebe Aderhold Professor in Early Childhood Education in UGA’s College of Education, will deliver the graduate Commencement address that same day at 9:30 a.m. in Stegeman Coliseum. Tickets are not required for either ceremony.


Hunter Smith, who will receive his bachelor’s degree in political science, is the student speaker for the undergraduate ceremony. 


“We are excited to welcome Charles Kelley and Dave Haywood back to their alma mater,” said UGA President Jere W. Morehead. “They are multi-talented musicians who have impressed the world, and the University of Georgia is very proud of all they have accomplished. We look forward to their inspiring comments.”


Georgia natives Kelley and Haywood of the seven-time Grammy Award-winning trio have launched their latest single “Heart Break,” serving as the title track from their No. 1 sixth studio album, “Heart Break.” Their current release follows more than 18 million units, nine No. 1 hits, ACM and CMA “Vocal Group of the Year” trophies three years in a row and other honors including seven Grammys, Billboard Music Awards, People’s Choice Awards and Teen Choice Awards. 


Along with his success as part of Lady Antebellum, Kelley also earned a Grammy nomination for “Best Country Duo/Group Performance” for the title track of his solo record “The Driver,” and has penned No. 1 hits recorded by artists including Luke Bryan and Darius Rucker. In addition to multi-instrumentalist and producer Haywood co-writing four chart-topping Lady Antebellum hits, including the six-times platinum hit “Need You Now,” Haywood has also written for artists such as Miranda Lambert and Luke Bryan. The multi-platinum trio will team with Darius Rucker this summer for their co-headlining Summer Plays On Tour, which kicks off July 19.


Both Kelley and Haywood received Bachelor of Business Administration degrees from UGA in 2004.


A professor of mathematics education, Spangler also currently is interim dean of the College of Education. She holds a bachelor’s degree in elementary education and a master’s degree in mathematics, both from Illinois State University. She earned her doctoral degree in mathematics education at the University of Georgia.


An award-winning instructor, Spangler is a member of the UGA Teaching Academy and is a recipient of the Richard B. Russell Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching. The majority of her career has involved helping elementary education majors learn to teach mathematics to children in ways that build on the numerical and spatial thinking that they develop from interacting with the world. She also teaches graduate courses on mathematics teaching and teacher education. She has graduated more than 30 doctoral students during her time at UGA.


Spangler’s research is tightly integrated with her teaching. She seeks to understand how novice teachers put into practice what they have learned from their teacher education programs, their experiences in schools and their own experiences as students—and how they balance these sometimes competing influences. The author of approximately 100 publications, including journal articles, book chapters and books, she has received continuous funding for her work since joining the UGA faculty in 1995.


“Dr. Spangler is an exemplary professor and administrator who has made a positive impact on the lives of countless numbers of students—from elementary school to the university level—through her teaching, research and service,” Morehead said. “She will provide a compelling message to our graduates.”


In addition to her teaching and research, Spangler has served on and chaired a number of committees and task forces at UGA. Additionally, she was an elected member of the board of education for the Clarke County School District for 12 years and served two terms as vice president of the board. Her national service includes chairing editorial panels for journals in mathematics education and serving on the board of directors for the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics. 

Officials: Georgia PE teacher resigns after accidentally showing porn in class

A physical education teacher in Georgia resigned after he accidentally showed pornographic images in class, WSB reported. 

>> Read more trending news

The sixth-grade teacher meant to show Sandy Springs Charter Middle School students an instructional video Tuesday from his personal laptop, WSB reported. 

Instead, officials said, “a few seconds” of porn were displayed on the screen. 

Fulton County Schools officials investigated the teacher, who eventually submitted a letter of resignation, WSB reported. 

“It is our expectation that teachers and staff maintain a safe and appropriate instructional environment for all students,” a Fulton County Schools official said in a statement to the news station. “Our focus will continue to be student achievement and the safety or our students and staff.”

The teacher’s name was not released

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