2013 in review: October-December

December 26, 2013 

2013 in review: October-December

October

1: About 4,000 civilian employees at Robins Air Force Base were sent home after receiving furlough notices as part of the federal government shutdown. Most of those employees were recalled about a week later.

15: Macon Mayor Robert Reichert overwhelmingly won a runoff election to become the first mayor of Macon-Bibb County’s consolidated government. Reichert defeated former Mayor C. Jack Ellis, taking 63 percent of the vote.

17: Volunteers with the rescue group All About Animals said three bulldog mixes were killed after an overnight break-in at their Macon shelter. As many as 15 other dogs received medical treatment. About a month later, Crystal Gale Fessler, 36, was arrested and charged with 13 counts of cruelty to animals, criminal trespass and probation violation.

21: After more than 160 years in Macon, the Georgia State Fair left town for good. It will now be held at the Atlanta Motor Speedway in Hampton.

November

1: After more than three years of work, a major widening of a 3.3-mile stretch of Interstate 75 between Arkwright Road and Pierce Avenue was completed. The road was widened from four lanes to six, with new interchanges and ramps and extensive bridge work.

12: Despite heavy opposition, including a petition signed by about 250 people, Macon’s Planning and Zoning Commission voted to rezone 25 acres on Zebulon Road to allow a $30 million shopping center in a residential area.

18: Tracy Michelle Jones, Courtney Nicole Kelly and Michael Brett Kelly pleaded guilty in the 2012 murder of north Macon legal secretary Gail C. Spencer.

26: Senior Superior Court Judge Stephen E. Boswell said he would order a new election in the Macon-Bibb County District 2 commission race between winner Larry Schlesinger and challenger Henry Ficklin because of voting flaws. The new election was later set for Jan. 14, 2014.

December

3: Retired firefighter Randy Toms was elected the new mayor of Warner Robins, defeating Joe Musselwhite by an almost 2-1 margin in a runoff.

5: Timothy Johnson, 51, walked out of the Houston County Courthouse a free man after spending the past 29 years behind bars. A jury acquitted him of the 1984 armed robbery and slaying of 24-year-old Taressa Stanley, who was shot in the neck at a Kwickie convenience store where she worked.

6: NewTown Macon selected Josh Rogers as the organization’s new president and chief executive officer, replacing its longtime leader Mike Ford, who announced his resignation in November.

-- Compiled by Beth Gadd

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