published Friday, May 3rd, 2013

Woman charged in 'beer pong' case and other news from areas around Chattanooga

Woman charged in 'beer pong' case

KINGSTON, Tenn. — She gave them what she called "child's alcohol," playing the drinking game "beer pong" with her underage son and three other juveniles at her Oak Ridge, Tenn., home during spring break in late March, court records show.

An investigation into the incident led to Tuesday's arrest of Misti Dawn Butler, who is accused of four counts of contributing to the delinquency of a minor.

Her son, who lives in Florida with his dad, mentioned the episode in a session with his therapist, who called the father, an arrest warrant states. The father confirmed the therapist's report by finding a recording on his son's phone of him talking to his friends about the event.

Butler, 38, who lives in the Roane County portion of Oak Ridge, has posted bond.

She is scheduled to appear June 17 in Roane County General Sessions Court, records indicate.


Worker errors led to explosion

ATLANTA — Georgia Power officials say employee errors led to an explosion that rocked Plant Bowen in Northwest Georgia.

Georgia Power spokesman Mark Williams told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Thursday that an internal investigation revealed employees at the coal-fired plant near Cartersville failed to comply with procedures and didn't follow communications protocols. The explosion happened as workers were shutting down a unit for maintenance.

The early April explosion injured three people and prompted an investigation, not yet completed, by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.


Georgia Supreme Court gets new chief justice

Georgia Supreme Court Presiding Justice Hugh Thompson has been elected unanimously as chief justice.

Thompson succeeds Chief Justice Carol Hunstein, who will remain on the court. The court also unanimously elected Justice Harris Hines to be presiding justice. Both will be sworn in Aug. 15.

The chief justice serves a four-year term, oversees the state's judicial branch and is the main spokesman for the court and the entire state judiciary. The chief justice also leads the Georgia Judicial Council, which governs all the state's courts.

The presiding justice serves in leadership roles when the chief justice is absent.


Students hurt in rip current

ATHENS, Ga. — Four fifth-grade students and a teacher on a field trip to Tybee Island were hospitalized after being caught up in an Atlantic Ocean rip current.

Clarke County Schools spokeswoman Anisa Sullivan Jimenez said the students were playing in the ocean Wednesday when they were knocked down by the current.

The four Oglethorpe Avenue Elementary students and the teacher were admitted to a hospital for observation, Jimenez said.

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