Here is the latest Georgia news from The Associated Press at 11:40 a.m.

AP Top News

GROVETOWN, Ga. (AP) – A dispute over whether Augusta University can build a 100-bed hospital in the rapidly growing suburb of Columbia County is again headed back to the Georgia Supreme Court. The Augusta Chronicle reports that Doctors Hospital has filed a notice of appeal of a recent ruling by the Georgia Court of Appeals. That ruling found the state Department of Community Health acted appropriately in awarding a certificate of need to the Augusta University to build the hospital in 2014. Doctors Hospital won an appeal of a previous Court of Appeals ruling to the state Supreme Court. Augusta University wants to build the hospital near Grovetown. All three Augusta-area hospitals sought the certificate of need. Columbia County has committed to pay 20% of the cost.


MOULTRIE, Ga. (AP) – A southwest Georgia jail guard faces felony charges of providing inmates with contraband marijuana and tobacco. The Moultrie Observer reports 27-year-old Jamie Devante Hill was arrested last week on five charges including furnishing contraband to inmates and violating his oath. Colquitt County Sheriff’s Investigator Channing McDowell says he saw Hill parked in an area authorities knew was used to hide contraband for inmates. McDowell says Hill told him he had stopped to urinate. But McDowell searched the area and found a package “about half the size of a basketball” that contained 14 packs of tobacco, five balls of marijuana totaling 2.5 ounces, plus electrical tape and baggies. Hill later admitted he had come to pick up the package.


NASHVILLE, Ga. (AP) – A south Georgia mayor has been arrested after a contractor alleged the mayor used an excavator without permission and damaged it. The Georgia Bureau of Investigation said Friday that it had arrested Nashville Mayor Taylor Scarbrough on theft by conversion and theft of services charges. Scarbrough turned himself in at the Berrien County jail and was released. GBI says that Scarbrough used James Hobbs’ excavator without permission on Aug. 17 and caused “significant damage” to the machine. Hobbs values the damage at $12,000 and says Scarbrough didn’t have permission to use the equipment. The mayor says he did have permission and says Hobbs is being unreasonable by not giving Scarbrough enough time to ask his insurer to pay the damage.


FORSYTH, Ga. (AP) – Authorities say a man was fatally shot on a Georgia highway after he rear-ended the car of another man who offered to give his girlfriend a ride early Sunday. The Monroe County Sheriff’s Office says Michael High and his girlfriend, Cierra Bell, had gotten into an argument after he drove to pick her up from a gambling game with Wendell Scott. Officials say Bell got out of High’s car and was walking along the highway when Scott pulled up. Deputies say High then rear-ended Scott’s car, and Scott shot him. Scott and Bell have been booked into jail.

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