Top stories for the week of May 26

May 31, 2014 

ROBIN TRIMARCHI rtrimarchi@ledger-enquirer.com Spotted at the Central-Phenix City Class of 2014 graduation ceremony. 05.23.14

ROBIN TRIMARCHI — rtrimarchi@ledger-enquirer.com Buy Photo

1. Ledger Inquirer: Could that have been a panther on the RiverWalk? A Concerned Reader emailed reporter Mike Owen that she and her cycling group came across a really large cat that, after some research, appeared to be a Florida panther. Panthers used to be common all over this part of the country but not in a long, long time. A senior wildlife biologist says if you see one don't make eye contact and slowly back away.

2. Report: Suspected thief targets wallets at The Landings, Hospice: Police are searching for a suspected wallet snatcher after several thefts were reported at Moon Road's Columbus Hospice and at several stores in The Landings shopping center, according to a Columbus police report. A 45-year-old Columbus Hospice employee reported her wallet stolen from her office on May 14, according to the report.

3. 750 people gather in Phenix City to discuss dismissal of two prominent black leaders: A week after two prominent black Phenix City leaders were let go, about 750 people filled Gaines Chapel AME Church Monday night looking for answers and direction in how to respond. Central High football coach Woodrow Lowe did not have his coaching contract renewed May 19 after four seasons and a 33-13 record. A day later, City Manager Wallace Hunter was terminated after leading the city since 2008.

4. Couple files claim against Phenix City police over May 18 arrests: First her daughter-in-law whacked her son in the mouth with a broom handle, then a Phenix City police officer shattered her eye socket by punching her in the face before police charged her with assault, disorderly conduct and resisting arrest. That's Elizabeth Coty-Green's synopsis of what happened at her Willow Trace Drive home.

5. Jamey DuBose accepts football coaching position at Central: For the second time in five months and the third time in two years, Jamey Dubose was introduced as the new football coach. The former Prattville, Florence and, for a few months, Charles Henderson coach was unveiled as the new man in charge of Central High's program at a board meeting in the school's auditorium Tuesday night. He takes over for the departing Woodrow Lowe, whose contract was not renewed by the Phenix City school board.

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Former WTVM and WXTX reporter Laura Ann Mann has been hired as the Muscogee County Library Foundation's first full-time executive director. Read more about this story and more at ledger-enquirer.com.

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