1. Future home of Academy Sports and Outdoors now under construction: More than a year after launching the rezoning of property along Whittlesey Boulevard in Columbus and finalizing the purchase of land over the summer, work on property that will be home to a future Academy Sports and Outdoors store is finally beginning.
2. Columbus native Mekhi Brown redeems himself after sideline blow-up: For a while, Columbus native and Alabama linebacker Mekhi Brown gained Internet fame for all the wrong reasons. Luckily for the redshirt sophomore, he made amends for his mistake and came up with a nice play to boot. Brown was tagged with an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty in the third quarter of Monday’s CFP national championship game against Georgia.
3. I killed my caretaker, 88-year-old allegedly tells a family member. ‘Come get you some.’: An 88-year-old man was accused of shooting and killing his stepdaughter Tuesday afternoon at his Trussell Avenue home after she missed his phone call, according to testimony Thursday in Columbus Recorder’s Court. James Byrd pleaded not guilty to murder and possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime. He was ordered held without bond in the Muscogee County Jail.
4. Metro Diner, with its homestyle menu, ready to open in Columbus: Metro Diner, the restaurant that gained a heaping helping of fame from an appearance on the hit Food Network show, “Diners, Drive-In’s and Dives,” is in the home stretch for its Columbus debut. On Thursday, employees at the 5,000-square-foot eatery at 5524 Whitesville Road, in The Landings shopping center, were continuing their training for the restaurant’s opening on Tuesday. The location is in the former Fuddrucker’s hamburger space.
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5. Columbus lawmaker to seek changes in distracted driving laws: As the Georgia General Assembly prepares to go to work next week, one Columbus lawmaker plans to introduce legislation to modify the state’s distracted driving laws in the wake of a crackdown by local police. Rep. John Pezold, R-Columbus, said he will follow through with plans to drop a bill which will make it legal to take your attention away from the road while operating a vehicle — if it’s stopped at a traffic light.