Polk County Sheriff Johnny Moats wants the County Commission to seek state investigative help digging into allegations that include cover ups of investigations he claims were made anonymously by more than a dozen officers from the Polk County Police Department against its admin istrators.
Moats put the concerns in writing in a letter sent to the Polk County Board of Commiss ioners on May 5 seeking for the board to decide on whether the allegations merit the assistance of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation.
Those officers claims included in the letter were "favoritism in assignment and promotion, criminal activity and cover-ups involving administrative personnel, failure to supervise, failure to direct, retaliation, lying, gossiping and officer safety due to lack of coverage and support in the patrol division."
Moats said in the letter the officers feared retaliation in the workplace if they came forward publicly with their complaints, and called the situation a "pressure cooker."
He added that the board needs to take action or the officers "will all quit and the county police will be unable to fulfill its obligation.
"I have been told by some of them it will happen by the end of May."
The investigation continues into the murder of a Cedartown woman found at Polk Memory Gardens in early May, and now police have a man in custody who might be tied to the case.
Polk County Police Chief Kiki Evans said that Roe Dale Bowman, 54, of 384 Hightower Road, was taken into custody by officers on Friday is a person of interest in the homicide of Tammy Wolfe, who was found in Polk Memory Gardens on April 5.
Bowman was jailed by police on Friday and charged with possession of a firearm by a convicted felon or first offender after he was found with two handguns.
He remained in the Polk County Jail without bail.
Evans said a small caliber handgun and automatic handgun were found as the result of search warrants being drawn by detectives seeking evidence in the case.
No charges have been brought against any suspects in Wolfe's death, officially ruled a homicide by the Polk County Coroner last month.
Coroner Tony Brazier said that Wolfe was shot and stabbed by an unknown assailant at the cemetery, but would not provide further details about the case citing the open Polk County Police investigation.
Staff at the cemetery told police they first noticed the vehicle on the day the body was found around 9 a.m., but didn't become suspicious about the car which Wolfe was found dead until later in the day.
Evans added that police also had no further comment about the homicide investigation.
According to a 2001 report from the Rome News-Tribune, Bowman had previously been indicted by the Polk County Grand Jury for a 1999 assault of Bonnie Bowman with a gun.
Students from Van Wert Elementary learn about the life outdoors during a special field trip to Hightower Falls in southern Polk County last Friday. The Arbor Day celebration at the local facility which once sported a grist mill and is now used for events and weddings. Kids got a chance to learn about wildlife, living and working outdoors, panning for gold, the history of the mill and candle making.
Blessings were offered and dirt was turned on property on Evergreen Lane where in the coming months a new facility is set to rise and breath new life into St. Bernadette's Catholic Church.
The church - which has split time between the small chapel at the corner of College Street and East Avenue and a rented building further down the street — will soon get to meet together in one large facility planned for the Evergreen Lane property.
Archbishop Wilton Gregory came to Cedartown on May 7 and was joined by other visiting priests and local officials for a ceremonial blessing of the new ground and to scoop up the first shovels of earth.
"I'm glad you're getting your own space," Gregory said.
He added that with many of the members of the church on hand for the ceremony, it was not so much the building that made up the community of God but themselves.
"Whether in the original town church, or the rented space, or in the auditorium, wherever you are gathered, there is the church," he said. "So this new building which will provide much more space for you, will provide the opportunity to worship in a adequate space, programs for catechism classes and business offices. That's all important, and very important. But you're more important."
The church also used the gathering of hundreds of parishioners to raise money for the new facility, which will be a multi-use facility to hold mass, community programs and more.
Father Timothy Gallagher said the gathering over the weekend to celebrate the beginning of construction efforts was a sign of how important it is to the spiritual community to have a new home.
"As we know, united in faith God can do his will, and that's the title of our campaign 'United in Faith,' and that's what brought us here," he said.
Visit stbernadettecc.org for more information on how to how to donate to their building campaign.
The idea for the new facility, Gallagher said, is to provide not only a larger worship space for St. Bernedette's parishioners, but also provide classroom space for religious education, social gatherings and faith formation.
He said previously the committee behind the expansion plans don't want a traditional sanctuary.
"We're still trying to figure out what to call it, but it's more than just a place of worship," he said.
Pastor Ed Pasley had a dream 12 years ago when he found several acres of land being auctioned off in Rockmart.
Wanting to expand the church and strengthen the city, Pasley and company took out a loan and purchased 9 acres of land for a total of $166,500.
Now in 2017, The Rockmart Church of God is celebrating being debt free on that very land. No construction has been planned for the time being, but eventually Rock mart Church of God hopes to see those 9 acres transform into a new church and various community facilities.
The church will become hard focused on spreading the ministry of Jesus, and individuals of all denominations will be welcome to join in and use facilities. They also plan to work on youth ministries as well for the time being.
The group also intends to build a clothing and food ministry to ensure troubled citizens can both stay warm and enjoy hot meals.
"Sometimes you have to heal the physical self before you can work on the spiritual self," said Pastor Mike Pasley as he explained the importance of a food ministry.
"Some people don't get a hot meal on Thanksgiving. That shouldn't be happening in Rockmart."
With nine acres of land available, the Pasleys also plan to have a women's shelter constructed as part of the church.
Pasley noted that Rockmart does not have a place for battered women to find safety, and he feels the new land has plenty of room for women in need of assistance.
Their goal may be more than just a dream if the church applies their previous means of fundraising toward future construction efforts.
To pay off the land, church-goers and community members donated vigorously, and The Rockmart Church of God held various motorcycle rides and golf tournaments to raise money.
Despite the land being empty, Rockmart Church of God is still getting bang for their buck. The congregation used the land to host a gospel singing event with guest appearances and offered up fried fish and other foods on Sunday, May 7.
The event also featured a symbolic letter burning where church-goers burned the loan renewal paper and put an end to their debt figuratively as well as literally.
The 9 acres purchased by Rockmart Church of God are located behind Day's Chevrolet and across from Rockmart High School. More events are slated to be held by the church and those interested can attend on various Sundays.
The original Rockmart Church of God is located at 1200 North Piedmont Ave.
The Rockmart High School FBLA is hosting a 5K Fun Run/Walk this Saturday, May 20, 2017. Color stations with pink, blue, and purple powder will be set up along the route. Proceeds to benefit the March of Dimes. Email Janet Dover at email@example.com for more information.
The 2017 Kids Fishing Rodeo for youth 15 and younger is coming up next month on June 10 from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Kenview Farms in Rockmart. Hourly drawings will be held for door prizes, plus free refreshments and t-shirts for the first 500 kids. 1 rod per child, no minnows allowed. There's an 8 fish limit per child. Find and like the event on Facebook listed as Polk County Kid's Fishing Rodeo.
Check out the Rockmart Farmers Market at the Silver Comet Trailhead behind Southcrest Bank on Thursdays from 2 to 6 p.m. from now through Thanks giving. Visit Rockmartfarmersmarket.com for more information.
The Georgia Legal Services Program will be at One Door Polk on Monday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. providing free civil legal services to those with low incomes needing the assistance of an attorney.
The next West Georgia Spay/Neuter Clinic is coming to the Cedartown-Polk County Humane Society on June 7 Head over to the organization's office at 608 Adamson Road, Cedartown on Fridays from 4 to 7 p.m. or Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. to fill out an admission and prepay for the surgery. Those wanting more information can call 678-361-7304 for more information. Vaccines and tests are available for extra cost as well. The next clinic date is June 28 following the beginning of the month.
Registration is now open for the 4th Annual Miles of Hope Bike Ride. This event is a fun way for riders and walkers to give back to Murphy-Harpst Children's Center. There will be a fun walk or ride along the Polk County portion of the Silver Comet Trail or a 10, 20, 30, or NEW 55 mile challenging Silver Comet Trail option for long distance cyclists to the Brushy Mountain Tunnel in Paulding County. A celebratory post-ride lunch will be at Congregational Holiness Church. Registration fee is a donation of your choice with 100 percent of the proceeds used to provide the therapy that the children at MHCC need to heal and thrive. Your donation of $20+ includes a T-shirt* and the knowledge that you are helping some great kids. Contact Julie Smith at Cycle Therapy at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information and to register for the event.
A youth wrestling camp is being hosted by Cedartown High School wrestling program starting June 19 through June 21, from 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. each day. Cost is $30 per child. Ages 4 to 12 only. For more information call Jerry Hartline at 470-539-7842.
Signups are coming up for the Cedartown High School varsity competition cheer team's annual clinic in June. Registration is May 22 from 5 to 8 p.m. at Cedartown High School in the girl's field house. Cost is $40 per child. Clinic dates this year are June 5 through June 7 from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. daily. Call the school at 770-748-0490 or e-mail email@example.com for more information.
The spaghetti dinner at American Legion Post 12 will be tonight, Wednesday May 17. Spaghetti, meatballs, garlic toast and salad for $5, all you can eat. Serving from 5 to 7 p.m. Trivia starts at 6 p.m. Bring your friends and come join the fun. All profits from the monthly dinners are used for veterans and children's projects.
The Revival on the River is coming to Rockmart's Seaborn Jones Park on Saturday through Sunday, starting on Friday from 5 to 9 p.m., and continuing Saturday 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., and Sunday 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Find out more information and look for an upcoming itinerary on their Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/Revival-on-the-River.
A grand opening for the Boaz Ministry in Rockmart's new food bank is coming up on May 27 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Groceries, children's bags, bibles, lunch and festivities will be free to those who want to participate. The new food bank located at 708 W. Elm St., Rockmart, will be open in June on Thursdays from 5 to 7 p.m. No fee is required or donations accepted to obtain food assistance. All that will be required is to have a valid photo identification.
The first meeting of Polk County's newest Alzheimer's support group will take place on June 5 from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. at Polk Medical Center. Meetings will continue on the first Monday of each month following starting at 10 a.m. Those interested can join for fellowship and lunch following in the hospital cafeteria. For more information call John Giglio at 678-246-8188.
A Memorial Day Service will be held at noon at Center Baptist Church in Felton on Memorial Day, May 29 and the veterans of Felton will be providing refreshments after a dedication service at the church. Turn off of Highway 27 South onto Felton-Rockmart Road to find the church. For information, contact Mark Hanson at 404-859-2096.
Fourth Friday is coming up for the summer in Cedartown! Check out the first concert featuring Bennie Gray and the Trailer Park Cowboys on May 26 to open up the series. Billed as more country than western and more roll than rock, Bennie Gray and the Trailer Park Cowboys are a local favorite. Check out the Fourth Friday car show, get food and drinks, and more as the car show begins at 5:30 p.m., and music at 7 p.m. Go to fourthfridaycedartown.com for a full lineup for the summer and more.
The Church of God of the Union Assembly, 32 Prospect Road, Rockmart, is encouraging members of the community to join them for praise and worship each Sunday and Wednesday. Praise and youth services are held at 7 p.m. on Wednesday nights, and services start at 10:30 a.m. on Sunday following Sunday School at 9:45 a.m. Call Pastor Jesse Starnes at 678-757-4572 for more information.
The Polk County Beekeepers meets the first Saturday of each month from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. at the Cedartown Library 245 East Ave. Whether you are an experienced beekeeper, new beekeeper or want to learn all are welcome. For more information email the Polk County Beekeepers at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit tinyurl.com/polkbees.
Signups are underway now for the Cedartown Performing Arts Center Lion King Summer Camp, taking place on July 17-21, July 24-28. Cost is $150 for the full 10 days of camp. Contact the CPAC at cedartownshows.com or call 770-748-4168.
The Polk County Extension Service's annual twice-weekly vegetable market will begin this year on June 27. They will have fresh veggies and fruits on hand from vendors on Tuesdays and Fridays from 6:30 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. Call the extension office at 770-749-2142 for more information or to learn how to participate.
A Homecoming celebration is being held at Bellview Baptist Church on May 21, which will include the Gospel Bluegrass Band and Scarlet Wool. The service begins at 10:30 a.m. and a fellowship meal is set to follow in the activity building after the service. Call 770-684-3941 for more information.
Cedartown Supper Club every second and fourth Tuesday of the month at 6:30 p.m. Held at 71 Woodall Rd. Seventh-day Adventist Church. Enjoy a vegetarian supper and participate in a lecture on healthy, happy living. Free and for all ages. Each evening provides a different menu and lecture topic. For more information call 678-901-9184.
The Northwest Georgia Regional Commission's Area Agency On Aging Will Hold Its Quarterly Meeting On Tuesday, May 23, 2017 at The Thornton Recreation Center, 102 North Floyd Park Road, Rome, Ga 30165 (Across From Armuchee High School On Highway 27 North). The Meeting Will Begin At 10:00 AM. The Meeting Is Open To The Public.
The Aragon School Reunion is coming up on May 20 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Tom Pittman Recreation Complex in Aragon. Former Aragon School alumni are encouraged to come attend and share old memories and meet with friends, take a tour of the Aragon Historical Society museum, and bring old photos to share. Contact Sadie Pittman for more information at 770-684-7416.
Victory Baptist Church's Bread of Life Food Pantry is now open to help those in need. Preassembled bags of groceries will be handed out to those in need free of charge (ID required). There's a limit of 1 bag per person per week. Regular hours of operation for the pantry will be Mondays, 1 to 3 p.m., Tuesdays, 5 to 7 p.m. and Thursdays, 8 to 10 a.m.
Aragon Children's Day is coming up on June 3 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Aragon Mill Pond. Fishing, games, goat hunt, prizes, food and more will be part of the day. Everyone is welcome, but activities are planned for youth 16 and under. Sponsored by the City of Aragon, area merchants and Davitte Lodge No. 513.
Interested in becoming a Foster or Adoptive Parent? Open your heart to a child in need and find out how you can help. Join others who seek the love of a child every second Tuesday night of each month at 6 p.m. at Polk Co. Department of Family and Children Services office, located at 100 County Loop Rd. in Cedartown. Information Sessions are held to explain what is required to become a foster or adoptive parent in the state of Georgia. For more information please call Robin Forston at 404-895-6517 or e-mail robin. email@example.com or call 1-877-210-KIDS. Visit www.fostergeorgia.com for more information.
On May 27, the 5th annual May Celebration honoring all veterans and military will be taking place at 7290 County Road 16 in Centre. The Patriotic program and entertainment includes a barbecue lunch, car and tractor show and more. There's also a drawing for a 12-gauge shotgun and $500 in cash. Vets and active duty military personnel eat free. Sponsored by Mc-Cord's Crossroads Homemakers and American Auctioneers. Call 706-767-1612 for more information.
Join the Polk County Chamber of Commerce as the board wraps up its new members contest on June 1 for a new member cookout in which the organization will announce the winners of the New Member challenge. Check out the website at polkgeorgia.com for more information.
Rivers of Living Water is hosting its 8th Annual "Your Best" talent show. The talent show will have two categories: younger children (ages 5-11) and older kids (ages 12-17). The winner will receive a trophy. Auditions for the talent show will be held on the following Saturdays: May 20 and June 3, 2017. The auditions will be at Rivers of Living Water from 1 to 2 p.m. The "Your Best" talent show will be Saturday June 24 at Rivers of Living Water at 5 p.m. There will be a $100 drawing at the talent show. Admission for the talent show is $10. For more information contact Courtney Ripoll at 770-689-7838.
Join Paul Craighead at the Rockmart Cultural Arts Center gallery for weekly pottery classes. They are held Tuesday and Wednesdays from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. for $15 each, and $12 for a Thursday class from 10 to 11:30 a.m. Materials are included in the cost of the classes. Call Paul Craighead at 770-843-5302 with questions. Registration open at the beginning of classes.
Celebrate Recovery continues to meet in the First Baptist Church of Rockmart, 311 E. Elm St., Monday nights with dinner at 6 p.m. A large group gathers at 7 p.m. and small share group at 8 p.m.
Victory Baptist Church will be hosting their annual Stockings of Love Christmas in July event on Saturday, July 22, 2017. Visit their website at www.vbcrockmart.com for more information.
The Alzheimer's Association Caregiver Support Group in Polk meets the first Monday of each month at First Baptist Church of Rockmart, 311 E. Elm St. The facilitator is April Williams.
Need to get an item onto the Area Calendar of Events? Email firstname.lastname@example.org today! All items must be in at least two weeks before the event to appear in the Standard Journal on time.