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Wednesday, May 5, 2021
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Home Authors Posts by Shelby Coates

Shelby Coates

Shelby Coates is an evening anchor/producer at 41NBC News. She anchors the 5, 5:30, and 6 evening newscasts. She also works behind the scenes producing the 5:00pm and managing newsroom assignments. She returns to 41NBC after working in Evansville, Indiana as the Morning/Noon Anchor and Executive Producer for WEVV. Shelby also spent time in Spartanburg, South Carolina, where she spent three years anchoring and producing the weekend morning newscasts at WSPA-TV. She also worked as a general assignment reporter, receiving several honors for her investigative and consumer reporting. Shelby has spent time working as a news anchor/reporter in Chattanooga, Tennessee; Macon, Georgia; and Abilene, Texas. Shelby is a native of Clarksville, Tennessee. She graduated from Abilene Christian University in Texas with a bachelor’s degree in Broadcast Journalism and Mass Communication and a minor in sociology. Shelby has a passion for empowering local communities, church ministry, public speaking, strengthening women and mentoring young people.

Arrest made in early morning homicide in Houston County


WARNER ROBINS, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – A Kathleen man is charged with murder and aggravated assault in connection to a deadly shooting at this home in Houston County.

The shooting happened in the 1800 block of Georgia Highway 247 South in Kathleen around 1:00 Thursday morning.

According to a news release, Houston County Sheriff’s Office deputies responded to the scene and found 27-year-old Brock Parrish, of Warner Robins, shot in the chest. The homeowner, 31-year-old Dylan Davis was also at the scene.

Parrish was transported to Taylor Regional Hospital in Hawkinsville where he later died. And deputies arrested Davis who is accused of using a rifle to shoot Parrish in the chest during an altercation.

The investigation is still on-going. Anyone with additional information can contact lead investigator Cpl. Zachary Polk at 478-542-2080.

Teen arrested in Macon armed robbery attempt involving toy gun

MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – The Bibb County Sheriff’s Office makes an arrest in connection to an attempted armed robbery where the suspect used a toy gun.

According to a Bibb County Sheriff’s Office news release, 17-year-old Javon Blackshear is accused of trying to rob the Mercer Food Mart located at 3737 Mercer University Drive.

Deputies say Blackshear was inside the store trying to play a gambling machine. When a store employee asked for ID, deputies say Blackshear pulled out a gun and demanded cash from the register. The incident report shows the store employee locked himself behind a protective plexiglass counter, and Blackshear left the store.

When deputies started canvassing the area, they located Blackshear in the 1600 block of North Atwood Drive. Deputies say they recovered a toy handgun that was used in the armed robbery attempt.

No injuries were reported.

Blackshear is being held in the Bibb County Sheriff’s Office Law Enforcement Center without bond on an armed robbery charge.

President Jimmy Carter issues statement on death of former VP Walter Mondale

ATLANTA, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – Former President Jimmy Carter issues a statement on the death of former Vice President Walter “Fritz” Mondale.

Mondale was a former Democratic senator from Minnesota who served as vice president under Carter. His family reports he died at his Minneapolis home at the age of 93.

Former President Carter issued the following statement:

“Today I mourn the passing of my dear friend Walter Mondale, who I consider the best vice president in our country’s history. During our administration, Fritz used his political skill and personal integrity to transform the vice presidency into a dynamic, policy-driving force that had never been seen before and still exists today. He was an invaluable partner and an able servant of the people of Minnesota, the United States, and the world. Fritz Mondale provided us all with a model for public service and private behavior. Rosalynn and I join all Americans in giving thanks for his exemplary life, and we extend our deepest condolences to his family.”

Macon pole dance studio offers “Closet Talk” to uplift, encourage others

MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – A pole dancing studio in Macon wants to uplift and encourage others by offering a series of candid conversations called Closet Talk.

Lanise Floyd is the co-owner of Closet Freaks Studios in Macon. She says she got the idea after her customers started staying after dance class to just talk. Floyd says her clients would share their fears or discuss a recent loss or struggle. That’s when she decided to organize sessions to allow people to speak freely and provide feedback from others who may be experiencing the same problems.

“They just want to really talk, and as they are talking, it’s kind of mind blowing and surprising that the same thing that you may be experiencing, the next woman or man may possibly be going through,” said Floyd.

Floyd says her mission is to encourage women to stay strong and know that someone cares. Sessions will take place every first and third Sunday of the month. The discussion will be self-led. People will have the opportunity to freely discuss any topic.

The first session is this Sunday, April 18th at 4:30pm. Sessions should last for one hour. To register, call or text 770-733-8774.

Closet Freaks Studio is an adult studio located at 3706 Mercer University Drive, Suite 34, in Macon. The studio offers various dance classes, including pole dance fitness, Zumba fitness, chair dancing and twerk classes.

Colton Strong: Toddler battles cancer, Monroe County community provides support and awareness

MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – No one wants to hear a cancer diagnosis, especially not for their three-year-old child. That’s the situation for 41NBC Managing Editor/Producer Clay Poulnott and his family in Monroe County.

Just weeks before his fourth birthday, his son Colton was diagnosed with lymphoblastic lymphoma in early March. Lymphoblastic lymphoma is one of the most common forms of childhood cancer, affecting the cells of the immune system with the ability to spread throughout the body. This form of cancer typically affects older kids or teens, and boys more so than girls. Cancers studies show it is not hereditary, and it is not linked to something environmental.

“I prayed a lot,” said Clay Poulnott. “He gave me a lot of comfort, a lot of peace.”

Clay and his wife Rachel were first concerned about Colton’s breathing. They say doctors treated Colton for an upper respiratory infection. But when the steroids wore off, he still struggled to breathe. X-rays and CT scans later showed a large mass near Colton’s throat, nearly crushing his airways.

“It’s unbearable,” said Rachel Poulnott. “You are living your worse nightmare.”

Doctors rushed Colton by ambulance to Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, Egleston Hospital. He was placed in the Intensive Care Unit on Monday. By Wednesday he was placed on oxygen to help him breath.

“If we didn’t do anything for whatever reason or they took longer at the hospital, I don’t know if he would have lived another two days,” said Clay.

Dr. Frank Keller treats Colton at Egleston. He says four to five out of 100,000 U.S. children will get lymphoblastic lymphoma. It’s unknown what causes it, and it usually appears as a mass most likely in the chest area. Symptoms include a cough or shortness of breath. But it’s sometimes passed off as asthma.

“It is probably a good idea to do a chest X-ray to make sure it’s something other than asthma, because this is something that is easily visible on a chest X-ray,” said Dr. Keller. “As it gets bigger it can create more and more of a life-threatening situation, because those are important structures like your breathing tubes, your heart and blood vessels.”

After five days in ICU, Colton moved to the cancer floor of the hospital, and Rachel shared the news on social media. That’s when more friends and family joined their cancer fight in an effort to help the family and spread awareness about childhood cancer.

“When I saw that post, just being a mom myself, I broke down in tears,” said family friend and neighbor Maria Allen. “I want to do for them what I hope others would do for me.”

Allen coordinated fundraisers with local restaurants and collected gift cards and donations. Long-time family friend Katie Bradberry got creative too. She helped design “Colton Strong” rubber bracelets, car decals and T-shirts. She says the items have raised more than $3,000 to help the family with medical bills and other costs. Each item displays the words “Colton Strong,” the childhood cancer ribbon and a tank.

After 17 days in the hospital, Colton was released two days before his birthday. The family headed home, and they were greeted with unexpected love and support.

“People you don’t even know and probably will never know — will never meet — just willing to help out in any way that they can,” said Clay. “It makes the hair on my arms stand up.”

Businesses brought food. A “Colton Strong Go Fund Me Page” pulled in more than $12,000. Front lawns were covered with “Colton Strong” signs. And the Mary Persons High School football team even stopped by to give Colton a helmet as a gift.

Clay says his son’s battle with cancer is far from over. He tells his son there’s a ball in his throat, and he needs to take his medicine to get it out. Colton will undergo two years of treatment. And his second, more intense, round of chemo starts next week.

For more ways to help the Poulnott family, find KT Deanna on Facebook to order T-shirts, bracelets and car decals. You can also visit the Colton Strong Go Fund Me Page.



Centerville holding Covid-19 vaccine clinic Friday

CENTERVILLE, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – The City of Centerville is holding a vaccine clinic on Friday, April 16th at the Galleria Mall.

The vaccination event starts at 10:00am, and participants do need to register by using the QR code or clicking the registration link.

The City of Centerville is partnering with Robins Pharmacy to offer the vaccinations.

Be sure to bring a photo ID and wear a mask.

Woman killed in Washington County crash Sunday

SANDERSVILLE, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – A weekend crash along Highway 231 in Washington County left a woman dead.

Washington County Sheriff Joel Cochran says two cars were involved in a head-on crash just outside of Davisboro.

According to Sheriff Cochran, around 12:45 Sunday afternoon, a Honda Accord crossed the center line and hit a Chevy Cruz driven by 28-year-old Janesha Little, of Wren.

Little died at the scene. The driver of the Honda Accord, 41-year-old Charles Moss, went to the Augusta Medical Center with serious injuries.

Griffith Family Foundation provides grants for five Bibb County schools

MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – Five Bibb County elementary schools received grants of $20,000 to help meet the needs of students and teachers.

The Griffith Family Foundation presented the checks to teachers at Union, Veterans, Ingram-Pye, Lewis and Bruce Elementary schools.

Each school has a plan for how they will use the funding and meet needs at their school. Funds will be used to provide teacher development, musical instruments and activities, rewards for student achievement and attendance, as well as incentives to support Positive Behavioral Intervention and Supports (PBIS) initiatives.

Since its founding in 1993, the Griffith Family Foundation has contributed more than $83 million to support projects, programs, and community organizations in Macon and Bibb County.

Gifted teachers include: LaShun Crawford and Kim Tolbert of Union Elementary School, Dr. Arrika Tunstell of Veterans Elementary School, Dr. Danielle Howard of Ingram-Pye Elementary School, Dr. Sonya Coley of John R. Lewis Elementary School, and Dr. Angela James of Bruce Elementary School.

Platinum Riders provides ‘drive-by birthday’ for Macon child with heart defect

MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – A Middle Georgia car club is giving back to the Macon community and helping a nine-year-old celebrate his birthday.

The Platinum Riders Car Club held a “drive-by birthday party” for Journey White who was born with Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome. The birth defect affects blood flow to the heart. Platinum Riders Car Club Founder Brandon Pope says Journey has had four to five open heart surgeries due to the defect.

When the club heard of Journey’s love of golf, fishing and playing with his keyboard, they knew they wanted to celebrate him.

“It’s things like this that help bring our community together and support a special cause for a child,” said Pope.

During the April 10th event, the Platinum Riders Car Club presented Journey with a golf set, birthday cards, balloons and more gifts.

Governor Kemp stops in Vienna to promote farm industry, signs two bills into law

VIENNA, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – Governor Brian Kemp spent the day in Southwest Georgia signing two new bills into law and promoting the state’s farm industry. He made stops at the Georgia Museum of Agriculture in Tifton and the Ellis Brothers Pecans in Vienna.

During his visit, the Governor signed House Bill 693 into law. The measure addresses road safety and right-of-way concerns when it comes to wide-load farming vehicles. State Senator Larry Walker (R-Perry) explains the new law recognizes instances where a wide-load farming vehicles may not be able to safely move to the right-hand-side and gives them priority on the road.

Governor Kemp also signed Senate Bill 222 in law. It designates the pecan the official state nut. Georgia lawmakers debated selecting the pecan over the peanut. While Georgia is the number one state producer of both pecans and peanuts, Senator Walker explains that a peanut is not an actual nut. It is consider part of the legume, or bean, family.

However University of Georgia Horticulture Professor Lenny Wells says pecans are not nuts either. He says they are drupes, a fruit with flesh on the outside and a big seed in the middle.

Lawmakers say the Georgia Peanut Commission is in support of the pecan as the official state nut.