November 17, 2022

Brunswick GA expungement clinic
A volunteer with Georgia Justice Project assists a woman at the Brunswick expungement clinic. Credit: Erika Curtis/Georgia Justice Project

Clean slate in Brunswick

The sound of ’90s hip-hop wafted through the air from outside speakers on a warm day last Saturday at the old Risley School in Brunswick.

The relaxed atmosphere welcomed the 150 residents who registered to get their criminal records wiped clean for Glynn County’s first-ever expungement clinic last weekend.

Attorneys from Atlanta-based Georgia Justice Project came to town to review case files to begin the process of restricting and sealing criminal records — a process known as “expungement.”

Around 4.5 million people have Georgia criminal records, the group’s legal director said. She said minor offenses or even charges that are dismissed can hang over a person’s life long after their crime, impacting applications for jobs, housing, and education.

The Current‘s Jake Shore spent time at the Brunswick expungement clinic, where he interviewed residents seeking to move on from their criminal records and spoke with attorneys and advocates who say the expungements will help Glynn County.

Will Porada/Unsplash

Tax breaks for Bryan ammo maker?

Norma Precision, a European ammunition maker owned by Beretta Holding S.A., plans to spend $60 million for a 300,000-square-foot manufacturing, assembly, and distribution facility to be built in Bryan County.

A writer with news website Center Square asked Georgia officials if Norma Precision received any tax incentives to locate in Bryan County. A state spokesperson said the project was still active, declining to release details on tax incentives.

If Bryan County officials did provide tax breaks, it wouldn’t be the first time.

A review of court records by The Current earlier this year found that Bryan County issued a $40 million revenue bond to gunmaker Daniel Defense to set up shop in the county in 2014. The bond covered the cost and risk of the gunmaker coming to the county with the understanding that its future tax payments and spurred economic activity would restore revenue to the county, according to court documents.

Daniel Defense’s operations in Bryan County came under scrutiny earlier this year after the Uvalde massacre where a gunman used the company’s rifle to kill children.

Camden jail beating video
A screenshot of Camden County jailers punching an inmate in a video that has sparked outrage and national headlines.

Camden jail investigations

Investigations by state authorities and the Camden County sheriff are underway after a video of deputies beating a North Carolina man in the Woodbine jail sparked outrage online.

On Sept. 3, 41-year-old Jarrett Hobbs, of Greensboro, N.C., was booked into the Camden County Detention Center for traffic and drug violations. Federal court records cited by other news outlets stated that Hobbs repeatedly kicked his cell door, provoking jailers and refused to listen when they came into the cell.

A video then shows deputies came into his cell and tried to grab his wrists, and when he resisted, at least three deputies began punching Hobbs in the head. The struggle made it outside of Hobbs’ cell and another video showed deputies knee-ing and kicking Hobbs on the ground.

His lawyers released the videos and held a press conference Wednesday in front of the sheriff’s office in Woodbine.

The Georgia Bureau of Investigation is examining the incident after a request by the Brunswick-area district attorney. Sheriff Jim Proctor said he is conducting an internal investigation, though he said the names of the deputies involved won’t be released until after it’s completed.

You can watch the videos for yourself at this link (content warning).

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Brunswick clinic seeks to clear criminal records for fresh start

A clinic in Brunswick last Saturday sought to jumpstart applications for Glynn County GA residents seeking to restrict and seal their criminal records, a process known as expungement.

Continue reading…

Ammunition maker expanding its Georgia operations in Savannah area

European ammo maker Norma Precision expanding into Bryan County with new assembly and distribution facility. It is also moving its current operations from Chatham County to the new site.

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Camden traffic stop leads to Black passenger’s arrest, controversy

When does no mean no? An interracial couple stopped for speeding in Georgia told officers they could not search their car. Sheriff deputies did anyway — now, probable cause is under scrutiny.

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Jake Shore covers public safety and the courts system in Savannah and Coastal Georgia. He is also a Report for America corps member. Email him at Prior to joining The Current,...