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Sunday, June 13, 2021


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A clay county woman is charged with child abuse and after the death of a six month- old child.

28-year-old courtney fitzgerald remains in the clay county jail.

Her bond was set at one hundred thousand dollars.

Sheriff eddie scott tells wcbi the death investigation revealed meth in the infant's system.

Other charges and arrests are expected.

More details about the case are expected to be released at a later time.

Sheriff eddie scott says that arrest is just the beginning of a growing problem... involving alleged drug use around children... which can have deadly side effects.... our rylie livingston joins us live in clay county with more.

Here in clay county sheriff deputies are investigating multiple cases of children being exposed to drugs.

Sheriff eddie scott says they are working with several agencies to put a stop to it.

Clay county sheriff eddie scott says children being exposed to drugs.... sometimes even before they are a growing problem.

"we are getting more proactive in going after these mothers.

Illegal grownups know we shouldn't be using drugs but when you intentionally endanger your unborn child, you know there's some statute law that protects that child, and it's our job to go out here and protect these children."

Scott says sometimes infants first come in contact with drugs in the womb or from breast milk.

However, that's not the only exposure can happen.

"one of the main things that we've seen in the many cases we've work is actually exposure to the smoke.

Where they are smoking methamphetamine we've actually worked cases where small children had breathed this, and actually went into seizures and had to be airlifted."

When handling potential drug exposure cases, deputies can't do it alone.

"we work really close with the department of human services because a lot of times they are the first ones to get the call about some type of drug abuse.

So at that point, time is just coordination working with these individuals working with the doctors working with a district attorney's office working with a crime lab so you know it's not nothing that can be investigated and done overnight.

It takes a while to do this stuff."

But even with that team effort... they still face some challenges.

"a lot of times you know when you're dealing with children, especially in a home where that is drug use, it's hard sometimes to talk to them so we have to get outside help to come in.

So it's a lot that goes into, when you investigating with children it's a team effort from everybody and that's the only way that we can be successful in prosecution and getting a district attorney's office what they need to do it with."

Sheriff scott says his department is working on several of these cases and expects more arrests in the future.

Reporting live in clay county, rylie livingston, wcbi news.

Take developing story stinger leave anchor mic up the mississippi state department of health releases numbers about vaping - related lung illness.

But you, our viewers, wanted more information.

Today, we got some answers.

State epidemiologist dr. paul byers tells wcbi four of the seven people with vaping-related lung illness report using thc containing or cbd containing products.

Those substances were either used exclusively or with nicotine products.

In the other three cases, patients reported using ?only?

Nicotine products.

The fda is doing more testing.

Byers says no link between the cases is identified, other than a reported history of e- cigarette or vaping usage.

Because no specific product or device has been determined as the cause, byers believes the only way to prevent these vaping related injuries is to not use the products.

First look stinger first look summary: great fall weather will continue thursday.

This is good news for all of the high school football games that have been moved to thursday.

Heavy rain is possible friday into saturday with 2-4?

Or more possible.

There is also a small chance for a few strong to severe storms friday night into saturday depending how things develop.

Gfs model rain projections wednesday night: clear and cool.

Lows in the lower 40s with some upper 30s possible.

Thursday: mostly sunny to partly cloudy.

Highs in the low 70s with se winds 5-10 mph.

Plan on 50s for high school football during the evening hours.

Friday: cool, cloudy, and wet conditions are expected.

A few rumbles of thunder can't be ruled out.

Highs should top out in the 60s.

Whether you're a first-time buyer whether you're a first-time buyer or someone looking for a home to fit the ?next?

Phase of their life, there are several programs available to help.

The columbus housing authority and cadence bank host an affordable housing information fair, today.

Our stephanie poole joins us in the studio with more... potential buyers have many reasons for looking for a new home..

The goal of the affordable housing information fair is to help them find quality, safe housing that fits in their budgets.

In our area many people are looking for a home to call their own.

Some are tired of renting.

Others have faced tragedy, leaving their homes damaged, causing them to depend on family members.

" because of the tornado some people lost their homes.

The renters are not doing anything."

That's what brought lana turner jones to the affordable housing information fair on wednesday.

She is searching for housing options for her aunt.

" her house ended up being condemned, the city condemned the house.

She's 80 years old, she's a breast cancer survivor and she has other illnesses and sickness so i've been going around helping her the best that i can.

I just thought it was worth my time and effort to see what i can do for her."

With a roof that needs repairs and floorboards that need replacing, jones is determined to find a safe, warm and stable house for her aunt... cadence bank representative eula jackson says there is a wide-variety of housing options to fit their needs.

" we have an affordable loan program that offers low down payment, that offers no mortgage insurance, it's based on your credit score and it's based on your income limits."

Jackson says most of cadence bank's housing programs focus on home ownership, financial literacy, and housing services.

But first, there are a few conditions..

" to qualify for the affordable home loan product you have to meet certain income criteria and that would be 80-percent of the hud median income limit in mississippi."

And there are other programs,like mississippi regional housing authority iv, who assist with meeting a financial budget.

Executive director brian power says his organization serves over 8 counties in mississippi.

" this is good because it brings people together and you can find what options are out there.

Affordable housing is very hard to find whether you're in columbus,mississippi whether you're on the coast,if you're anywhere.

We know there's not enough affordable housing out there."

In the meantime, jones says her search to find her aunt a new home will remain at the top of her to-do list.

" she's been living there for 22 years, but she doesn't have any place to go, so she has no choice but to stay here right now.

" for more information on some of these programs from cadence bank or columbus housing authority, visit our website at wcbi-dot-com.

Take vo off top while some potential home buyers search through different options, there's actually an application you can fill out to see what fits in your budget.


Affordability is important in all communities and being able to sustain your finances will pay off down the road.

Cadence bank loan officer katina robinson says buying a home can doesn't have to be a hard process.

" you can utilize our online service you can go directly to the personal link or you can just give us a call and they will take the application over the phone and they will give me this is been specific details of what you're going to need based on what we pull up on your credit.

" robinson says you can visit your nearest cadence bank branch for a paper application.

Stinger halloween is right around the corner, but in tupelo they've got their eyes on ?christmas?

We check in live on the ?celebration?

When we come back... people across north mississippi can get an early start on christmas shopping... starting tomorrow.

"celebration village" opens to the public tomorrow, but our allie martin is joining in the preview part tonight.

He joins us live from tupelo with more..

Stinger hello where here the furniture market celebration village 2018 ... lighting boosts you have an amber cross their father tell us a summons and some things about your stuff they are selling annual fundraising event advance hundred and 30 vendors from across the southeast.

This fundraiser is almost in porton fundraiser ... 1.cause we serve one another regardless of the ability to pay on site and make sure boats and come out.

This is the preview party tonight starting tomorrow through saturday 10 am to 9 pm.

Tickets are seven dollars at the door and come on saturday from 10 am to five and come on saturday from 10 am to ... wx open sunny, drier, and cooler weather will continue for the end of the week now that the cold front has pushed through the area.

Rain chances slowly increase through the weekend and into early next week as our next cold front approaches.

Monday will be our best chance for showers and storms. wednesday night: cooler air will continue to move in overnight tonight with lows in the low to mid 40s.

Winds will be out of the north at 5-10 mph.

Thursday-friday: we'll see plenty of sun for the end of the week with highs in the upper 60s to low 70s.

A nice breeze out of the north will help to keep us comfortable through the day.

Morning lows will be in the 40s, so you may have to add an extra layer as you head out the door.

Saturday-sunday: temperatures will return to the mid to upper 70s for the weekend as a few showers slowly creep back into the area.

We'll keep rain chances lower for saturday, but there could be a few more showers on sunday as a cold front approaches.

Either way, the weekend overall will be pretty nice as many of us won't see rainfall and will see plenty of sunshine.

Monday: showers and storms will develop through the day and will likely last into the evening.

Some storms could produce heavy rain and gusty winds.

Temperatures will top out in the mid 70s by the stinger weather wrap stinger the tip off to a new season of bulldogs basketball is right around the corner... more from mississippi state, next in sports..

Spx open men's basketball will be back inside the hump sunday for an tipoff to the regular season is two weeks away mississippi state preparing to build off it's ncaa tournament appearance from a year ago the bulldogs will be lead by preseason first team all-sec forward reggie perry...coming off a summer where he won olympic gold with team usa ben howland says perry will be option one in the offense, and the bulldogs plan to use one of reggie's underrated skills to pour in points "we're definitely running more offense this year through reggie and i think i mentioned in the past is one of his best skills is his ability to pass ad create for others.

He does that quite well so it's something we want to continue to try to work on and get better at because it's a real strength for us."

"the frontline we just want to set the tempo of the game.

Every game.

I have a lot of faith in dj and iverson and i feel they're ready to play."

"we lost a lot of key players key guys so it's just time to step up and take those roles and places of the guys that left."

Nick weatherspoon will sit out the south alabama exhibition game after suffering a concussion in practice.

Weatherspoon will miss the first 10 games of the regular season as continuation of his suspension rain is wreaking havoc once again on high school football...but the show must go one more than 25 games set to play tomorrow....but only one can be the game of the week that's right...a special edition thursday night game of the voted on by you at home the winner is none other than the huge region 4-3a showdown between choctaw county and the noxubee county tigers two undefeated teams left in the division....this one could decide the champion there may not be a team hotter than choctaw of 5 straight, including a 38-0 blank of ripley....the chargers will rely on a fierce defense and devastating run game to take down noxubee county....the tigers defense one of the best in all of 3a....since 2008...the tigers have lost 2...count em 2....division one comes ready to play for the big lights like the tigers we'll be live from ackerman thursday as part of our endzone appetizer for week 10 the results....more than 1300 votes acro twitt and faceboo octaw coty- noxubeandeast webst- eupora tied on twitter...facebo ok wins it for our game of the week big thanks to everyone who voted....we'll have highlights from all of these matchups coming up tomorrow our player of the week for week 10 has been making plays on the endzone for quite some time he took over our game of the week last friday....and showed out in possibly the game of the year starkville wide receiver rufus harvey brings home the honor after his a-1 performance friday night versus madison central.

Harvey had 2 thirds of altmyer's passing yards reeling in 8 catches for 106 yards and 2 touchdowns!!!

This is the 1st time this season mad central has given up a 100 yard receiver.

Harvey says he and the squad came into the matchup locked in looking for a dub.

"monday throughout all the week we had a good week of practice.

We knew we were going to come into the game facing the #1 team.

We had to go out and accomplish the goal we had.

It was a great matchup all across the board.

We had big plays that were needed to be made and we stepped up and made those plays.

My favorite play will be the deep ball.

I was glad when i caught it there."

Harvey says he models his game after none other than alabama receiver jerry jeudy.

When we return...chief meteorologist keith gibson will have a last look at your forecast.

You are watching wcbi news at six.

"wcbi sports player of the week is brought to you by cspire and cannon.

Nobody had a better game than this player of the week and nobody beats a cannon


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