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Updated: 22 min 47 sec ago

Authorities looking for check fraud suspects

Wed, 2/25/2015 2:50 PM

 

Authorities are trying to identify two women they say cashed fraudulent checks earlier this month.

The two women cashed fraudulent checks on Feb. 5 at a bank of Furys Ferry Road in Martinez, according to Columbia County Sheriff’s Office Investigator Krista Johnson. They were seen traveling in a white SUV possibly a Dodge Durango.

One of the women has several piercings on her face and might be from the Atlanta area.

Anyone with information about the identity or whereabouts of either of the women should call Johnson at (706) 541-4021.

Categories: Local

Son arrested for attacking father with golf club

Wed, 2/25/2015 10:22 AM

 

A Grovetown man remains hospitalized after he told authorities his son attacked him Tuesday.

Nathaniel Jackson, 48, was taken to the hospital Tuesday evening with a severe head injury, according to Columbia County sheriff’s Capt. Steve Morris.

His son, Alexander Lee Jackson, 21, who lives with his father, was charged with aggravated assault.

A neighbor called 911 after Alexander Jackson went to a neighbor’s house on Baldwin Lakes Drive. Deputies arrived and found Alexander Jackson uninjured, but with blood all over his hands, according to a sheriff’s office incident report.

Nathaniel Jackson came outside disoriented and covered in blood with lacerations to his head and fingers, according to the report. He told authorities that his son attacked him with a golf club and a hammer. Morris said Nathaniel Jackson’s son hit him in the head with a golf club.

A Georgia Regents Medical Center spokeswoman said she could not provide any information on Nathaniel Jackson’s condition.

His son is being held in the Columbia County Detention Center without bond, according to jail records.

Categories: Local

Police Blotter

Wed, 2/25/2015 12:15 AM

The following accounts were taken from Columbia County Sheriff’s Office incident reports:

Woman sells fake gold bars

An employee of a Martinez jewelry store called authorities Thursday after discovering he had bought a fake gold bar.

The employee of The Gold Shop on Washington Road said that two days earlier, a woman came into the store to sell a Suisse 10-gram gold bar, which she presented in a sealed package. He said the bar had all the appropriate markings and appeared to be authentic. He paid the woman $275 for the gold bar.

The employee said the owner of a Hephzibah pawn shop called him and said a woman came in and sold him a similar fake gold bar. After looking up the sale from the woman, the employee said he and the owner of the Hephzibah business determined they’d received the fake gold bars from the same woman.

The gold bar should have weighed 10 grams, but when weighed, the employee said it weighed only 9.6 grams. He also performed an acid test on the bar and determined it was not made of gold.

 

Man scammed over driveway

A Martinez man told deputies Friday that he was scammed by someone who was selling driveway repair services.

The 33-year-old man said he was approached Friday afternoon by a man who identified himself as Ezzie Small who offered to seal the cracks in his driveway with asphalt for $450. The man agreed and paid the repairman, who then sprayed a substance over the entire driveway. He left mounds of raw asphalt along a few cracks before leaving for lunch.

The man said the repairman told him a road crew would come back in about an hour to finish the job. When no one returned, the man called the repairman’s associate, who said he’d check with the crew and call back. He never returned a call to the man and all of his subsequent calls went unanswered.

 

Women spot foot-toucher

Two women recently told authorities they were approached by a man they later recognized as one arrested for touching women’s feet in public.

On Saturday, a woman said she was loading her groceries in her car outside the Grovetown Wal-Mart at about 5:20 p.m. when a man approached her asking for help. She told him to wait while she loaded her groceries, then went to his vehicle. She said the man laid down on the ground, lifted up his shirt and asked her to jump up and down on his stomach. When she asked how that would help, the man said it would give him leverage to reach a bolt.

The woman refused and walked away. The man got up and asked if he could kiss her feet for good luck. She refused and drove away.

After an online search, the woman said she found a photo of the man, who had been previously arrested in Columbia and Aiken counties for touching women’s feet in places such as Wal-Mart.

A woman told authorities that the previous day the same man approached her at a gas station. The woman said she was at the Circle K on South Belair Road in Martinez at about 8 p.m., on Friday when a man approached and asked for a pair of her socks. The woman refused and watched him get into the passenger side of a waiting station wagon.

The woman later did an online search and identified the man as the same one the woman at Wal-Mart identified.

 

Woman turns tables on caller

A Harlem woman turned the tables on a phone scammer Saturday by putting him on the phone with a deputy.

The 62-year-old woman said she received a call at about noon from a man claiming to be a federal court case worker in Atlanta telling her she needed to pay $497 to be done with her case. Though the woman informed the caller she had no case in Atlanta federal court, he continued to call requesting money.

The woman went to a Columbia County Sheriff’s Office substation and a deputy got on the phone with the caller. He identified himself as a U.S. marshal and said he was taking out a warrant for her son for impersonating a deputy, believing the deputy who spoke to him was the woman’s son.

The calls were coming in every few hours throughout the day, so the woman is planning to change her home and cell phone numbers.

Categories: Local

Upscale service hotel to join Gander Mountain, CarMax

Wed, 2/25/2015 12:13 AM

An upscale service hotel will be built near Gander Mountain and CarMax.

Plans for Hyatt Place have been submitted in Columbia County, and construction on the 112-room hotel could begin as soon as early March, said John Engler, the vice president of local development firm McKnight Properties.

The four-story hotel will be built on three acres on Mason McKnight Jr. Parkway behind Sprint Foods, just off Interstate 20, and include a fitness center and outdoor pool. The project should be complete in time for the 2016 Masters Tournament, Engler said.

“We’ve been talking about this for over a year now,” he said. “We wanted to have a brand that would be a different model for Augusta. They’re not in the Augusta market.”

Launched in 2006, Hyatt Place caters to frequent business travelers and small corporate and executive meetings. The brand builds properties in airport, urban and suburban areas and has more than 200 hotels worldwide.

A message left at Hyatt’s corporate headquarters in Chicago was not immediately returned.

The hotel is the next facet of a vast mixed-use development on Mason McKnight Jr. Parkway that already includes CarMax, the 240-unit Gateway Crossing Luxury Apart­ments and outdoors retailer Gan­der Mountain, which opened last September.

About 40 undeveloped acres remain on the site in Columbia and Richmond counties, Engler said.

“Interest is coming back in the area,” he said. “This is just another one of the phases that we were waiting to do over time, just waiting to find the right partner.”

As much as 200,000 square feet of additional retail space is available next to Gander Mountain. Res­taurants and a grocery store would be ideal tenants, said Engler, adding that developers are in talks with retailers and hope to make more announcements soon.

That land has been graded for future building activity, he said.

“It’s all ready to go, and it’s just a matter of getting the right tenants to come along,” Engler said.

Categories: Local

Pet Adoptions

Wed, 2/25/2015 12:13 AM
Categories: Local

Current Events

Wed, 2/25/2015 12:13 AM

Strawberries

Senior Citizens Council is taking orders for strawberries from Plant City, Fla.; $20 per flat (12 pints/6 quarts); order/payment deadline March 20; pick up 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. March 27, Columbia Professional Centre, 4210 Columbia Road Suite 13A, Martinez; (706) 868-0120, katernce@gmail.com

Benefit yard sale

Donations being accepted; benefits a local family; 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, March 28; Four Paws, 479 Old Evans Road, Evans; (706) 651-9040; $5 hot dog combo for people, $5 nail trim for dogs

Essay contest

Citizens for Nuclear Technology Awareness contest open to high school juniors and seniors in Columbia, Richmond Aiken, Allendale and Barnwell counties; also open to CNTA members’ families who have high school juniors and seniors in other locations; 1,000-5,000 word essay on one of three topics chosen; deadline Feb. 28; check with science teachers and/or guidance counselors for details; (803) 649-345s6

Open house

3:30-7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 26, Columbia County Christian Academy, 4004 Prescott Drive, Martinez; pre-K through eighth grade; Bob Jones University Press Curriculum used; (706) 863-0535 ext. 304, c4christianacademy.com

Pancakes

9-11 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 28, Evans Christian Academy, 213 Old Belair Road, Grovetown; fundraiser for the school’s seniors; $7; evanschristianacademy.org

Storybook meal

11 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 28, First Baptist Church of Augusta, 3500 Walton Way; benefitting Southeastern Firefighters Burn Association, break-fast followed by a parade of storybook characters; autographs and photographs with characters; tickets required; sfbf.net

Birding trip

Augusta-Aiken Audubon Field Trip to Lovers Lane 9 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 28, meet at Popeyes, 450 Walton Way; open to the public, beginners welcome; free; augustaaikenaudubon.org

Havana Nights

Columbia County charity gala 7-11 p.m. Feb. 28, Columbia County Exhibition Center, 212 Partnership Drive, Grovetown; Vegas-style games, dinner, raffle, prizes, complimentary been and wine; cash bar; $80 individual, $150 couple; (706) 312-7192

Empty Bowl

11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Sunday, March 1, Legends Club, 2701 Washington Road; sample foods from area restaurants; take out available; silent auction; advance $20, ages 2-10 $5; at door $25, $7.50; (706) 364-6086, emptybowlcsra.org

Lake workshops

Army Corps of Engineers Thurmond Project Shoreline Management Plan Public Workshops 6-8 p.m. each meeting; March 2, Lincoln Center, 160 May Ave., Lincolnton, Ga.; March 3, McCormick High School, 6981 S.C. Highway 28 S., McCormick, S.C.; March 5, Columbia County Library, 7022 Evans Town Center Blvd., Evans; to discuss specific issues one on one with Corps representatives and to provide concerns, ideas and opinions related to the Thurmond Project Shoreline Management Plan; no formal presentations; Robin Webb (800) 533-3478 ext. 1134, cesas-op-t@usace.army.mil

Preschool tour

Tours and open registration 11 a.m. Wednesdays in March, BeeHive Preschool, 898 Weinberger Way, Evans; tours followed by Q&A session; meet teachers, visit classrooms; nonsectarian art and activity-based early learning program centered on the whole child; for potty-trained children ages 3 and turning 4 by end of school year; at the Augusta Jewish Community Center; (706) 833-0033, Beehivepreschool.com

Time Out

Lunchtime fellowship ministry 11:50 a.m. Thursday, March 5, First Baptist Church of Evans, 515 N. Belair Road; Kaye Morris, speaker; fried chicken, mash potatoes and gravy, green beans, salad, rolls and dessert; $6; reservations required by noon Wednesday, March 4; (706) 863-1228, fbcevans@knology.net

Museum gala

7 p.m. Friday, March 6, Morris Museum of Art, 1 10th St.; an evening of fine food, entertainment and dancing celebrating the exhibition American Dreams: Paintings by John Mellencamp; $175 members, $200 others, $125 ages 35 and younger; themorris.org

Winter concert

Augusta Men’s Chorus 2015 Winter Concert 7:30 p.m. Friday, March 6, Reid Memorial Presbyterian Church, 2261 Walton Way; featuring music by Schubert, Mendelssohn, Bach, Copland and other composers; $10

Yard sale

Held by Augusta South Rotary Club and Aquinas High School; 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, March 7, Aquinas High School, 1920 Highland Ave.; space rental $25, deadline to reserve March 1; leave items to be donated at Catholic Social Services; doors open 7 a.m. for set up; (706) 840-2087, plightsey@gru.edu

Catalyst Quartet

Symphony Orchestra Augusta: Catalyst Quartet 7:30 p.m. Friday, March 6, Jabez Sanford Hardin Performing Arts Center, 7022 Evans Town Center Blvd., Evans; Bank of America Columbia County Music Series; $15.74; soaugusta.org

Recycling

Electronics Recycling/Home Medical
Equipment Collection Day 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Saturday, March 7, Aquinas High School, 1920 Highland Ave.; electronics and used home medical equipment; benefits Friends of Disabled Adults and Children; held by Rotary Club of Augusta South; (706) 550-4256, (706) 840-2087, rotarypam@gmail.com, fodac.org

Clarks Hill trip

Augusta-Aiken Audubon field trip to Clarks Hill 9 a.m. Saturday, March 7, meet at Thurmond Lake Welcome Center, parking lot overlooking lake, 510 Clarks Hill Highway, Clarks Hill, S.C.; looking for waterfowl and small birds; carpool around area checking below dam areas and the lake; trip goes into afternoon, bring lunch or snacks; open to the public, beginners welcome; Anne Waters and Lois Stacey lead; free; augustaaikenaudubon.org

Seuss Birthday

10 a.m. Saturday, March 7, Hire Grounds Cafe, 3179 Washington Road; celebrate Dr. Seuss’ birthday with book readings, cookies; free

Celebration

St. Patrick’s Day celebration noon Saturday, March 7, Augusta Harley-Davidson, 4200 Belair Frontage Road; everyone’s Irish on St. Patty’s Day; Irish fare, cold beer and more, while supplies last; please ride responsibly; free; augustahd.com

Something Wild

5-8 p.m. Saturday, March 7, Julian Smith Barbecue Pit, 3 Milledge Road; wild game tasting and soiree; silent and live auctions; music by Eryn Eubanks and the Family Fold; benefits Fisher House Augusta, Coins for Alzheimer’s Research Trust and other charities; tickets available online; $40 advance, $45 day of; (706) 724-5756, AugustaWestRotary@gmail.com, eventbrite.com

Sandwich sale

Deadline to place orders March 9 for kosher corned beef meals 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. March 15 and 16, Adas Yeshurun Synagogue, 935 Johns Road; $12; overstuffed corned beef sandwich on rye bread with pickle, condiments, chips, a drink and freshly-baked brownie; (706) 736-8788, cornedbeefaugusta.com

Industrial exhibit

New electrical, instrumentation and automation products; 4-8 p.m. Tuesday, March 10, Columbia County Exhibition Center, 212 Partnership Drive, Grovetown; continuing education seminars available; free, open to the public; isaga.org/penshow

Categories: Local

Columbia County schools has 329 spots available for permissive transfer

Wed, 2/25/2015 12:03 AM

Columbia County parents or guardians interested in requesting a permissive transfer next year for their children have until March 6 to apply for one of 329 spots available at five public schools.

According to a Columbia County Board of Education report, Harlem High School has the most spaces at 257, followed by 30 at Riverside Elementary, 22 at Stallings Island Middle, 14 at Blue Ridge Elementary and six at River Ridge Elementary schools.

Permissive transfers were first offered in 2009 under Georgia law and allow children to change public schools within the same county as long as classroom space is available after enrollment for new and returning students has been finalized.

This year, 477 spots were open to county students, but only 43 chose to use the transfers.

Evans and River Ridge Elementary schools were the most popular choice with 11 pupils electing to transfer in.

The year before, 433 spaces were available, with River Ridge Elementary School claiming the most students at 10.

“Historically, we haven’t had more requests than seats available,” said Dr. Sandra Carraway, schools superintendent.

Carraway said interested parents and guardians should read the school system’s policy on attendance zones before completing a Permissive Transfer Request Form, which is available online at ccboe.net or at the Board of Education office at 4781 Hereford Farm Road in Evans.

If the school receives more permissive transfer requests than space available, Carraway said available spots will be awarded in a drawing from all submitted applications.

“Affected parties will be notified and invited to witness the public drawing, which will be held within three business days of the application deadline,” she said.

The school board’s report noted parents or guardians electing to send their children to an eligible school assume responsibility for transportation.

Categories: Local

Georgia State Patrol Grovetown post short on manpower

Wed, 2/25/2015 12:00 AM

An emphasis on patrolling busy thoroughfares in metro Atlanta has left the Georgia State Patrol’s Grovetown post undermanned, but officials say help is on the way.

Over the past several years, graduating trooper classes have been sent to the Atlanta area to bulk up the manpower in Troop C, which covers five counties including Fulton, Cobb and Gwinnett, said Capt. Allen Marlowe.

An initiative with the Georgia Department of Transportation offered to pay for some trooper classes in exchange for the state patrol placing more troopers along the Interstate 85 and Interstate 75 corridors to alleviate traffic congestion.

The result, Marlowe said, was that other areas, including Augusta, missed out on new troopers. The Grovetown post, which covers five counties, went from a staff of 17 sworn personnel to 11, three of whom are administrators.

“And when you take into account vacation days and training days, there is obviously thin coverage,” said Marlowe, who oversees Troop E, which includes the Grovetown post.

Many troopers have retired, and at least one left to take a higher-paying job elsewhere. A trooper fresh out of the academy stands to make $35,741 a year, higher than the starting salary of sheriff’s deputies in Richmond, Columbia and Aiken counties.

The Grovetown post averages 40 DUI cases and investigates 160 crashes in a given month, Marlowe said, meaning it could use as many as 20 troopers to reach peak efficiency.

With a new batch of troopers graduating Friday, Marlowe said, that goal will inch closer to being reality. Classes usually graduate about 35 troopers.

Marlowe expects at least two of the graduates to join Post 25 in Grovetown in about a month.

In the meantime, Sgt. 1st Class Ritchie Howard said the post had to get creative in covering the five counties.

“We obviously have to prioritize our response according to requests for help,” he said. “We try to put people in positions where they’re going to be most useful based on stats. Sometimes that works, and sometimes it doesn’t work.”

The post received some support from sheriff’s offices with established traffic divisions, including in Columbia and Richmond counties, which allowed troopers to serve in more of a support role.

With help on the way, Howard said the post can shift into a more hands-on role.

“From the standpoint of operating a patrol post in a five-county area, it will give us some more time to be a little more proactive and provide a little more visibility,” he said.

Marlowe said Troop E is also experiencing shortages in its Grovetown-based communications center, which has 12 dispatchers, down from 17. The communications center covers five posts and 20 counties along Interstate 20.

Reach Travis Highfield at (706) 823-3339

or travis.highfield@augustachronicle.com.

Categories: Local

Fort Gordon growth makes sales-tax package critical for Columbia County schools, superintendent says

Wed, 2/25/2015 12:00 AM

With considerable job growth at Fort Gordon expected to result in at least 700 new students in Columbia County classrooms next year, Superintendent Sandra Carraway said Thursday that voter approval of a $140 million sales-tax package is critical to the school system’s future.

On March 17, voters will have their say on a five-year plan to possibly replace and expand Grove­town Elementary and Harlem Middle schools, and complete renovations at all high school athletic facilities in 2017, including a new stadium and sports complex at Lakeside High.

After that, the fund could pay for replacement and expansion of North Harlem Elementary School in 2018 and a new elementary or middle school in 2019, when Fort Gordon is expected to finish adding 3,700 cyberdefense employees to its workforce.

Carraway said the Columbia County school system is already seeing significant growth, adding more than 600 students this year, topping the increase of 395 it expected based on birth rates and population trends.

She said if the 1-cent education sales-tax package failed to pass, the school system would have to make “major adjustments” in how it accommodates growth, possibly bringing in portable classrooms and eliminating athletic facility upgrades.

“It would put a severe strain on the school system, not just for new facilities, but also for construction projects related to building maintenance and operations,” she said.

“We would probably have to consider going to our voters for their approval to incur long-term debt” to meet the school system’s future needs.

If the system needed to take on debt, she said it would be paid back through district savings and property taxes, currently set at an 18.59 mill rate.

“It would be a situation that school system leadership and the board of education would never want to consider, but if our school system continues to grow as it has in the last five to 10 years, we would have very few options,” Carraway said.

Roxanne Whitaker, the school board’s vice chairwoman, said the package is important because the board passed its most extensive rezoning effort last month to move about 2,000 students over a four-year period at 21 schools.

She said the need is especially high at Harlem Middle School, which was built in 1955 and has a building still in use that is more than 100 years old.

“It is the oldest school campus we have in the county,” she said.

“Unlike other schools that have classrooms enclosed in a central facility, Harlem Middle has exposed wings and students have to change classes outside in cold weather, which can be tough this time of year and is a safety issue.”

The sales tax, known as ESPLOST, has been approved by voters every cycle since 1997 and has paid to build or expand
nine elementary, five middle and four high schools.

Facility improvements include renovated science labs; resurfaced gym floors; upgraded auditoriums; repaved parking lots; and new roofs, HVAC systems and bleachers.

Because the upcoming package is for five years, Carraway said it is hard to determine individual project costs, but she estimated costs of $13 million for elementary schools, $19 million for middle schools and
between $35 million and $40 million for high schools.

Additionally, the package could pay for instructional and administrative technology improvements at the schools and on buses. Plus, if it is passed, voters could approve $55 million in general obligation debt to pay for capitalized interest and related expenses,
which would be repaid by the ESPLOST collections.

Carraway said the board of education passed a resolution in November to design the package and that each member hopes it will receive public support, because voters “tend to believe the school system is doing an excellent job.”

“It is more than critical,” Whitaker said of referendum approval.

“We are going to have one of the largest (school) populations we have ever had.”

Categories: Local

Augusta businessman accused of sex with teen

Mon, 2/23/2015 4:08 PM

 

An Augusta businessman was recently arrested and accused of having sex with and delivering sex toys to an Evans teenager.

Randy Houston Mercer, 57, of Downing Street in Augusta, was charged Friday with aggravated child molestation, enticing a child for indecent purposes and computer pornography.

Mercer is owner of Peach Augusta, a women’s clothing boutique in Surrey Center, and a professional make-up artist.

An Evans woman called authorities on Jan. 7 about what she considered an inappropriate relationship her 15-year-old son developed with an adult man online. The man, identified as Mercer, asked her son for inappropriate photos of himself, which the teen did not send, according to a Columbia County Sheriff’s office incident report.

The teen told his mother that he met Mercer on www.grindr.com, an all-male social networking site. He said he and Mercer never met in person, according to the report.

The teen also told his mother that Mercer asked him a few months ago if he could deliver a package to the teen’s Evans home. When he refused to allow it, the teen told Mercer to drop the package off in the bathroom on the 13th green of Jones Creek golf course, according to the report. He received the package about two months ago and ended the relationship with Mercer.

While cleaning her son’s room in early January, the woman said she found a duffel bag containing “various sex toys, dildos and male under garments,” according to the report.

Sheriff’s office investigators determined that Mercer met with the teen three times between June 1, 2014, and Jan. 31, “for the purpose of engaging in sexual intercourse,” according to the report.

Mercer is being held in the Columbia County Detention Center without bond, according to jail records.

Categories: Local

Schools expected to stay open Tuesday despite winter weather forecast

Mon, 2/23/2015 2:40 PM

Despite the possibility of winter weather overnight, Columbia County School System officials expect schools to remain open Tuesday.

The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Weather Advisory from 4 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday. The winter weather, which can include a wintry mix of snow/sleet and light freezing rain is expected to affect the Augusta area, according to information released by Columbia County Emergency and Operations Division Director Pam Tucker.

Tuesday is expected to be a "normal school day," without delays or closings, according to information released by the school system. Should weather conditions deteriorate overnight, school system officials could call for a delayed opening or cancellation of school.

Parents and guardians should monitor local media outlets, the school system social media pages including Twitter and Facebook and the system Web site www.ccboe.net for the latest information about potential cancellations and delayed start times.

Children kept out of school on Tuesday will be able to make up the missed work, but the absence will be considered unexcused.

Tucker said she expects to have more details about the potential winter weather by late Monday afternoon. Unless the potential diminishes, Tucker said she plans to activate the county Emergency Operations Center at midnight as a precaution.

Tucker said it is always uncertain as to the amounts of winter precipitation that will fall on any given area.
Temperatures are expected to bottom out in the low 30s, according to the advisory. Snow and sleet could accumulate up to a half inch, mainly on grassy surfaces. Ice could accumulate in trace amounts, mainly on elevated surfaces and trees, power lines and untreated roadways and walkways. Bridges may be icy.

Tucker said the Emergency Operations Center will be open all night to monitor conditions. The 3-1-1 center also will be open all night to receive calls.

Anyone needing information on roads or other issues can call 3-1-1 in Columbia County or dial (706) 868-3375 beginning at midnight.

Columbia County staff is prepared with fueled up Roads and Bridges trucks, diesel fuel trucks, chainsaws, snow plows, salt-spreaders and a large supply of rock salt, according to Tucker.

Categories: Local

Police Blotter, Feb. 22, 2015

Sun, 2/22/2015 12:12 AM

The following accounts were taken from Columbia County Sheriff’s Office incident reports:

Stolen vehicle damages lots

Someone stole a Grovetown man’s truck early Feb. 18 and took it joy-riding, damaging several empty lots.

A deputy was called out to Keesaw Glen in High Meadows subdivision near Grovetown just before 1 a.m. about someone driving a vehicle recklessly and causing damage to several empty lots. The caller described the vehicle as an SUV or truck with ladders on top.

On the way to the area, the deputy saw the vehicle, a 2000 Ford Explorer, driving toward him on Great Glen. As he turned around to stop the vehicle, the driver quickly accelerated and turned on Gallaway Drive. By the time the deputy turned around and caught up to the SUV, the driver had abandoned it partially in a yard of a home on Gallaway Drive.

Deputies were able to trace the owner of the SUV as a man who lived in the same neighborhood, only a street over.

He didn’t know the SUV, which was parked in his driveway, was stolen until deputies informed him they found it.

The owner said he typically leaves the vehicle in the driveway with unlocked doors and the keys in the cup holder in the center console.

A wrecker service was called to take the SUV back to the man’s home, but he disputed the price with the driver. He refused to pay, so it was taken back to the company lot. He became uncooperative with deputies and left. He did say he wanted to prosecute whoever stole his SUV.

Woman chases men from yard

A Grovetown woman said Feb. 16 that she had to chase two men away from her yard.

The woman said she saw two men walking down the road in front of her Hardy Drive home at about 6:30 p.m. The woman said they kept staring toward the backyard, where there is a workshop. The men continued walking to the dead end of the street and went into a portable restroom.

As the men walked back down the road, the woman said they tried to come into her yard. They refused to leave when she asked them to, so the woman grabbed her shotgun from inside. The men ran away.

The woman said a few minutes later, she saw a white van with a yellow ladder on top drive past her house to the dead end. The van sat there for a couple minutes before driving away.

Stolen card used 50 times

A woman told authorities Tuesday after discovering someone fraudulently used her credit card more than 50 times last year.

An Evans woman went to the Columbia County Sheriff’s office substation in Evans after discovering more than 50 fraudulent charges on her credit card made between Jan. 19, 2014, and May 15, 2014. The total of all the fraudulent charges is $10,148. The woman cancelled the card on May 16, 2014, and said her daughter is the only one with permission to use the card. The bank had already opened an investigation.

Categories: Local

Wife accused of stealing $400,000 from husband's firm

Sun, 2/22/2015 12:11 AM

The estranged wife of a Columbia County businessman was being held at the Columbia County jail Feb. 13, accused of embezzling more than $400,000 from her husband’s businesses over several years.

Heather Singleton Boggus, 35, was arrested last week by police in Thomasville, Ga. on a warrant accusing her of violating the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, according to Columbia County sheriff’s Capt. Steve Morris. She was transferred to Columbia County on Tuesday.

According to the warrant issued Feb. 10, Boggus schemed to illegally divert more than $400,000 from JBC Construction LLC and its subsidiaries between Oct. 2010 and Dec. 2012. During that period, Boggus worked as the bookkeeper for JBC Construction, a business founded by Jerome “Jeb” Boggus Jr. in 2006.

At the time of the alleged thefts, Boggus was known as Heather Singleton and Jeb Boggus was married to another woman. That marriage ended in Dec. 2012, according to Superior Court documents.

Jeb Boggus and Singleton wed on Oct. 7, 2013 in Napa Valley, Calif, according to court documents. The couple did not make to their first anniversary before they were separated. It was during those few months that Jeb Boggus began to run into financial difficulties, according to court documents.

In Jan. 2013, he was sued by Synovus Bank for repayment of notes amounting to $1.6 million, and four months later American Express filed suit seeking repayment of more than $39,000 in overdue charges.

In an answer to the American Express lawsuit, Jeb Boggus claimed “that most of the charges were the result of fraudulent activities of Heather Singleton.” Boggus claimed his former bookkeeper charged things without his knowledge, hid statements from him, claimed some charges would be paid by “a fictional third party” and used other embezzled funds to make credit card payments.

Jeb Boggus filed for divorce from Heather Boggus on Sept. 22. A month later, he called the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office to report the theft of an “unknown amount” of money stolen from his personal and business accounts.

“We are still investigating the total amount, but it is a very large figure,” said his attorney Jim Trotter.

Among the problems Jeb Boggus discovered was that he owed more than $240,000 in back property taxes on the Picket Fences Apartments that he owns off of Old Evans Road. Trotter said a check to pay the taxes and interest was sent to Columbia County Tax Commissioner Wayne Bridges on Feb. 13.

Although Bridges asked county commission members to consider waiving more than $13,000 of penalties on the taxes, a motion to do that Tuesday failed to pass with a 2-2 vote.

The embezzlements, however, weren’t the only thing Jeb Boggus discovered about his wife, according to divorce filings. In October, Heather Boggus informed the court that she was pregnant with her husband’s child. She also provided a document from Morning Glory Childbirth Services that indicated she was 14 weeks pregnant as of Nov. 11.

Her husband has disputed this claim, saying that she had faked a pregnancy before and “lied about the death of a child.”

Jeb Boggus said according to medical records, his wife was not pregnant when she went to the hospital that day and she was in fact only “treated for vertigo.”

Categories: Local

Early predictions call for full summer pool at Thurmond Lake

Sun, 2/22/2015 12:10 AM

Thurmond Lake is expected to be full this summer, according to early predictions from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

Water levels at the reservoir are expected to reach full or near-full pool by late May, said Billy Birdwell, a spokesman for the Corps. Forecasts calling for average rainfall in the spring will help the water rise as the targeted water level – known as the “guide curve” – increases from its lowest point during the winter, he said.

“My prognosis is it should put us right at guide curve or a foot below guide curve about Memorial Day weekend, which is a good place to start the summer,” Birdwell said.

On Monday, the lake was 327.05 feet above sea level, or one foot below the targeted level, according to Corps water management data. The water level has been slightly below the guide curve throughout the winter, with the exception of an early January spike.

“We’ve been hovering just below guide curve,” Birdwell said.

From mid-October to April 1, the guide curve is between 326 and 330 feet above sea level, where it stays during warmer months. However, the Corps has been keeping the lake level no higher than 329 feet for safety measures during repair work at Thurmond Dam. Releases from the dam to the Savannah River increase if the water level exceeds the guide curve.

Rainfall in January was below average for the Thurmond Lake basin, but lake levels were not significantly affected, according to the Corps. During the winter, there is more water runoff from the banks because vegetation does not absorb as much and there is less evaporation from the lake surface.

This summer could feature similar conditions to the past two at Thurmond Lake, unlike low water levels experienced during drought years, Birdwell said.

Categories: Local

Grovetown seventh-grader drafting second piece of legislation

Sun, 2/22/2015 12:10 AM

The Grovetown seventh-grader who convinced lawmakers this year to introduce a bill that would lower the minimum age for holding state office has begun drafting his second piece of legislation.

CJ Pearson, 12, said Monday he is working on a bill proposal that would make it a civil penalty in Georgia for teachers to refuse students permission to use the restroom if it results in an accident.

CJ said he came up with the idea after reading a story about a Florida kindergartner who wet herself after her teacher declined her persistent requests.

He began researching the issue and read report after report of similar cases but found no laws in place to prevent such accidents.

The legislation would give families an avenue to sue teachers and schools for the unnecessary suffering that comes with having an accident in front of classmates.

CJ, who identifies as a Re­pub­lican “with strong Liber­tarian views,” said this is not meant to be big government controlling classrooms but rather a safeguard to prevent embarrassing episodes.

“This is not the state regulating bathroom breaks,” he said. “That is still up to the boards of educations. But it will penalize teachers and the schools to allow a student to be consistently denied the right to go to the restroom and they have an accident on themselves.”

Rep. Dexter Sharper, D-Valdosta, agreed to sponsor the bill after CJ contacted him on Facebook. Sharper, a paramedic and second-year representative, said he hopes to have a draft written by Friday to have the bill introduced next week.

Sharper said he hadn’t thought much of the issue before CJ’s message, but once he began researching it, he realized bathroom freedoms are blocked more than people might
realize.

Through speaking with students and families, Sharper said he met a young man in Valdosta with a kidney disease and heard a firsthand account of being denied the right to go to the bathroom and having an accident as a result.

“If a child uses the restroom in their clothes, especially as a teenager, it’s going to get to the point where that kid is ridiculed by other classmates, it’s going to go through that school really fast,” he said. “That person could go home and commit suicide, or that kid could come to school and shoot up the kids that teased him or the teacher who did not allow him to go.”

Sharper said the bill will be written with common-sense exceptions to prevent abuse of the system.

He said the measure will account for students who ask for hall passes excessively, those who disrupt class and those who ask to leave during testing.

CJ said because every district is unique, it would be important for local boards of education to create a policy about bathroom breaks to prevent accidents and lawsuits. Some could write policy that clarifies what makes an appropriate time to go to the bathroom, how many request are excessive, and other factors.

“We’re encouraging them to deal with this problem head on,” CJ said. “We’re setting the fire under the wood to say this is what you need to do, here are the consequences if this happens.”

CJ founded Young Georgians in Govern­ment last year and has recruited about 15 field representatives from across the state to serve in the organization.

The group’s first legislative pitch to lower the minimum age to serve in office materialized as two sister bills were introduced in January.

Sen. Josh McKoon, R-Columbus, sponsored SR 27, which would lower the qualifying age for senators from 25 to 21, and Rep. Ben Harbin, R-Evans, sponsored HR 37 to lower the age for serving in the House from 21 to 18.

CJ said apart from politics, he is passionate about getting other young people involved in issues that matter.

He started his civic involvement by becoming the youngest class president ever elected at Columbia Middle and has no plans to stop there.

“You don’t get change by sitting on your couch playing (the video game) Call of Duty, you make change by going out and doing something,” he said.

Categories: Local

Property Transfers, Feb. 22, 2015

Sun, 2/22/2015 12:04 AM

Winchester Homes of GA Inc. to Royce J. Morris and Rebekah J. Morris, 171 Edenburg Way, $225,985.

Oconee Capital Investments LLC to Chaehyon Pyon, 210 Ryan Lane, $242,000.

Wilson Parker Homes of Hidden Creek Inc. to Roger C. Cole Jr. and Cheri L. Cole, 8521 Crenshaw Drive, $264,990.

Jennifer T. Brackett nka Papadopoulos to Jeffrey S. Peebles and Mandi K. Peebles, 607 Birkdale Court, $320,000.

Christopher M. Crookshanks to David F. Brown and Carrie M. Brown, 203 Clyde Ave., $290,000.

John A. Fairburn to Rhonda B. Clark and Christa A. Clark, 604 Brandywine Drive, $223,000.

Parks Motlow to Matthew H. Tiner, 304 Old Salem Way, $152,900.

JR Homes of Alabama LLC to Michael T. Marbury, 729 Old Indian Camp Road, $274,100.

All Weathers Construction Co. LLC to John H. Hall III and Sherry A. Hall, 314 Kirkwood Drive, $422,000.

Gregory Properties LLC to Donald H. Dixon, 656 Gregory Drive, $30,100.

Martha M.Shurling to Cynthia A.S. Hall, 792 Faircloth Commons Road, $110,000.

Ivey Residential LLC to Timothy S. Pinkley, 536 Brantley Cove Circle, $179,830.

Michael Clyde Down and David L. Dorn to Brian T. Abbott, parcel ID 036002, $45,000.

Deutsche Bank National Trust Co. to Vishal Nanda, parcel ID 077E246, $100,000.

Queen E. Elseth to Melvin D. La Pan, parcel ID 073L104, $140,000.

Robert F. Mullins to Richard Cartie and Cynthia Cartie, 4361 Deerwood Lane, $800,000.

Riverwood Land LLC to First Choice Homebuilders LLC, 4061 Dewaal St., $45,000.

Nestor L. Nieves to Clark Lawrence Brittingham and Michelle Loraine Brittingham, parcel ID 082J112, $130,000.

Baker Place Development LLC to Wilson Parker Homes Retreat at Baker Place Inc., 743 Burch Creek Drive, $47,000.

Baker Place Development LLC to Wilson Parker Homes Retreat at Baker Place Inc., 750 Burch Creek Drive, $47,000.

Baker Place Development LLC to Wilson Parker Homes Retreat at Baker Place Inc., 744 Burch Creek Drive, $47,000.

Baker Place Development LLC to Winchester Homes of GA Inc., 310 Firelight Drive, $42,000.

Baker Place Development LLC to Winchester Homes of GA Inc., 312 Firelight Drive, $42,000.

Winchester Homes of GA Inc. to Marion Stringer and Dixie Lee Stringer, 2429 Newbury Ave., $184,335.

Baker Place Development LLC to Wilson Parker Homes Retreat at Baker Place Inc., 729 Burch Creek Drive, $47,000.

Baker Place Development LLC to Wilson Parker Homes Retreat at Baker Place Inc., 737 Burch Creek Drive, $47,000.

Baker Place Development LLC to Wilson Parker Homes Retreat at Baker Place Inc., 739 Burch Creek Drive, $47,000.

Baker Place Development LLC to Wilson Parker Homes Retreat at Baker Place Inc., 743 Burch Creek Drive, $47,000.

Baker Place Development LLC to Wilson Parker Homes Retreat at Baker Place Inc., 747 Burch Creek Drive, $47,000.

Baker Place Development LLC to Wilson Parker Homes Retreat at Baker Place Inc., 749 Burch Creek Drive, $47,000.

Baker Place Development LLC to Wilson Parker Homes Retreat at Baker Place Inc., 751 Burch Creek Drive, $47,000.

Baker Place Development LLC to Wilson Parker Homes Retreat at Baker Place Inc., 755 Burch Creek Drive, $47,000.

Baker Place Development LLC to Wilson Parker Homes Retreat at Baker Place Inc., 762 Burch Creek Drive, $47,000.

Baker Place Development LLC to Wilson Parker Homes Retreat at Baker Place Inc., 742 Burch Creek Drive, $47,000.

Baker Place Development LLC to Wilson Parker Homes Retreat at Baker Place Inc., 740 Burch Creek Drive, $47,000.

Baker Place Development LLC to Wilson Parker Homes Retreat at Baker Place Inc., 1510 Driftwood Lane, $42,000.

Baker Place Development LLC to Wilson Parker Homes Retreat at Baker Place Inc., 315 Firelight Drive, $42,000.

Wilson Parker Homes of Sunbury at Bartram Trail Inc. to Ryan C. Norton and Jami J. Norton, 5643 Sunbury Loop, $350,655.

First Bank of Georgia to Ernie N. Blackburn, 1053 Peninsula Crossing, $150,000.

South Georgia Custom Homes LLC to Niekro C. Maggitt, parcel ID 0681122, $214,900.

Jeffrey Scott Badgley to South Georgia Custom Homes LLC, parcel ID 065016A, $170,000.

Glynn S. Bruker to Park Ridge Builders Inc., parcel ID 068898, $35,000.

William H. Eubank Jr. to Miles Daniel White and Joyce White, parcel ID 027075, $1,000.

Riverwood Land LLC to Belair Properties LLC, 759 Bishops Circle, $97,740.

Jonathan W. Hodges to Travis L. Hernandez and Heather W. Hernandez, parcel ID 074013J, $200,000.

PM Real Estate LLC to CEW Investments Inc., 1400 Collins Drive, $33,000.

Euchee Forest LLC to Ivey Residential LLC, 543 Brantley Cove Circle, $30,500.

Euchee Forest LLC to Ivey Residential LLC, 541 Brantley Cove Circle, $30,500.

Sudhendra Hublikar to Robert H. Wilson and Calvin Lawrence Hobbs, 577 Bay Hill, $45,000.

Danual J. Lewis to Peter A. Frohling and Carley M. Frohling, 3464 Rhodes Hill Drive, $325,000.

Laurence M. Mixon to Christopher J. Melcher and Melanie A. Melcher, 3495 Lonesome Pine Court, $279,900.

Daniel W. Rabon and Ashley L. Rabon to Stone Financing LLC, 4085 Eagle Nest Drive, $214,900.

Stone Financing LLC to Rebecca M. Tyler, 4085 Eagle Nest Drive, $214,900.

Kathryn B. Selby to S.A. LLC, a portion of parcel ID 062086, $1,705,000.

Adriana L. Barbee to Zee S. Sultan, 413 Fernhurst Lane, $22,000.

Designer Homes and Construction LLC to Bart L. Deisch, parcel ID 068987, $209,900.

First Choice Homebuilders LLC to Amanda Peterson and James Peterson, 322 Kirkwood Drive, $401,000.

Rhodes Farm LLC to North Star Home Builders LLC, 106 Rhodes Trail, $70,000.

Baker Place Development LLC to Winchester Homes of GA Inc., 757 Burch Creek Drive, $47,000.

Baker Place Development LLC to Winchester Homes of GA Inc., 758 Burch Creek Drive, $47,000.

Baker Place Development LLC to Winchester Homes of GA Inc., 756 Burch Creek Drive, $47,000.

Baker Place Development LLC to Winchester Homes of GA Inc., 754 Burch Creek Drive, $47,000.

Baker Place Development LLC to Winchester Homes of GA Inc., 752 Burch Creek Drive, $47,000.

Winchester Homes of GA Inc. to James E. Fairey Jr. and Ronna L. Fairey, 2414 Newbury Ave., $179,000.

Baker Place Development LLC to Wilson Parker Homes Retreat at Baker Place Inc., 1509 Driftwood Lane, $42,000.

Baker Place Development LLC to Wilson Parker Homes Retreat at Baker Place Inc., 1508 Driftwood Lane, $42,000.

Baker Place Development LLC to Wilson Parker Homes Retreat at Baker Place Inc., 305 Firelight Drive, $42,000.

Baker Place Development LLC to Wilson Parker Homes Retreat at Baker Place Inc., 309 Firelight Drive, $42,000.

Dwight David Goodman to Mai Tuyet Tran, parcel ID 073B201, $74,000.

Michael Wayne Hill as trustee of the Hill Family Trust dated Nov. 16, 2011, to Yasitu Richardson, parcel ID 072M135, $275,000.

Martin Tyler Moore to James E. Norwood and Michelle L. Norwood, parcel ID 069613, $103,000.

William E. Sandoval to James Harold Feltner and Leslie D. Winters, parcel ID 078707, $304,297.

River Island Development Co. LLC to Michael J. Sizemore and Connie J. Sizemore, parcel ID 081390, $63,800.

Donna C. Miller to Abigail C. Breckenridge, parcel ID 077G348, $123,900.

IDK Homes Inc. to Julia B. Sammons, parcel ID 0671521, $239,900.

Virginia P. Lovelace to Thomas O. Lovelace II, parcel ID 073E347, $100,000.

Julie Bagby Sammons aka Julie B. Arrowood to Heggie’s Rock Investments LLC, parcel ID 050510, $107,500.

The estate of Elizabeth M. Riddle to John A. Riddle, parcel ID 029079, $90,000.

Blackstone Development Co. LLC and River Island Development Co. LLC to Gary Shaw Homes Inc., parcel ID 081394, $50,000.

Travis M. Newsome to American Homes 4 Rent Properties Eight LLC, 1047 Waltons Pass, $171,000.

Keystone Homes Inc. to Byron A. Edwards, parcel ID 0611910, $164,000.

Rebecca A. Huff to Robert S. White and Christine White, parcel ID 060662, $217,800.

Categories: Local

Marriage Licenses, Feb. 22, 2015

Sun, 2/22/2015 12:04 AM

Ricardo Rodriguez Wright and Nicole Shere Sheats applied for a marriage license on Jan. 29, 2015, and were married Feb. 2, 2015, in Evans.

Brad Carmichael Jeffares and Karla Morales Ponce applied for a marriage license on Jan. 30, 2015, and were married Feb. 6, 2015, in Evans.

Justin Michael Garner and Stephany Nicole Summers applied for a marriage license on Feb. 4, 2015, and were married Feb. 12, 2015, in Evans.

Shaun Wayne Cosnahan and Melanie Ann Jackson Stripling applied for a marriage license on Feb. 5, 2015, and were married Feb. 8, 2015, in Hephzibah.

Glen Pace and Margaret Marie Ingram applied for a marriage license on Feb. 6, 2015, and were married Feb. 6, 2015, in Evans.

Kenneth Charles Frame Jr. and Candice Marie Ayers applied for a marriage license on Feb. 9, 2015, and were married Feb. 12, 2015, in Evans.

Max Goodwin Jr. and Natalie Kate Shorey applied for a marriage license on Feb. 12, 2015, and were married Feb. 12, 2015, in Evans.

Waltrell Devante Price and Allison Susanne Roberts applied for a marriage license on Feb. 10, 2015, and were married Feb. 12, 2015, in Evans.

Mario Brian Childers and Lajuanda Michelle Benjamin applied for a marriage license on Feb. 12, 2015, and were married Feb. 12, 2015, in Evans.

Robert Noland Pearson Jr. and Katherine Lynn Sparks applied for a marriage license on Feb. 12, 2015, and were married Feb. 12, 2015, in Evans.

Brett Howard Salter and Melissa Kaye Barnes applied for a marriage license on Feb. 12, 2015, and were married Feb. 12, 2015, in Evans.

Timothy William Zucarelli and Rebecca Anne Davenport applied for a marriage license on Feb. 12, 2015, and were married Feb. 12, 2015, in Evans.

Bradley Dilworth Jr. and Lauren Chanel Russell applied for a marriage license on Feb. 12, 2015, and were married Feb. 12, 2015, in Evans.

Andrew Boyd Barton and Chastity Linh Bromagen applied for a marriage license on Feb. 9, 2015, and were married Feb. 12, 2015, in Evans.

Justin Thomas Ertle and Valerie Ann Capuy applied for a marriage license on Feb. 12, 2015, and were married Feb. 14, 2015, in Grovetown.

James Cornell Johnson and Clarice Huntley Richardson applied for a marriage license on Feb. 6, 2015, and were married Feb. 14, 2015, in Evans.

Tanner Perry Thompson and Katie Lorraine Williams applied for a marriage license on Jan. 22, 2015, and were married Feb. 7, 2015, in Evans.

Christopher Lawrence Hanson and Traci Danielle Baucom applied for a marriage license on Feb. 6, 2015, and were married Feb. 14, 2015, in Appling.

Aaron Hardy and Thelma Broom Aldridge applied for a marriage license on Feb. 11, 2015, and were married Feb. 14, 2015, in Martinez.

Timothy McFarlin and Christina Egbuka applied for a marriage license Feb. 3, 2015, and were married Feb. 14, 2015, in Augusta.

Categories: Local

Divorces, Feb. 22, 2015

Sun, 2/22/2015 12:04 AM

Tabitha Elayne Niver and Chad Addison Barrs, Feb. 5, 2015.

John T. Kalafatis and Angel R. Kalafatis, Feb. 9, 2015.

Raymond B. Westcott III and Kelly R. Westcott, Dec. 15, 2014.

Judy S. Love and William Gary Love, Feb. 12, 2015.

Brandy Bailey-Ayala and Luis C. Ayala, Feb. 11, 2015.

Mariros Robedillo and Erwin Robedillo, Feb. 13, 2015.

Luis Guitierrez Uroza and Wendy Vargas, Nov. 14, 2014.

Christine Diane Brown and Culhaine Hugh Brown, Feb. 10, 2015.

Ivan Trinidad and Lydia Rodriguez Trinidad, Feb. 2, 2015.

James T. Dabin and Heather A. Von Zynda-Dabin, Feb. 13, 2015.

Chris Hamilton and Stephanie A. Hamilton, Feb. 13, 2015.

Kristina R. Newman and James M. Newman, Feb. 4, 2015.

Krista Oglesby McWhorter and Manuel Christopher McWhorter, Feb. 16, 2015.

Kristina D. Camesi and Lory J. Camesi, Feb. 4, 2015.

Richard W. Rudolph and Corinna Rudolph, Feb. 9, 2015.

Emery Frentzel and Drea Frentzel, Feb. 9, 2015.

Peter March Greb and Ann Bryant Greb, Feb. 9, 2015.

Tolanda V. Martin and Cornelius J. Martin, Feb. 16, 2015.

Categories: Local

Man who sought time with kids in police custody

Wed, 2/18/2015 9:34 AM

 

Grovetown police have in custody a man who allegedly told a mother Tuesday he would pay $200 to spend alone time with her children.

Chad Eric Stefani, of Broad Oak Road in Grovetown, was wanted on three felony arrest warrants for criminal intent child molestation, according to a statement from Grovetown Chief Gary Jones.

The Grovetown Public Safety Facebook page announced just before 11 p.m. that Stefani had turned himself in, saying “The (Stefani) suspect has surrendered and is in custody at our facility.”

Stefani allegedly approached the mother and her four children in the city and offered her $200 an hour to spend time with her daughters.

He told her that he was considering having children, according to a news release on the Facebook page.

Stefani has been accused before and turned himself in before.

According to Columbia County News-Times archives, two years ago he surrendered to police and was arrested after allegations made in several counties.

Stefani was charged with public indecency in Richmond County, the newspaper reported, released on bond, then surrendered to Columbia County authorities on a similar charge.

Stefani was accused of exposing himself to a female motorist on Wheeler Road on June 20, 2013. The day before, a Columbia County woman said, he exposed himself to her from his vehicle on Bluff Road.

Another woman told police she recognized Stefani’s photo in the media, stating he was the man who exposed himself to her on June 12, 2013 outside the Family Y on Belair Road in Evans.

The 23-year-old said she was eating lunch in her vehicle when a truck pulled up next to her. The driver, who she believes is Stefani, said, “Can I ask you a question?” He lifted himself up in his seat and exposed himself. The woman said she drove away, but didn’t get a tag number from the truck.

After hearing about similar incidents and recognizing Stefani’s photo, she called authorities.

A teen also called deputies after recognizing Stefani’s picture. The 18-year-old said she was driving on Columbia Road near Samarya Lane in Martinez on June 3, 2013 when a truck pulled up next to her vehicle. A passenger had a ferret and lifted it to show the truck driver, believed to be Stefani. The teen said Stefani lifted himself, pulled down his pants and exposed his penis to them.

Stefani is also accused of a similar incident in Edgefield County on April 4, 2013, the News-Times reported.

Categories: Local

Helping families afford adoptions

Wed, 2/18/2015 12:27 AM

Helping families afford adoptions

Categories: Local
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