Several not-guilty pleas entered during arraignment



Several people charged with felonies in Columbia County pleaded not guilty at an arraignment hearing Friday.

Ted Howard Screws Jr., 44, pleaded not guilty to armed robbery and having a hoax device. Authorities say Screws, of Martinez, walked into First Bank of Georgia on Furys Ferry Road on June 28 and handed the teller a note and a homemade device.

Screws left with an undisclosed amount of money but was later located and arrested. The device was a fake pipe bomb. Screws was released from the Columbia County Detention Center Aug. 20 after posting a $40,000 bond, according to jail personnel.

George Scott Dillard, 46, pleaded not guilty to kidnapping, burglary, aggravated assault, terroristic threats, two counts of cruelty to children, criminal trespass and stalking. Authorities say Dillard, of Grovetown, beat his ex-girlfriend unconscious on July 28 inside her Martinez apartment in front of their two young sons.

Dillard is being held in the jail without bond.

An Evans teen accused of rape, aggravated child molestation and incest also pled not guilty at the hearing. Authorities say Blake Weems, 17, forced a 12-year-old girl to perform numerous sex acts.

Weems was released from jail after posting a $50,000 bond.

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Savannah River Site resumes normal activity

A suspicious item was discovered Wednesday afternoon at the Savannah River National Laboratory which prompted emergency responseactivities.

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