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Shoplifting suspect stabs Marine, police say

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A Marine collecting Toys for Tots donations at Augusta's Best Buy was stabbed in the back Friday while helping to subdue a shoplifting suspect.

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Tracey Attaway  Richmond County Jail Photo
Richmond County Jail Photo
Tracey Attaway


Fellow Marines identified the injured man as Cpl. Phillip Duggan, 24, who spent part of Black Friday recuperating at Eisenhower Army Medical Center with injuries that were not life-threatening.

Tracey Attaway, 39, of Waynesboro, Ga., was jailed and charged with armed robbery, aggravated assault and possession of a knife in the commission of a crime.

Orvin Smith, a sales manager at Best Buy, said the incident occurred about 1:15 p.m. when a man was seen on surveillance videos placing a laptop under his jacket. Store staff asked Attaway to return the merchandise, and the situation began to escalate.

"He was really irate. A whole lot of energy. ... he finally let go of the laptop, ran out the front door, knocked one of my employees down and pulled out a knife so he could make sure he could get out the front door," Smith said.

Outside the door were four Marines and seven volunteers collecting donations for Toys for Tots.

"(Duggan) clotheslined him, and after that he kind up got up and started swinging a knife around," Smith said.

Gunnery Sgt. Robert Richie said Attaway "came over the top and got (Duggan) in the back."

Attaway ran again but didn't get far before Richie, several other Marines and members of the store's loss-prevention team tackled him in the parking lot and held him until deputies arrived.

Gunnery Sgt. Sherry Barrera, who also serves as the Toys for Tots coordinator, opted to close operations for the day.

"When a Marine gets injured, we just shut it down, go to the hospital, make sure he's OK and make sure he gets proper treatment," she said.

Barrera said Duggan joined the unit about three months ago. Although she has had the opportunity to drill with Duggan only a few times, she said she had heard wonderful things about him.

"My boss, who has served with him before, did say he was an outstanding Marine," Barrera said.

According to Richmond County authorities, Attaway also tried to steal two digital cameras, an Xbox game, a PS3 game and a PS3 game controller with a combined value of $1,365.

Comments (100) Add comment
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jam25557
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jam25557 11/26/10 - 02:06 pm
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I was there, the victim is a

I was there, the victim is a Marine that was there collecting money for Toys for Tots.

GoGators2010
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GoGators2010 11/26/10 - 02:08 pm
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Congrats on the timeliness

Congrats on the timeliness AC. Good job.

crackerjack
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crackerjack 11/26/10 - 02:08 pm
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Wow, why would anyone stab a

Wow, why would anyone stab a volunteer trying to help the poor kids?
I hope there were some folks around to catch the culprit.

CobaltGeorge
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CobaltGeorge 11/26/10 - 02:28 pm
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Now is the time that all

Now is the time that all Veterans and Military need to step in. "No Man Left Behind" The local LE will not do anything to bring the deserved justice that is needed.

CobaltGeorge
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CobaltGeorge 11/26/10 - 02:30 pm
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Welcome to Augusta, the Crime

Welcome to Augusta, the Crime Free City.

TrulyWorried
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TrulyWorried 11/26/10 - 02:32 pm
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Crackerjack -"Cute" remarks

Crackerjack -"Cute" remarks are in the wrong place here - sorry lot that has no sense of decency - stab or shoot - that's the motto to live by.
And a Merry Christmas to all - no - to all the good folks and there are a lot of them, thank God.

charliemanson
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charliemanson 11/26/10 - 02:36 pm
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The patrons at Best Buy have

The patrons at Best Buy have been getting a little rowdy there, lately.

crackerjack
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crackerjack 11/26/10 - 02:39 pm
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I typed the comment before

I typed the comment before the first one, but it came up second. Go figure!

Asitisinaug
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Asitisinaug 11/26/10 - 02:44 pm
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CobaltGeorge, the RCSO (local

CobaltGeorge, the RCSO (local LE) has solved 98% of murders from this year and last year excluding the 2 that just occurred this past weekend and have not been added into statistics. They also exceeded 90% solvancy in violent crimes in the area thus far for this years statistics. Saying local LE will do nothing to bring justice is an undeserveed, unwarranted and unfounded slap in the face to those doing their best to protect, serve and solve crime in our area.

Looking to point fingers, start with the criminals as they are the true problems. Second, once caught, "the system" becomes part of the problem from the DA's office plea bargins to the weak punishments issued from our liberal judges in the area.

As for crime prevention and pro-active policing, your county commissoners cut 14,000 man hours from the RCSO in November and and December by furloughing all employees from 2 shifts. They approved cutting 35,000 man hours thus far from next year along with an additional $750,000.00 from the Sheriff's budget. This compared to Columbia County who already pays more, has far better benefits, is less dangerous to work, per officer has 50% less call volume and issued 6% pay increases this year.

Not that is directly effects how officers work or respond but pay cuts, furloughs, no educational benefits, terrbile health insurance, etc. compared to other local agencies and agencies of the same size throughout the state causes the RCSO to have higher turnover. Finding new highly trained and seasoned officers apply in RC simply does not happen anymore and will not until the commissoners really want pro-active policing from well trained officers.

The RCSO does a great job under difficult circumstances with little pay or benefits and rare showing of appreciation from the commissoners or community. And, community policing takes more than a police officer, it takes the entire community in a true partnership.

fatboyhog
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fatboyhog 11/26/10 - 02:47 pm
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Cobalt, local LE will do

Cobalt, local LE will do everything in it's power to bring the deserved justice to the criminal. It's the courts and the jury that you need to worry about. LE can only do so much, and they are only part of the equation.

humbleopinion
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humbleopinion 11/26/10 - 02:47 pm
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It's too bad that the Marine

It's too bad that the Marine didn't do what he is trained to do....Kill the enemy. Criminals ARE the enemy of a decent society. My hat is off to the Marine for his intervention! The story does say that a suspect is in custody.

fatboyhog
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fatboyhog 11/26/10 - 02:56 pm
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Asitis, also note that

Asitis, also note that administrators who don't care about their employees doesn't help morale either. The "doing more with less" mantra is getting old. Everyone knows what the pay is and what the benefits are before they take the job. A little appreciation would help. You get what you pay for. You treat your men (and women) like dirt, what level of service do you think the citizens are going to get?

CobaltGeorge
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CobaltGeorge 11/26/10 - 02:58 pm
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I don't care what the

I don't care what the circumstances are of this Marine getting stabbed. The suspect piece should not be in custody. Oh, I forgot, Asitisinaug said that RCSO can no longer afford guns on duty.

fatboyhog
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fatboyhog 11/26/10 - 03:01 pm
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If not in custody, where

If not in custody, where should he be? You do realize that there are laws that the police need to follow before deadly force can be used, right? Just because he was involved in a violent crime does not give the police, or anyone for that matter, the right to shoot the suspect, unless the circumstances dictate.

jam25557
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jam25557 11/26/10 - 03:03 pm
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The "suspect", although he is

The "suspect", although he is known to be the one who did it, was trying to steal a laptop from the store and the marine tried to stop him. For those of you wondering about race, or the one person wondering about it, the Marine was either white or a light skinned Hispanic and the person who stabbed him was a black male. This should not matter though. Another Marine tackled the man who committed the crime and held the man down with help from others until several RC deputies arrived and arrested the man.

Asitisinaug
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Asitisinaug 11/26/10 - 03:10 pm
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FatBoyHog, I totally agree

FatBoyHog, I totally agree with you regarding how employees are treated and that starts with the commissoners and goes all the way down. However, if you want to keep good deputies, pay and benefits do matter as they will use the RCSO as a stepping stone and we will continue to be a revolving door agency. Without good and experienced deputies policing becomes far more difficult and money is wasted on training the basics over and over to new deputies.

Also, in addition to appreciation, money does become important as life scenerios change. Young new deputies start off enjoying the job and not worrying about the pay but when you get married or have a child or anything of the such, you then realize you need to look for a new job in a decent paying department.

Bravo to the Marine and the citizens who stepped up to the plate and helped out. Now, lets just hope our judges do the same.

ColbaltGeorge, nothing you are saying is ethical, legal or acurate.

CATFISHSTEW
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CATFISHSTEW 11/26/10 - 03:06 pm
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Is it just me or....everyone

Is it just me or....everyone is alittle short fused today? If someone comments,there is someone else to chastize them for their comment.
Can't we just all get along?

CobaltGeorge
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CobaltGeorge 11/26/10 - 03:07 pm
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Thanks for correcting me. The

Thanks for correcting me. The suspect piece didn't want to kill him because he directed his knife into the Marine in such a matter to miss any vital organs that could have cause death so the Marine will live and the suspect can be back on the street in a few days. My oversight for my opinion.

RoadkiII
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RoadkiII 11/26/10 - 03:10 pm
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SEMPER FI, Marine. May your

SEMPER FI, Marine. May your recovery be swift. From an old soldier.

CobaltGeorge
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CobaltGeorge 11/26/10 - 03:10 pm
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Thanks Jam25557 for the

Thanks Jam25557 for the information. The Marines must be falling back on their training.

CobaltGeorge
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CobaltGeorge 11/26/10 - 03:11 pm
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Second RK.

Second RK.

Batman
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Batman 11/26/10 - 03:13 pm
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Wishing the Marine a speedy

Wishing the Marine a speedy recovery and I hope the culprit spends many Christmases in prison.

CobaltGeorge
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CobaltGeorge 11/26/10 - 03:16 pm
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Batman, would like to take

Batman, would like to take odds he will be home for Christmas? The going odds are 97 to 1.

CobaltGeorge
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CobaltGeorge 11/26/10 - 03:27 pm
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Asitisinaug "ethical, legal

Asitisinaug "ethical, legal or acurate." Your right, I'm wrong so live with what you got.

fatboyhog
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fatboyhog 11/26/10 - 03:33 pm
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Cobalt, as much as I may

Cobalt, as much as I may agree with you, that the vermin needs to be exterminated, the fact is that we do live in the U.S. Due Process is a right that every U.S. citizen is guaranteed. The police, nor citizens, can just go around shooting the vermin. If he was in the act, then shoot him..one he is subdued, you cannot use deadly force, no matter how much you want to. Our justice system works the best that it can. I'd rather have it that way, then another way. Having said that, once convicted, the animals need to be treated like animals. Stack them like cork wood. The sentence should be served. No parole. We need real "truth in sentencing" laws.

Patty-P
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Patty-P 11/26/10 - 03:42 pm
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Why hasn't the thief been

Why hasn't the thief been charged with anything yet?

CobaltGeorge
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CobaltGeorge 11/26/10 - 03:46 pm
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Don't get me wrong fatboyhob,

Don't get me wrong fatboyhob, I have been in 6 far east countries and our Judicial system is the best in the world but has lost it's correcting power in too many of our citizens. If this same incident had happen in parts of Thailand, that piece suspect, after the Marine was transport to the hospital for treatment, would have been held down and one finger would have been chopped off. He then would have been let go to that care of himself. No trail, No prison No tax payer money wasted. If this was carried out here, I can guarantee you that shoplifting would come to a stop. I really hate to see America use this type of system but look and read daily to see what we have is solving our crime.

fatboyhog
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fatboyhog 11/26/10 - 03:46 pm
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"according to the jail Web

"according to the jail Web site". You can bet he's been charged, it just isn't posted on the web site. I'm sure if a reporter called, or had our world famous talk show host get with his contacts, they'd find out what the charges are..I'm thinking, at a minimum, Shoplifting and Aggravated Assault.

tfh
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tfh 11/26/10 - 03:57 pm
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..tis the season

..tis the season

myusername
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myusername 11/26/10 - 04:01 pm
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Made it onto Drudge. Great

Made it onto Drudge. Great publicity for Augusta.

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