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Man to be charged in slayings of girlfriend, officer

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A 26-year-old man with a history of trouble with au­thorities was arrested in con­nection with the killing of an Aiken police officer Sat­urday, just hours after, police say, he fatally shot his girlfriend in Augusta.

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Aiken Department of Public Safety Sgt. Wilson Dandy (second from left) joins officials from other law enforcement agencies at the scene of the Saturday morning shooting of Master Cpl. Sandra Rogers. Rogers became the second Aiken officer killed on duty in the past two months.  ZACH BOYDEN-HOLMES/STAFF
ZACH BOYDEN-HOLMES/STAFF
Aiken Department of Public Safety Sgt. Wilson Dandy (second from left) joins officials from other law enforcement agencies at the scene of the Saturday morning shooting of Master Cpl. Sandra Rogers. Rogers became the second Aiken officer killed on duty in the past two months.

Joshua Tremaine Jones is being held in the Aiken County Detention Center. He was arrested at 11:35 a.m. on Youman Street in Bates­burg, S.C., said Kathryn Richardson, a spokeswoman for South Carolina Law Enforcement Division.

Four hours earlier, police say Jones shot Master Cpl. Sandra Rogers, a 27-year veteran of Aiken Public Safety, who later died at Aiken Re­gional Medical Centers.

While authorities in South Carolina were searching for Jones, deputies in Richmond County discovered the body of his 21-year-old girlfriend, Cayce Vice, in her apart­ment on Washington Road. She had been shot in the head.

Jones will be charged in Vice’s slaying, said Richmond County sheriff’s Capt. Scott Peebles. The sheriff’s office obtained warrants for murder and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, he said.

At 7:30 a.m. Saturday, Rogers, 48, responded to a call of suspicious activity at Eustis Park on Edgefield Avenue in Aiken. Almost immediately, she was shot by the driver of a metallic blue BMW, which was spotted leaving the scene by other officers responding to the call.

Sonya Drummings, who lives on the corner of the park, said her daughter heard three gunshots and woke her up. When she ran to the door, she saw chaos in the park.

“It is usually a quiet neighborhood. I actually felt pretty safe here,” she said. “No one deserves to die do­ing their job.”

Authorities found Jones about 30 miles away on the north side of Batesburg, and he was taken into custody without incident.

Another tragedy

Rogers’ death comes just a little more than a month after Aiken Officer Scotty Richardson was shot and killed while on a traffic call at the entrance of Pace’s Run apartments on Brandt Court in Aiken. Three months ago, Richmond County Deputy J.D. Paugh was killed in the line of duty.

“It’s like a horrible nightmare playing over in front of us,” Sgt. Aaron Dowdy said in Eustis Park. “I’m still wearing a Richardson band on my wrist.”

With tears in his eyes, new Aiken Public Safety Director Charles Bar­ranco asked for the city of Aiken’s support as his office faces another tragedy.

“Thanks to the community for standing next to us again, and always,” he said at a news conference Saturday evening to announce that Rogers had died and Jones would be charged.

Attending the news conference was Jones’ father, James, who said the BMW was his and that his son had taken it Friday night.

“My heart goes out to officer Rogers’ family,” James Jones said. “There is great pain for all of us.”

Joshua Jones was born in North Augusta and attended North Au­gusta High School, although he did not graduate, his father said.

James Jones said his son had been “going through a lot of mental issues.”

“My condolences for Rogers and Cayce,” he said. “This is not in character of my family. I have to leave it in the hands of God.”

Rogers had been a part of Aiken Public Safety since 1984.

She received a distinguished ser­vice award and a lifesaving award in 2003 and a Certificate of Commendation in 2011.

“Master Cpl. Rogers was an invaluable street cop who exemplified the model of a Public Safety Officer,” Sgt. Jake Mahoney said.

Worst fears realized

On Friday night, the blue BMW was spotted outside the apartment building where Vice lived at The Greens on Washington, a complex on Washington Road in Augusta. Peebles said investigators are still working on the details of Vice’s kill­ing, but it likely occurred late Friday night or early Saturday.

Downstairs neighbor Harry Parker said Jones was unfriendly and didn’t interact with others in the apartment complex.

“If you spoke to him he didn’t speak,” Parker said.

Parker said he heard a loud thud and rumbling noises in the upstairs apartment Friday night that sounded like someone was running, or “hurrying to pack up and go.”

Donna Rigdon knew something was wrong when Vice didn’t show up for her 10 a.m. shift at Five Guys Burgers and Fries. Vice had worked at Five Guys for about two years and was never late.

“She was a great worker,” said Rigdon, the general manager at the Washington Road restaurant.

When she got no answer from Vice’s phone she was immediately concerned. Vice had missed almost two weeks of work recently after she said she was beaten by her boyfriend. Peebles confirmed that Vice had sworn a complaint against Jones for the assault around Jan. 8.

“He punched her in the face repeatedly,” Peebles said. A warrant for simple battery was taken out for his arrest, but deputies had not caught up with him, Peebles said.

Rigdon said Vice had recently let Jones back into her life because she was pregnant. She said she had counseled her against the idea, but Vice wouldn’t listen.

Not long after 10 a.m., Rigdon was on her way to Vice’s apartment, a little more than a mile away. Rigdon said she called the sheriff’s office to help her check on her employee.

“I just wanted to make sure she was OK,” she said.

Just after 10:40 a.m., Rigdon waited outside the apartment while the manager opened the door for a sheriff’s deputy.

“He came back and said, ‘This is now a crime scene,’ ” she said. “I was devastated.”

Peebles said Jones was a suspect in the slaying “almost immediately.” He has a history of arrests in Georgia and South Carolina dating back at least to 2002. Reports show he was charged as a juvenile at the age of 16 in an assault on his father in their Belvedere home in January 2002. Officials said Jones stabbed his father twice in the back and was sent to a juvenile justice facility in South Carolina.

A family’s sorrow

On Saturday afternoon, Howard Vice sat on the floor drinking his last beer at his barren apartment, not far from his daughter’s in The Greens. He wondered what he could have done to stop what had occurred.

“The police told me he shot her in the head in bed,” he said, shaking his head.

Howard Vice said he had been living with his daughter and Jones until last month, when they had a falling out over her boyfriend. He said he didn’t get along with Jones, who had moved in Oct. 31.

“There’s something wrong with a man when he stays in his bedroom all day long and don’t come out,” Howard Vice said. “I knew there was something wrong.”

Vice said his daughter had just turned 21 on Wednesday and was a “few weeks” pregnant.

“He beat her up about two weeks ago,” he said, offering a photo of his daughter’s battered face that he still has on his cell phone. “She turned right around and let him back in.”

He said his daughter dropped out of Westside High School and obtained a GED. She had been working and attending Augusta Technical College to become a medical assistant.

Ginny Vice said she spoke to her sister on the phone almost every day, but she didn’t know Jones had returned to the apartment.

“She was lying to me. She didn’t want me to know,” Ginny Vice said. “She knew we did not want him around her.”

Howard Vice said he was frustrated that Jones had never been arrested in connection with the assault on his daughter. If he had, the killings might not have happened, he said.

“The police let it go and now one of their own is dead,” he said. “But I can’t be mad at the police, she let him come back.”

THE VICTIMS

• Cayce Vice, 21, was found shot to death Saturday in her Augusta apartment. Vice worked at Five Guys Burgers and Fries and attended Augusta Technical College. Her father said she was “a few weeks” pregnant.

• Aiken Department of Public Safety Master Cpl. Sandra Rogers, 48, was shot Saturday morning while responding to a call in Eustis Park on Edgefield Avenue in Aiken. A 27-year veteran of the department, Rogers later died at a hospital.

THE SUSPECT

Joshua Tremaine Jones, 26, is suspected of fatally shooting Vice and Rogers in separate incidents. Vice, Jones’ girlfriend, had sworn a complaint against Jones, a North Augusta native, for assault earlier this month. Jones’ father offered his condolences to both women during a news conference Saturday.

OFFICER DEATHS

Three Augusta-area officers have been fatally shot since October. The Aiken Department of Public Safety is mourning a second officer in just two months’ time.

DEC. 20: Aiken Master Public Safety Officer Scotty Richardson, 33, was shot and killed while on a traffic call at the entrance of Pace’s Run apartments on Brandt Court. Stephon M. Carter, 19, of Aiken, who was wounded by police and captured at the scene, has been charged.

OCT. 23: On his way home from a special assignment, Richmond County Deputy J.D. Paugh, 47, stopped to check out a suspicious vehicle on Bobby Jones Expressway at Gordon Highway. Paugh was fatally shot by Tennessee National Guardsman Christopher Michael Hodges, 26, who then shot himself.

Comments (41) Add comment
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kiwiinamerica
942
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kiwiinamerica 01/28/12 - 03:58 pm
0
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It's actually about half a
Unpublished

It's actually about half a mile down the road from National Hills Shopping Center. It's closer to the IHOP on Washington Rd., just past the Augusta National.

fatboyhog
1948
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fatboyhog 01/28/12 - 04:27 pm
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There really are no words to

There really are no words to express my outrage at this moment. Well, there are, but I'll violate the terms of service. Three lives snuffed out by this worthless human being. Seems like this puke likes to shoot women in the head. Maybe that's the punishment that he deserves.

proud2bamerican
441
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proud2bamerican 01/28/12 - 04:48 pm
0
0
I am so sorry....

I am so sorry....

fatboyhog
1948
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fatboyhog 01/28/12 - 04:53 pm
0
0
Proud, maybe you should

Proud, maybe you should change your moniker. For the first time in my life, I am ashamed to be an American...it's been brewing for a while, but over the last few years, I have been ashamed.

Bobby Hill
0
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Bobby Hill 01/28/12 - 04:55 pm
0
0
Where can I sign up to be on
Unpublished

Where can I sign up to be on the execution squad?

xpresso1
68
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xpresso1 01/28/12 - 05:11 pm
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Such a horrible

Such a horrible story..prayers going out to this family who lost this beautiful young lady...this world is in a sad state of affairs

Asitisinaug
3
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Asitisinaug 01/28/12 - 05:13 pm
0
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No Bail, Solitary

No Bail, Solitary Confinement, Court, and when found guilty, take him to the chamber and be done with it already.

My prayers to this father and her family - such a senseless tragedy.

Willow Bailey
20580
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Willow Bailey 01/28/12 - 05:26 pm
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0
My condolences to Ms.Vice's

My condolences to Ms.Vice's father, family and friends.

jbartley
545
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jbartley 01/28/12 - 05:27 pm
0
0
you can only pray for her

you can only pray for her father and family...

storiesihaveread
358
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storiesihaveread 01/28/12 - 05:27 pm
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I know this girl and her

I know this girl and her sister. This is very sad. The issues that surround this case that I know of the person in question should have been in jail 2 weeks ago. Prayers to the family

kiwiinamerica
942
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kiwiinamerica 01/28/12 - 05:49 pm
0
0
When I look at this pretty
Unpublished

When I look at this pretty young lady's picture and I then look at the mugshots of her live-in.........*cough*............"boyfriend", which are posted in various places around the internet due to his frequent run-ins with the law, I just scratch my head.

That's all I'm going to say.

Gigglegal215
36
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Gigglegal215 01/28/12 - 05:49 pm
0
0
My prayers go out to this

My prayers go out to this young lady's family.

Gigglegal215
36
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Gigglegal215 01/28/12 - 06:27 pm
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Oh my Lord! I just read the

Oh my Lord! I just read the update of this story. This young lady was pregnant and the Police Officer is dead also. How can someone be so evil? Now we have to waste money on a trial and take care of him before and after the hearing.

GarfieldCat
0
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GarfieldCat 01/28/12 - 06:45 pm
0
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How did this young woman ever

How did this young woman ever take up with this piece of trash?

peace4784
117
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peace4784 01/28/12 - 07:02 pm
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It is a tragedy. Why are
Unpublished

It is a tragedy. Why are people surprised? Americans love to be entertained by violence which which brings out the worst in people. God comfort the hearts and minds of the family of this precious young lady. May the person responsible be quickly apprehended and pay the maximum penalty. Amen

Willow Bailey
20580
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Willow Bailey 01/28/12 - 07:29 pm
0
0
GarfieldCat, the same way

GarfieldCat, the same way millions of other young women do...looking for personal acceptance and significance in the process of trying to change/save a broken person.

I so wish there were a better way through education to prepare the young for life.

rmwhitley
5547
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rmwhitley 01/28/12 - 07:46 pm
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o.j. simpson, what a fine
Unpublished

o.j. simpson, what a fine example of interracial relationships you set.

bettyj
50
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bettyj 01/28/12 - 08:02 pm
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So sorry for this young girls

So sorry for this young girls life being snuffed out and for the baby, she was carrying. It`s a shame, the baby never had a chance in life. Prayers and condolences go out to her family. My understanding the police officer is in critical condition and hasn`t died..

kiwiinamerica
942
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kiwiinamerica 01/28/12 - 08:06 pm
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I guess we'll have to wait to
Unpublished

I guess we'll have to wait to find out the motive. Judging by this guy's "I'll kill you then go eat lunch" stare in his various mugshots, it wouldn't take much to set him off.

Three homicides in one day including the cold blooded execution of a pregnant woman. He'll get the death penalty and then three squares/day and a cot for 20 years while the various appeals processes run their course. In the meantime, he'll continue to waste oxygen.

bettyj
50
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bettyj 01/28/12 - 08:13 pm
0
0
Just heard, the police

Just heard, the police officer has died too.Had been with law enforcement 27 years and would have been 49 years old, next month. Prayers are with her family. This trash will be facing 3 counts of senseless murder and should be done the same way.

reba530
65
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reba530 01/28/12 - 08:38 pm
0
0
This is aweful. Instead of
Unpublished

This is aweful. Instead of wasting tax payers money fry the SOB. They didn't deserve to die, Now this man does not deserve the right to live.

scoopdedoop64
2366
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scoopdedoop64 01/28/12 - 08:43 pm
0
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Prayers for this family. So

Prayers for this family. So sorry to hear of such a terrible thing to have happen.

convertibleguy
0
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convertibleguy 01/28/12 - 08:51 pm
0
0
I have been a police officer

I have been a police officer for 36 years and am really sorry to say that I have seen this many times. I have spoken to many women and some men that allow a very dangerous person back into their lives after being assaulted. There just isn't anything you can say to them to see the light until they see it themselves. Most times the victim refuses to press charges and cooperate with us. I'm so sorry for her Dad and our police department.

Common.sense
465
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Common.sense 01/28/12 - 09:43 pm
0
0
With his record he should've

With his record he should've been incarcerated. The Justice system is broken.

curly123053
4674
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curly123053 01/28/12 - 09:51 pm
0
0
Why is being punched in the

Why is being punched in the face multiple times considered "simple assault"?? The laws are not nowhere harsh enough as it should be. This man needs to be 6 ft under ! He should have never been out of jail either with his record! How many times do we see this kind of justice around here??

alinfun
24
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alinfun 01/28/12 - 09:55 pm
0
0
I'm all in favor of the death

I'm all in favor of the death sentence for this low life! The electric chair needs to be re-introduced as a form of capital punishment and the dog who committed this act needs to roast and toast!! Well I will leave that up to his maker

Hope he gets whats coming to him!!

kiwiinamerica
942
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kiwiinamerica 01/28/12 - 11:51 pm
0
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The updated article makes for
Unpublished

The updated article makes for amazing reading. It describes a series of red flags which date all the way back to when this guy was 16, when he TWICE stabbed his own father in the back. His own father, for cryin' out loud!! HELLO!!!!

Then there's the situation with his girlfriend whom he brutally assaulted. I don't want to say anything against her father because he is in a world of hurt right now but if that was my daughter who had been beaten in such a cowardly and savage manner, Jones would be in a coma right now. The guy is 5'-7" tall, weighs a buck-50 and he beats up girls. Can you say "little man syndrome"??

The whole story is just one disaster after another and the truly sad thing is that Jones is not alone. There are plenty more like him out there, just waiting to go off.

openeyes73
0
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openeyes73 01/29/12 - 01:15 am
0
0
My heart goes out to the

My heart goes out to the family of the young lady who was killed and the police officer's family who was killed by this worthless piece of trash. How much of a coward he must be to find it amusing to kill a woman carrying his child and then a police officer. Yes I am the daughter of a police officer and it ticks me off to no end that trash like this is allowed to walk the streets. I have tried hard to understand the senseless killings of the very ones who are sworn to protect us but today's events just leaves me seeing red. I watched for years as my father put on that uniform to protect the very scum that committed this crime today. So for all the scum out there still walking the streets, while you may not respect them and while you may not have family at home who cares about you that man or woman who puts on that uniform everyday has a daughter/son at home who loves them deeply and wants to see them return home. So sorry folks this lady has no sympathy for the coward who did this today and I don't care what mental issues he had. He has issues with women in general.

Cadence
219
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Cadence 01/29/12 - 01:46 am
0
0
Domestic violence reaches so

Domestic violence reaches so much further than the two people involved. It should be treated as a first step towards homicide and the batterer locked away from society. If the victims can't stay away, then let the government take over before I get killed or you get killed. I am not willing to die because someone won't do what they need to do. God bless the family of the slain officer. The pain on her family's face is terrible.

Riverrunner30909
149
Points
Riverrunner30909 01/29/12 - 02:12 am
0
0
The should have emptied a 15
Unpublished

The should have emptied a 15 round clip in the SOB and claimed he tried to kill another offiicer and we would not have to put up with the 100's of thousand to keep this slime alive and try him.

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