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East Boundary apartment complex troublesome spot for law enforcement

'Devil has taken over'

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The response to gunshots at River Glen Apartments has become an all-too-familiar routine.

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A Richmond County Sheriff's Office investigator videotaped the belongings of a shooting victim left behind at River Glen Apartments on Jan. 14.  MICHAEL HOLAHAN/STAFF
MICHAEL HOLAHAN/STAFF
A Richmond County Sheriff's Office investigator videotaped the belongings of a shooting victim left behind at River Glen Apartments on Jan. 14.


This East Boundary housing complex is one of the more troublesome spots for law enforcement, where Richmond County deputies responded to more than 850 calls in 2011. On Sunday, deputies found the body of Truemaine Jones, 27, in the parking lot. It was the third homicide in the 192-unit complex since May.

“I’m thinking the devil has taken over,” said a long-time River Glen resident who referred to himself as “The Preacher Man.”

Capt. Scott Peebles said it’s not the residents who cause the repeated problems, but visitors to the complex.

“It makes it unsafe for people who live there,” he said.

The most recent two homicide victims did not live in the apartments, and authorities continue to investigate whether their killings were related. Jones was a witness in the shooting death of Doniel Hicks, 24, at River Glen on Jan. 14 and told investigators he knew the suspect, according to Lt. Blaise Dresser.

In May 2010, deputies discovered the body of Angelo Daggett, who was fatally shot outside. Daggett did live at River Glen.

All three victims had criminal histories.

Peebles said residents are cooperative with officers and do what they can to diminish crime while keeping their families safe. More than 125 of the 868 calls to the complex in 2011 were from residents reporting suspicious goings-on.

“The residents have to be very cautious. They’re in a peculiar situation because they know we can’t be there 24 hours a day,” he said.

Kayla Cavazo crosses her fingers every time she sends her daughters out to play.

“I say, ‘Hopefully today there’s not going to be any drama,’ ” she said outside her apartment Friday.

Cavazo is one of the many single mothers living in the publicly subsidized apartment complex. Capt. Scott Gay said River Glen is primarily a women’s housing area, although there are a few cases where men are included on leases.

Cavazo said her concerns have increased since she moved in a year ago.

“The police are out here all the time. I guess they can’t see everything that goes on,” she said.

Vivian Preston walked the streets Friday morning looking for a way to help.

Her 21-year-old goddaughter lives there with her children. Preston had no words for the unending worry she feels.

“You can only imagine,” she said. “A bullet doesn’t have a name.”

Preston hopes to work with her church, Faith Outreach in Hephzibah, on a rally to stop the violence.

Although River Glen is Section 8 housing, it is not owned by the Augusta Housing Authority.

The property has changed hands many times and now is owned by River Glen Investors of Sherman Oaks, Calif., and managed by PK Management of Charlotte, N.C.

The housing authority’s role is to review rental applications for eligibility and send applicants to PK Management.

“We’re asking for PK Management to do more,” Gay said.

After the apartments became a consistent problem for deputies, the sheriff’s office opened a mini-substation at the entrance. Deputies can’t stay there all the time, however.

The sheriff’s office is asking the management to install gates at the front of the entrance, fix holes in the existing fence and enforce policies about visitors.

The sheriff’s office also plans to put more people from the special operations and the crime suppression team in the River Glen area.

Calls to PK Management were not returned.

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twolane
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twolane 02/10/12 - 08:06 pm
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the devil huh...... no just
Unpublished

the devil huh...... no just ignorant thugs.......its the greed of money and drugs HUMAN THINGS not the devil

Conservative Man
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Conservative Man 02/10/12 - 08:27 pm
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CNPO anyone?

CNPO anyone?

KelPierson
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KelPierson 02/10/12 - 09:02 pm
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I used to manage River Glen

I used to manage River Glen back in 2010. I begged the higher ups and the owners to install a security gate and new walls/fences around the entire property. Most of the residents there are not trouble makers. It's the drug mules who ride back and forth 24/7 and cut through River Glen from "the yellow store" to the back side of River Glen. Add to that, there is non stop foot traffic from East Augusta Commons. If the outsiders were forced to stay out, River Glen would be a much safer and pleasant place for these young families and children to live. Of course, when I asked, it was "all about money". How do you explain to these families that their loved ones are dea because you wanted to save a few bucks? As people start leaving there in droves, the money is going to dry up. Should have listened to someone who genuinely cared about River Glen and the residents and honestly wanted to help improve the quality of life for the whole community!!

raul
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raul 02/10/12 - 09:57 pm
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@Conservative Man. CNPO?

@Conservative Man. CNPO? What's that mean?

GaStang22
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GaStang22 02/11/12 - 03:43 am
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Outsiders didn't do this. It
Unpublished

Outsiders didn't do this. It started with the residents, they created a breeding ground for this type of behavior. This place wasnt decent in 2010. Back when I worked there about 8 years ago it was a hole filled with entitlement residents on the dole with bad attitudes!! You say it wasnt the residents, but would the drug mules be coming there if the residents werent buying or selling themselves??? We pay their rent, food stamps etc... They buy drugs. Don't even think the residents had nothing to do with it!! Ever notice almost every single section 8 place turns out like this???? And you dont think the residents play a HUGE part????? lol

cozzster
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cozzster 02/11/12 - 04:11 am
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"all three victims had
Unpublished

"all three victims had criminal histories."

Looks like someone just did the world a favor.

what is wrong
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what is wrong 02/11/12 - 07:17 am
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Everyone who lives there are

Everyone who lives there are not bad people, some are decent people. They do not want the bad element there either, but fear for their lives if they stand up. Some of them work, but still don't make enough to move out. Taking control of their own area, is really hard for them. Especially when the person you report, can come tell you that you reported them. Please stop judging people because of where they live, the trouble makers are our neighbors. It's a fact most of the crimes are commited by people who do not live there. The police has a good idea of who lives there and who doen't. It's hard to trust the police when you have been betrayed by them. If they report a thug, don't tell the thug who reported them. Not to offend you Gastang22 but did you report these offenses, and if so to who?

seenitB4
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seenitB4 02/11/12 - 07:55 am
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So what is the answer....do

So what is the answer....do we take a few out & place them in a middle class neighborhood.....(Mag Trace for example)...will that change everything for them.....should we experiement with humans to find a way to put a dagger in poverty??

Riverman1
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Riverman1 02/11/12 - 07:57 am
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Columbia County will soon

Columbia County will soon have its own River Glen. Richmond County won't have anything on us. Magnolia Trace will give us somewhere to drive to see the other side of town. You know sort of like going to China Town in NYC or something. Maybe we can make Magnolia Trace an attraction. We will have visitors go to Savannah Rapids and on the way out stop by our ghetto.

Riverman1
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Riverman1 02/11/12 - 08:00 am
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Yeah, I got your putting a

Yeah, I got your putting a dagger in poverty alright. The thing is if everyone had a six figure income and big houses, but a few had 7 figure incomes and bigger houses, we would start to say the six figure people were in poverty.

Riverman1
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Riverman1 02/11/12 - 08:01 am
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Seenit, thinking alike with

Seenit, thinking alike with the Mag Trace thing. High five.

Riverman1
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Riverman1 02/11/12 - 08:08 am
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I may be onto something about

I may be onto something about making Mag Trace a tourist attraction. Down by Hilton Head they have some villages for tourists. They sell some sweetgrass woven baskets that they get from China, dance around a little bit for the Yankees and charge them 10 bucks each. Mag Trace could sell T-shirts, project Ripple and Thunderbird for your authenic dining pleasure.

seenitB4
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seenitB4 02/11/12 - 08:11 am
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Thinking

Thinking alike...heh...:)

About poverty in the US......This is the very reason we need to retain factory jobs here...with decent pay.......all the big talk about college-college-college just doesn't work for all.......I wish a politician would tell the truth & say that not all have the desire-intelligence-or get up & go to expand their horizon.....what made America work in the past can work today..

Riverman1
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Riverman1 02/11/12 - 08:23 am
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Yep, I harp on the fact too

Yep, I harp on the fact too many go to college a good bit. One of the biggest mistakes this country has made is overbuilding colleges and making everyone believe they can and should go to college. Not some, but MOST, should not go to college. We leave them in debt for decades with useless degrees. I'd guess only about 10% of the population should go to college. Even if they come up with some BS degree, and I do mean BS, they are not going to be happy or adequate in their careers. We need technicians, we need blue collar workers.

Riverman1
87155
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Riverman1 02/11/12 - 08:25 am
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Matter of fact, everyone

Matter of fact, everyone shouldn't finish high school even. Some people are not cut out for it and are disruptive when made to stay in school. Some of these young people will work like heck and become successful the old fashion way...hard work.

howcanweknow
2306
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howcanweknow 02/11/12 - 09:04 am
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Tend to agree, River. Not

Tend to agree, River. Not everyone is suited for a college education. Nothing wrong with technical or trade schools so you can learn a job and make a living.

Far too many of our "colleges" are little more than advanced high schools. The curriculum is diluted so much that folks who really don't belong in college can still graduate with a "degree" in something.

blues550
380
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blues550 02/11/12 - 09:08 am
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Mag Trace could even have
Unpublished

Mag Trace could even have simulated drive by shootings for the tourists...wait a minute,,,they might not be simulated,

David Parker
7923
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David Parker 02/11/12 - 10:04 am
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U can mix champagne and

U can mix champagne and ripple, u get champipple. :)

I thank you.

THere was only one comment that was directed at the owner/management. It's probable telling that the article states calls to them went unanswered. I wonder if the good folks in sunny California are even made aware that 3 souls perished on their property due to violence. It's a problem for everyone, not just those 3 and their families, but as far as taking steps to get involved, it's all put on the RCSO and residents.

I strongly agree about the pseudo-importance of graduating high school and college. Education is so important but everyone being convinced it's imperative to take it to the N-th degree isn't warranted. It should be a viable option for young people to step out of the system and begin working to gain experience, which is as invaluable as a degree. Just ask anybody who doesn't use their's and sits on a pile of debt for student loans.

Jane18
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Jane18 02/11/12 - 10:41 am
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I was thinking very much what

I was thinking very much what GaStang22 wrote at 2:43am...........

madgerman
236
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madgerman 02/11/12 - 11:26 am
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If a bar or a store or any
Unpublished

If a bar or a store or any other business has multiple killing in their parking lot, the solution is to close them or require that they hire security guards. Why hasn,t the license for this facility been revoked - money and lots of it. Maybe if they closed it and these people had no places to stay, they would actually have to find jobs or move to Atlanta.

JRC2024
9341
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JRC2024 02/11/12 - 12:20 pm
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The owners in Ca. did not

The owners in Ca. did not cause the deaths and in my opinion they are not responsible. And yes it is about money, they purchased the property to make a profit. If there was no market for drugs there then the dealers would not be there. Violence follows crime and drugs. KEEP THEM THERE AND NOT IN OUR NICE AREAS where people are paying their own way. I do feel sorry for people caught in a trap but having multiple children without the means to support them is just plain nuts and will put you in places like this. The participants do not think of the responsibility they have created. GaStang is 100% right in his comment.

Conservative Man
5577
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Conservative Man 02/11/12 - 03:56 pm
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To raul 8:57 last night.

To raul 8:57 last night. "What's a CNPO?"A Chronic Nuisance Property Ordinance. They are used all over the country to bring the owners of properties with repeated police calls to the table to help solve the problem...Augusta looked at one last year or the year before, but our city attorney...bless his heart....drew one up then promptly called it un-constitutional. Also some well known slumlords in town screamed like stuck pigs when it was mentioned, saying "you can't hold US accountable for our tenants behavior". Totally misunderstanding that the ordinance is meant to be used as a tool for GOOD landlords to rid themselves and neighborhoods of troublesome tenants....
It's fairly easy to research...google "chronic nuisance property ordinance"...

AutumnLeaves
8507
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AutumnLeaves 02/11/12 - 04:23 pm
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If only the people that say

If only the people that say oh, it won't happen to me, understood what so many of us that are "crying in the wilderness" do understand. Bullets don't have names on them. If they start flying, it doesn't matter who your friends are, how you happened to be in the vicinity, whether you've lived a blameless life or chosen a life of crime, you can just as easily be a victim as the worst example of bad choices a person can make. And you'll be just as dead, innocent or not. People that turn a blind eye and don't report crime are guilty of complicity. I don't have any respect for them. And people that target people that do report crime should have the book thrown at them. They are not always who you would think they would be, either. A few of them were corrupt vice and narcotics cops before they landed up in Federal Prison a few years back. This problem is not a simple matter.

Iwannakno
1533
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Iwannakno 02/12/12 - 12:05 am
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This place has been trouble
Unpublished

This place has been trouble for years...didn't it used to be known as another name back in the 90's?

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