Police hold back crowds at Laney Walker store eviction

PHOTOS BY JAMES DOBBS/ SPOTTED
Sheriff Roundtree (gray suit) talks to the crowd
Tuesday, March 26, 2013 2:45 PM
Last updated Wednesday, March 27, 2013 2:37 PM
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 Richmond County sheriff’s officers were called Tuesday to fend off crowds hoping to make off with merchandise that had been set outside an Augusta grocery store during an eviction.

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Employees and hired men gather piles of food discarded by Laney Supermarket. Everything went into trash bins.   EMILY ROSE BENNETT/STAFF
EMILY ROSE BENNETT/STAFF
Employees and hired men gather piles of food discarded by Laney Supermarket. Everything went into trash bins.


Officials estimated 200 to 300 people filled the parking lot at Laney Supermarket, 843 Laney-Walker Blvd., after word spread that the Richmond County Marshal’s Office was enforcing an eviction at the business.

Officials said onlookers became angry when they learned they would not be allowed to take away food and other sundries that were piled outside the grocery as “abandoned property.”

The crowd dissipated after a swarm of deputies arrived, along with Sheriff Richard Roundtree, to assist the three marshals who had been initially assigned to the eviction.

“There is the potential to have people fighting and causing problems,” Lt. Calvin Chew said. “That’s not something we want.”

There were no arrests in the resulting confusion, but groups of people remained to watch the proceedings, many clutching empty bags and grumbling.

Tiffany Serles said she heard about the eviction from her aunt who lives nearby.

“She said they evicting Gurley’s,” Serles said, referring to the former name of the neighborhood market. “So, I came down here to get some of the stuff.”

Serles was watching with several friends while workers scooped up the food and other merchandise in trash cans which were in turn dumped into two garbage bins that officials said were destined for the Richmond County landfill.

“It’s a shame that they are just throwing all this stuff away and not even donating it to a shelter or anything,” she said.

Her friend, Victoria Williams, said she heard about the eviction on Facebook, as did many others. Word spread fast, and soon the parking lot was packed with people and cars waiting for a chance to take away the spoils.

“There are people with babies who need diapers out here,” she said.

Teresa Russell, a chief deputy with the marshal’s office, said the landlord, SunTrust Bank, was paying to have the displaced merchandise hauled away.

She said the tenant, Il Ki Choi, of Sun and Food LLC, could have avoided the commotion if he had moved out when notified by the court.

“They’ve known about this since Feb. 13,” Russell said. “They could have moved out anytime before today.”

SunTrust notified the tenant Jan. 1 that he had 30 days to vacate the property because the lease would not be renewed, according to court records.

A court-ordered eviction notice was served Feb. 13. Russell said the tenant failed to file an answer, so a judge signed the final order Feb. 27. SunTrust delayed scheduling the eviction until Tuesday.

According to Russell, a final notice was posted on the grocery’s door Friday. The tenant removed some goods from the store Tuesday morning before leaving, she said.

When reached by phone Tuesday afternoon, Choi said he was busy and could not answer questions.

Johanne Vargas, an agent for property manager FirstService Residential Realty, based in Sandy Springs, Ga., said she was unable to discuss the matter when asked why the groceries were not donated.

Joseph Young, who helps run a youth mentoring program in the same shopping center as the supermarket, watched marshals stand guard as food was tossed into the trash.

“We could have gotten some of this stuff and done something special for the kids this weekend,” Young said.

Comments (107)

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lifelongresident
1311
Points
lifelongresident 03/26/13 - 02:48 pm
0
1

tyhpical obama's people when

Unpublished

tyhpical obama's people when something's free here they are but tall them to work for it then they will cuss you out...'DEYS GIBBIN AWAY FEE FOOD DOWN AT GURLEY'S LETS BE GOIN HURRY UP BE-FO EBBY THING BE GONE FO SHO CAINT NOT BE DO LET ALL DEY GOOT STUFF BE GONE FO SHO WIT IT ALL CAUSE WE GIT WELFARE DONT NOT WONT TO WERK WIT FO WELFARE FEE STUFF FO SHO"

Jake
30448
Points
Jake 03/26/13 - 02:52 pm
7
4

Is this one......

.....of the areas designated as a food desert?

Cameron Poe
634
Points
Cameron Poe 03/26/13 - 03:11 pm
15
4

So since the store was

So since the store was closing everyone came out of the woodwork assuming that they should be allowed free reign over all the items? They were then furious because they all thought wrong? Am I the only one that feels this is a point that need not be explained? I guess its time to get out the canopies and tailgating gear so that the rest of us can be first in line for the next store closure!

chascushman
6653
Points
chascushman 03/26/13 - 03:12 pm
21
14

Just a typical bunch of Obama

Unpublished

Just a typical bunch of Obama supporter trying to get more free stuff.

lifelongresident
1311
Points
lifelongresident 03/26/13 - 03:16 pm
0
1

KSL just offer "free stuff"

Unpublished

KSL just offer "free stuff" and the animals in people do not come out, the animals come out like feeding time at the zoo they know when its time to be fed and the obammy people about to riot outside of gurley's are the same as zoo animals except the animals rely on handlers to feed them becasue they are unable to fend for themselves in their natural state, while the animals outside of gurley's are there because they are just looking for a free handout unwilling to purchase the merchandise just waiting for help from the "gubment" to put the stuff on the curb so they can fight over it like a pack of animals

Buckys Friend
77
Points
Buckys Friend 03/26/13 - 03:21 pm
19
6

When my baby was little and

When my baby was little and needed diapers, I had to pay for them. My goodness, this lady thinks she should have free diapers. Take the darn things when she didn't pay for them! These people probably already have the EBT card. So, I pay for their groceries and now they want to steal diapers.

allhans
21992
Points
allhans 03/26/13 - 03:21 pm
13
2

Oh my God..How low can we

Oh my God..How low can we go....

Sweet son
8301
Points
Sweet son 03/26/13 - 03:29 pm
7
3

Ancestors of the 190 riots!

Hope the AC has a gallery of all of their mugs!

PUPPYMOMMA
1271
Points
PUPPYMOMMA 03/26/13 - 03:51 pm
12
3

There are people with babies

There are people with babies that need fathers to help with their diaper needs. The pictures are worth a thousand words. Disgusting that people are acting like a bunch of jackals waiting on their turn at the corpse. Could you imagine the melee that would have occurred if help had not been called in?

triscuit
2445
Points
triscuit 03/26/13 - 03:52 pm
19
2

I am totally against all this

I am totally against all this mob entitlement stuff, but really...if they were tossing it into dumpsters anyway.....? It does seem a waste...should have been donated to the Food Bank or a shelter at the least.

triscuit
2445
Points
triscuit 03/26/13 - 03:56 pm
8
4

and honestly...THIS is

and honestly...THIS is something that the Sheriff himself has to attend to???

PUPPYMOMMA
1271
Points
PUPPYMOMMA 03/26/13 - 04:07 pm
15
1

I actually think it is a good

I actually think it is a good thing that Sheriff Roundtree showed up. He's right down the street anyway. These are the same people that voted for him so maybe they felt better hearing from him why they were not allowed to pilfer.

Grace422
233
Points
Grace422 03/26/13 - 04:12 pm
18
3

Just reviewed the pictures..

Why aren’t these folks at work?? They look abled bodied to me.. Some read about it on face book.. Need diapers well then get a job. We really need to put a time limit in place for welfare..

Dixieman
10493
Points
Dixieman 03/26/13 - 04:29 pm
12
7

5,802,776 POINTS

Wait - didn't Obama promise we could have this free stuff? Like the Obamaphone? Just another tragic result of the degeneration and decline of this once-great country.
At least the Sheriff showed up and there was no violence. Small rays of hope.
Also re the photo caption: these are NOT U.S. Marshals, but Richmond County Marshals -- there is a BIG difference, AC! I was trying to figure out the Federal dimension of a common or garden variety state law eviction.

kiwiinamerica
840
Points
kiwiinamerica 03/26/13 - 04:45 pm
0
0

Phew!!

Unpublished

Lucky they weren't tossing out cell phones instead of food. Things could have gotten really ugly, really quickly if that was the case.

Pops
4561
Points
Pops 03/26/13 - 04:45 pm
16
0

Just a thought

here. Maybe if some of these people had bought goods from this neighborhood store they might have been able to keep their doors open.

BamaMan
1817
Points
BamaMan 03/26/13 - 04:56 pm
7
6

I have a few

words, but the entitlement crowd wouldn't like it, so I'll just laugh at this whole situation on my own. Typical

CobaltGeorge
139297
Points
CobaltGeorge 03/26/13 - 05:18 pm
8
6

Pops

it probably closed down because it didn't accept EBT cards.

Pops
4561
Points
Pops 03/26/13 - 05:26 pm
9
5

I take it

there won't be a Publix or Fresh Market taking over the lease.

countyman
16938
Points
countyman 03/26/13 - 05:50 pm
5
9

Laney Walker

I'm glad to see the local sheriff wanted to be proactive in this situation.

There's only two Fresh Market locations in the entire metro(almost 600k) and CSRA(over 700k). The West Augusta location finally expanded in 2009, and the Aiken location didn't open until this year(March). I'm willing to bet the Laney Walker neighborhood attracts some type of nicer grocery store in the future. The new residential/businesses, Medical District construction, and the proximity to the CBD. I'm positive Laney Walker, Bethlehem, or somewhere off 15th street near Josey will attract the first private or public student housing development outside of the GGHF site/Summerville campus/Fat mans old location.

nocnoc
31231
Points
nocnoc 03/26/13 - 06:44 pm
6
0

Due to article update I

Due to article update I have withdrawn my comment.
It is no longer applicable.

Grandpa Jones
1003
Points
Grandpa Jones 03/26/13 - 06:27 pm
7
2

...

Wonder how many tax dollars did we save today by having Roundtree as sheriff

Pops
4561
Points
Pops 03/26/13 - 06:36 pm
5
14

Maybe

the sheriff just showed up to get him some. Just a little late......

nocnoc
31231
Points
nocnoc 03/26/13 - 06:39 pm
7
3

Grandpa Jones - likely had the best comment

It would have gotten messy quickly if Sheriff Roundtree didn't happen to be available.

Given Laney Walker gangs likely have more ammo that the police right now thanks to Homeland Security's massive ammo purchases, I would hate to see any mob go real violent and ugly.

IAmISaid
198
Points
IAmISaid 03/26/13 - 06:41 pm
12
7

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Unpublished

I give you three generations of welfare state, Great Society liberalism. An entire society of individuals raised in a culture of entitlement, who feel no particular need to work for anything, who blame anyone and everyone else for their problems, and who determinedly believe the world must take care of them simply because they exist. Fabulous!

rmwhitley
5121
Points
rmwhitley 03/26/13 - 06:54 pm
0
0

As serles

Unpublished

says I came down to steal me some.

ClearCookies
133
Points
ClearCookies 03/26/13 - 06:56 pm
14
4

Did the city of Augusta

Unpublished

Did the city of Augusta REALLY waste that much food and dry goods???

Sigh....and the beat goes....

Jesus would have helped the poor. Period.

When will we ever turn back to Him?

Delirious58
57
Points
Delirious58 03/26/13 - 06:58 pm
11
8

Racism still in Augusta

Racism still in Augusta

Just My Opinion
4718
Points
Just My Opinion 03/26/13 - 07:01 pm
15
1

countyman, do you REALLY

countyman, do you REALLY think that a "nicer" grocery store will open up in that neighborhood? I'm thinking you're just being your usual positive self when it comes to promoting all things Augusta. If you think the place would stand a chance, why don't you promote that idea to some of your more influential and rich black friends so they can "give back" to that neighborhood in that way? It'd be hard. After all, they don't live there..you really think they're going to put up a business there? Hey, it'd be great if someone did it.

fatboyhog
1499
Points
fatboyhog 03/26/13 - 07:04 pm
11
3

Define the word Racism

Delirious, please define the word "racism" and after defining it, please explain how you deem that racism applies here.

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