Crime & Courts

Richmond Co. | Columbia Co. | Aiken Co. |

Augusta sees spate of violence since last week

Tuesday, July 23, 2013 7:50 PM
Last updated 8:09 PM
  • Follow Crime & courts

Since Friday morning, the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office has handled three homicides, the suicide of a slaying suspect, the shooting of a probation officer and the death of a probationer. Two more people remain in critical but stable condition from the shootings.



“It’s been a rough week,” Sheriff Richard Roundtree said. “But by no means are we discouraged.”

Roundtree said his team has been working this year to reverse trends he sees leading to homicides. Teen violence or gang shootings are one area they have been trying to crack down on.

Police were called to a loud house party in the 2500 block of East Kensington Drive late Thursday where they discovered Marquez Eubanks, 19, and Jeremy Whitehead, 21, with gunshot wounds. Eubanks died at Georgia Regents Medical Center early Friday. Whitehead remains in critical condition.

Less than 24 hours after the shooting, police arrested Dijon Cortez Abbott, 17, of James Drive.

Roundtree said investigators were able to quickly make an arrest because Abbott was already on their radar. The sheriff’s office’s intelligence team had been tracking information since a shooting after a party in Cambridge Subdivision about a month ago. No one was injured in that shooting, but police had been eyeing the two groups who had possibly been feuding.

“We think if we had more time to track that we might have been able to prevent it (the East Kensington Drive shooting),” Roundtree said Tuesday.

Youth violence as a whole is down, he said, but it’s still a problem for the Augusta area.

“That’s the type of violence we are trying to cut down on,” Roundtree said.

Domestic violence is less predictable.

A domestic violence shooting Sunday morning resulted in two slayings, one woman being critically wounded and the suspect’s suicide.

Richmond County sheriff’s Lt. Calvin Chew said Cedric Tobias Harris, 31, entered a home in the 3600 block of Stanton Court and shot his ex-wife, April Paulk, in the head. He then shot Paulk’s 35-year-old sister, Brandi Wilson, and her husband, Lee Wilson, 31.

Brandi Wilson and Lee Wilson were pronounced dead at 5:15 a.m. Sunday. Paulk remained in critical condition Tuesday.

Harris escaped to McDuffie County, where he fatally shot himself.

Seven of this year’s 12 homicides have been domestic-related.

“You have no control over those,” Roundtree said.

The sheriff said his department tries to look for reoccurring domestic violence cases that could develop into a homicide, but it can’t always be predicted. Earlier this year, he said, investigators stepped in to stop what they believe could have turned into a homicide. Roundtree would not elaborate on that case.

On Monday, the sheriff’s office assisted the Georgia Bureau of Investigation with the investigation of a probation officer who was shot at the Augusta Probation Office.

Authorities said Sherrill Latasha Warren was trying to arrest Travis Berrian, 29, when the two began to fight over a gun. Berrian was fatally wounded and Warren was shot in the abdomen.

Authorities said Berrian was being arrested on an active warrant for a June slaying in Statesboro, Ga.

Roundtree encouraged his team at Tuesday morning’s command staff meeting to use the probation office shooting as a learning experience. He asked the staff to always be aware of potential danger when making contact with anyone.

“That’s something that can’t be prevented,” he said. “We have to make contact with people. We have to engage people.”

Despite the recent rash of violence, homicides are still down by six compared with this time last year. Investigators handled 18 homicides through July of last year, with a total of 31 homicides by year’s end.

Comments (17) Add comment
ADVISORY: Users are solely responsible for opinions they post here and for following agreed-upon rules of civility. Posts and comments do not reflect the views of this site. Posts and comments are automatically checked for inappropriate language, but readers might find some comments offensive or inaccurate. If you believe a comment violates our rules, click the "Flag as offensive" link below the comment.
thauch12
6982
Points
thauch12 07/23/13 - 08:36 pm
6
4
“We think if we had more time

“We think if we had more time to track that we might have been able to prevent it"...YEAH RIGHT. There's nothing you can do to prevent idiots from being idiots, come on Roundtree.

gladtobeinna
121
Points
gladtobeinna 07/23/13 - 09:30 pm
4
0
I can't believe they don't

I can't believe they don't have metal detectors at this office.

pgapeach2
1331
Points
pgapeach2 07/23/13 - 10:24 pm
2
2
thauch12

The statement was made in reference to Abbott being on their radar for a prior shooting.

thauch12
6982
Points
thauch12 07/23/13 - 11:30 pm
5
1
pgapeach

Thanks for stating the obvious. It doesn't change the fact that Roundtree is blowing smoke up our youknowwhats with ridiculous assertions like his intelligence team "tracking" two gangs would have prevented this guy from opening fire at a party. Give me a break.

corgimom
36809
Points
corgimom 07/24/13 - 03:17 am
4
4
At last the Sheriff of RC

At last the Sheriff of RC publically acknowledges that Augusta has gangs, unlike Ronnie "There are no gangs in Augusta" Strength.

seenitB4
93819
Points
seenitB4 07/24/13 - 05:13 am
5
1
Roundtree

Wear your protective vest Tree...i think you will need it with gang activity....don't act like the Pope.

Riverman1
90733
Points
Riverman1 07/24/13 - 05:31 am
6
3
Sheriff Roundtree Gets IT

I believe Sheriff Roundtree gets IT. He recognizes the teen and gang violence and is working to bring law and order to areas that haven't had it before. We need more black leaders like him...white ones too.

soapy_725
43963
Points
soapy_725 07/24/13 - 06:03 am
0
0
It stopped raining. Track the timeline. LOL LOL
Unpublished

It stopped raining. Track the timeline. LOL LOL

soapy_725
43963
Points
soapy_725 07/24/13 - 06:47 am
0
0
Spate... a sudden flood, rush or outpouring. Wording is everyth
Unpublished

Spate... a sudden flood, rush or outpouring. Wording is everything

...point to ponder
779
Points
...point to ponder 07/24/13 - 07:09 am
3
1
Choice of words

...spate.... I would have said "Augusta suffers from continued violence".
It is what it is.

JRC2024
9998
Points
JRC2024 07/24/13 - 07:54 am
2
1
Thanks to the Sheriff for

Thanks to the Sheriff for trying to arrest all that do criminal acts. We do not need these types of people in the community. Maybe some could resist and head home for good. No tears from me.

Bulldog
1333
Points
Bulldog 07/24/13 - 08:16 am
5
3
Misdirected Concern

A number of posters here seem to be inferring that law enforcement is somehow responsible for preventing every violent act. While they do an excellent job of responding to crime, it is not their job to be a mother to every criminal in town. The vast majority of the responsibility falls on the community at large and it is the community at large which has failed miserably. I will specifically pick on the religious "leadership" in Augusta/Richmond County. Why have you allowed your "flocks" to degenerate into what we see today? Why do you accept the culture of the "hood" and fail to condemn the familial disintegration that spawns the violence that we see daily? We need a far better grade of leadership with a genuine concern for something other than their collection plates...
The RCSD is doing their job; you need to pick up your end!

chascushman
6653
Points
chascushman 07/24/13 - 08:34 am
6
3
"We need a far better grade
Unpublished

"We need a far better grade of leadership with a genuine concern for something other than their collection plates..."
bulldog, they have done a great job of spreading the entitlement and victimization mentality. The black leaders are as much to blame as the democrats and liberals.

noxiousfumes
490
Points
noxiousfumes 07/24/13 - 08:37 am
4
1
In spite of his arrogance,

In spite of his arrogance, and some questionable dept. actions recently, we have to remember that Roundtree was one of the top investigators in the dept. before his demotion under Strength. Also, working in the school system, he would have first hand knowledge about most of the gangs in the area, because that's the recruiting ground. So, his statement about tracking doesn't seem so far fetched to me. I agree with Corgimom that he at least acknowledges that we have a gang problem (which has been here for over 10 years).

augrichgal
327
Points
augrichgal 07/24/13 - 08:43 am
3
1
I still say along with many

I still say along with many others, he latched on to Operation Thunder, now Heat for show, Augusta has too much crime to put most effort in on traffic violations. Maybe now the "show" is over and he will start listening and open his eyes and crack down on high crime areas!! If anyone comes back and says Richmond County does NOT have crime I will blow a gasket. There are many things not even reported, we only know of the ones that astually make the news.

Cestlavie
147
Points
Cestlavie 07/24/13 - 08:43 am
3
0
To Bulldog: I take offense

To Bulldog: I take offense at your statement about pastors. Most pastors are very concerned about the state of the family and of our young black men in particular. Many churches have outreach programs that assist with mentoring, family counseling, community partnerships, etc. Your comment is a cheap shot and most of those young people involved in these activities are not a part of a faith community, which is part of the problem.

augrichgal
327
Points
augrichgal 07/24/13 - 08:45 am
2
0
Roundtree top investigator? I

Roundtree top investigator? I thought he was fired?

noxiousfumes
490
Points
noxiousfumes 07/24/13 - 09:02 am
3
1
Roundtree wasn't fired, he

Roundtree wasn't fired, he was demoted and instead of taking the demotion, got a job with the RCBOE police.

http://chronicle.augusta.com/stories/2008/09/16/met_473574.shtml

http://chronicle.augusta.com/news/education/2012-01-17/roundtree-named-r...

augrichgal
327
Points
augrichgal 07/24/13 - 09:00 am
2
0
some people are given the

some people are given the option to "resign"

lifelongresident
1323
Points
lifelongresident 07/24/13 - 03:16 pm
0
0
solution....
Unpublished

1) augusta get out of the public housing, "gub-i-ment" welfair business
2) build more, and more, BIGGER, AND BIGGER PRISONS
3)schools need to send students who are violent, disrespectful, disruptive, and not interested in getting an education back to their trifling, sorry azz, welfare recieving parent
4)judges need to hand out longer and longer prison sentences stop giving out probation
5)parole boards need to be abolished

rmwhitley
5547
Points
rmwhitley 07/24/13 - 05:16 pm
0
0
You just can't
Unpublished

do anything with those out-of-control Tea Party patrons. Trouble makers.

oldredneckman96
5115
Points
oldredneckman96 07/25/13 - 05:53 pm
0
1
Crime in Augusta
Unpublished

While Evans, Ga. is not crime free, as least today Evans was again making itself known on a nationally televised show in a good way. Lakeside High School senior Jessica Giddens was showcased along with the school students that voted her homecoming queen. The only time you see Richmond County on the news it is bad, now you know why those who could, left. Now, go fix yourself, Augusta! Eneny, Meany, Miney, Mo, catch a criminal by the toe, never ever let him go!

JRC2024
9998
Points
JRC2024 07/26/13 - 11:16 am
1
0
only in certain areas

only in certain areas oldredneck. I used to live in Evans also. Augusta is still a nice place and the traffic is horrible in Columbia County. I work in it everyday. For 43 years I have worked in Richmond, aiken and Columbia counties and never had a problem with anyone. Sure things get stolen. All of our product was removed from a house near Barton Village one time and also a church in North Augusta and ladders from a house in Evans. Crime is everywhere and not only in Richmond County unless someone looks thru rose colored glasses.

Back to Top

Top headlines

Georgia Regents' hospital plan chosen

Georgia Regents Medical Center won a lengthy and hardfought battle over two other Augusta hospitals to build the first hospital in Columbia County, the Georgia Department of Community Health ...
Search Augusta jobs