Originally created 11/08/97

Additional area news



Police seek thief of money orders

Grovetown police are looking for a man who they say is a flimflam artist.

The man -- described as a slim black male with a Jamaican accent, about 5 feet 9 inches tall and wearing a gray business suit -- approached several businesses Thursday and successfully defrauded one out of about $870, according to police reports.

In each case, the man requested several money orders for large amounts and then attempted to leave the business without paying.

In one case, at Gurley's Grocery Store, the man placed the money orders in an envelope and made a switch, leaving a similar envelope behind, while he left the business, supposedly to retrieve his money, said Investigator Carol Wolfe of the Grovetown Public Safety Department.

He unsuccessfully attempted the same trick at two other Grovetown businesses, Investigator Wolfe said.

Gunman holds up area motel

A Washington Road motel was robbed Thursday night by a gunman who got away with more than $500.

A man walked into the Hampton Inn, 3030 Washington Road, brandishing a semiautomatic handgun, and demanded money. Motel clerk Erwin Maurice Robinson handed the robber the cash register drawer containing $563, according to police reports.

Pupils treated for fumes

GRANITEVILLE -- Twenty-eight pupils and one teacher at Leavelle McCampbell Middle School were taken to Aiken Regional Medical Centers on Friday morning after a student discharged a fire extinguisher by accidentally bumping it with a book bag.

About 80 pupils were in the band room when the fire extinguisher went off, said Vernelle Tyler, school principal. Some of the pupils started coughing, and an ambulance was called, she said.

All the parents of children involved were notified, and all of the pupils were released from the hospital. Most of the children were back in the classroom by the afternoon, Dr. Tyler said.

License office closes for holiday

The Georgia Department of Public Safety driver's license bureau at the Columbia County Government Complex in Evans will be closed Tuesday in observance of Veterans Day.

The office, which normally is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, will reopen at 9 a.m. Wednesday, said Debbie Rowland, exam supervisor.

Also in Columbia County, the Baker Place landfill will be open during its normal hours -- 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. -- on Veterans Day, said landfill Superintendent Don Bartles.

Sheriff investigates thefts

Aiken County Sheriff's Office is investigating two unrelated thefts caught on videotape at businesses in Beech Island, said Lt. Michael Frank, sheriff's spokesman.

About 6 p.m. on Oct. 26, three men walked into Bryant's Texaco in the 200 block of Cary Drive. Lt. Frank said two of the men lured the clerk from behind the counter to the back of the store while the third man crawled behind the counter. A cigar box with an undisclosed amount of money was stolen from an unlocked safe, he said.

The three men are described as black, 35 to 40 years old, with black hair and brown eyes. One was 5 feet 10 inches tall, 170 pounds and wore a tan jacket and black hat. Another was 6 feet 1 inch tall, 180 pounds and wore a white jacket. The third was 6 feet 2 inches tall, 190 pounds and wore a brown jacket.

In an unrelated break-in Thursday, a man smashed the front door of Todd's Shop and Go in the 1500 block of Ferry Road, ran behind the counter and stole several cartons of cigarettes, Lt. Frank said.

The man is described as black with black hair and brown eyes, 5 feet 10 inches tall and 175 pounds.

Anyone with information about these crimes is asked to call the sheriff's office at (803) 642-1761 or (800) 922-3211. Phone calls can also be made to Crime Stoppers at (803) 642-1798. Anyone whose information leads to an arrest and conviction is eligible for a cash reward.

Exchange Club fair events set

Events today at the Exchange Club of Augusta Fair:

-- Admission gates open 10 a.m.; all gates locked at midnight.

-- Fair office open 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.

-- Fourth Street parking lot open 8:30 a.m. to 11 p.m.

-- Entertainment by Korky the Clown, Frisco Brothers Petting Zoo & Animal Acts, Oscar the Robot and Ben & Keeter's Puppets.

-- Talent contest finals: ages 12-15 6 p.m., ages 16-23 8 p.m.

-- Hale Street Horrors haunted house $3 with paid admission.

-- NASCAR simulators $1 with paid admission.

-- $4 walk-around admission, $8 unlimited ride ticket; ages 4 and under free admission.

Colleges sue retailer

CHARLESTON -- Six of the country's best-known universities are suing a Charleston retail business for trademark infringement.

The colleges -- Michigan State, Ohio State, Stanford, the University of California at Berkeley, UCLA and Southern California -- allege that Ben Silver Corp. stamped their school logos on merchandise without their permission.

The store, known for its necktie selection and catalog business, allegedly sold "counterfeit" cuff links and blazer buttons despite legal threats dating back eight years, according to documents filed in federal court here.

Robert Prenner, chairman of Ben Silver, denied the allegations.

"It's all a misunderstanding, and it should be resolved very quickly," he said.

Doctor's license revoked

MYRTLE BEACH -- A Myrtle Beach neurologist has been forced to stop seeing patients after a state court lifted its stay that had kept his license revocation from taking effect.

The state Court of Appeals issued a tersely worded, two-sentence decision Thursday that barred Dr. David Michael Woodward from practicing medicine. The court would not elaborate.

Dr. Woodward, who specializes in pain management, had sued to stop the state Medical Examiners Board from following through on a decision to revoke his license amid charges of sexual misconduct.

The board revoked Dr. Woodward's license Oct. 22, saying Dr. Woodward engaged in sexual misconduct with two patients, including a former employee.