Originally created 03/10/02

Across the area



Storms arrive with cold front

The thunderstorm that pelted the Augusta area with rain Saturday night was caused by a cold front coming from the west, weather officials said.

The air mass ahead of the front was unstable, and high afternoon temperatures were enough to cause the storm, said Chuck Little, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in West Columbia.

Today's weather will be sunny, with lows around 50 and highs in the mid-60s.

Spa prostitution charges leveled

The manager of a local spa and her employee were arrested early Saturday morning on charges of prostitution, authorities said.

Mun Sun Cooper, the manager of Osaka Spa, and Ok Yon Kim, an employee, were arrested about 1 a.m. after Ms. Kim made a proposition to an undercover officer, said Richmond County Sheriff's Office Sgt. Greg Smith.

Ms. Cooper was arrested because she took care of the money for the business, Sgt. Smith said. She told police that the spa - located on the 2300 block of Washington Road - is owned by Sammy Lee of Atlanta.

Sgt. Smith said charges against Mr. Lee and further action against his business are pending.

Ms. Cooper, 56, of the 200 block of Sue Drive in Martinez, was charged with soliciting prostitution and keeping a place of prostitution; and Ms. Kim, 40, of the 1600 block of Wayne Cross Circle in Atlanta, was charged with prostitution.

Fire destroys duplex on 15th Avenue

Two families were left homeless after a Saturday night fire destroyed a duplex on 15th Avenue. No one was injured.

Augusta-Richmond County firefighters were called about 8 p.m. to the fire on the 1000 block of 15th Avenue, said Battalion Chief Otis Smith. The blaze started in one apartment, then spread next door, he said.

The fire also burned a Chevrolet station wagon in the driveway of one of the apartments, Chief Smith said. Firefighters extinguished the blaze within several minutes, he said.

The cause of the fire was not known, the chief said. The American Red Cross was contacted to help the families, he said.

Car wreck kills two; hospitalizes driver

An Aiken man is still recovering from injuries he suffered in an accident that killed two other men Tuesday.

Terry Chapman was in fair condition at Medical College of Georgia Hospital on Saturday night.

Mr. Chapman was driving a late-model Acura at more than 100 mph Tuesday when he hit the back of a Chevrolet Cavalier on Banks Mill Road. The collision killed two men traveling with Mr. Chapman - Clinton Bowles, 19, of Aiken, and Daniel Webster, 22, of New Ellenton.

A third passenger, Joseph Kessler, suffered several broken bones and was released Friday. Police had not determined why Mr. Chapman was driving so fast.

Girl Scouts' parade will close 13th Street

Thirteenth Street will be closed to traffic between Greene Street and Riverview Park in North Augusta this afternoon.

The closing will take place between 2 and 5 p.m. for the Girl Scouts' 90th Anniversary Parade.

Drivers can use the Fifth Street Bridge, Gordon Highway Bridge, Telfair Street and Walton Way as detours.

Boy struck by car remains critical

A Hephzibah 3-year-old remained in critical condition Saturday at the Medical College of Georgia Children's Medical Center.

The Hephzibah boy was injured Wednesday when he was struck by a Ford Escort on Lace Road as he crossed the street. The boy was walking from a neighbor's driveway when the accident occurred, Richmond County sheriff's Deputy Byrnie Hardin said.

The driver of the Escort has not been charged in the accident pending an investigation, the deputy said.

Open house scheduled for summer, day camps

Parents can scout out summer memberships and day camp possibilities at the Augusta Jewish Community Center, 898 Weinberger Way in Evans, during an open house between 1 and 4 p.m. today.

Hot dogs, fries and drinks are on the house.

For more information, call 228-3636.

Neglected trash fire leaves family homeless

A North Augusta family is trying to rebuild their lives Saturday after a fire destroyed their mobile home the day before.

Melissa Sawyers, of the 400 block of Cary Avenue, said her family lost most of their possessions when a trash fire burned two homes in a mobile home park Friday. Police have charged Larry Andrew Griffin, 42, of Dogwood Drive, with negligently allowing a fire to spread to the property of another and disorderly conduct.

Capt. Michael Frank said Mr. Griffin burned the trash at the request of the park's owner and a gust of wind spread the fire to the nearby homes. The North Augusta Department of Public Safety responded to the call, along with fire departments from Bath, Beech Island, Clearwater and Langley.



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