Originally created 11/25/03

Across the area



Two armed men rob Denny's

Two men robbed the Denny's restaurant on Gordon Highway on Monday morning, then forced the manager and a waitress into a cooler.

The armed men walked into the restaurant at about 5 a.m. and ordered manager Bruce Robertson and waitress Tracey Smith to get money from the safe. They then put the two into the cooler and fled.

There were no customers inside at the time, and no one was hurt. Mr. Robertson and Ms. Smith told police that the robbers hid their faces with a turtleneck and a hooded sweat shirt.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Richmond County Sheriff's Office at (706) 821-1080.

Jewelry, silverware is stolen from home

A North Augusta man told police he was robbed of silverware and jewelry worth more than $17,000 Sunday morning, according to the North Augusta Public Safety Office.

Billy Thurmond, 55, of the 900 block of Carolina Avenue, said he left his home at about 9:10 a.m. and returned at 12:30 p.m. to find a front gate open, a report said.

Missing items included an $8,000 Chantilly sterling silver tea set, 14 goblets valued at $3,200, two antique pitchers worth $1,000 and jewelry valued at $2,000, the report said.

There were no signs of forced entry, but Mr. Thurmond told authorities he might have left a back door unlocked, the report said.

Men steal pizzas, cash from deliveryman

A Pizza Hut deliveryman was robbed Sunday night in Hephzibah, according to the Richmond County Sheriff's Office.

Ernest Eldridge, 22, told police he was making a delivery to a home in the 3700 block of Pinnacle Place at about 10 p.m. when two men approached him in the front yard. A man with a black mask pointed a gun at him and took $27 and a wallet. The other robber took three large pizzas he was carrying, a police report says.

The homeowner told police he had not ordered the pizzas.

Police seek 2nd man after robbery arrest

One man has been arrested and another is being sought in a robbery last week on Dublin Drive in south Augusta, authorities said.

Dominique Wilson, 21, of the 3800 block of Fairington Drive in Hephzibah, was arrested during a traffic stop Saturday and charged with armed robbery and possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime. Police are seeking Jamarcus Cornelius Boyd, 18, on similar charges.

On Thursday, Michael Callaway Jr., 21, reported being robbed at gunpoint by two men. He told police that he was returning home at 1:30 p.m. Thursday when the men approached him.

One man pulled out a silver pistol and demanded his money. Mr. Callaway said he gave the man his wallet, which contained $509.

Anyone with information on Mr. Boyd's whereabouts is asked to call the Richmond County Sheriff's Office at (706) 821-1080.

GBI, police inquire into store break-in

Authorities are investigating a weekend burglary at the Family Dollar store on U.S. Highway 1 in Jefferson County.

Someone threw a concrete block into the window and entered the Louisville store Saturday night or Sunday morning, said Agent Mike Seigler of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation.

Store officials were conducting an inventory to determine what had been stolen.

The GBI is assisting the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office with the investigation.

Augustan surrenders over shooting at work

An Augusta man accused of shooting at his plant supervisor after a dispute at work turned himself in Monday and was charged with assault with intent to kill, Aiken County sheriff's Lt. Michael Frank said.

Brian Wynn, 32, of the 1600 block of Apple Valley Drive, is accused of firing several pistol shots into Rodney Toole's pickup after an argument at the Pactiv Corp. in Beech Island on Nov. 13, Lt. Frank said.

Mr. Toole was not injured in the shooting, which occurred in the parking lot of Beech Island Credit Union at 143 Old Jackson Highway, Lt. Frank said.

Mr. Wynn was being held at the Aiken County Detention Center.

Audit finds faults at park facilities

An internal audit of 23 facilities run by Augusta's Department of Parks and Recreation uncovered multiple but minor deficiencies in the centers' internal controls and operating procedures.

Officials from Baird & Co. presented their findings to the Augusta Commission's finance committee Monday.

According to the audit, improvements were needed in the collections and deposit procedures at all but one of the recreation centers audited: McDuffie Woods Park.

Auditors noted a need for reconciled petty cash drawers, properly receipted transactions, agreement between receipted amounts and deposit slips, and the deposit of collections within one day.

City will consider new holiday for workers

A request to give city employees an extra day off at the Christmas holiday will be considered by the Augusta Commission next week.

On Monday, a committee was asked to consider the request from Human Resources Director Brenda Byrd-Pelaez through City Administrator George Kolb. It deferred action until the Dec. 2 commission meeting, and elected officials requested a report on the financial impact of the request.

City employees already get 10 paid holidays, including Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. If approved, the request would make Friday, Dec. 26, a holiday, giving employees a five-day weekend.

Traffic signal goes up on Tobacco Road

A new traffic signal was installed on Tobacco Road at Crest Drive on Monday.

The signal will be on temporary flash mode until all signals are fully operational, according to the Augusta Public Works and Engineering Department.

Residents persuade council to keep zone

Residents of the Pickens Place subdivision in Aiken won a small zoning battle Monday night, which they hope will guard their neighborhood from convenience stores.

Residents attending the Aiken City Council meeting said that changing the zoning for two lots on Pepper Way to allow a local doctor to build a medical office could open the door to unwanted businesses.

Instead, residents want the developer to seek a variance that would allow the medical office but not other commercial businesses.

The council voted unanimously to follow residents' advice and requested that the decision to modify the zoning be sent to the Board of Zoning Appeals.

City takes phones for recycling

Metro Augusta and Columbia County Clean and Beautiful are collecting old cell phones for recycling. Phones may be dropped off at the Columbia County landfill, Richmond County landfill, Savannah Rapids Pavilion, Evans Government Complex, Augusta-Richmond County Municipal Building, Publix on Washington Road in Augusta, and at the Clean and Beautiful office at 418 Greene St., Augusta.

For more information, call 261-4390.



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