Originally created 04/28/04

Across the area



Overpass traps city backhoe

An often-troublesome train overpass on Olive Road trapped a piece of heavy city Public Works equipment Tuesday morning, causing traffic to be tied up and a cleanup crew to be called, officials said.

Richmond County sheriff's Sgt. Darrell Wright said a Public Works employee attempted to drive a backhoe under the overpass at Olive Road near White Road, where the machinery got stuck.

He said no one was hurt, although the machinery was damaged and leaked hydraulic fluid, which had to be cleaned up.

It was the second time this week that a vehicle has been caught underneath the railroad bridge, which has a maximum clearance of less than 10 feet. Augusta dispatchers said a large truck got caught Monday.

Man faces charges of burglary, robbery

An Augusta man was indicted by a Richmond County grand jury Tuesday after authorities accused him of robbing an elderly Augusta man last winter, court records state.

Jasper Morris Newton, 24, was indicted on charges of burglary and robbery in connection with the Feb. 16 home invasion of William Germany, 77, on Olive Road.

Authorities said Mr. Newton asked Mr. Germany for a glass of water, and while Mr. Germany went to get it, he struck the 77-year-old man with a glass cake holder, knocking him unconscious.

Mr. Germany told deputies that he was missing about $200 after he awoke.

Man accused in rape, kidnapping, assault

A Richmond County grand jury indicted a man Tuesday, accusing him of kidnapping, assaulting and raping a woman last fall, court records state.

William Russell Ware was indicted on charges of kidnapping with bodily injury, rape and aggravated assault, court records show.

Authorities accuse Mr. Ware of holding a woman against her will, causing cuts and fractures to her head and body, forcing her to have sex and choking her Sept. 28, court records show.

Driver wrecks van, hits house, pickup

A man who police said stole a van was sent to an Augusta hospital after wrecking the van, hitting the side of a house and landing on top of a pickup, reports state.

The man, who was not immediately charged, was taken to Medical College of Georgia Hospital after Sharon Ann Story, 31, told deputies that after 11 p.m. Sunday, he took her van without her permission.

The report states that the man later got into an accident in the 2300 block of Henry Circle. Officials said the vehicle hit a house, hit another vehicle and then landed on top of a pickup.

Aerial team makes pit stop in Augusta

Members of the Canadian Forces Snow Birds arrived at Augusta Regional Airport on Tuesday for a refueling stop.

The military aerial demonstration team, similar to the Navy Blue Angels, is headed for an air show at Fort Lauderdale, Fla., spokeswoman Capt. Stephanie Walker said.

The nine-member team flies CT-114 Tutor aircraft manufactured by Canadair, Capt. Walker said.

Two planes were at the airport at about 8 p.m. and the remaining squadron will refuel in Augusta on Thursday, she said.

The team started out in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan, before stopping in Augusta en route to the weekend air show, Capt. Walker said.

Officers investigate suspicious house fire

North Augusta Department of Public Safety officers investigated a suspicious fire early Tuesday.

Officers were dispatched at about 1:30 a.m. to the 1100 block of Francis Street, where they found heavy smoke and fire at a residence that looked abandoned, a report shows. The fire appeared to be suspicious, the report states.

South Carolina Electric & Gas Co. crews went to the house later to disconnect its power supply, the report shows.

Couple jailed after early morning fight

A couple who Richmond County sheriff's deputies said got into a drunken brawl early Tuesday morning were jailed after one person bit the other, a report states.

Caroline Irene Mode and Jeffrey Lee Mode were charged and held at the Richmond County jail Tuesday, jail officials said. Jailers said Mrs. Mode was charged with battery and Mr. Mode was charged with simple battery.

According to the report, at about 2 a.m., deputies came to the Mode residence in the 4100 block of Windsor Spring Road in Hephzibah after someone called Richmond County 911 and hung up.

Mr. Mode told police that Mrs. Mode pushed him to the floor, jumped on him and bit him. Deputies observed two bite marks on Mr. Mode's right side, and found that Mrs. Mode suffered a bloody lower lip and a lump on her head.

Extradition delayed for murder suspect

A man who authorities said confessed to the murder of a long-missing Sandersville woman had an extradition hearing in Florida on Tuesday, officials said.

Washington County Sheriff Thomas Smith said Hosea Griffin, who is charged with murder in the death of Glenda Tarver, had his hearing before a judge in Orange County, Fla.

Authorities said Mr. Griffin confessed to killing Ms. Tarver, who had been missing since 1991 and whose remains were found last week in Sandersville.

However, Sheriff Smith said that although Mr. Griffin's extradition paperwork was completed, Florida authorities will not release him until they have resolved theft charges against him in their jurisdiction.

Augusta man charged in clothes shoplifting

An Augusta man was arrested Monday night after deputies were told that he had walked back and forth between a Washington Road restaurant and a vehicle, taking more than $500 in clothing, a report states.

Vincent B. Martinez was charged with felony theft by shoplifting and was released from the Richmond County jail on $5,050 bond, jail officials said Tuesday.

According to the police report, Mr. Martinez was observed walking back and forth from a 1985 Mercury Grand Marquis and the Hooters restaurant in the 2800 block of Washington Road.

A witness told deputies that he was seen lying down in the back of the car for a short time, and then exited the vehicle and zipped up his pants. When deputies arrived at the restaurant, they found him by the back merchandise cabinet.

The report states that the clothing items were found in the back seat of the Mercury.

Burke County deputy's condition improves

The condition of a Burke County sheriff's deputy who was thrown from his patrol car this weekend has improved, officials said Tuesday.

Deputy Mark Miller, 30, was listed in serious condition at Medical College of Georgia Hospital on Tuesday afternoon, said Danielle Wong, an MCG spokeswoman. His condition had been critical.

Officials said Deputy Miller was thrown from his patrol car and injured Saturday when he lost control of his vehicle and was struck by a pickup.

Three indicted in parking lot robbery

A Richmond County grand jury handed down an indictment Tuesday against three people whom authorities accuse of robbing a woman while she was in the parking lot of an Augusta grocery store.

Kaydee Watkins, 23, of Warner Robins, Ga.; Jonathan McCraney, 20, of Augusta; and Terrance Moore, 18, of Memphis, Tenn., were indicted on charges of armed robbery, possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime and criminal use of an article with an altered identification mark.

Officials accuse the three of robbing Carrie Johnson, 27, at gunpoint March 26 while she was in the parking lot of the Kroger in the 3100 block of Deans Bridge Road.

Barnwell, Allendale gain airport funding

Barnwell and Allendale counties are included in an $11.4 million Federal Aviation Administration grant to improve equipment, services, runways and taxiways at nine South Carolina county and municipal airports, U.S. Sen. Ernest "Fritz" Hollings announced Tuesday.

Barnwell County will receive $137,188 for the design of a full taxiway, including lights and pavement markings, at its airport. Allendale County will get $157,486 for the construction of a taxiway at its airport.

Coliseum Authority gets new chairwoman

Annie W. Rogers was approved as the new chairwoman of the Augusta-Richmond County Coliseum Authority at the board's Tuesday meeting.

Mrs. Rogers replaces Billy Holden, whose term as chairman had ended.

Addressing the board, Mrs. Rogers said she appreciates the vote of confidence.

Also, Millard Cox was appointed as the board's vice chairman, Bonnie Ruben was named the treasurer and Mildred McDaniel was approved as the secretary.

Senate candidate Cain to speak Sunday

Herman Cain, a Republican candidate attempting to fill the seat of U.S. Sen. Zell Miller, is scheduled to appear at a south Augusta business facility Sunday.

Mr. Cain, a former Pillsbury executive, will speak at HBA Group, International offices at the Small Business Incubator, 3140 Augusta Tech Drive.

The public is invited to hear Mr. Cain speak at the 5:15 p.m. session.

For more information, call 792-1427.



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