Originally created 10/11/05

Across the area



Officers search for 61-year-old

Richmond County sheriff's officers are looking for a 61-year-old Alzheimer's patient who officials said wandered away from a downtown Augusta personal care home.

Investigator Bonnie Kalbskopf said Miholo Der was last seen walking near Fourth and Watkins streets at about 9:45 a.m. Monday.

Mr. Der reportedly speaks with a heavy Yugoslavian accent and has a faded tattoo on the inside of his left arm. He is 5 feet 9 inches tall, weighs 175 pounds, has brown hair and eyes, and was last spotted wearing a blue, black and white plaid shirt with a white T-shirt.

On another occasion, Mr. Der ran off and was found in North Augusta, Investigator Kalbskopf said.

Anyone with information about his whereabouts is asked to call the sheriff's office at 821-1080 or 821-1020.

Body found in woods is missing woman

Authorities have identified the badly decomposed body found in Edgefield County woods late last month as missing Aiken woman Rosa "Duke" McKevie.

Edgefield County Coroner Thurmond Burnett said pathologists in Newberry, S.C., used medical records and X-rays to positively identify Ms. McKevie, 52, who was last seen taking a walk Aug. 25.

Mr. Burnett said the results came in Friday, but the investigation into what killed Ms. McKevie will continue.

An autopsy was inconclusive.

"We think it's natural," Mr. Burnett said. "We just need to look into a little bit more."

Hunters stumbled over Ms. McKevie's body off Springfield Church Road on Sept. 24, but her identification was a mystery because of the advanced state of decomposition.

Officials arrest man linked to 2 robberies

Authorities have arrested a man they say robbed a Clearwater convenience store with a knife Saturday.

Michael Paul Martin, 27, of Fredericksburg, Va., was booked into the Aiken County Detention Center and charged with two counts of armed robbery and two counts of possession of a firearm during the commission of a violent crime.

Mr. Martin is accused of robbing the Four Seasons Food and Fuel on Jefferson Davis Highway in Clearwater on Saturday with a pocketknife.

He is also charged with robbing Ye Ole Grocery, also on Jefferson Davis Highway in Clearwater, on Sept. 27, also with a knife.

Owner of gas station says she was robbed

The owner of the Shell gasoline station in the 600 block of Bransford Road told police she was robbed Sunday afternoon.

According to a Richmond County sheriff's report, the woman said she had reopened the business at about 6:45 p.m. when the men came inside.

According to the report, they told her to get down on the ground before leaving with the woman's purse and other items.

Woman says bullets struck daughter's bed

An Augusta woman told police that bullets struck her 10-year-old daughter's bed and the wall of her bedroom late Sunday, according to a Richmond County sheriff's report.

Cynthia Gibson, of the 1700 block of Hicks Street, said she heard gunshots and noticed damage from the bullets at about 10:30 p.m. No one was hurt.

The gunfire reportedly came from an adjoining apartment.

Crews smell gasoline at scene of house fire

Officials are investigating a reported Monday morning arson in Augusta.

According to a Richmond County sheriff's report, David Deraildge, who lives at the home in the 2800 block of Glenn Hills Circle, said he was awakened by the smell of smoke at about 3 a.m. He left the home and noticed a smoldering rag.

According to the report, firefighters who responded also smelled gasoline.

Free workshop to aid language teachers

Area foreign-language teachers will have a chance to learn more about using music, storytelling and theater in the classroom during a free workshop at Augusta State University.

The Foreign Language Alliance for International Rapport Conference will be held at 8 a.m. Friday in the Washington Hall Towers. It will be presented by Patti Lozano, author of Music That Teaches Spanish! and a foreign language consultant.

Call 737-1500 for more information.

Brownfields meeting is set for Thursday

A public meeting in North Augusta on the subject of brownfields has been rescheduled.

The meeting, which was set for last Thursday, will be held Thursday at 6 p.m. at the North Augusta Community Center, 495 Brookside Ave. in North Augusta.

Aiken County officials and consultants conducting assessments of the abandoned properties have been discussing the county's Brownfields Assessment Project, funded by an Environmental Protection Agency grant. Input is also sought on the location of brownfield sites through the county.

Richmond County fills legislative positions

The Richmond County legislative delegation elected Rep. Quincy Murphy chairman Monday to fill the position vacated by the death of Rep. Henry Howard last week.

The delegation elected Rep. Pete Warren to fill Mr. Murphy's role as vice chairman, and Rep. Alberta Anderson to fill Mr. Warren's post as secretary. Rep. Sue Burmeister remains treasurer of the delegation.

Georgia counties join to promote tourism

Five Georgia counties joined forces Monday to promote tourism and economic development using Thurmond Lake as a primary draw, but Richmond County wasn't among them.

The Clarks Hill Partnership will enable Columbia, McDuffie, Lincoln, Wilkes and Warren counties to pool their resources for mutual benefit, said Columbia County Commission Chairman Ron Cross.

In particular, the counties hope to use Thurmond Lake as a drawing card to promote tourism, attract new industries and seek out available grants for projects that will improve quality of life throughout the region.

Despite Richmond County's absence Monday, state Sen. Jim Whitehead, who helped establish the partnership, said the regional concept has already attracted new interest.

"I've had two other counties wanting to talk to us," he said. "And none of them are east of here."

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