Originally created 06/08/06

Arcoss the area

Cell phone employee is charged with theft

An employee at a local cell phone business was arrested Tuesday after being accused of illegally transferring his personal cell phone debts to other accounts.

Gregory Giles, 26, of Cedar Lane in Martinez, is accused of generating at least two fictitious accounts at Alltel, in the 2900 block of Washington Road, and was charged with felony theft by deception, said Richmond County sheriff's Investigator Anita Hopson.

The discrepancies were discovered after Alltel officials performed audits, police said.

Between March 2005 and January 2006, Mr. Giles transferred $2,875 to the new accounts, which left his personal account balance-free, Investigator Hopson said.

He was terminated after the audits, she said.

Theft charges filed in wreck

Two Augusta women were charged with shoplifting Wednesday in connection with an incident alleged to have led to a deadly Martinez wreck Sunday, said Columbia County sheriff's Maj. Rick Whitaker.

Tiara Smith, 20, of Greening Lane, and Nebula McNeely, 42, of Zader Lane, were charged with felony theft by shoplifting Wednesday after being accused of taking $390.81 worth of merchandise at about 4 p.m. Sunday from Marshalls department store in Evans.

Ms. McNeely, also known as Denise Yvonne McNeely, was arrested Wednesday after being released from Medical College of Georgia Hospital and was held without bond at the Columbia County Detention Center.

Ms. Smith, who also faces 10 traffic charges in connection with the collision, was charged with two counts of first-degree vehicular homicide, feticide and felony theft by shoplifting. She was being held Wednesday on a $46,400 bond, according to jail personnel.

The wreck on Washington Road on Sunday killed Margaret Patricia Branton, 63, of Padrick Street, and her son, Lonnie D. Turner, 37. Mary Turner, 26, who was about 19 weeks pregnant, lost her unborn child and remained in critical condition at MCG on Wednesday.

Airport to undergo new construction

Parking and terminal access at Augusta Regional Airport will change soon to accommodate construction on a new terminal.

Phase Two of construction will transform the old US Airways south holding room into a temporary ticketing area and the old Delta/ASA holding room into a temporary baggage claim.

Starting June 11, passengers will have to access the terminal from the north parking lot. Passenger pick-up and drop-off, taxi queuing and rental car returns will also be in the north lot.

The main parking area will be used for all parking options. Customers can still park in this area free of charge for the first 40 minutes. Thirty-minute free parking will also be available at the far end of the passenger pick-up and drop-off area.

Man is charged with having crack pipe

An Aiken man was arrested early Thursday when authorities found him in possession of a crack pipe, officials with the Aiken Department of Public Safety said.

Police pulled over the vehicle that Earnest Patterson, 55, of the 400 block of Red Oak Drive, was riding in after they noticed it did not stop at a stop sign at the intersection of Edgefield Avenue Northeast and Sumter Street Northeast.

Mr. Patterson was arrested at 1:40 a.m. after he emptied his pockets and the glass crack pipe fell to the ground, police said.

Mr. Patterson was charged with possession of drug paraphernalia.

Smoking at parks will be restricted in Aiken

The Aiken County Council unanimously passed an ordinance on a third and final reading Tuesday that will restrict the use of all tobacco products at county parks. The use of tobacco products still will be permitted in the parking lots at the parks.

Smoking already was prohibited in county-owned or -leased buildings.

Officials said smoking is irritating to park visitors and creates significant litter problems at county parks.

The ordinance is effective immediately.

Member quits board over health concerns

Richmond County Board of Elections member Adna Stein has resigned from the board for health reasons, according to the board's executive director, Lynn Bailey.

Mr. Stein was one of the two Democratic appointees on the five-member board. The Richmond County Democratic Party is in the process of appointing someone to fill his unexpired term, which ends March 31, 2009.

Two members are appointed by the local Democratic party and two by the local Republican party. The chairman is appointed by the Augusta Commission.

Stolen gun is found in car after police chase

A stolen Smith and Wesson semiautomatic pistol was recovered Tuesday from a wrecked vehicle at a Gordon Highway hotel, according to a Richmond County sheriff's report.

As an officer attempted to stop a vehicle for speeding, the fleeing automobile crashed in front of Adams Inn, and a man bailed out of the vehicle, fleeing from deputies, the report said.

In the sheriff's incident report, the deputy said more than 20 rounds of stolen ammunition and three magazines were recovered as well.

Memorial marker to be dedicated at fort

A Blue Star Memorial Marker will be dedicated at Fort Gordon on June 14, according to a news release.

The ceremony will be held at 1:30 p.m. at Freedom Park on Rice Road.

The marker is presented to Fort Gordon by the Augusta Council of Garden Clubs in coordination with the National Garden Clubs Inc.

It is dedicated to the honor and glory of the men and women who have served, are now serving or will serve in the armed forces.

The marker will be located at Gate 1, off Gordon Highway, near the guardhouse.

The ceremony is open to the public.

Fort Gordon cake to mark Army's birthday

Fort Gordon will hold a cake-cutting ceremony June 14 to celebrate the Army's 231st birthday, according to the post's public affairs office.

The ceremony, which is open to the public, will be at 10 a.m. in Conrad Hall off of Chamberlain Avenue.

The Army was established by a resolution of the Continental Congress in 1775.

- From staff reports


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