Originally created 08/22/06

Across the area



Autopsy reveals several wounds

Monday's autopsy of an Augusta man who was found dead in his home Sunday revealed that he was shot more than once, according to Richmond County Coroner Grover Tuten said.

Larry Knighton, 66, of the 100 block of Leroy Street, was found by his wife lying partially outside the front door.

According to Lt. Scott Peebles, Mr. Knighton suffered gunshots to his body and one shot to the head.

No arrests have been made, and the case remains under investigation.

Armed robber gets cash at store, runs

The Sprint Food Store at 3444 Mike Padgett Highway was robbed Monday, according to a Richmond County sheriff's report.

The store's clerk told deputies that a man pointed a long gun at her and demanded money from the cash register. The robber ran from the store with the cash.

Victim of hit-and-run in good condition

A 20-year-old Burke County woman was hit by a vehicle while walking near state Highway 80 East on Sunday, according Burke County Sheriff's Chief Deputy James Hollingsworth.

Nikki Fryer, who lives on the road, was taken to Medical College of Georgia Hospital, where she is listed in good condition.

Chief Deputy Hollingsworth said investigators are trying to determine whether the driver intentionally hit her. He said that they don't know the type of vehicle but that it was silver.

Mayoral candidates to speak at forum

Candidates for Augusta mayor will participate in the first of four forums tonight at Henry Brigham Community Center.

The forum, which is to begin at 6:30, is being sponsored by the Southern Christian Leadership Conference of the CSRA and the Augusta Professional Firefighters Association.

Questions must be submitted in writing and will be read by the moderator.

The center is at 2456 Golden Camp Road.

Schools to study why records were found

A Columbia County school board member said on Monday that an investigation will be conducted dealing with how a teacher roster with personal information was left unattended at the former Evans Middle School and might have been accessed by someone outside the school system.

Mike Sleeper said he was told Friday that a parent had informed school Superintendent Tommy Price that the information had been left at the former North Belair Road school site and that it had been tampered with.

Mr. Sleeper said the issue will be discussed at today's 6 p.m. board meeting at the new board office off Hereford Farm Road, which is in front of the new Evans Middle, which opened this school term.

17-year-old charged in bus disturbance

An Aiken teen was arrested late last week on charges that he caused a disturbance on a school bus.

Najee Larronz Preister, 17, of Burlington Street, was charged with disorderly conduct and interfering with the safe operation of a school bus.

According to an Aiken County Sheriff's Office report, Mr. Preister "became unruly" Friday morning and cursed at the Aiken High School bus driver, keeping him from operating the vehicle.

Mr. Preister was released from the Aiken County Detention Center on Saturday on $955 bond.

Police say woman was pulled from car

A 35-year-old Aiken man was arrested Sunday on charges that he pulled a woman from a moving car and almost caused her to be run over.

Christopher E. Blitchington, of the 2400 block of Beaver Creek Lane, was charged with criminal domestic violence of a high and aggravated nature and trespassing after notice.

According to an arrest warrant from the Aiken County Sheriff's Office, Mr. Blitchington pulled Julia Ayers from a moving car Saturday on Augusta Road in Warrenville, threw her to the ground and then almost ran over her with a car.

Police charge man in threat with knife

A 28-year-old Aiken man was arrested Sunday on charges that he threatened a woman with a butcher knife last March.

Byron Xavier Edwards, of Williamsburg Street, was charged with criminal domestic violence of a high and aggravated nature.

According to an arrest warrant from the Aiken County Sheriff's Office, Mr. Edwards threatened to kill Wanessa Anderson at a home on Kenmont Street in Aiken.

Victim is bound by armed robbers

Aiken County sheriff's authorities are investigating a burglary and armed robbery in North Augusta on Sunday.

Investigators are looking for three men between 20 and 25 years old who, they say, walked into a home in the 100 block of Nappier Lane through an unlocked door at about 11:30 p.m.

They covered the resident's face, tied his hands behind his back with a belt and demanded money and jewelry, according to the sheriff's office.

Anyone with information about this crime is asked to call Investigator Charles Cain at the sheriff's office at (800) 922-9709, or call Crimestoppers at the Midlands at (888) 559-TIPS to be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000.

Woman hasn't been seen since Aug. 3

Aiken authorities are looking for a 40-year-old woman who hasn't been seen by her family since Aug. 3.

Jennifer Delene Hough was last seen at a home on the 1200 block of Alfred Street and was driving a white 2000 Buick Park Avenue with a tag number of 821 UNJ.

She is described as being white, 5 feet 9 inches tall and 150 pounds.

Mrs. Hough has a young daughter and has not contacted any family members since she was last seen, according to the Aiken Department of Public Safety.

Anyone with information on her location is asked to call police at (803) 642-7620.

Ruling expected on department's dealings

A special master will rule within 30 days whether the Windsor Volunteer Fire Department has been violating the rights of Windsor residents by allowing only firefighters to make decisions about the department.

Special master David Miller heard more than two hours of testimony Monday and decided to dismiss Aiken County as a defendant in the lawsuit, concluding that it was not violating the constitutional rights of Windsor taxpayers by collecting fire protection fees nor providing inadequate fire service by contracting with the volunteer department.

What's left to decide is whether the way the fire department is run is legal, he said.

Parents United set will meet Saturday

Parents United, an organization of Richmond County parents, will begin its "Survival Guide" series Saturday.

The meeting will discuss giving children a quality education. The rap session/forum will discuss school problems and include a petition against the school uniform policy.

The meeting will be held at Diamond Lakes Library at 10 a.m. Saturday.

For more information, contact Greg Collier at (706) 771-0878 or ParentsUnitedTTA@comcast.net.

Instrument is stolen from middle school

A tuba valued at more than $7,000 was stolen from Langford Middle School some time Friday or Sunday, according to a Richmond County sheriff's report.

A teacher told police that the window on the door to her classroom had been broken out and the instrument taken from its case.

A piece of concrete was found on the ground near the broken door.

Family in need after fire destroys home

Martinez-Columbia Fire Rescue is accepting donations for a family of four whose home was destroyed by fire Sunday.

Just after 6 p.m., the fire department responded to a fire at a house at 1246 Miles Road, which was already engulfed in flames, said Honey Shore, fire department spokeswoman. Teresa Brown, Antonio Robinson Sr. and two children - Shaiquan Lowe, 10, and Antonio Robinson Jr., 5 - lived in the residence but were not at home at the time of the fire, Mrs. Shore said.

The house, owned by Ms. Brown's mother, Lillie Brown, was not insured and the family did not have renter's insurance, Mrs. Shore said.

The fire department is accepting donations of clothing and household items at all its fire stations.

Anyone wanting to donate larger items such as furniture is asked to call (706) 863-7745.

Both boys attend North Harlem Elementary School, where donations are also being accepted. A list of the family's clothing sizes is available at the fire department's headquarters on Desoto Drive and at North Harlem Elementary.

The Red Cross has provided the family with a temporary hotel room, but the family needs a place to live, Mrs. Shore said.

Girl, 12, charged with felony bomb threats

Columbia County authorities arrested a 12-year-old girl Monday in connection with a bomb threat at Riverside Middle School.

Sheriff's Capt. Steve Morris said the seventh-grader wrote a bomb threat on a wall inside a girls bathroom at the school at 1095 Furys Ferry Road in Evans. Emergency personnel responded to the school just after 9 a.m.

Capt. Morris said the girl, whose name wasn't released because of her age, was charged with transmitting a false public alarm and making terroristic threats or acts, which is a felony.

She will be held at the Regional Youth Detention Center pending a detention hearing, which had not been scheduled Monday, Morris said.

Authorities discovered that the girl wrote the note through the process of elimination while interviewing several potential witnesses and suspects, Capt. Morris said.

- From staff reports