County sees more killings during 2007

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Richmond County homicides increased last year, but arrests have been made in all cases, and only one suspect connected to a local slaying remains at large.

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Maj. Ken Autry: Officer had no reason for the increase in homicides, but praised the Richmond County sheriff's office for its work to solve the 28 reported deaths.  File/Staff
File/Staff
Maj. Ken Autry: Officer had no reason for the increase in homicides, but praised the Richmond County sheriff's office for its work to solve the 28 reported deaths.

Last week's discovery of the partially burned body of Corwin Lee, 38, brought the county's 2007 homicide total to 28 -- eight more than in 2006.

Although Mr. Lee's remains were found in Aiken County, authorities said they believe he was killed in Augusta and then taken to South Carolina.

Criminal Investigations Maj. Ken Autry, of the Richmond County sheriff's office, said homicide rates tend to fluctuate every year so it would be difficult to determine why Richmond County had eight more in 2007. He said he was impressed with the work the investigators put in to solve those 28 homicides.

"They weren't what we'd call smoking guns," he said. "A lot of them were difficult to solve. And as stretched as our staff is, that's a big deal."

Investigative Sgt. Richard Roundtree said the public's willingness to talk with investigators has made a huge difference in his department's ability to solve crime. He attributed the tips his department has received in the cases to the public's being less afraid because they see criminals going to jail because of their information.

"I think they're doing their part and seeing that it's paying off," he said.

Investigators finished the year with just a single suspect on the loose, 18-year-old Victor Levee Scott, who is suspected in last week's slaying of Mr. Lee.

Mr. Scott should be considered armed and dangerous, according to police. Anyone with information on his whereabouts can call the sheriff's office at (706) 821-1080.

The year's homicide increase mirrors a national trend that shows violent crimes, which include murder, forcible rape, robbery and aggravated assault, went up in 2006 when compared to the previous year, according to the FBI's most recent Uniform Crime Report. Murders increased by 1.8 percent nationwide in 2006.

Reach Adam Folk at (706) 823-3339 or adam.folk@augustachronicle.com.

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crystalball
1
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crystalball 01/01/08 - 11:11 am
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Congradulations to the

Congradulations to the Richmond County Investigators, Police Officers and the public for the job well done in trying to stamp out crime in our city.
Imagine how much safer we would be if the Commissioners would increase the pay of these men and women that put their lives on the line every hour to protect us. Also, imagine how much greater we would be protected if the Sheriff was allowed to hire the personell greatly needed.
Commissioner's our lives and yours are in the hands of the Commissioner's...WAKE UP.

marien
28
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marien 01/01/08 - 01:41 pm
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This is so true, I say the

This is so true, I say the same thing about education this area is hard to attract and keep good teachers because the pay is so bad.

Delirious58
63
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Delirious58 01/01/08 - 03:34 pm
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As a native of Augusta,

As a native of Augusta, now residing in Brunswick, Ga.
I would like to thank Maj. Autry and all the investigators for the great job in solving those cases.
Crime (murder) is every where and it is apparent to me that it took some dedication and hard work for these investigators to find the ones responsible for the devastating crimes that were commited.
Again, I thank you

Ron Martin CPP
2
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Ron Martin CPP 01/01/08 - 05:00 pm
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Let me introduce to you the

Let me introduce to you the New Sheriff of Augusta-Richmond County. MAJ Autry!

AugustaVoter
2
Points
AugustaVoter 01/01/08 - 08:23 pm
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Augusta needs a new sheriff.

Augusta needs a new sheriff. The moral at the Sheriff's office is horrible. Its not just the pay. Its the moral. In the next month, the SO is losing about 50 officers to other departments or getting out of enforcement all together. 20 to Plant Vogel, 5 to GSP, a few to Columbia County, a couple to retirement, about 10 to Atlanta PD, at least 10 to out of state agencies. Why? Tired of the political BS.

freeshy2006
0
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freeshy2006 01/01/08 - 10:12 pm
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Note... These cases have not

Note... These cases have not been solved just because an arrest was made. They are solved when there is a conviction. Don't get too excited Augusta, Richmond County Citizens do more work than the investigators... It's usually a mere statement that puts these people in jail not good old detective work. Then the statements don't hold up in court because there's no other evidence...

freeshy2006
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freeshy2006 01/02/08 - 01:11 pm
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BARONESS... Unless you've

BARONESS... Unless you've personally been involved in a case with Richmond County, you don't have a clue just how many arrests are made solely on statements and no other evidence. Where else can any revengeful girlfriend pay $10.00 to have a warrant taken out on anyone for anything... Only in Augusta... See for yourself!

Son of God
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Son of God 01/03/08 - 01:37 am
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There is nothing wrong with

There is nothing wrong with the sheriff that we have. God put him in office. If you can't say anything good about him or others, then just hold your peace. It is a New Year and you should know the scriptures. You don't know God because if you did, you would know how to speak good things. Out of the good treasures of the heart comes forth good things. Out of the evil things of the heart comes forth evil things. What's in your heart? What would you do if you were sheriff? Poor Augusta if your actions are like your words. Thanks for all of the positive comments about The Honorable Major Autry and The Honorable Sheriff Ronald Strength. The sheriff's only son just went to be with Jesus and all you have in your heart is blasphemy and let downs. Your day will come unless you repent. If we took our time seeking the Kingdom of God and His righteousness, then we will not have time meddling, gossiping, and complaining about others. Please don't get lost in the flood because God has appointed someone else to build another boat even in the drought. Don't get left off the boat by ignorance. Repent; for the Kingdom of God is at hand. Read Romans 10;9,10

Wheels of Yellow
0
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Wheels of Yellow 01/25/08 - 11:02 pm
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0
I hope that Victor Scott is

I hope that Victor Scott is arrested for his good & his families. I know he can be trouble since I knew him from when he was in School. Has anyone checked in Burke Co. on Hwy 80 East where most of his family is. The last time I saw him he was on Lee St in Waynesboro, Ga. He has lot's of cousins, friends & family in the area. He stayed in trouble at School before he was expelled & then dropped out. It's a shame that at one time in School he was doing so good in the younger grades. Between the 5th & the 8th grade something changed in him & it was like the Devil got in him & possesed him totally. Victor if you are reading this... Why????? For your Grandmother's sake turn yourself in, she tried so hard to raise you right, the least you could do is give her some peace from fear.

Wheels of Yellow
0
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Wheels of Yellow 01/25/08 - 11:06 pm
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I hope that Victor Scott is

I hope that Victor Scott is arrested for his good & his families. I know he can be trouble since I knew him from when he was in School. Has anyone checked in Burke Co. on Hwy 80 East where most of his family is. The last time I saw him he was on Lee St in Waynesboro, Ga. He has lot's of cousins, friends & family in the area. He stayed in trouble at School before he was expelled & then dropped out. It's a shame that at one time in School he was doing so good in the younger grades. Between the 5th & the 8th grade something changed in him & it was like the Devil got in him & possesed him totally. Victor if you are reading this... Why????? For your Grandmother's sake turn yourself in, she tried so hard to raise you right, the least you could do is give her some peace from fear.

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