Across the area

Manager is held up at North Augusta business

The Aiken County Sheriff's Office is investigating a robbery in North Augusta.

T wo men, one with a pistol, walked into Title Max, 328 Edgefield Highway, at 12:55 p.m. Tuesday and robbed the manager, a news release states. They are believed to have driven away in a dark blue Crown Victoria with dark tinted windows.

Elderly man kidnapped outside grocery store

Columbia County authorities are looking for a man they say kidnapped an elderly man at knifepoint Monday in the Evans Kroger parking lot, then forced him to drive around withdrawing money from ATMs.

James Clevenger, 75, of Morgantown, W.Va., told police a Hispanic man confronted him Monday afternoon in the parking lot on Washington Road. He stole Mr. Clevenger's debit card, credit card and $190 before forcing him to make other withdrawals, according to the Columbia County Sheriff's Office.

Parent's threat puts school on lockdown

Wagener-Salley High School was locked down Tuesday as a precaution after a parent with a record of violence called to threaten the principal, police said.

Aiken County sheriff's Capt. Troy Elwell said the man is believed to have left the area and no lockdown was planned today .

The parent, identified by police as Tregory Tyler, 36, of Tyler Road, threatened the principal because his child was facing disciplinary action. Capt. Elwell said Mr. Tyler is wanted on outstanding arrest warrants, one involving a harassment charge and another on assault and battery. Additional warrants might follow Tuesday's action, he said.

Camilla man accused of molesting girl, 15

A 77-year-old Camilla, Ga., man was arrested Monday on charges that he molested a 15-year-old girl in the Medical College of Georgia School of Dentistry's waiting room.

William Barton was charged with one count of child molestation, according to a Richmond County jail committal. He is accused of kissing the girl and touching her private areas, a warrant shows.

Board OKs millage, meal price increases

The Aiken County school board approved increasing meal prices 15 cents for the next school year Tuesday.

The price of lunch was raised 10 cents this past school year. All schools currently charge $1.35 for breakfast. Elementary lunch costs $1.75; middle and high school lunch costs $1.90.

Richmond County elementary lunches cost $1.50; middle and high school lunches cost $1.75. Columbia County elementary lunches cost $2; middle and high school lunches cost $2.25.

The board also unanimously approved a tentative budget based on raising the millage the maximum 5 percent, from 131 mills to 137.5, and using the lowest base student cost of $2,024 proposed by the state Senate. The increase amounts to $39.50 per $100,000 of property value, it but excludes primary homes.

The board has until May 25 to advertise a tentative budget before a June 9 hearing.

Band hazing suspects will enter guilty pleas

A former college student from Augusta and six others have struck a plea bargain and will likely get probation for a

violent hazing attack that sent two fellow marching band members to intensive care, a Baton Rouge, La., prosecutor said Tuesday.

East Baton Rouge Parish District Attorney Hillar Moore said the former Southern University students agreed to plead guilty to hazing and criminal conspiracy to commit second-degree battery, a felony.

Three Georgians - including Harvey Harrison of Augusta - were among the defendants. They faced a maximum of 50 years in prison and $50,000 in fines.

$28 million contract awarded for barracks

An Ocilla, Ga., contractor is the recipient of a $28 million contract for the construction of modular barracks, classrooms and a dining hall at Fort Gordon, according to the Army Corps of Engineers.

The corps' Savannah District awarded the contract to PPSC/FBS Joint Venture for the project, which will be completed within 90 days of the notice to proceed order.

Because modular barracks are factory-assembled, installation progresses more quickly . T he barracks will provide housing for nearly 1,500 soldiers.

Social worker honored by University Hospital

A social worker in case management was named University Hospital's Employee of the Year on Monday night.

Myra Corcoran, who has lived in Augusta since 1987, received the honor at a dinner at the Augusta Marriott Hotel & Suites , the hospital announced Tuesday . She has been with University since December 1999.

TV style expert will sign books at store

Andy Paige, a style expert for TV shows including TLC's How Do I Look? and 10 Years Younger and NBC's Starting Over, will be at Barnes & Noble Booksellers at Augusta Mall, 3450 Wrightsboro Road, at 6 p.m. today for a book signing.

Her book, Style on a Shoestring, offers tips on how to look great without spending a fortune, she said.