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Two robbed at gunpoint Thursday in Richmond County

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 07/17/2014 - 11:16pm

The Richmond County Sheriff’s Office is searching for a man accused of robbing two victims at gunpoint Thursday afternoon.

Approximately 1:50 p.m., Samuel Williams and Deandre Clark were driving on the 2800 block of Thomas Lane when an unknown suspect “came out from behind a tree and pointed a pistol at them,” according to an incident report from the RCSO.

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Second arrest made in Columbia County apartment shooting

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 07/17/2014 - 11:05pm

Columbia County deputies made a second arrest Thursday in connection with a shooting that occurred early Monday morning at Westwood Club Apartments on Washington Road.

Makayla Gabrielle Ivey, 17, of Grovetown, is accused of giving false statements to investigators and is charged with felony false statements or writings and concealing facts, according to Capt. Steve Morris.

Ivey was booked at the Columbia County Detention Center and released on a $10,100 bond, Morris confirmed.

Ivey’s arrest comes two days after Trelon Baker, 20, was arrested in his Augusta apartment.

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Washington Police Department defunded, closed by Council vote

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 07/17/2014 - 10:56pm

The Washington (Ga.), police department is no more.

Washington City Council voted 4-3 to defund the police department at Thursday night’s meeting, with Mayor Ames Barnett breaking the 3-3 council member tie. Members of council and Mayor Barnett debated for numerous weeks about closing the department in an effort to cut costs to balance the city’s budget. The department closed Friday, leaving 14 employees without jobs.

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Augusta woman dies in evening car crash

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 07/17/2014 - 9:32pm

A man has been charged with DUI, reckless driving and first-degree vehicular homicide following a traffic accident that killed an Augusta woman Thursday in Richmond County.

Donetta McCullum, 50, of the 3000 block of Miranda Road, died from injuries that she sustained when her Suzuki Grand Vitara attempted to turn left from Faircrest Avenue onto Peach Orchard Road, according to a statement from Richmond County coroner Mark Bowen.

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Hephzibah man who used 7-year-old daughter as lookout in burglary pleads guilty

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 07/17/2014 - 9:18pm

A man who used his 7-year-old daughter as a lookout while he burglarized an Augusta home has pleaded guilty to burglary and contributing to the delinquency of a minor.

Ronald Jay Miller, 38, pleaded guilty July 10 in Richmond County Superior Court. Judge Sheryl B. Jolly imposed a sentence of 10 years’ probation, with the condition Miller is to complete a drug-rehab program.

Miller had been in the Augusta Judicial Circuit’s drug court program but had absconded at the time of his arrest for the Nov. 11 burglary.

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Project Jackson trial begins Friday in Aiken County

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 07/17/2014 - 8:00pm


The fate of North Augusta’s planned riverfront baseball park could become clearer after Friday.

A lawsuit challenging Project Jackson, a $144 million development that includes a new stadium for the Augusta GreenJackets, is going before South Carolina Circuit Judge Ernest Kinard in Aiken County. The plaintiff, North Augusta homeowner Stephen Donohue, claims the city violated the state’s Tax Increment Financing law when it created an ordinance to fund the project.

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Man sought in Beech Island shooting

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 07/17/2014 - 5:28pm

Aiken County Sheriff’s Office investigators have obtained warrants for the arrest of a man following a shooting Thursday in Beech Island.

Alex James Pitts, 21, is sought in the incident stemming from an ongoing feud between him and 35-year-old Ronald Mixon, according to a statement from Sgt. Jason Feemster.

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Initial attempt to dismiss serial killer's appeal falls short

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 07/17/2014 - 4:45pm

The state’s initial assault on the final appeal filed by convicted serial killer Reinaldo Rivera has proved unsuccessful.

Attorneys at the Georgia attorney general’s office filed a motion asking the judge to dismiss Rivera’s petition for a writ of habeas corpus. Such a writ orders a person in custody to be brought before a court.

The attorneys contend that Rivera missed a one-year deadline to appeal the Georgia Supreme Court’s ruling that affirmed his 2004 conviction and death sentence.

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Father charged after leaving toddler in car

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 07/17/2014 - 4:25pm

An Augusta man has been charged after leaving his 19-month-old son unattended in a car Saturday.

Russell Dennis Givens, 45, was booked into the Richmond County jail Thursday morning after being charged with deprivation of a minor. According to a police report, Givens left his son inside his car with one window cracked while he visited his brother at Woodcrest Apartments on Woodcrest Drive in Hephzibah.

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Michaux: Woods' play encouraging

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 07/17/2014 - 4:22pm

Typically only insomniacs turn on the television to watch golf at 4 a.m. in a desperate effort to go back to sleep.

On Thursday, golf junkies were actually waking up intentionally to do just that.

The start of ESPN’s live 11-hour coverage of the first round of the British Open at Royal Liverpool just happened to coincide with the major championship return of Tiger Woods. And the man who moves golf’s needle the way The Beatles once did rewarded the diehards with an encouraging performance.

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Police quit probe after victim balks

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 07/17/2014 - 4:11pm

Police say their investigation into an Appling home invasion and the reported thefts that followed it was terminated Thursday after the victims refused to cooperate.

Columbia County sheriff’s Capt. Steve Morris said the investigation was closed.

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Poll: Kingston edging ahead of Perdue

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 07/17/2014 - 3:45pm

U.S. Rep. Jack Kingston’s one-point lead one week ago over businessman David Perdue has stretched to five points in the Republican Senate runoff, poll results showed Thursday.

The InsiderAdvantage/Fox5/Morris News survey was conducted with OpinionSavvy July 15-16 and included telephone and online surveys of 696 likely voters in Tuesday’s Georgia GOP primary runoff.

The latest results show Kingston leading Perdue 46-41 percent, a spread just outside the margin of error. Thirteen percent said they were undecided.

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Men robbed after stopping with flat tire

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 07/17/2014 - 1:18pm

Two men told police they were robbed at gunpoint after stopping with a flat tire early Wednesday.

Rooney Dupuy, 27, of Texas, and Antwaun Fambro, 28, of Arkansas told police they were driving on Morgan Road around 1:30 a.m. to get to Gate 1 of Fort Gordon on Gordon Highway when they had a flat tire. The men had previously attempted to enter the base’s Tobacco Road entrance after returning from downtown but found it closed.

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Ukraine: 295 on Malaysia plane shot down over east

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 07/17/2014 - 11:49am

HRABOVE, Ukraine — A Malaysia Airlines passenger plane carrying 295 people was shot down over war-torn eastern Ukraine on Thursday, Ukrainian officials said, and both the government and the pro-Russia separatists fighting in the region denied any responsibility for downing the aircraft.

As plumes of black smoke rose up near a rebel-held village of Hrabove, an Associated Press journalist counted at least 22 bodies at the wreckage site 40 kilometers (25 miles) from the Russian border.

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UGA donors set fundraising record

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 07/17/2014 - 11:47am


ATHENS, Ga. -- Donors loosened up their purse strings to set a record in new University of Georgia President Jere Morehead’s first year in office.

Morehead’s inaugural year proved to be the best fundraising year in UGA history, the university announced Thursday.

In the fiscal year that ended June 30, UGA fundraisers received gifts and pledges for $126.4 million, up 8 percent from the previous years.

The number of donors also increased; large and small gifts came from nearly 57,000 contributors, up 4 percent over the previous year.

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Gamecocks picked to win SEC East

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 07/17/2014 - 10:44am


South Carolina has been picked as the favorite to win the 2014 Southeastern Conference Eastern Division title, according to the media attending the annual SEC Media Days in Birmingham.

The Gamecocks received 1,895 points to outdistance Georgia (1,777) for the top spot in the East. Florida (1,362) and Missouri (1,263) were picked third and fourth respectively, while Tennessee (893), Vanderbilt (619) and Kentucky (395) round out the Eastern Division.

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Ex-school janitor admits sex charges

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 07/17/2014 - 10:25am

The first time a student reported that Reginald L. Price had fondled her, the solicitor’s office let Price go. The second student’s allegation against the school janitor was deemed insufficient.

It wasn’t until a third middle school student complained that Price’s hug turned sexual that criminal charges were pursued.

On Thursday, Price, 45, pleaded guilty in Richmond County Superior Court to two counts of sexual battery for what he did to the girls in Richmond County schools.

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Command Sgt. Maj. Pflieger retires, hands over responsibilities to incoming command staff

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 07/17/2014 - 10:17am


Two incoming members of the Fort Gordon command staff accepted the sword of responsibility Thursday from retiring Command Sgt. Maj. Ron Pflieger.

Pflieger, who will officially retire from the Army in January after 32 years of service, relinquished his duties of the U.S. Army Cyber Center of Excellence and Fort Gordon during a Change of Responsibilities ceremony at the post’s Barton Field. His retirement ceremony followed.

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McIlroy, Woods happy with British Open play

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 07/17/2014 - 10:14am


HOYLAKE, England — Tiger Woods is back at the majors.

Seems like he was never away.

After a shaky start to the British Open, Woods ripped through Royal Liverpool on Thursday much as he did eight years ago when he won the claret jug for the third time. A 30-foot birdie from the fringe of the 11th green got him going. Four more birdies in the next five holes carried Woods to a 3-under 69, leaving him just three shots behind Rory McIlroy.

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Car crashes on Reynolds Street

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Thu, 07/17/2014 - 9:34am

A woman was injured Thursday morning when her vehicle overturned and hit the Beamie’s at the River restaurant on Reynolds Street.

Police were called to the crash about 9:10 a.m. Deputies were unable to give details on the crash, but witnesses said the driver’s brakes failed.

Sylvia Johnson and Wanda Henry were in the parking lot when they saw the crash. They ran over to the vehicle, which was lying on its left side at the edge of the restaurant’s patio.

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