Child drowns in neighbor’s pool outside Grovetown
A toddler died Tuesday after being pulled from a pool near Grovetown.
Raydin Hollbrooks, age 3, was pronounced dead at Doctor’s Hospital at 3:45 p.m., said Columbia County Coroner Vernon Collins.
An autopsy done Wednesday at the GBI crime lab in Augusta confirmed that Raydin drowned, he said.
Raydin was found about 2:30 p.m. in a backyard pool in the 100 block of Pauline Street owned by Rex and Karen Newman, after wandering away from her home, said Columbia County Sheriff’s Capt. Steve Morris. The homes are about a quarter-mile apart in the rural community off Louisville Road.
The gate to the fence around the above-ground pool was open, Morris said.
Raydin had wandered away from her home undetected, and when family members noticed her missing they began searching the neighborhood, Morris said. A neighbor helping with the search, Deontray Johnson, 25, saw the open gate and checked the pool.
When Johnson saw Raydin at the bottom of the pool, he called out to the other searchers and jumped in to rescue her, Morris said.
Kirk Hammonds, 18, of Harlem, a friend of Raydin’s older cousin, jumped in to help when Johnson had difficulty retrieving Raydin from the pool, Morris said.
Raydin’s cousin and a neighbor started CPR on the girl until emergency personnel arrived.
Morris said the case remains under investigation.
The following accounts were taken from reports from The Columbia County Sheriff’s Office:
Church is burglarized
An assistant pastor at Stevens Creek Community Church, 600 Stevens Creek Road, called deputies at about 8 a.m. Wednesday and said someone broke into the church and stole electronics and money. Five flat-screen televisions, two DVD players, three Mac computers and seven gaming systems were missing.
The pastor said the burglar climbed into the ceiling to get into a locked office. He was unsure if anything was stolen.
Investigators found no signs of forced entry, but a church employee found a fingertip of a rubber glove inside the office.
Man passed counterfeit bills
Employees of two stores at the Gateway shopping center told authorities Monday that a man spent counterfeit bills.
An employee of Game Stop on Gateway Boulevard told deputies that a black man wearing a red shirt and hat bought $10.69 worth of merchandise at about 7:30 p.m. Aug. 18 using a counterfeit $100 bill.
An employee of the Murphy Express on Gateway Boulevard said a black man in a red shirt and hat bought $15 worth of gas using a counterfeit $100 bill at 7:34 p.m.
The serial numbers on the two bills match.
Burned garage determined to be arson
Fire officials recently determined that a fire that destroyed a Martinez garage early Saturday was intentionally set.
A Martinez-Columbia Fire Rescue investigator told deputies Wednesday that an early-morning fire on Lake Shore Loop was the result of arson.
The fire started just after midnight in a detached garage at the home. Firefighters doused the blaze, which destroyed the garage and two vehicles inside.
The fire investigator told deputies that the fire was not accidental and was intentionally set.