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Two teens involved in a Grovetown home invasion pled not guilty Friday during an arraignment hearing.
A Columbia County grand jury indicted Mario Levache Jones Jr., 17, of Augusta, and Nicholas Dwight Blodgett, 17, of Grovetown, with burglary, aggravated assault, false imprisonment, criminal attempt to commit armed robbery and possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime in mid-November.
Mario Jones and Blodgett are accused of an armed home invasion on Lake Royal Drive along with Jermaine Marcell Jones Jr., 14, Antonio Marquette Davis, 15, and Zion Howard, 11, all of Augusta. They were charged with the same crimes as Mario Jones and Blodgett.
At about 2 p.m. Oct. 31, a woman called authorities claiming four young men threatened her at gunpoint. She answered the door of her boyfriend’s home off South Old Belair Road and a young man asked if “Bill” was home. When she said no, another teen appeared, pointed a gun in her face and made her lay facedown on the floor.
The woman warned them not to wake up her boyfriend upstairs. Her boyfriend then opened the bedroom door and cocked a weapon, scaring the four assailants away.
Police saw the teens running nearby and a truck driving slowly along a neighboring street. The four attempted robbers were caught and arrested.
Blodgett, who is believed to have been driving the truck, was arrested later after the teens claimed he was the mastermind of the home invasion.
Juvenile Court Judge Doug Flanagan sentenced the three juveniles on Nov. 19. Jermaine Jones and Davis, who also faced a theft by receiving stolen property charge, received the maximum sentence of five years in confinement. They can be transferred from a youth detention facility to an adult prison at age 17 or 18, Flanagan said.
Flanagan remanded Howard to the custody of the state Department of Juvenile Justice, which will evaluate him and decide whether to hospitalize Howard or keep him in confinement.
Blodgett is being held in the Columbia County Detention Center on a $90,200 bond and Mario Jones is being held on a $85,300 bond, according to jail records.