The following accounts were taken from reports from the Columbia County Sheriff’s office:
Rhinehart’s workers robbed
Two employees of an Evans restaurant told authorities they were robbed at gunpoint early Friday morning.
The Rhinehart’s employees were leaving the restaurant at 305 N. Belair Road, one with a bag containing the nightly cash deposit, at about 12:30 a.m. A masked man wearing all black approached the women with a handgun and demanded the money bag. The woman with the bag gave it to the robber, who ran into the woods behind the restaurant.
A man waiting in a car in the parking lot to escort the women to the bank saw the robber take the bag and run behind the building. The man began chasing the robber when a second man dressed in all black stepped out from the behind the building, pointed a gun at the man and told him to stop chasing them. The two robbers then ran into the woods.
Two schools vandalized
Vandals damaged two elementary schools over the weekend.
Three teens were charged with breaking into and vandalizing three portable classrooms at Evans Elementary. Zachary Alexander Hughes, 17, a 16-year-old and a 14-year-old, all of Evans, were charged with second-degree burglary. Hughes was released from the Columbia County Detention Center Saturday after posting a $7,600 bond, according to jailers.
A teacher at the school called deputies after discovering her portable at the school on Gibbs Road and two others were damaged. The teacher said she’d come to work at about 8 a.m. Saturday to get some paperwork done and found her portable unlocked. Inside, the teacher discovered someone had come in through a back window and drawn vulgar pictures on the chalk board.
The teacher also found two other portables unlocked. Someone sprayed fire extinguishers inside those portables.
A neighbor identified a photo of the intruder taken from school surveillance video footage and provided Hughes’ address.
In another incident, children who were seen damaging Westmont Elementary School Sunday were made to clean up the mess.
Witnesses saw five 8- to 10-year-olds throwing rocks and breaking a window at the school at about 1:30 p.m.
The children also threw trash around the commons area of the school on Oakley Pirkle Road in Martinez.
They also wrote nasty words on seats inside a school bus.
Deputies found the children in a neighborhood behind the school. They were made to come to the school with their parents or guardians and clean up the mess they had made.
Man duped in Masters scam
A New York man told authorities Saturday that he was scammed out of thousands of dollars while trying to buy badges to the Masters Tournament.
The 42-year-old man said that throughout 2012 and early 2013, he sent bank deposits to the checking account of another man who promised to get him 15 of this year’s Masters Tournament badges for $7,500. The middleman agreed to use that money to buy the badges and have them ready when the man arrived in town for the tournament.
When the man arrived, the middleman said he couldn’t get the badges and couldn’t reach the individual he’d paid for them.
Later, the middleman told the man he could get four badges, but it would cost him another $4,000, which the middleman gave to the person he said couldn’t originally deliver the badges.
The man said he never saw the money or the badges in his dealings with the middleman.
Dogs stolen from Harlem homes
Three dogs were recently stolen from the yards of Harlem neighbors.
A Campbell’s Way resident called authorities Thursday after discovering her dog missing from her backyard. An outer gate was locked, but an interior gate was not. The dog was stolen between 7:45 a.m. and 7 p.m.
A neighbor said her two dogs were stolen during the same time frame.
Columbia County Fire Rescue weekly fire, April 14-20:
Medical calls, 42; vehicle wrecks, 17; mutual aid/public safety assistance, activated fire alarms, 11; five; damage from inclement weather, three; interior natural gas leak, two; investigations, two; assist citizens, two; CPR in progress, one; dumpster fire, one; controlled/unauthorized burns, one; structure fire, one; vehicle fire, one; and wood/brush/grass fire, one.