As reported in The Columbia News-Times 13 years ago on Wednesday, Oct. 25, 1989.
Father, son find WWII grenades
Wade Sparks Sr. and his son, Wade Sparks Jr., of Metter, got more than they bargained for when they picked up some junk cars they purchased at 4431 Furys Ferry Road on Sunday. They found two live grenades, several bullets and other live World War II explosives.
One grenade was found inside a wooden box and another by a pine tree. The younger Sparks noted that one of the vintage explosives had its pin halfway out. They were classified as a WWII MK-2, while the other as a Japanese type 97.
"When we saw the grenades, I just became scared to death," the elder Sparks said. "All I wanted to do was get away from them as quick as I could."
The two men quickly drove to the Dixie Quick Shop to call the Richmond County Sheriff's Department, who later summoned Columbia County deputies as the incident took place in Columbia County.
The two also found four .30-caliber bullets and one 20-MM Japanese projectile.
This is the second grenade incident in Columbia County. Almost three months ago, a West Lake resident found a grenade in his front yard.
Inmate freedom was short-lived
Anthony Lee Rose, 21, of the 3600 block of Wrightsboro Road, escaped from the Columbia County detention center, but was captured only eight hours later.
Rose used gym clips and a lotion bottle to keep his cell door from completely closing. He used a similar blocking device on the door leading to the outside. The escape occurred about 4 p.m., but was not noticed until 30 to 40 minutes later at census count.
The escape has triggered an internal investigation into the incident by department officials. Sheriff Otis Hensley said he thinks Rose's escape was possible because of a variety of factors including failure of deputies to do their jobs and overcrowding.
Rose's escape was the third one to occur since the facility was constructed in 1980.
Hensley is currently looking into ways to safeguard the facility from more such escapes including raising the 12-foot security fence.
Barbecue to be held for sheriff
A group of local businessmen and attorneys have established the Law Enforcement Support Committee to sponsor a barbecue to help alleviate the debt incurred by Sheriff Otis Hensley in his attempt to exonerate himself of charges in 1988.
The barbecue will be at Julian Smith Casino. The meal will be catered by Sconyers Barbecue.
Two other sheriffs in the Augusta Judicial circuit - Greg Coursey of Burke County and Charles Webster of Richmond County - have joined the effort as co-sponsors to show the cooperative spirit between the three departments.
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