Police are looking for an elderly man who they say scammed a Martinez grocery store for $400.
Sterling Gibson, assistant manager of the Bi-Lo at 4480 Columbia Road, told police that the man asked a cashier for four $100 bills to put into a greeting card in exchange for an equal amount in $10 and $1 bills.
Gibson said the man only gave $388 to the cashier. Since the man didn't have enough money to cover the $400, the cashier returned the money and the suspect gave back the greeting card supposedly containing the $100 bills.
When the cashier opened the envelope to retrieve the $100 bills, they were gone and replaced with torn paper towels.
The incident occurred Aug. 15 but was reported Monday, according to a Columbia County Sheriff's Office incident report.
The man is suspected of similar crimes at various locations in Columbia and Richmond counties.
While on patrol Tuesday night, Columbia County Sheriff's Office Deputy Randall L. Chambers stopped to assist a motorist stranded on Interstate 20 near the Grovetown exit.
The man told the deputy that he ran out of gas and didn't have any money to purchase more. He said all he had was a personal check that he had not yet deposited.
Chambers examined the check and saw it belonged to Samuel Eugene Morris, an Aiken policeman, and was made out to Tucker Orthodontics.
The man found the check in an envelope, signed the back and intended to deposit it into his own account, Chambers wrote his report about the incident.
Chambers reported that he notified Morris, who did not wish to prosecute.
A Martinez man said his brother tried to force his way through the front door of his house.
Jason Blair Carter, of the 200 block of Biltmore Drive, told police that he opened his front door, and his brother grabbed him, causing Carter to strike his head on a flight of stairs. His brother then wrestled him to the ground and began choking him. Carter said his brother also threw a phone and punched him in the shoulder.
After the fight, Carter's brother drove away in his employer's truck as Carter called the sheriff's office.
Similar incidents have occurred in the past, Carter said. A deputy noted in an incident report that he saw no visible injuries.
A disabled Martinez woman told police she was threatened in the parking lot of the Waffle House at 4077 North Belair Road on Tuesday afternoon.
Helen Louise James said she was driving a friend's car when a man approached her and told her to pull into the Waffle House's parking lot, according to a police incident report. The man, described in the report as 6 feet 1 inch tall and weighing 200 pounds, told James he was going to repossess the car because of late payments.
The report stated that the man mistook James for the owner of the vehicle.
James said the man threatened to hurt her if she did not exit the car. Fearing for her safety, James told police she turned the car over to the man, who then drove her home.
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