The Georgia Bureau of Investigation charged a Martinez woman on Aug. 18 with stealing from the Columbia County Magistrate Court.
Veronica Menefee, 35, turned herself over to the GBI the same day agents obtained an arrest warrant.
The former deputy clerk of the magistrate court is accused of stealing more than $2,300 in fines paid to the court since mid-2002, said GBI special agent in charge Mike Seigler.
Menefee was charged with one count of theft by taking. The GBI has turned the case over to District Attorney Danny Craig's office.
GBI agents booked Menefee into the Columbia County Detention Center, and she posted a $10,000 property bond immediately.
After being confronted by court officials, Menefee resigned her position July 28, Chief Magistrate Judge David Huguenin said.
Huguenin said Menefee has agreed to pay back the money she is accused of stealing.
Owner spots burglar
A Martinez man discovered someone breaking into his home Friday.
About 4:30 p.m., James Coleman Stanifer, 33, of Martinez was sitting in his study and heard a noise on his back porch, according to a Columbia County Sheriff's Office incident report. When he investigated the noise, Stanifer saw what he described to deputies as an 18- or 19-year-old white male attempting to pry open his porch door with a screwdriver.
When the burglar saw Stanifer, he jumped a wooden fence at the back of the yard and ran into the woods behind the home, the report stated. Deputies found no sign of the man when they canvassed the area but did find scratches on the door.
Two missing dogs
Two Columbia County dog owners recently lost their pets.
Ronald Hubert Owens, 64, of Martinez, gave permission to a female he met to walk his 7-year-old beagle Sunday. She did not return with the dog, according to a Columbia County Sheriff's Office incident report.
Owens said he met the woman at his apartment complex's laundromat two weeks ago, when she told him her children liked his dog and wanted to play with it.
In another incident, Kathy Screws Hayes, 45, of Evans, left her 9-month-old Rottweiler puppy tied by a chain to a runner Friday in the back yard of her home. She fed the puppy before leaving for work at 5:30 p.m., according to a police report.
When she returned home about 9:15, Hayes did not see the dog on the runner.
A browser at a Martinez car dealership noticed someone had stolen headlights from several of the vehicles on the lot.
Wayne Benjamin Hill, 20, of Martinez, was driving through the lot of Pontiac Master GMC about 2:50 a.m. Sunday looking at vehicles, when he noticed all the hoods on the line of Ford Mustangs were slightly open and their headlights were missing, a Columbia County Sheriff's Office incident report stated.
Deputies found someone had pried back the window of each car to unlock the door before popping the hood from inside the car, the report stated.
All the headlights were removed, and three of the cars had visible damage. Investigators found fingerprints on several of the vehicles, according to the report.
An Appling woman returned home Saturday to find that someone had shot her cat.
Deborah Gail Jenkinsmann, 43, of Appling found her 11/2-year-old, black-and-white tabby cat wounded, a Columbia County Sheriff's Office incident report stated.
Jenkinsmann took the cat to an animal hospital, where the caliber of weapon used could not be determined because the bullet went straight through the cat, the report stated.
A Martinez man discovered two guns missing after his home was burglarized Friday.
Someone entered the home of Tom Edwin Chumley, 53, of Martinez, through the garage door then used force to enter the back door, a Columbia County Sheriff's Office incident report stated.
The only missing items from the house were a $1,000 Remington 12-gauge pump-action shotgun and a Colt .45-caliber semi-automatic pistol worth $600, the report said.
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