Windmill theft case
The Evans woman who admitted stealing nearly $80,000 from the Windmill Home Owners Association avoided jail time at her sentencing hearing Thursday.
Susanne White, 35, was charged with racketeering and theft for taking $79,000 from the Windmill Plantation Home Owners Association, of which she was treasurer.
White pleaded guilty to theft by taking and the racketeering charge was dropped as part of a negotiated agreement. She could have received up to 10 years for theft, Superior Court Judge Albert Pickett said at the Columbia County hearing.
White and her husband, Tom, repaid $75,000 just after her indictment, District Attorney Danny Craig said.
Pickett sentenced White to repay the remaining $4,000 in restitution and an additional $11,000 in fines. She also was sentenced to 10 years probation, during which she must continue counseling and depression medication and not hold a position giving her access to financial accounts that are not her own.
An investigation into White taking less than $1,000 from Greenbrier Elementary School's parent-teacher organization that she was president of is ongoing, Craig said.
The following accounts were taken from reports filed with the Columbia County Sheriff's Office.
A Martinez home was damaged by fireworks Monday.
The homeowner, John Joseph Mazurek, told police someone threw a large firework device, already ignited, over a fence into his yard. About a dozen flaming projectiles then bombarded the house in the 3600 block of Camelback Lane, and one created a dent and scorch mark on the front door, according to a Columbia County Sheriff's Office report.
Mazurek said he was out of town when it happened, but he did have video of the incident from his home security system. A deputy reviewed the video, but noted that he couldn't see who threw the device.
A Martinez woman admitted to holding a PlayStation 2 video game and other items hostage until she retrieved her missing $400.
Lindsey Michelle Seagraves, 19, of 200 block of Leah Lane, told police she spent Monday night at Brian Richard Bergeron's home in the 4200 block of Knollcrest Circle, Martinez. When she woke Tuesday morning, Seagraves said she was alone in the house, and $400 was missing from the pocket of a pair of pants she left at the foot of the bed she slept in, according to a Columbia County Sheriff's Office report.
Bergeron, 18, told officers he left the house with a friend between 6 and 7 a.m. on Tuesday to get something to eat. When they returned at about 2:30 p.m., he found his PlayStation 2, two PlayStation games, four DVDs, two wooden tennis rackets and other items missing, the report stated. Bergeron checked with Seagraves, who told him she would return the items once she found out what happened to her missing money, he stated in the report.
Seagraves' father told deputies that his daughter admitted to him that she took the items, according to the report. An officer called Seagraves, who told him she took the items as collateral for her missing money.
All the items were returned to Bergeron, except for two DVDs and some medication.
Both Seagraves and Bergeron filed incident reports, but no one had been arrested as of Thursday.
A closed water park was burglarized last week.
Kenneth Paul Edwards, owner of the Industrial Park Drive property in Evans that used to be Krystal River Water Park, told authorities that someone vandalized and stole items at the site sometime between Feb. 14-18.
Five building doors were damaged, a trailer door was pried open and several boxes of candles were stolen in addition to several figurines and dolls, according to a Columbia County Sheriff's Office.
Suspects caused more than $1,200 in damage and stole several hundred dollars in merchandise, the report stated.
A deputy took photographs of the scene and entered it into evidence.
An Augusta man claims his car was held for ransom by a friend, who then gave it away.
Charles Herbert Leo, of 1700 block of Fairwood Court, told officers he was arrested for traffic violations Oct. 25 in Harlem. He didn't want to leave his 1985 Chevrolet Camaro unattended, so he asked a friend to pick it up for him, according to a Columbia County Sheriff's Office report. Leo said he's been trying to get his car back ever since.
Leo said his friend told him he would return the Camaro for $50, the report stated. He said he refused to pay and visited his friend at work Monday to try to get his car back. The friend then told Leo he no longer had the car and had given it away, Leo said.
The man said he tried to get Leo to come get the car, but he never would, the report stated. After 90 days passed, he considered Leo's car abandoned and got rid of it, Columbia County Sheriff's Office Capt. Steve Morris said.
A routine traffic stop early Monday morning ended with an arrest on a weapons charge.
Columbia County Sheriff's Office Deputy Bryan Matthew Baxley said he saw a burgundy-colored Cadillac weaving and pulled it over. When he talked to the driver, Gregory Lamar Grace, of 100 block of East Chapman Street, Augusta, the deputy wrote in an incident report that he could smell the odor of marijuana coming from the vehicle.
Baxley contacted Deputy Thomas Langford, who responded with his police dog, Spike. Langford walked Spike around the Cadillac and said the canine was "alerted" to something about the car, according to the report.
Baxley asked Grace to get out of the car. He was about to begin a search when Grace said, "There might be a gun in there. I am not sure," the report stated.
Under the driver's seat, Baxley found a Glock handgun.
Grace admitted to not having a license to carry a concealed weapon and was arrested. He was released later that same day on a $2,550 property bond.
The Columbia County News-Times ©2013. All Rights Reserved.