Martinez man indicted after police chase, shooting
A Columbia County grand jury indicted a Martinez man Wednesday on charges that he led them on an October chase that ended in a shooting.
The jury indicted Jerome Aaron Stokes, of West Lake Shore Drive, on charges of interference with government property, fleeing/attempting to elude police officers and nine misdemeanor traffic offenses including failure to stop at a stop sign and failure to maintain lane, according to court documents.
Deputies shot Stokes on Oct. 22 after he led them on a chase on River Watch Parkway that ended at Stevens Creek Road, police said. Stokes spent more than a week at Medical College of Georgia Hospital before being taken to the Columbia County Detention Center. He was released from jail Oct. 30 after posting a $16,200 bond. He was then taken to the Richmond County jail and was released Oct. 31 after posting a $27,600 bond.
Stokes was indicted by a Richmond County grand jury in mid-January on two counts of aggravated assault, two counts of interference with government property and misdemeanor counts of reckless driving and fleeing or attempting to elude a police officer, according to court records.
Three indicted in Martinez meth lab raid
A Columbia County grand jury on Wednesday indicted three people who were accused in December of operating a methamphetamine lab from an area hotel.
The jury indicted Travis Frederick Lever and Russell Dewayne Hinton, both of Martinez, and Susannah Michelle Chance, of Evans, on charges of manufacturing methamphetamine and possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute, according to court records. Lever and Chance were also indicted on charges of possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime and misdemeanor possession of marijuana.
Police say Columbia County sheriff's investigators discovered an operational lab and ingredients for manufacturing methamphetamine when they searched two rooms at the Georgia Inn at 434 S. Belair Road.
All three were arrested Dec. 21 and were being held in the Columbia County Detention Center without bond, according to jail personnel.
16-year-olds accused of having sex at school
Two Columbia County teens were released to their parents Wednesday after being arrested on a charge of public indecency at school.
Sheriff's Capt. Steve Morris said the two 16-year-old Lakeside High School students were arrested Tuesday morning after being accused of fornicating on school grounds. They were released to their parents at a Juvenile Court hearing Wednesday morning.
Morris said that at about 7:30 a.m., the school public safety officer caught the two teens engaged in sexual activity in the dugout of the school's softball field.
Both teens were suspended from school for five days, according to the incident report.
Businessman denied bond on home-repair fraud charge
An Augusta man was denied bond Wednesday after being arrested Monday on a charge of home-improvement fraud.
Columbia County Magistrate Judge J. Wade Padgett denied granting bond to Richard Kelly Heslen, 39, of the 500 block of Aumond Drive.
Heslen, owner of Augusta Building and Construction Inc., began work on a Martinez home but never returned to finish the work after he was paid $10,350 by the homeowner, according to the felony Magistrate Court warrant.
Padgett said granting a bond for Heslen was not appropriate because the Columbia County Magistrate Court has been trying to serve Heslen with three civil suits since 1997. Judge Padgett added that Heslen also has at least six similar Magistrate Court complaints filed against him since 2000 and that there are 14 court judgments in Richmond and Columbia counties in which Heslen is listed as the defendant.
The following accounts were taken from reports filed with the Columbia County Sheriff's Office:
Income tax return taken from resident's mailbox
A Martinez man told sheriff's deputies Monday that his wife's tax return and other mail were stolen from their mailbox in the past two weeks.
The man told deputies he found pieces of his mail lying across the street from his home in the 3000 block of Old Furys Ferry Road.
High school students charged after fight
Two Greenbrier High School students were charged with affray after a fight at the school Tuesday.
The boys, whose names, ages and grade level were not provided, were released into the custody of their parents.
The boys told Columbia County sheriff's investigators they were wrestling each other during third period.
The wrestling turned into a fist fight, and both suffered "injuries to the head and face," police reported.
Automobile, cash taken from Appling home
An Appling man told sheriff's deputies Monday that someone stole his car Feb. 25 or Feb. 26.
The car, a white 1990 Ford Thunderbird, was locked and parked in front of the home in the 1900 block of Smith-Crawford Road.
When the man notified his roommate of the car theft, the roommate discovered that someone had broken into a safe in his room and taken $4,000.
There were no signs of forced entry into the home.
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