Schrenko pleads guilty
Former Georgia Schools Superintendent Linda Schrenko pleaded guilty Wednesday to accusations that she had tried to steal federal money.
Schrenko pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to steal more than $600,000 in federal funds entrusted to the state Department of Education and to one count of conspiracy to launder money.
Under the binding plea agreement, she will be sentenced to eight years in prison. As a federal prisoner, she will not be eligible for parole.
Where she will be sent has not been determined.
Also left for a July 12 sentencing hearing is how much Schrenko will pay in restitution.
She had been named in a 47-count indictment. Together, the counts Schrenko was charged with could have carried a maximum prison term of 25 years and more than a half-million dollars in fines.
The trial against Schrenko's two co-defendants, South African businessman Stephan Botes and his employee, Peter Steyn, will continue.
Five people charged with armed robbery
Five people were arrested late Tuesday in connection with the Monday armed robbery of a Dollar General store in Martinez.
Police said two of those arrested are boys, ages 15 and 16. Their names were not released because of their ages.
They were charged with armed robbery and possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime and were taken to the Augusta Regional Youth Detention Center, said Columbia County sheriff's Capt. Steve Morris.
Also charged in the robbery were Anthony Brown, 24; Isaac Hurst, 18; and Felix Hurst, 17, all of the 200 block of Weldon Drive, Martinez, Capt. Morris said. The Hursts also were charged with possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime.
The robbery occurred at about 8 p.m. Monday at the discount store at 4115 Old Petersburg Road.
As of Friday, Morris said no bond had been set.
Two pupils arrested Monday
Two Columbia County pupils were arrested in separate incidents Monday.
A 14-year-old Columbia Middle School student was charged with marijuana possession, and a 17-year-old Lakeside High School student was charged with possession of a knife at school and theft of services off-campus, said Columbia County sheriff's Capt. Steve Morris.
A public safety officer at Columbia Middle found 2.2 grams of marijuana in the teen's wallet Monday morning, Morris said. The boy, whose name wasn't released because of his age, was taken to the Regional Youth Detention Center pending a hearing.
In the second incident, officers arrested 17-year-old Brittany Michelle Graves, of the 600 block of King Taylor Road, at Lakeside High in connection with an off-campus incident, and found a knife in her pocket.
Deputies had identified the Evans teen as a suspect in a May 7 incident at a Pizza Hut on Washington Road in Martinez, according to a police incident report.
A manager of the restaurant told deputies a girl, later identified as Graves, and a white male had ordered pizza, hot wings, a salad and drinks and left the restaurant without paying, according to the incident report.
She was charged with possession of a weapon on school grounds and theft of services and was released from the Columbia County Detention Center on Tuesday on $3,700 bond.
Martinez woman must pay money back
A Martinez woman convicted of stealing thousands of dollars from the Lakeside High School band booster club was ordered Monday to pay back $15,000.
Superior Court Judge Neal Dickert ordered Sharon Schultz Nichols, 45, the former president of the booster club, to pay back the sum within the next two years.
In August, Dickert sentenced Nichols to 10 years on probation and $4,500 in fines. During Monday's hearing, Dickert suspended payment of Nichols' fines until she can make restitution to the booster club.
Nichols, of the 3700 block of Winchester Trail, was arrested in May 2005 after an audit of the booster account revealed more than $6,000 missing and 126 checks written to Nichols or to cash.
Woman points gun at sisters
Two sisters told deputies late Tuesday that a woman threatened them with a handgun during an argument at an Evans gas station.
The sisters, one from Augusta and the other from Savannah, said a young woman who was exiting the convenience store as they walked in began cursing at them, saying she was struck by the door, according to a police incident report.
They argued, and the woman pulled out a handgun and told them to "back off," the report stated.
The young woman fled the station in a truck, according to the incident report.
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