Israeli diplomat released on bond
An Israeli diplomat was released from the Columbia County Detention Center on $50,000 bond Wednesday within hours of pleading not guilty to charges that he tried to entice what he thought was a child on the Internet with pornography.
A bond of $50,000 was granted Wednesday afternoon to Yosef Sagiv Ofri, 37, an Israeli diplomat stationed at the Atlanta Israeli Consulate, during a bond hearing and arraignment before Superior Court Judge Duncan Wheale. The bond was set with nine conditions, including that Ofri cannot leave the United States with the assistance of the Israeli government and that he must surrender his diplomatic passport.
Ofri's attorney said the defense and prosecution agreed to the terms of his bond before the hearing.
Ofri was indicted by a Columbia County grand jury Aug. 30 and was arrested the next day by Columbia County authorities at his Atlanta home. He faces 22 counts of the charge of computer pornography and child exploitation.
The following accounts were taken from reports filed with the Columbia County Sheriff's Office:
Martinez man arrested on burglary charges
A Martinez man was arrested early Monday after deputies canvassed an area near a Washington Road convenience store searching for a reported burglar.
William Junior High, 41, of the 300 block of Applecross Drive, was charged with one count of burglary and was being held without bond at the Columbia County Detention Center.
A newspaper carrier told deputies she saw a man attempting to use a crow bar to break into the Sprint Foods store at 3701 Washington Road in Martinez at about 3 a.m. Deputies found shattered glass and blood at the front door of the store and began searching the area, according to a sheriff's incident report.
Deputies found High nearby with a cut on his finger, and in High's apartment they discovered $3,650 in lottery tickets taken from the store, according to the incident report.
Martinez worker arrested on theft by taking charges
An Augusta woman was arrested Monday night after deputies say she was undercharging customers for big-ticket items for months at her job at a Martinez retailer.
Lola Ann House, 46, of the 1400 block of Ridgewood Drive, is charged with theft by taking and was released Tuesday from the Columbia County Detention Center on $10,100 bond.
A district manager for the Lowe's store on Bobby Jones Expressway told deputies that House had been undercharging customers for big-ticket items by scanning lower priced items since April, according to a sheriff's incident report.
The district manager told deputies the scheme cost the store $24,000 over time.
School buses broken into and vandalized
Four Columbia County Schools bus drivers told deputies Tuesday that someone broke into their buses and vandalized them.
A 48-year-old driver from Martinez told deputies that he arrived for work at South Columbia Elementary School at about 6 a.m. and discovered his bus had been broken into and that someone discharged the contents of the fire extinguisher inside. Three other drivers reported the same had occurred at their buses, also parked at the school.
The extinguishers were then stolen, according to a sheriff's office incident report.
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