Ex-martial arts instructor pleads to statutory rape
A former martial arts instructor charged with child molestation was sentenced Thursday to a year in jail.
Robert Houston Reynolds Jr., 25, of Evans, was indicted in May on a charge of child molestation stemming from an admitted sexual relationship with a 15-year-old girl while he was working as an instructor at Martial Arts America. The girl became pregnant, and they later married.
Reynolds, who was supported in court by his family, friends and the girl's parents, pleaded guilty to the lesser charge of statutory rape Thursday.
Superior Court Judge Duncan Wheale sentenced Reynolds to 364 days in the Columbia County Detention Center, followed by nine years on probation. He also must register as a sex offender. Because he was sentenced as a first offender, he will not have to register after completing probation, the judge said.
Grand jury indicts man who was shot by deputy
A Hephzibah man shot by a sheriff's deputy Sept. 15 during an undercover operation was indicted on six charges Wednesday.
Michael James Garrett, 20, was charged with aggravated assault, interference with government property, possession of cocaine with intent to distribute, possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime, third-degree cruelty to children and driving with a suspended license, according to the indictment.
He was accused of trying to run down an undercover deputy with his car in the parking lot of Food Lion in Grovetown. Police say Columbia County sheriff's Staff Sgt. Tripp Penn shot Garrett in the neck. An internal investigation determined the shooting was justified, said sheriff's Capt. Steve Morris.
Garrett's passenger, Anderson Levon Kyler, 22, was indicted on possession of cocaine with intent to distribute, the indictment said.
A 15-year-old passenger was charged with possession of cocaine with intent to distribute and has been released from the Regional Youth Detention Center, Morris said.
The following accounts were taken from reports filed with the Columbia County Sheriff's Office:
Teen arrested on child molestation charge
A teenager who was living with a foster family in Harlem was arrested Nov. 11 on a charge of child molestation involving the family's 7-year-old daughter.
Brandon Lee Kent, 17, of Harlem, was arrested after deputies questioned himi and family members. He was being held Friday on $25,100 bond at the Columbia County Detention Center.
Martinez woman reports being attacked at home
A Martinez woman told deputies who responded to Doctors Hospital late Monday that an ex-boyfriend had attacked her at the entrance of her home on Carson Cutoff the night before.
The 33-year-old told deputies that when she answered a knock on her door late Nov. 12, the Augusta man, also 33, grabbed her neck and struck her repeatedly with his fist. She said she fell and struck a staircase railing with the back of her head.
No arrests had been made in the case as of Friday.
Cash, gas stolen
An Evans man told deputies Monday that someone stole cash from his home in the 3400 block of Greenway Drive and siphoned fuel from his truck.
The 49-year-old said $450 was taken from the pocket of his pants and gas was siphoned from his 1988 Ford F-150.
TV, fish-filled aquarium stolen from Evans home
A television set and an aquarium filled with fish were among the items an Evans man reported stolen from his home Monday.
The man, of the 400 block of Evans Mill Court, said someone also took a DVD player and a propane tank between 11:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m..
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