Deputy thwarts kidnapping suspect
A Columbia County sheriff's deputy on Sunday arrested a woman accused of kidnapping a 2-year-old Texas girl.
The deputy noticed a silver Hyundai Santa Fe with a California tag matching the description of a vehicle given by the FBI as driven by a kidnapping suspect from Texas, traveling Interstate 20 near the Grovetown exit before noon.
The deputy followed the vehicle, driven by Courtney Elaine Hernandez, 34, until another deputy arrived to assist with a traffic stop. Hernandez was wanted for the kidnapping of Addison Fowler, of Teague, Texas.
KWTX in Waco, Texas, reported that the child's mother is a Fort Hood soldier preparing to deploy. The soldier asked Hernandez to watch her daughter until July 2. The soldier tried unsuccessfully to reach Hernandez from July 2-10 to retrieve her daughter. The FBI was investigating the case.
The child was found in good health in Hernandez's vehicle and was turned over to the Department of Family and Children Services while her mother traveled from Texas.
The following accounts were taken from reports from the Columbia County Sheriff's Office. Reports are available at www.columbiacountyso.org:
Man accused of
A Martinez woman told police Saturday that she caught a man shooting cell phone pictures up her skirt in a Martinez Walmart.
The woman said that at about 6:40 p.m., while shopping at the store at 260 Bobby Jones Expressway, she heard the sound of a photo being taken. She turned and saw a man bent over with his cell phone in his hand and nearly underneath her skirt.
The man told police he had dropped his keys, bent over to pick them up and was possibly near a woman but did not take a photo. He gave police permission to look through his phone, where they found pictures taken from under skirts.
The case was turned over to the sheriff's office's Criminal Investigations Division for investigation. No arrests have yet been made, according to sheriff's Capt. Steve Morris.
Marine said teen propositioned him
A Marine stationed at Fort Gordon called police to a Martinez coin laundry Friday to report that a teenage boy had offered him oral sex.
The 25-year-old said that about 11:25 a.m. he was at the laundry on Old Evans Road at Old Petersburg Road when the teen made the offer. The Marine said he was shocked by what the teen said and asked, "What did you say?" The boy repeated the proposition.
The Marine said he asked why the teen was at a coin laundry if he wasn't doing laundry. The teen replied, "Don't worry about me. Hopefully, next time you won't see me up here."
Police arrested the teen, who was a 15-year-old from Martinez, and charged him with pandering, according to sheriff's Capt. Steve Morris. He was released to his mother.
and left burgers
A Martinez woman said Sunday that someone broke into her home and cooked hamburgers.
The 21-year-old woman said she returned to her Wheeler Road home about midnight Sunday, after being gone for about three hours, and found a bathroom window broken.
Hamburgers had been cooked and left on the kitchen counter.
Disoriented man arrested in home
An Appling man was arrested and charged with criminal trespass Saturday after another Appling man discovered him disoriented inside his home.
The resident said he returned to his Happy Valley Lane home about 8 p.m. and saw the intruder, later identified as Kevin Allen Whitener, standing in his living room looking out the window. The resident went inside, and Whitener said he was "looking for a doorbell."
Whitener, 27, of the 7900 block of Lakeside Drive, told police that he didn't know where he was and that he had awoken in the woods and walked to find help. He got into the residence through an unlocked door.
Whitener said his last memory before waking up in the woods was of driving his truck. Police found Whitener's truck about a half-mile from the man's home with the door open and the keys inside.
Police believe Whitener was under the influence of drugs because of his condition and a glass pipe found in his possession.
Whitener was charged with criminal trespass. He was released from the Columbia County Detention Center early Sunday after posting a $1,600 bond, according to jail staff.
Martinez-Columbia Fire Rescue report for July 4-10:
Structure fires, two; vehicle fire, one; wood/brush/grass fires, seven; controlled/unauthorized burns, four; other fire, one; gas line rupture, one; activated fire alarms, nine; activated carbon monoxide detectors, two; medical incidents, 20; vehicle accidents, five; investigate various incidents, five; assist residents, two; and mutual aid/public safety assistance, one.
The Columbia County News-Times ©2013. All Rights Reserved.