Armed robbery occurs at Quickbuys

Published 4:43 pm Friday, July 10, 2009

Police responded to an armed robbery that occurred Thursday night at the Quickbuys convenience store, located at 720 Faceville Hwy. in Bainbridge.

Shortly after 9:30 p.m. Bainbridge Public Safety officers responded to the robbery and began searching the area for a suspect.

The store’s clerk told investigators she exited the store to have a cigarette where a masked man was kneeling down pointing a gun at her. He then ordering her back into the store and forced her and a customer inside the store behind the counter. The robber proceeded to take the money from the store’s cash register, which exceeded $250.

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A witness outside of the store told police the suspect ran north leaving the store and was picked up by someone driving a white Ford truck, which then sped south on Highway 97, according to incident reports.

BPS officers and Decatur County Sheriff’s deputies continued searching for the suspect until approximately 1:30 a.m. and enlisted the help of Apalachee Correctional Institution tracking dogs.

The robber was described as wearing a Michigan hooded sweatshirt, mask, dark pants with two white stripes on the legs, gloves and appeared to walk with a limp.

If you have any information pertaining to the robbery, contact Investigator Chris Jordan at (229) 248-2038. Tips can be made anonymously.

Speeding stop leads to drug arrest

On Wednesday, Georgia State Patrol Trooper J.F. Jackson conducted a traffic stop on U.S. 84 East, near the new Bainbridge High School, which led to the driver being arrested on drug charges an in possession of a loaded firearm.

During the traffic stop, Jackson smelled what he believed to be the odor of marijuana and saw a small amount of marijuana on the passenger seat of the vehicle, according to incident reports.

Upon a search of the driver, Cory Edward Ballenger, 19, of Marietta, Ga., the trooper found an amount of marijuana in his pocket. Inside the vehicle officers found three more bags of marijuana, a loaded .25-caliber pistol in the driver’s side door panel, two pipes, a digital scale and a pill bottle containing a number of propoxyphene pills—a prescription pain killer commonly refereed to as Darvocet.

Ballenger was arrested and charged with DUI, possession of a controlled substance, possession of marijuana with intent to distribute, possession of drug-related objects, possession of a weapon while trying to commit crimes, speeding, failure to maintain lane, turn signal required, possession of marijuana within 1,000 feet of a school and possession of a firearm within 1,000 feet of a school.

Probation warrant leads to discovery of meth lab

Sheriff’s Deputies discovered an active methamphetamine lab inside a home while serving a probation warrant on Friday, July 3.

Sgt. Patrick Trolinger, Deputies Vincent Edmonds and Nick Godwin were serving the warrant for 35-year-old Jimmy Ray Bryson at his residence, located at 3378 Dothan Road in Brinson.

According to incident reports, Trolinger detected a strong chemical odor when they approached the door. Deputies began knocking on the front door of the home, but there was no answer. A short time later, Bryson came running out of the back door of the home where he was apprehended by Edmonds. On Bryson’s person they located a quantity of suspected methamphetamine and several unidentified pills.

Inside the home, deputies found Melvin Keith Cloud, 41, of 138 Deertrail Road in Bainbridge. Upon searching Cloud’s vehicle they found several precursors commonly used in meth production.

Bryson was arrested and charged with probation violation—the original charge being suspended registration, two counts of possession of controlled substance with intent to distribute and contempt of court, which the original charge being child support.

Deputies located an active meth lab inside the home.

Cloud was also arrested and charged with manufacturing methamphetamine and parole violation—the original charge being possession of methamphetamine.

Street robbery

A Bainbridge man reported being robbed by two young men on bicycles on July 2.

The man told police he was walking in the area of Las Lomas Laundry Mat on Scott and Water streets when two young men approached him on bicycles.

He said they asked him where he was going and then pulled out what appeared to be a pistol. Pointing it at him, they patted him down and stole his cell phone valued at $139.99.

Dogs help deter trespassers

On Saturday, a homeowner used her dog to help deter two men trespassing on her property.

Decatur County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to a home on Kelly Road. The resident told deputies she had witnessed two males climbing over her 6-foot privacy fence and move toward a shed located on the property.

According to incident reports, she released her dog who, “escorted the two males over the fence quickly.” She said the men left in a green vehicle that was parked on a dirt road near the residence. A be-on-the-lookout call was put out for the vehicle.

She said the dog may have bitten one of the men.

Patrol warns of summer heat dangers to vehicles

Atlanta—The Georgia State Patrol is reminding drivers this week that now is the time to make sure your vehicles are ready for the summer driving season.

Col. Bill Hitchens, commissioner of the Georgia Department of Public Safety, said that as temperatures rise across the state, Georgia State Troopers see an increase in the number of vehicles with mechanical problems on Georgia roads each year.

“Summer heat is dangerous to both people and cars if proper precautions are not taken,” Hitchens said. “Those precautions include keeping your motor vehicle in proper running condition and not leaving children and pets inside an unattended vehicle.”

The commissioner points out that the outside heat and humidity, combined with the heat generated by your vehicle, can take a toll on your vehicle’s engine, transmission and cooling system.

Col. Hitchens said Georgia State Troopers routinely watch for stranded motorists and provide assistance to them during the course of everyday patrols.

Troopers recommend checking your vehicles to make sure they are being serviced at recommended intervals; that all fluids are filled to proper levels with fresh fluids; and regularly inspect the belts and hoses for cracks and leaks. Additionally, troopers remind drivers to check their windshield wipers and replace the blades if necessary.

“Any defects found with your vehicle should be repaired immediately,” Hitchens said.

State Troopers recommend drivers prepare and keep an emergency roadside kit in their vehicles. The kit should include a flashlight, first-aid kit, jumper cables, gloves, extra clothes, extra washer fluid, non-perishable food, a gallon of water and basic tools.

“Emergency roadside assistance numbers should also be kept in a convenient location,” Hitchens said. “This includes membership numbers and related information your auto club may need in order to provide you with roadside service.”

Troopers also advise drivers to make sure their cell phones are fully charged so calls for assistance can be made should you become stranded and lose power in your vehicle.

Motorists are cautioned to make sure children and pets are not left in unattended vehicles since the temperature inside a vehicle can reach a fatal level very quickly when the ignition and air-conditioning are turned off in a poorly ventilated vehicle.

“Do not leave children and animals unattended,” Hitchens said. “Teach children that a car or truck is not a play area and be sure to lock your vehicle.”

He also reminds drivers to make it a regular practice to check the back seat and back floor area for children and animals each time you exit your vehicle.