|News from Banks County...||
OCTOBER 6, 2004
Candidates forum set for Tuesday
Man found murdered in Commerce home
Two arrested, authorities seek two more suspects
Two people have been arrested in the murder of a Commerce man and authorities are seeking two more suspects.
Paul Rucker, 64, Commerce, was beaten to death and suffered several severe blows to his head, according to Banks County Sheriff Charles Chapman. He was found in his home Wednesday, Sept. 29.
He had apparently received several blows to the head, Chapman said.
Those arrested for felony murder include: Carla Joan Simmons, 22, Commerce, and Donald Andrew Murphy Jr., 19, Arcade. An arrest warrant for felony murder has been issued for Torrell McGarrett Young, 32, Athens. Chapman said a fourth suspect is also being sought in the murder.
Chapman said Rucker, who lived alone, was found by his brother, who had been trying to get in touch with him all day. His brother went to his Rucker Road residence Wednesday evening and knocked on the door. When no one answered, he went inside and found Rucker on the floor of the bedroom.
Chapman said the murder is believed to have occurred late Tuesday night or early Wednesday morning.
Investigators were on the scene during the night Wednesday and most of the next day, Chapman said. Later in the week, there were some people interviewed by authorities. Good information was given which was a help to law enforcement. It led to the arrest of the two people in custody now...We worked day and night and all through the weekend.
Chapman said the suspects didnt know Rucker, but they had been to his residence on Monday night with an acquaintance of the victim. The sheriff added that robbery appears to have been the motive.
The apparent motive for this happening was robbery, he said. We dont know exactly what was taken. Its not sure how much money Mr. Rucker had. That was the real reason. they went...It was probably money to get dope, thats what we figure.
The investigation is on-going and the sheriffs department is being assisted by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation.
GBI is seeking help in identifying bank robber
The Georgia Bureau of Investigation, the Banks County Sheriffs Office, the Washington Police Department in Wilkes County and the Augusta office of the FBI are seeking the publics help in identifying a suspect in two recent bank robberies in Banks County and Washington. An artists sketch of the suspect has been released.
On September 17, at approximately 11:56 a.m., a white male in his early 30s with a stocky build, approximately 58 in height, robbed the Regions Bank at Banks Crossing, Commerce, near I-85. The suspect was wearing a loose-fitting, blue flannel checkered shirt, a soft fishing type hat with a brim all the way around and dark sun glasses. The suspect fled the area on foot.
On September 23, at approximately 11:40 a.m., an individual attempted to rob the Farmers and Merchants Bank in Washington. The subject was wearing a grey hooded sweatshirt, loose fitting blue jeans; brown boot cut shoes and dark sunglasses. He is described as a white male, early to late 30s, 56-59 in height, weighing 175-190 pounds.
The sketch is from a witness who saw the individual before he entered the bank and concealed his face. The physical descriptions, along with other similarities, lead authorities to believe that the same man committed both crimes.
Anyone with information in this matter is asked to call the GBI tip line at 1-800-597-TIPS (8477). On the Banks County robbery, contact Major Kyle Bryant, Banks County Sheriffs Office at (706) 677-3133, or GBI Special Agent Mike Pearson in the Athens office at (706) 542-9936.
Maysville leaders say festival a success
Council holds closed meeting for personnel, legal issues
The Maysville City Council met Monday night for the regular meeting with a virtually blank agenda.
The only topic of discussion was the Autumn Leaf Festival, which all council members considered a great success.
Councilman Scott Harper offered his thanks to all the people and organizations, as did Mayor Richard Presley.
Presley suggested a letter of thanks be written to Al Crace and the Jackson County Board of Commissioners for their help.
We had a big turn-out and there were a lot of people who made it happen, he said. My thanks to everyone in the community clubs and the police department.
In other business, Presley reported there was no new information regarding the privatization of the trash pickup service.
Water and sewer system supervisor Mark Dudziak said the bid packets with the necessary information for the wastewater plant upgrade/expansion are ready to go.
He also presented the council with the September water report. The crew worked three water leaks and cleared blockage from a sewer main. He reported the problem with the aerator at the pond had been repaired, as had the #2 lift station controls. Water quality tests remained within environmental protection division limitations, he added.
The council voted to close the public meeting and enter into closed session to discuss personnel issues and land acquisition. The council reopened the public meeting, but did not take any further action.
County to receive state funds for Grove Creek bridge project
Rep. Jeanette Jamieson has announced the approval of funds for the Grove Creek Bridge project on State Route 51.
The funds will be used to improve grading and drainage, lay base and resurface a 0.483 mile stretch of State Route 51 which crosses Grove Creek. The contract will include funds for the construction of a bridge culvert at Grove Creek.
At a time when many local governments are struggling for money, its always good when the state can provide a little boost on important local projects, Rep. Jamieson said. Im very glad that we could find a way to make this happen.
A legislator since 1984, Jamieson is chairman of the state planning and community affairs committee, and serves on the House ways and means committee, education committee and the budget writing appropriations committee.
Maysville council changes meeting
CVB elects new board members
Homer mayor to speak at chamber breakfast Oct. 14