Oconee County blotter

SHOPLIFTER CAUGHT: On Jan. 1, Deputy Daniel Ellis was driving through the parking lot of Lowe’s when he was flagged down by a loss prevention officer from the store. The LPO reported a man was inside putting items in his pockets. The deputy waited for about 20 minutes outside the store when he saw the suspect running out of the construction side door with the LPO chasing him. The deputy drove to the location, exited his unit, and began chasing the man. The deputy shot the man with his stun gun, but it had no effect, so the deputy tackled the man and placed him in handcuffs. The 37-year-old Statham man was charged with misdemeanor shoplifting.


SHOPLIFTER ESCAPES: On Jan. 1, Deputy Elliott Kline was dispatched to Walmart, where a loss prevention officer had watched a man place several items into a plastic Walmart bag then take the items to Customer Service for a refund. The refund was declined so the man left the store with the merchandise, but was confronted by the LPO, who took the bag from the thief. The thief ran, so the officer chased him until the suspect ran into the woods behind the store. The suspect was described as a black male, thin build, about 6-foot, wearing a gray fur hat with ear flops, a black jacket, green shirt, dark jeans, and bright yellow shoes.

SHOPLIFTER FLEES: On Jan. 2, a deputy was dispatched to Kohl’s for a report of a loss prevention officer chasing a shoplifting suspect. When the deputy arrived, the suspect had already escaped. The Kohl’s LPO said the man had removed two bottles of perfume from a display area and when confronted as he was leaving the store, the suspect made a comment about shooting him. A gray-colored car drove by the store and the suspect got into the passenger side and left. A description of the suspect was not provided.

BIG MAN DOWN: On Jan.1, Deputy Stephen Shaffer was patrolling through Athens Ridge Apartments, when a young man approached to report seeing a large white male with no shirt throwing garbage cans into the street. The deputy drove to the location and saw the man where he had fallen face down on a concrete driveway. The man, who was 6-foot-5 and weighed about 320 pounds, was unresponsive so the deputy called for an ambulance. As the deputy waited, the man came to and sat up, but the apparently intoxicated man was unable to explain what had happened. He had a 5-inch cut on his shoulder. The ambulance took the 20-year-old man, who was from Hoschton, to a hospital and the deputy asked the 911 center to contact his parents.

MONEY TAKEN: On Nov. 28, Deputy Richard Leuze met with a 42-year-old Watkinsville man, who reported he went through the self checkout lane at Kroger’s on Epps Bridge Parkway. The man requested $60 cash with his purchases, but then forgot to collect the cash as he left. The man returned to the store less than an hour later, but no one had turned the money in. A security camera shows a white woman with shoulder length dark hair and wearing a sweat suit take the money.

DAMAGE: On Nov. 27, a resident of Oak Lake Trail, Bogart, told deputies he found a door to his boat garage slightly opened.

BURGLARY: On Nov. 26, a Bogart man reported someone entered a work shed behind a house on White Oak Drive, Watkinsville, and stole $2,265 worth of items including fishing equipment, jumper cables, a fan and a wheelbarrow. A window had been broken out to gain entrance.

TIRES STOLEN: On Dec. 28, Lt. Paul Maxey was dispatched to Kauffman Tires on Epps Bridge Parkway, where an employee reported that they were doing a tire inventory and had placed some tires next to a work bay. The employee went back into the show room to help a customer when he noticed a red pickup drive around the building. The employee went back to the work area and saw the pickup speeding off with the Cooper Discover tires, valued at $600, in the bed of the pickup.

VANDALISM: On Dec. 18, Deputy Richard Leuze met with a resident of Jefferson Road in North High Shoals, where he observed that someone spray painted letters on the man’s fence. The deputy later drove across the river into Walton County and saw where someone had also sprayed street signs.

FRAUD INVESTIGATED: On Jan. 2, a couple reported a fraud that resulted in someone obtaining more than $13,000 in merchandise when they used the couple’s personal identification. The 66-year-old man reported that he became aware of the fraud when he received a credit card bill showing someone had purchased $11,000 worth of goods from one company and $2,303 from another company in early December. The man then discovered that someone stole his identity at the Social Security office to obtain his benefits.

MEDICINE STOLEN: On Jan. 3, a 22-year-old Colbert man reported he was visiting with friends in Athens Ridge Apartments off Old Macon Highway and someone stole two bottles of his prescription medicine.

VEHICLE DAMAGED: On Jan.3, a 17-year-old Bogart woman reported someone broke a window out of her vehicle while it was parked on Lampkin Branch Drive, Watkinsville. Nothing was taken, but a witness reported seeing a man walking quickly away from the area.