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BCSO blotter: Online date turns weird
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From Bryan County Sheriff’s Office reports: 

Fraud: An Ellabell man reported Oct. 28 that a few nights earlier he “matched up” with a woman on Tinder, an online dating app. The man said the woman told him she was 18. He said he “never asked to meet the female and asked her a few times if she was 18 and (she) later stated she was underage.”

The man also told BCSO “he received three pictures of the female posing topless and three pictures in the female in her underwear. (He) stated he deleted the pictures.”

Two days later, the man said he got a phone call from “a male who identified himself (by name)… and stated he worked for a task force and was calling from Columbia, South Carolina.”

The caller then “converted the phone call to a three-way call with another male who identified himself as the female’s father. (Victim) stated the father stated is wife wanted to go to law enforcement in reference to the incident.”

Then, the father “informed (the victim) of an altercation between his wife and daughter and a laptop and backdoor was damaged. (Victim) stated he offered to pay for the laptop and door in exchange for the father and mother not contacting law enforcement.”

The father gave the victim a quote of $1,800 for the backdoor and $750 for the laptop.

The victim said he tried to pay using an app but then called his bank to put a halt on a payment, and the bank told him it was a scam. The victim gave BCSO the fraud’s phone numbers, as well as an email address with “jongotti” in it.

The victim got a case number, etc.

Hit and run: A woman reported Oct. 28 she was at the Zip In on Highway 204 and standing outside her vehicle when “she noticed that her vehicle moved slightly when a green colored Chevy Trailblazer backed into her vehicle.

She stated that she thought the vehicle was going to stop and talk to her but instead (it) kept on driving away.”

There was some minor damage to the woman’s vehicle, but no injuries.

DUI: A deputy patrolling in “the area of Hwy. 80 and Hwy. 280” on Oct 30 around 1 a.m. saw a pickup “squeal its tires” and turn into a Dollar General, then leave and ran a stop sign “at the intersection of Old Cuyler Road and Hwy. 80.”

The pickup also reportedly weaved a few times, so the deputy conducted a traffic stop.

The driver “appeared to be nervous,” and his eyes “appeared to be glassy,” the report said. The deputy noted he could smell alcohol coming from inside the vehicle and spotted a koozie near the driver’s seat but when he asked the driver if he’d been drinking he said it was his wife.

“(He) stated his son and wife were frantic because his son was scared from an incident at a Halloween haunted house in Statesboro,” the report continued, adding that the event was at 8 p.m. and it was nearly 1 a.m.

The man agreed to take a blood test, the man was arrested and charged with DUI, failure to maintain lane, failure to stop at a stop sign and open container.

DUI, child endangerment, move over law, etc: A deputy finishing up a traffic stop on the side of I-95 near mile marker 89 around 4 p.m. Oct. 30 noted an SUV didn’t slow down or move over as it passed his location. The deputy followed the vehicle and pulled it over at a gas station at the Highway 144 exit.

“The offender kept trying to leave the scene claiming he had to use the restroom,” and he had bloodshot eyes and “you could smell a strong odor of alcoholic beverage from his breath and person,” the deputy reported.

The man acknowledged he’d had a beer a couple hours ago, but agreed to take a field sobriety test.

He blew a .082, and a check of his ID “revealed his license was canceled in 2013.”

There were three passengers in the vehicle, one of whom was 4. The car was turned over to a licensed river. The driver was taken to jail.

Fraud: Deputies were sent to a Richmond Hill address around 6:30 p.m. Oct. 24, where a man said someone claiming to be a deputy with the Liberty County Sheriff’s Office called him and told him he missed a court date and needed to pay $5,000 bail using an app. The man said he was skeptical, but the man then transferred him over to another person who claimed to be a lieutenant with LCSO.

“Deputies informed (the man) the phone all was fraudulent and advised him that (the lieutenant) ... was no longer employed at (LCSO)” In fact, that deputy now works for BCSO and had responded to the fraud call.

Deputies called the number and got a voice mail. They also called LCSO and let them know what was happening.

Accident: A deputy responded to an accident in a Richmond Hill subdivision around 8 p.m. Oct. 25. The man said he “got in an accident and hit the back of his girlfriend’s vehicle.”

The girlfriend said “she was driving home and was stopping for a cat crossing the road and (her boyfriend’s) vehicle struck the back of her daddy’s car.”

The deputy noted damage to both vehicles was consistent with their story.

Matter of record: A deputy was sent to a convenience store on Highway 80 around 9:40 p.m. Oct. 26 “for an unwanted person.” Once there, the deputy learned a man was inside “just staring at the floor, scaring workers and customers.”

The deputy talked to the man, noted he seemed to be having some sort of mental issue and was able to ID him. The deputy then called for EMS to come, and they tried to take the man to Memorial but had to call back for help on Highway 280 near I-16 because the man was behaving strangely and “mentioned he wanted to be ‘de-commissioned.’” The deputy took the man on to the hospital.

DUI: Deputies got a report of a vehicle headed west on the wrong side of the road on Highway 204 near Black Creek Church Road around 4:30 a.m. Oct. 25 and finally managed to pull it over on Highway 280 at Whispering Pines Road.

The driver, a 28-year-old woman, blew a .212. She also said she thought was she was headed to Garden City. She was arrested and faces multiple charges.

Matter of record: Deputies were sent to a Highway 80 convenience store shortly after midnight Oct. 24 regarding “an unwanted person who had threatened employees in the past and was currently inside the store.” The man said he was headed home, but instead pulled his vehicle to the air pump, and “after filling his tires with air … displayed abrupt, yet suspicious driving maneuvers.” The man was “wearing sunglasses and it was just after midnight,” then drove out of the parking lot, circled the store without his headlights on and went back to the gas pumps, the report said.

The deputy pulled him over. “While speaking to him, he admitted to have smoked methamphetamine about three days ago but had slept yesterday,” the report said. Deputies offered the man a number of options, including giving him a ride home or calling his father, the vehicle’s registered owner, but “(he) was acting very deceptive.” A search turned up the man’s wallet, which included a military ID for a woman a financial transaction card for someone else and a Connecticut driver’s license for someone else.” The man said they were given to him at first, but later recanted. Deputies took the cards, but let a family friend take the man home.

DUI: A deputy on patrol on Highway 204 around 4:30 a.m. Oct. 23 saw a gray VW “traveling approximately 20 mph under the posted speed limit,” then cross the fog line and the center line on Highway 204,” and then signal to turn right, then left, and then turn off his turn signal.

A traffic stop followed. The man had all the signs of someone who’d been drinking, and when he got out of the car the deputy noticed an open bottle of Crown Royal in the driver’s car.”

The man was too unsteady on his feet to complete all the field sobriety tests, but registered a .250 on a breath test. He was taken to jail.

DUI, traffic: A deputy on patrol on Highway 280 around 8 p.m. Oct. 3 spotted a pickup “pass a vehicle and a dump truck in a no passing zone,” and then “another group of vehicles” before he was eventually able to conduct a traffic stop near Toni Branch Road.

The deputy smelled pot in the truck and the driver, a 61-year-old man, said he was “having blood sugar issues and was trying to get back home.” He also told the deputy there was pot in the vehicle in a coffee can on the passenger side floor board where his wife was sitting.

That can was given to a deputy.

The man, who was asked to step out of the pickup, “informed (a deputy) that he was a retired prison warden from (a state prison), and asked (the deputy) to give him a break.”

The man then said he smoked marijuana “all day every day,” and agreed to take field sobriety tests to prove he was safe to drive.

“(The deputy) then learned that (the man) had multiple heart attacks, recently undergone eye surgery, and has Parkinson’s,” then said he had low blood sugar, which prompted deputies to call for EMS, and got candy from his wife to eat.

EMS eventually drew blood at a nearby fire station, and despite the man’s repeated requests to be given a break, he was cited for passing in a no passing zone and DUI drugs and taken to jail.

Matter of record: Authorities were investigating a series of shattered windows on Highway 204 near Morgen’s Bridge on Oct. 20. What were thought to be gunshots were broken pieces of concrete thrown by someone at vehicles as they drove past. Several vehicles were damaged, including a Georgia Southern transport bus, but there were no injuries. One witness on the bus said she saw someone on the bridge throw something before the window shattered. A man said he saw two people run away from the area, and “drew his firearm and fired several warning shots into the air.”

The incident is under investigation by BCSO and the Chatham County Police Department.

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