News 12 This Morning Local Update - November 17, 2006

5 arrested in Aiken County drug bust

Five people are arrested after a five month undercover investigation in Aiken County.

The sheriff's office, along with other local and federal agencies, arrested the men late last night on a variety of drug charges in Gloverville and Warrenville.

Bennie Grimes, Marcus Johnson, Daniel Robinson, and Cornelius Simpkins are all charged with distribution of crack cocaine. Charges are pending against Koran Sapp.

Georgia Avenue Circle K robbed

North Augusta Public Safety officers are looking for two robbery suspects.

They hit the Circle K gas station off Georgia Avenue in North Augusta Thursday night.

It happened after 11 o'clock.

Officers are now looking for a white man last seen in a black jumpsuit and black man in a green field jacket and black shorts.

Teacher accused of sex with student goes to court

Former softball coach and Harlem High School teacher Melissa Chase will appear in court Monday for her bond hearing.

Chase was arrested on sexual assault charges this past Monday.

She resigned when she was accused by a female student of having a sexual relationship with her.

2 deputies suspended, one terminated over MySpace pages

A road patrol deputy is kicked off the force and two others suspended for information they posted on

Phillip Hambrick received a 10-day suspension and Colby Harrell a 2-day suspension. Jason Izquierdo lost his job with the Richmond County Sheriff's Office.

Sheriff Ronnie Strength says images and statements on their MySpace pages were inappropriate, especially after the entire department was warned about the site four months ago.

All three deputies have ten days to file an appeal.

Woody Merry says he'll fight drag strip

CSRA community watchdog Woody Merry is back, vowing to help residents in south Augusta fight new drag strip plans.

Augusta commissioners gave the go-ahead for plans last week, but Merry presented a list of concerns from the community in a news conference this morning, outlining why he says the city's investment in this project is a bad idea.

"We had several residents from south Augusta contact us personally and asked us to help," he told News 12. "They had been fighting city hall by themselves. And their voices and requests have gone unheard. They asked C.S.R.A. Help to get involved. We're getting involved in a big way."

Right now, the city administrator is working to buy the land from the Development Authority before securing $6 million in bonds to build the racetrack.

New District 4 commissioner sworn in

A new voice joins the debate in Commission chambers.

Bernard Harper was sworn in Thursday.

Harper defeated opponent Alvin Mason for the seat from which Richard Colclough resigned earlier this year.

Commissioner Harper says his agenda includes fixing budget problems in Augusta and making sure there will not be a tax increase.

The CSRA lines up for PS3s

Some people were able to get PlayStation 3's from the North Augusta Wal-Mart this morning.

The gaming system kids and adults are talking all about went on sale at midnight, but only a few folks got one because of availability.

400,000 PS3's will go on sale across the nation today.

Many say they plan to resell the game on eBay for double and triple the price.

Coming Up

Thought about your biological clock?

Well, it may be something to consider if you're a man.

Monday, what you should know as you get up there in age.

That's on News 12 This Morning starting at 5:30 a.m.