Local Update - January 4, 2007

Meth lab busted in upscale neighborhood

Some people in Columbia County got quite a shock when they learned one of their neighbors had been running a meth lab.

Tuesday night investigators arrested 37-year-old Jamie Brosious after they found a meth lab inside her Pond View Road home.

Narcotics agents also arrested Scott Fernandez and Cheree Granade, who were seen leaving Brosious' house with ingredients in the truck they were driving.

A company working with the drug enforcement administration later cleaned up the home. We're told the property will most likely not be seized.

Escaped inmate recaptured

A Jefferson County inmate will be behind bars a little longer after escaping.

It happened Wednesday morning around 5 o'clock.

The sheriff says 29-year-old David Campbell and his wife took off to his dad's house in Walterboro, South Carolina.

That's where local deputies caught up with him around 10 o'clock Wednesday morning.

Campbell was supposed to be mopping the floors when he wandered off to the side of the jail.

The sheriff says he used an air-conditioning box to climb onto the roof and took off to his mother's house, where his wife was waiting to pick him up.

"It was a rare thing to happen, and may not never happen at that, but we're going to take precautions that won't happen again," said Sheriff Gary Hutchins.

Now David and his wife Niesa face more jail time.

Campbell took off with just four and a half months left in jail. He was in on a probation violation for previous drug charges.

Man arrested for hit-and-run of 7-year-old

A man has been arrested after hitting a child and driving off New Year's Eve.

Deputies say James Paschal ran over the seven-year-old boy's leg after leaving Macedonia Baptist Church.

Deputies say the child was actually responsible for the accident, but they say Paschal was charged because he left the scene and was driving with a suspended license.

City budget changes go into effect

You may have noticed the grass is a little higher and you don't see as many buses running in Augusta.

City Administrator Fred Russell says these are all signs of changes to the city's budget.

Last year, commissioners got rid of some transit routes and made cuts to the landscaping department.

Russell says there's more to come. He expects to announce $1.6 million worth of job cuts within the next two weeks.

No word yet on what departments those cuts will affect.

City removes mementos at James Brown's statue

The city of Augusta has been given the go ahead by James Brown's family to remove mementos placed around his statue.

The city administrator says the family will store some of those things and decide what they want to keep and what will be donated to the city.

Lots of items have been left at the statue on Broad Street downtown since James Brown's death on Christmas day.

New school officials sworn in

School is back in and Columbia County's first elected chairman is now in office.

Regina Buccafusco was sworn in Wednesday night after winning a runoff election last month.

In the past, the school board chairman has been a board-appointed position.

And there will be a swearing in today at the Richmond County Board of Education.

School Board President Marion Barnes will swear in newly-elected board members Eloise Curtis, Alex Howard, Jack Padgett, Jr., Frank Dolan, and Venus Cain. Cain defeated former school board member A.K. Hasan in December.

The swearing in will take place at 4 p.m. in the boardroom.