Augusta Canal Authority tries to keep area patrolled

Monday, June 9, 2014

(WRDW) --

The Richmond County coroner is waiting for autopsy results after a second body was found in the Augusta Canal in a span of four months. A fisherman found the body face down in the water Saturday near the intersection of 13th and Telfair. All the coroner knows right now , the victim is a black male with no visible injuries.

Bikes, kayaks, and people on foot are on the canal almost everyday especially in the summer time. Leslie Wright rents out canoes and kayaks year round. She said, "This is a treasure. This is Augusta's hidden treasure right here. There is so much to do right here."

Now that summer has rolled around, Leslie said business is really picking up. She said, "In the morning we rent everything out, and in the afternoon as well."

But there aren't just more people on the water, there are also more patrols along the shores as well. Dayton Sherrouse with the Augusta Canal Authority says nine off-duty deputies help patrol the canal almost forty hours a week. He said, "Of course you can't stop everything and you can't have twenty-four hour patrols either."

Even though the patrols aren't around the clock, he says, they make a big difference. Sherrouse said, "I think it's just like when you're driving down the road and you pass a police car and the first thing you do is check your speedometer. I think the same thing holds true up there."

And that's something folks like Leslie have noticed too. She said, "There are policemen in the park frequently. We probably see policeman coming up and down the towpath at least once a day."

Something Leslie is glad about. She said, "Well just the fact that they patrol it, I think makes people feel safer."

And along with those nine off duty patrolmen there are also DNR officers and Richmond County Deputies. The Canal Authority wants you to know you are not out on the canal alone and there is always someone keeping an eye on things.

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