By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Reflecting on 2009: July-August
bank suspect
A surveillance camera caught images of a man who robbed The Heritage Bank branch in Midway on July 8. The suspect has not been arrested. - photo by Photo provided.
As 2009 comes to a close, the Courier put together the year in review through front page stories from 2009 newspapers. The dates listed are the date the Courier printed the stories, not the date on which the events occurred. The following is a review of July and August news stories.

July 1
The Liberty County Development Authority backed out of a partnership with AASU on a new campus/library project, following the example of Liberty County commissioners. The lone partner, Hinesville, was all that remained of the initial five partners.
“The message we’re getting is there’s still support, but not money,” said Bill Megathlin, assistant to AASU’s president.

July 3
Liberty County Sheriff’s Office asked for community vigilance due to an increasing number of daytime burglaries. According to Liberty County Chief Deputy Keith Moran, eight property crimes, all in broad daylight, occurred in one weekend.
“We are asking everyone in their neighborhoods to be alert to possible strangers and who is coming and going in and out of their neighborhood,” Moran said. “If they see vehicles that are suspicious looking, by all means, call them in.”

July 5

Fort Stewart’s 4th of July celebration, featured rhythm and blues singer, Ashanti, and country singer, Trace Adkins. Carnival rides and games added to the day’s activities, all to boost soldier and family morale.
“It allows us to focus on something else right before we deploy,” soldier Anzren Johnson said. “So I think it was a great opportunity and really fun.”

July 10
A robbery at the Midway branch of The Heritage Bank was handed over to federal officials. According to bank officials, things went much better than they could have.
“[Wednesday] morning there was an incident at our Midway Branch,” said James Floyd Jr., Heritage’s chairman and CEO. “Thankfully all of our employees are safe. They followed the security measures in place and handled the situation like the true professionals they are.”

July 12
FBI sought local help in finding and arresting of the man responsible for the bank robbery. Special Agent Gregory Jones said the man walked into the bank wearing a motorcycle helmet and carrying a book bag.
“He placed the book bag on the counter and ordered the victim teller to put money in the bag,” the release said. “As the teller was retrieving money from his teller drawer, the robber placed a black semi-automatic pistol on the counter and told the teller he was sorry.”

July 17
The 3rd Battalion 69th Armor Regiment celebrated its 69th birthday with a family day of water gun fights, food and tank and other Army vehicle demonstrations.
“We like celebrating birthdays of various units and regiments to remember both the soldiers currently serving and the soldiers that have served in the past,” said Sgt. Johnathon Jobson, public affairs officer for the 3rd ID’s 1st Heavy Brigade Combat Team.
Brewton-Parker College cut tuition rates in half to encourage more people in their pursuits of higher education. The price dropped from $415 per credit hours to $215 per credit hour.
“There were a lot of factors,” said Chris Jeancake, director of the Liberty County campus. “We really wanted to open our doors to new students.

July 19
To help offset the costs of preparation for the fifth brigade, the Defense Appropriations Committee announced it would be sending Liberty County $75 million instead of 4,000 new soldiers.
“Hinesville and Liberty County have stepped up when the military asked them to and now it’s time for the Pentagon to step up and help Hinesville,” U.S. Rep. Jack Kingston said.

July 31

Because of budget cuts, Liberty County School System officials had to schedule in three furlough days during the fall semester. To help counter the missed learning time, school days were extended for the fall semester, with children being released 15 minutes later than usual. According to Superintendent Dr. Judy Sherer, the furloughs weren’t optional.
“We simply couldn’t afford not to,” Sherer said. “It’s called money.”

Shots were fired at middle and high school students as they walked away from a bus stop. Witnesses and students said the shooter was riding in a white car, along with five other people.
“Kids scattered everywhere,” said Hinesville Police Major Det. T. E. Cribbs. “We found five cartridges.”

Aug. 19

Hinesville resident, Eric Michael Turner, 21, was arrested by the Hinesville Police Department Crime Suppression Unit and charged with the after-school shooting. Turner was charged with one count of aggravated assault, criminal damage and possession of a firearm during commission of certain felonies, plus additional misdemeanors, according to Hinesville Police Det. Doug Snider.

Aug. 23

The local chapter of Disabled American Veterans was scheduled to lose its office space to the new justice center parking. The scheduled date of property loss was Sept. 1.
“In my office alone, we’re seeing 100-200 veterans a month,” said Garlon Penland, commander of DAV, Chapter 46. “We have no idea where we’re going.”

Aug. 26
Four more were charged in relation to the bus-stop, after-school shooting, two of whom were soldiers assigned to Fort Stewart. The four were charged with being party to an aggravated assault and simple assault. Hinesville Police Det. Doug Snider said the four suspects turned themselves in at the department.
Sign up for our e-newsletters