Crime Blotter

Columbia Man Busted for Turtle Trafficking

Plus: Richland County Sheriff Poser, House Shooting

By Preach Jacobs
Wednesday, July 23, 2014
Illustration by Jason Crosby

Pushing Turtles: There are stories about trafficking of drugs, bootleg clothing and even humans, but it’s a rare occasion when you hear about the trafficking of turtles. A Columbia man pleaded guilty to illegally trafficking wild turtles after he found out the buyer was actually an undercover U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service agent. He faces five years in prison and a $20,000 fine. Funny that you don’t hear much about turtle trafficking. Guess it’s a slow business.

Poser: Authorities are looking for a man attempting to dupe unsuspecting rubes out of money by posing as a lieutenant in the Richland County Sheriff’s Department. Authorities say the suspect calls people, telling them they were caught on camera running a red light and claiming a bench warrant is out for their arrest. The suspect then claims that the people would have to put money toward a Green Dot card to pay the bond. (He might as well just say put it toward a PayPal account.) Cops are encouraging people not to fall for the ol’ okie-doke. Let’s hope the suspect will accidentally call a cop next time.

Up the Street: Three women and a man were arrested after they broke into a home in North Columbia armed with a pistol. It didn’t take long for the cops to find the suspects: They were up the road at a gas station hanging around. Maybe when you’ve done something illegal — like, I don’t know, rob someone’s home — you might want to get as far away as possible. They don’t make crooks like they used to.

Late Night Robbery: Cops are looking for a 21-year-old man who knocked over two late-night diners within the week. During the second robbery, the suspect entered a restaurant in Lexington and pulled a gun on the seven customers, getting away with a whopping $300. Just proves once again that eating horrid diner food at 3 a.m. after clubbing isn’t the only risk to eating out.

House Shooting: A 33-year-old man found the wrong way to try to get his ex-girlfriend to listen to him was by shooting a gun inside her home in Camden. The suspect tried to enter his ex’s house while arguing with her. When the woman realized that the guy was, y’know, crazy as hell, she hid and told her son to hide in the closet. The suspect then entered the home, shot the roof and then just left Nobody was injured, but, unfortunately, this isn’t the first time this guy has done this. Last time the suspect got into an argument with his ex, he shot up his own home. Sounds like someone needs anger management.

Making the Cut: A 28-year-old woman proves the old saying, “Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned.” This gal’s got a knife, too: A woman got into an altercation with a man at a home in North Columbia, and the argument ended with the woman stabbing the man in the upper body. The victim is recovering.

Tip of the Week: If you’re in an argument, hitting someone with your car won’t help the situation. Two people were arguing in downtown Columbia when their argument went too far. Authorities aren’t sure about the motive, but know that it got automotive when the suspect drove toward the other person in the argument. The victim was attempting to walk away until the suspect drove closer and struck the victim. The victim was transported to the hospital and is recovering.

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