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Crawford County man indicted for shootout with deputies


A Crawford County grand jury Wednesday indicted Rickey Eugene Smithey Jr. on 14 counts, including aggravated assault on a peace officer, aggravated assault, criminal attempt to commit a felony and possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony.

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District Attorney David Cooke announced the indictment during a Wednesday afternoon news conference. Cooke said the charges stem from a March 14 incident in which Smithey allegedly assaulted three Crawford County law enforcement officers and three civilians.

Fort Valley residents attend spring cleaning program


People in Fort Valley had a chance to get a jump start on their spring cleaning Saturday morning.

Fort Valley State University's Cooperation Extension held the Green Up Clean Up event to help people tidy up and recycle responsibly. FVSU's extension housing specialist Keishon Thomas explained the reasoning behind the event. She said, "In the cooperative extension program, we have a housing area and one of the things for the housing area is to obtain and maintain healthy sanitary housing. We wanted to make sure we brought the resources to the community rather than the community trying to search out and find. We figured if we put everything in a one stop shop kind of place that people would be able to partake in at least one or more of the stops."

Man shot by deputies released from hospital, arrested


The man injured during a shootout with Crawford County deputies on Monday has been released from the hospital.

After his release, Rickey Eugene Smithey Jr. was booked into Crawford County jail and charged with three counts of aggravated assault on a peace officer, according to a sheriff's office news release.

Smithey is awaiting his first court appearance.

Crawford deputies were called to Racers Gas Station at the corner of Olive Grove Church Road and Hwy 80 at about 7:53 p.m. after a 911 call about a disturbance involving Smithey, the news release states.

Deputies encountered Smithey and during a confrontation with him, Smithey took a semi-automatic pistol out of his pocket several times.

The deputy ordered Smithey to keep his hands off of the pistol and the suspect did not comply, according to the news release.

Crawford County deputy, suspect injured in shootout


There are now three arrest warrants out for the man, who allegedly shot a Crawford County deputy during a shootout Saturday evening.

They all charge Ricky Eugene Smithey, who's 31, with three counts of aggravated assault.

Peach County tax official arrested


A Peach County tax official who was being investigated for embezzling county funds was arrested Monday morning after turning herself in.

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Peach County Chief Deputy Tax Commissioner Cindy Doles was booked into the county jail charged with fiduciary theft and taking property greater than $24,999.99, according to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation. Both charges are felonies.

Doles' bond was set at $10,000, and it has been posted.

According to her arrest warrant, Doles admitted taking funds paid by residents for vehicle taxes from February 2009 to January 2015.

Peach County tax official investigated for embezzlement


UPDATE:

A Peach County tax official is being investigated for allegedly embezzling Peach County money.

Special Agent J. T. Ricketson of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation confirmed the agency is investigating Peach County Chief Deputy Tax Commissioner Cindy Doles for embezzlement.

Ricketson says GBI investigators discovered a large amount of money missing from Peach County funds and Doles is a suspect.

However, Ricketson would not confirm whether the GBI has issued an arrest warrant for Doles.

Peach County Sheriff Terry Deese said the Sheriff's Department does not have a warrant out for Doles' arrest.


Man dies in accident after chase with Crawford deputies


A man is dead after wrecking the car he was driving while being pursued by a Crawford County deputy at about 10:22 p.m. Sunday in the 1900 block of Hwy 42.

The deputy chased the suspect, Kenneth Potts, 23, into Peach County and called for back up, according to a Peach County incident report.

Potts lost control of the Jeep Liberty when he came to a curve in the road flipping the vehicle several times. The vehicle was reported stolen from Jones County, according to the report.

Potts was trapped in the vehicle. After being removed from the Jeep, Potts was taken to the hospital in Macon where he was later pronounced dead from his injuries.