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FBI now offering $20K reward for missing Putnam County woman

FBI now offering $20K reward for missing Putnam County woman

(WXIA) -- The FBI is offering a reward of up to $20,000 for any information about a missing Putnam County woman.

Just after noon Tuesday, Georgia Department of Natural Resources rangers launched a specially equipped pontoon boat brought in from Lake Lanier to search a portion of Lake Oconee for 87-year-old Shirley Dermond.

She's been missing for exactly one week since the decapitated body of her husband, Russell, 88, was found in the garage of their nearby lakefront home.

Sheriff issues scam warning

Sheriff issues scam warning

Sheriff Bittick warns Monroe Countians about a scam making its way through Georgia.

He says scammers have found a new way to take victims' money.

Read the full release from the Monroe County Sheriff's Office:

A new scam is making its way through Georgia and Sheriff John Cary Bittick is warning all citizens not to fall victim to this most recent scam.

As with most scams, the latest involves the victim turning money over to a stranger. But since most victims have learned the hard way that money shouldn’t be wired or transferred to an unknown bank account or banking institution, scammers have found a new way to take victims’ money.

Ky. Man Wanted in Twiggs County Arrested

A man wanted in Twiggs County for impersonating a peace officer was arrested in Kentucky on Tuesday.

Twiggs County Sheriff Darren Mitchum said Mark Tucker, 53, was picked up by Nicholasville, Ky. police on charges that also include criminal damage of property, burglary and possession of a firearm during a crime.

Tucker, who lives in Kentucky, was spotted by a resident on Fourth Street in Danville on Sept. 9 with a woman.

The resident asked what they were doing and Tucker told him he was with the sheriff's office and opened his shirt exposing a gun and badge, Mitchum said.

Tucker told the resident he was trying to recover a stolen dalmatian and to not tell his neighbor they were at the house, a Twiggs County incident report stated.

The resident told his neighbor who called the sheriff's office.

Glass on the front door was shattered to gain entry to the house. Dresser drawers were open, but nothing was missing, the report stated.

Twiggs County Sheriff's Office Awarded Grant

Twiggs County Sheriff's Office Awarded Grant

The Twiggs County Sheriff’s Office has been awarded an $8,000 grant from the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety (GOHS) to purchase the Intoxilyzer 9000.  The grant was awarded to agencies within the State of Georgia that were involved in the support of GOHS initiatives, online enforcement reporting and participation in traffic enforcement networks.

The State of Georgia in 2012 passed legislation requiring all Law Enforcement Agencies to upgrade their current Intoxilyzer 5000 machines to Intoxilyzer 9000 by the end of 2015.

Intoxilyzer 5000 machines are the only current state approved machines that departments use to run breath alcohol tests for impaired drivers to make the determination if they are driving under the influence. The Intoxilyzer 5000, which has been in use since 1994, is being phased out because technology and legal requirements have changed.

Two Men on the Loose in Twiggs County

Twiggs County deputies search for two men who fled the scene of a routine traffic stop today.  

Around 12:30 p.m., they stopped a car with four passengers, two men and two women, on I-16 west for a window tint violation. 

A second unit arrived to the scene, and the two men in the car fled the scene.  Deputies used the dogs, and the Georgia State Patrol chopper to search for the men, but have not found them.

The car contained loose leaf marijuana and open containers of alcohol.  Deputies search for Charlie Branner, 36, from Vidalia and Michael Laquell Sanders, 33, also from Vidalia, also known as Kool-Aid and Smokie.

They both will face charges of felony obstruction and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon when they are caught.

Two Arrested in Danville for Cocaine, Guns, Stolen Goods

Two men were arrested after a police search of a Danville business.

Members of the Twiggs County Sheriff's Office, Wilkinson County Sheriff's Office and Ocmulgee Drug Task Force acted on "simultaneous search warrants" at Jones Detail Shop, finding crack cocaine, guns and an array of stolen goods Thursday evening.

Checo and Isaac Jones were arrested after deputies discovered the two had multiple warrants out for selling cocaine, according to a news release.

Deputies found a "substantial amount" of crack cocaine, three firearms and items apparently stolen from the area.

During the operation, officials also seized four vehicles, two trailers, multiple ATVs and power tools.

How to Write for 13WMAZ's Where You Live

How to Write for 13WMAZ's Where You Live

Where You Live is WMAZ's hyperlocal feature. This means that we are helping bring you more community-specific news more often.

We have websites for these communities:

Dooly-Macon County
Warner Robins
obins AFB

These community websites are a place for you and your community members to share information.

To join our team and share with folks just like yourself, all you have to do is email us your email address and name whereyoulive@13wmaz.com

From there, we set up an account for you. This account lets you log in to your community site and post photo galleries, concerts, community events, 100th birthday parties, your concerns, latest creative projects, how-to advice and anything else you want people in your area to know.

Once you have an account, here are some examples of how you can stay involved Where You Live:

(These are just ideas to get you started. Feel free to come up with your own blog ideas!)

  • Post about your hobby: 
    Music reviews 
    Movie reviews 
    Local fashion


  • Are you that person who always takes photos at the high school's football games or at community festivals?  You can log in with your new account and create a gallery to show off your photos on our site.
  • Have a story idea that may need a reporter in our newsroom? Send us a news tip by emailing eyewitnessnews@13wmaz.com
  • Where You Live is your space for public conversation.  Feel free to comment on others' articles. New ideas can crop up just from simple conversations with others.
  • See something bizarre around town? Take a (cell phone) photo and post it to your community site! Maybe someone else will know the background story.
  • Add an event to our community calendar. Click "Add an Event"  on your community site's event section.
  • Like" us on Facebook to include your local news, breaking news and weather warnings and watches in your Facebook feed.
  • Follow us on Twitter for breaking news and weather updates.