Cleveland man charged with neglect of disabled wife

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CLEVELAND, Ga. — A report by a home health nurse last week led to the arrest of a Cleveland man who is charged with neglect of a disabled person along with eight counts of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and the operation of a moohshine still in his home.

Cleveland Police arrested Lee Carter Blake, 53, at his home Friday, April 6, and transported him to the White County Detention Center where he is being held on $13,000 bond.

A spokesperson for Cleveland Police said deputies went to the home occupied by Blake and his 65-year-old wife, Patricia Blake, who is confined to a wheelchair and found the home to be in “deplorable condition.”

In searching the home, they discovered that Blake, a convicted felon, was in possession of several firearms. He was convicted of theft by taking in 1993.

The search also uncovered an illegal still.

 

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that covers Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. If you would like to follow up-to-date local events in any of those counties, please visit us at FetchYourNews.com

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‘Active shooter’ training exercise at White County Middle School April 4

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CLEVELAND, Ga . — White County Public Safety Director David Murphy wants the public to be aware that an “active shooter training” exercise will take place at White County Middle School on Wednesday, April 4, from 7 a.m. until noon.

This is a joint exercise by the school system, Cleveland Police Department, White County Sheriff’s Office, White County Public Safety, Cleveland Fire Department and the Georgia Emergency Management-Homeland Security Agency.

Murphy said the exercise will evaluate the plans for both the system and first responders in the event an actual situation should occur. This exercise will include volunteer students and faculty from White County Schools and Truett – McConnell University.

The public should be aware of the increased presence of personnel on this date and not be alarmed as this is only an exercise of emergency response plans.

School systems and public safety personnel all across Georgia have conducted these exercises for some time, but the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, that killed 17 students and faculty Feb. 14, has led to a heightened awareness of the importance of such exercises.

 

 

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that covers Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. If you would like to follow up-to-date local events in any of those counties, please visit us at FetchYourNews.com

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Report: Juvenile threatens to ‘shoot up’ school

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CLEVELAND, Ga. – A juvenile male is being detained at the Regional Detention Center after he reportedly made threats to shoot up the Ninth Grade Academy Thursday.

Cleveland Police Lt. Donna Sims said the juvenile was overheard threatening to shoot up the school when classes resume on Wednesday, Feb. 21.

Sims said officers with the Cleveland Police Department began interviewing subjects who say they heard the threats. Once they got corroborating information, the juvenile was detained at the Regional Youth Detention Center.

The investigation is ongoing, but there are no other suspects being sought. If any other students heard anything that was said, they are asked to call the Cleveland Police Department at 706-348-7078.

FetchYourNews will have more details when they become available.

 

 

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that covers Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. If you would like to follow up-to-date local events in any of those counties, please visit us at FetchYourNews.com

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Law enforcement disrupts major marijuana distribution ring operating in three counties

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Steven Pruitt

CLEVELAND, Ga. – Agents with the Appalachian Regional Drug Enforcement Office (ARDEO) and multiple local law enforcement agencies including White County and the Cleveland Police Department disrupted a large marijuana distribution organization operating in White, Habersham and Gwinnett counties last week.

White County authorities learned about the organization through tips from the local community. On Feb. 2, search warrants were executed at Steven Pruitt’s residence at 110 Rolling Ridge Drive in Cleveland where eight pounds of marijuana, 200 grams of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) wax and numerous firearms were confiscated.

ARDEO Agents and Norcross Police also executed a search warrant at Evan Johnstone and William Blake Moore’s townhome in Norcross where they found 14 pounds of marijuana, 200 grams of THC wax, 104 .500 mL THC Vape Cartridges, and $42,169 in cash.

Evan Johnstone

Johnstone and Ryan Crispin were arrested with cash and drugs in their possession during traffic stops in White County. An investigation indicated Crispin was coming to White County to purchase marijuana from Pruitt and that Johnstone and Moore supplied Pruitt with marijuana and the THC wax.

Overall, the operation yielded $56,253 in cash and took $546,000 of illegal narcotics off the streets.

Agents believe a large quantity of the marijuana was smuggled into Georgia from states that have legalized marijuana. It also appears Johnstone and Moore were producing their own THC wax, a highly potent THC-concentrated mass that contains extraordinarily high THC levels.

William Crispin

Pruitt, 33, Crispin, 20, and Johnstone, 25, were charged under Georgia’s Racketeer Influenced Corrupt Organization (RICO) statute and transported to the White County Detention Center. A RICO warrant has been issued for Moore, but he has not yet been arrested.

Anyone with information about Moore or who would like to report suspicious drug activity can do so via instant message or by calling 706-348-7410.

 

 

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that covers Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. If you would like to follow up-to-date local events in any of those counties, please visit us at FetchYourNews.com

 

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Cleveland Police arrest gang member

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Richard Nash

CLEVELAND, Ga. – The Cleveland Police Department arrested alleged gang member Richard Nash, 25, of Cornelia on a long list of felonies, including willful obstruction of a law enforcement officer by use of threats of violence Jan. 10

Nash is believed to be a member of Ghost Face Gangsters, a prison-based gang that has been in Georgia for more than 20 years. The gang is believed to be responsible for a prison break last June that left two correction officers dead.

Cleveland Police attempted to question the driver of a vehicle parked at the Walmart store when Nash, a passenger, jumped from the vehicle and ran. He was quickly apprehended and booked into the White County Detention Center.

Nash is also charged with possession of methamphetamine, possession of a firearm or knife during the commission of or attempted commission of a felony and criminal use of an article with an altered ID tag.

 

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that covers Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. If you would like to follow up-to-date local events in any of those counties, please visit us at FetchYourNews.com

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WCMS Student Appears in Juvenile Court Friday

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CLEVELAND, Ga. – A seventh-grade student at White County Middle School, who was arrested last week for making terrorist threats is scheduled to appear in White County Juvenile Court tomorrow (Friday, Oct. 13).

The student, who is not identified due to his age, allegedly told a classmate he planned to shoot up the school and that she would be the first one shot.

White County School Superintendent Dr. Jeff Wilson declined to answer questions regarding the incident but instead, issued the following prepared statement:

“On Wednesday afternoon last week, a threat was made by a White County Middle School student. The administration met with the students involved and addressed the issue. The student who made the threat was sent home while the incident was investigated further. After further investigation on Thursday morning, the school contacted law enforcement. WCMS students were safe throughout the process.  The safety of our students is our number one priority and we work diligently to keep our teachers and students safe.”

According to a spokesman for the Cleveland Police Department, the boy was arrested then released to his parents but ordered to wear an ankle bracelet

The mother of the girl who reported the threat asked not to be identified for fear of retribution. She did say that she was upset with school officials because her daughter reported the threat to a teacher and a support coordinator Wednesday morning. But the mother said she wasn’t told of the incident until Wednesday evening when the coordinator called her.

“I asked to meet with the school Principal Kristi Gerrells Thursday morning,” the mother told Fetch Your News. “When I did, I was told that she wanted to wait until the School Resource Officer returned from vacation on Monday before contacting the police. I said that was unacceptable and I thought parents should be made aware of the threat immediately.”

The mother added, “I felt like the way she handled it was inappropriate. She made me feel like I was wasting my time. She also said she appreciated me not posting it on social media because we don’t need a bunch of stirred up parents. I felt like she just wanted to cover it up. But I think this is something parents need to know.”

This is the second time this year school officials reacted to a threat at the same school. A threat made on social media in March prompted a request for additional security. At the time, Wilson said the threat was investigated it and determined not to be credible.

 

 

 

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that covers Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. If you would like to follow up-to-date local events in any of those counties, please visit us at FetchYourNews.com

 

 

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Cleveland Traffic Stop Leads to Meth Bust

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CLEVELAND, Ga. – The Appalachian Regional Drug Enforcement Office, Cleveland Police Department, White County Sheriff’s Office and Lumpkin County Sheriff’s Office scored a significant drug bust last week.

It started with a traffic stop that led to the arrest of Bobby Joe Mullinax Jr., 39 of Cleveland and the seizure of one pound of methamphetamine and $1,700 in cash.

The following day, ARDEO agents, along with deputies with White County and Lumpkin County executed a search warrant at Keith and Bradley Talley’s residence, 794 Stanley Nix Road in Cleveland, during which they confiscated more than $51,000 in illicit drugs, including 460 grams of meth, 30 Methline pills and a quantity of hydrocodone pills.  

Mullinax is charged with trafficking in methamphetamine. Patrick Keith Talley is charged with trafficking in meth, possession of marijuana with intent to distribute, possession of meth with intent to distribute, and possession of Schedule II with intent to distribute.

Bradley Talley is charged with possession of marijuana with intent to distribute, possession of meth with intent to distribute, possession of schedule II with intent to distribute.

Patrick Keith Talley was charged with trafficking in meth, possession of marijuana with intent to distribute, possession of meth with intent to distribute, and possession of Schedule II with intent to distribute.

The three men were transported to the White County Detention Center.

For additional information about ARDEO or to provide tips on criminal activity look for ARDEO@appalachiandtf on twitter or follow on facebook@appalachianrdeo and/or Instagram or contact your local Sheriff’s Office or Police Department.

The Appalachian Regional Drug Enforcement Office is a multi-agency unit that consists of the following Sheriff’s Offices: White County, Lumpkin County, Towns County, Banks County, Habersham County, Stephens County, Rabun County, Franklin County, the Cleveland Police Department, and the Lavonia Police Department, along with the Georgia National Guard Counter Drug Task Force, the Department of Public Safety, and the Georgia Bureau of Investigation.

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Cleveland PD Charges Lula Woman With Forgery, Identity Fraud and Exploitation

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Cynthia Forrester is charged with forgery, identity theft and exploitation of elderly/disabled person.

CLEVELAND, Ga. — The Cleveland Police Department has arrested 52-year-old Cynthia Marie Forrester of Lula on multiple charges of forgery of financial transaction card, financial transaction card fraud, identity theft fraud and two counts of exploitation/infliction of pain to deprive essential services to a disabled or elderly person.

Lt. Donna Sims, who is in charge of the investigation, said Forrester, worked for a healthcare agency in Cleveland.  Bond has been set at $82,000. Forrester bonded out on Aug. 2.

Authorities believe Forrester accepted gifts from a person in her care who has been diagnosed with dementia and that she took the patient to a bank where she used the patient’s debit card to withdraw cash.

The investigation is ongoing and a full incident report will be available later this week.

Fetch Your News will report additional details as they become available.

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that covers Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. If you would like to follow up-to-date local events in any of those counties, please visit us at FetchYourNews.com

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