Investigators looking into inmate beatings, thefts in county jail

First Posted: 4:09 pm - November 25th, 2015

By Larry Stanford - lstanford@civitasmedia.com

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By Larry Stanford


Upson County Sheriff’s Investigators are looking into an apparent strong-arm operation in the Upson County Jail.

According to an incident report by Deputy Adam Wainwright, on November 16 he spoke with an inmate in reference to an incident that occurred on Nov. 14 between 10-10:30 p.m. The inmate said three young black males came into his cell before lockdown on Saturday night and jumped on him, hitting him in his head, side, ribs and back. He said another inmate came into the cell and pulled one of the three off of him, and they left.

The inmate said he had seen the same three men go into another inmate’s cell around noon on Saturday and take his commissary. He said that inmate told him he did not want to get beat up, so he gave them his commissary. The inmate said he had also seen a fourth inmate bring some commissary into his cell, saying the other inmate was weak and he had taken the rest of his commissary.

On Nov. 16, about 1 p.m., the inmate said he woke up to find the fourth inmate standing by his bed and taking his commissary out of his drawer. The other three inmates were also standing there waiting to take his commissary. He said the fourth inmate started punching him before he could get off his bed. The inmate said a jail officer came in and he told him what had happened. An hour later, the inmate was moved to another pod for protective custody reasons.

Vehicle chase

A Thomaston man caught driving on a suspended license will not be getting his license back anytime after leading Sheriff’s deputies on a high speed chase.

According to an incident report by Deputy Mario Cromer, about 2:15 p.m. on Nov. 16 he was patrolling on Atwater Road when he saw a blue 2002 Pontiac Grand Prix GT go by. He recognized the driver as Christopher Wayne Ledford. Dep. Cromer stated in his report that was familiar with the man because he had arrested him in October for driving while his license was suspended.

As he began to give chase, Dep. Comer said the vehicle increased its speed and crossed over the fog line on the roadway. He radioed in his pursuit. The vehicle turned onto Willingham Spring Road and continued at a high rate of speed, weaving over the roadway. Dep. Cromer lost sight of it as it rounded a curve and contacted Dep. Kody Kennedy, advising him of the situation and asking him to check David Road while Cromer checked Bonds Road.

Dep. Cromer spotted the vehicle sitting in a driveway at a house on Bonds Road, with the driver not in sight. Kennedy and another deputy arrived to assist. They checked the area, but could not find Ledford. The tag on the vehicle came back to a female. When they contacted her, she said she had given the keys to Ledford and said she would contact him and try to get him to turn himself in. Ledford made contact with Dep. Kennedy and said he could pick him up on Atwater Road.

Ledford, age 34, was charged with Fleeing or Attempting to Elude a Police Officer, Driving While License Suspended or Revoked, Reckless Driving, Weaving or Roadway, and Improper Signal.

Lamar County

Lamar County drivers also don’t seem to worry about driving when their licenses have been suspended or revoked. Four of them are facing new charges after being stopped by Lamar County Sheriff’s Officers last week.

The first incident occurred on Nov. 13. James R. Wilkerson, age 33, was arrested and charged with Possession of Marijuana, Less than an Ounce; Failure to Maintain Lane, and Driving While License Suspended or Revoked.

The second happened on Nov. 14. Kyle Q. McCrary, age 39, was arrested and charged with Possession of Marijuana, Less than an Ounce; Failure to Maintain Lane, and Driving While License Suspended or Revoked.

On Nov. 15, Jesus Briceno-Vargas, age 24, was arrested and charged with Affixing Materials that Reduce Visibility, and Driving While License Suspended or Revoked.

Also on Nov. 15, Jayla J. Woolfork, age 18, was arrested and charged with Speeding in Excess of Maximum Limits, and Driving While License Suspended or Revoked.

Larry Stanford may be reached at 706-647-5414 or on Twitter @LarryStanford7.


By Larry Stanford




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