Augusta Man Behind Bars for Mosquito Breeding Ground - WJBF-TV ABC 6 Augusta-Aiken

Augusta Man Behind Bars for Mosquito Breeding Ground

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Augusta, GA -

41 year old  Andre England was sentenced to 60 days in jail for violating the environmental health code for an untreated pool -- A sentence England's aunt thinks is uncalled for.

Patresicia Gaither says, "two other people have had this same charge and they didn't get but 5 to 10 days. Why my nephew get 60?"

Richmond County Mosquito Control says it's because this home on Richards Road has had mosquito problems off and on since 2011.

Fred Koehle with Mosquito Control Operations Manager explains, "he had a problem in 2011, we got it fixed. Got it squared away. Then, the beginning of this year, in January, we had a complaint registered. We went out and did an inspection, the pool was holding stagnant water, we treated the pool, sent him a  30 day letter."

Koehle says Mosquito Control reached out to England approximately 10 times, in hopes of capping the problem. He tells me some changes were made, but when mosquito control went back in July-- and a permanent fix was not evident -- they headed to court in fear of an environmental disaster.

"The size of Mr. England's pool, if it's not controlled, can produce upwards of half a million mosquitoes a season," Koehle adds.

Gaither says her nephew's pool was not posing an environmental risk.

"He has put chlorine chemicals in it, they say empty it, he emptied it. They say cover it, he covered it. He's doing -- he has done everything they asked him to do," she tells News Channel 6's Tyrone McCoy.

But with Augusta-Richmond County already experiencing one case of the West Nile Virus this year,  Koehle says this sentence could help reduce the potential for more disease carrying mosquitoes

He adds, "the potential is there. This is in a neighborhood. Plenty of places for mosquitoes to hide."

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