Neighbor sees ‘traffic in and out’ of Magnolia Park as crime issue

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AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) – Three women involved in a home invasion now face drug felony charges. It happened in a west Augusta apartment, near Gordon Highway and Highland Avenue Sunday afternoon.

People who were at Magnolia Park when the incident happened tell NewsChannel 6 they heard fighting and then gunshots. And they were not surprised that it happened either. One neighbor said it’s all because of the company that some people keep.

“As for it being a home invasion, I don’t believe it,” said Neighbor Patricia Dunbar.

Three women thought they were letting a man with a familiar name inside a Magnolia Park apartment Sunday afternoon. A case report states deputies replied to a shooting in building 12. But before that happened, 31-year-old Jonta Moss and two others heard a knock at the door. When asked, a man replied “it’s Chuck” and Moss stated, “yea he good, let him in.” Patricia Dunbar said she’s lived in the community since 2005 and traffic as well as people living in the apartments who are not on the lease is a problem.

“These three women have a lot of company in and out of their apartment,” Dunbar said. “You don’t allow everyone in and out of your apartment. You don’t know what they’re going to do and how they’re going to retaliate.”

The women let the man they thought was Chuck inside and report it was actually two men who pushed the door open and forced their way inside. The suspects began shooting. One victim reports hearing a man say “where it’s at” to which Moss replied, “I don’t have nothing,” and was shot in the leg.

It’s not the first shooting at Magnolia Par. A man was shot to death in May. Another person was shot last October. And in May of 2016 a fire claimed a young girl’s life.

The above graphic is the number of shootings in Magnolia Park in the past five years. The data was complied by the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office.

“Every time we try to call the police on something either they come and they don’t do nothing or they wait too long and it’s over with. I’m not saying it’s their fault because I know they’re busy at times too, but we say somebody is out here shooting and it takes them forever to get here,” Dunbar elaborated.

Investigators arrested Moss along with 28-year-old Krystal Bolton, of Columbia, S.C. and 23-year-old Shandrisa Moore, of Trenton, S.C. They found marijuana, crack cocaine, MDMA pills and three handguns in the apartment. All are charged with felony possession of each with intent.

Dunbar plans to remain vigilant, but she’s hoping a few changes can take place.

She added, “A fenced in gate that’s going to need a card or something to slide through.”

Some other suggestions include getting a security guard staffed at Magnolia Park, mainly during overnight hours to help cut down on crimes.

We will keep following this story.

Photojournalist: Gary Hipps

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