Around the Region: Arson Fires Under Investigation, Mosquitoes Test Positive for West Nile and Hitchhiker Arrested
A look at top Patch stories from around Georgia.
Rash of Arson Fires in Gwinnett Under Investigation, 2 in Loganville -- Loganville Patch
Gwinnett Fire officials are currently investigating a series of recent fires in the county as arson, two of them in a Loganville neighborhood. Lt. Colin S. Rhoden, public information officer for Gwinnett Fire and Emergency Services, said authorities do not believe that these fires are connected.
“We do have surveillance of the last one, an early morning vehicle fire in Buford, and we hope to be able to release the footage to the media,” Rhoden said.
Information naming four of the fires as arson, including the Buford vehicle fire and a house fire on June 27 in the 2400 block of Range Heights Terrace, Loganville, was sent to media outlets Tuesday. The other two included a house fire in unincorporated Stone Mountain on June 22 and another on Vivid Drive near Lilburn on July 22.
Last month, authorities said an early morning house fire in the 3700 block of Red Rose Court in Loganville also was arson.
Mosquitoes Testing Positive for West Nile Virus – Lilburn-Mountain Park Patch
The Dekalb County Board of Health reports mosquitoes recently taken from eight various trap locations tested positive for the West Nile Virus, however at this time the CDC in Atlanta has no confirmed or reported cases of West Nile in Gwinnett County.
The CDC confirmed 712 human cases of the disease last year with fewer than five cases confirmed in Dekalb and none in Gwinnett, per the CDC website.
“I am encouraging residents to educate themselves about West Nile Virus prevention and to take precautions to protect themselves,” stated S. Elizabeth Ford, district health director of the DeKalb County Board of Health. “The most effective actions against the virus are to wear mosquito repellent and to reduce standing water where mosquitoes breed.”
Woman Arrested for Hitchhiking – Athens Patch
Police arrested a woman for hitchhiking and stopped her from getting into a man’s vehicle after they arrived on the scene near Commerce Road in Athens on Friday.
Emily Ribblett, 43, reported to police that her car had caught fire and she was trying to get a ride to a location closer to her friend’s house, however she would not give police the name of that friend. When asked why she didn’t call a cab, the woman stated that she didn’t have the money but she was found to have $15 when police performed a search. Ribblett was arrested with soliciting rides on the roadway, a tactic that is sometimes used to solicit prostitution.