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Soldier ties up interstate with suicide threat

A 31-year-old Oklahoma soldier, distraught over orders to go to Iraq and a restraining order keeping him from seeing his six-year-old son, threatened to jump off an interstate overpass in McDuffie County Monday morning.


10:15 a.m., Monday
Sgt. James Richard Rogers talks with Georgia State Patrol troopers atop the Washington Road overpass at Interstate 20.
Photo by Jason B. Smith
Sgt. James Richard Rogers climbed out of his gold Saturn about 10:15 a.m. Monday and was standing on the overpass railing as emergency personnel arrived.

McDuffie County Public Information Officer Don Norton said the incident lasted about 30 minutes as traffic on the westbound lanes of Interstate 20 was diverted up the Exit 172 ramp and across Highway 17.

Around 10:50 a.m. a cadre of Georgia State Patrol Troopers and McDuffie County Sheriff's deputies wrestled Sgt. Rogers to the ground.

Georgia State Patrol Post Commander Mark Bentley and McDuffie County Sheriff Logan Marshall said Monday afternoon their agencies would likely not be filing charges in the incident.


10:47 a.m.
A group of Georgia State Patrol troopers, McDuffie County deputies and local emergency workers wrestle Sgt. Rogers to the ground to end the standoff.
Photo by Jason B. Smith
Officials said Sgt. Rogers was first transported to McDuffie Regional Medical Center and then to Fort Gordon.

Mr. Norton, who also serves as county manager, said Sgt. Rogers had come to the McDuffie County Courthouse in an effort to see his child Monday morning.

There he was told a restraining order was in place, and the man became distraught.

"He was not threatening over here or anything like that, just terribly upset," Mr. Norton said.


10:53 a.m.
A handcuffed Sgt. Rogers talks with various emergency workers after being taken into custody Monday.
Photo by Jason B. Smith
Fort Sill Media Chief Nancy Elliott said Sgt. Rogers is attached to the B Battery, Second Battalion, Fifth Field Artillery Regiment and the unit is on deployment orders. She did not have any more information on the soldier, she said.


10:55 a.m.
Officers check Sgt. Rogers before loading him into the back of a McDuffie County Sheriff's Department vehicle.
Photo by Jason B. Smith

Web posted on Thursday, June 30, 2005


Temperature:53° F
Wind:from the W at 5 MPH
Visibility:10 miles
Dew Point:53° F
Updated: 04-Nov-2010 10:01

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