SAVANNAH, Ga. (CN) – A grand jury indicted Grammy-nominated country singer Billy Currington on charges of “making terroristic threats and abuse of an elder person,” a state prosecutor said.
“Chatham County Superior Court Judge Penny Haas Freesemann has signed a bench warrant for Currington’s arrest,” Chatham County District Attorney Meg Heap said in a statement.
A Chatham County grand jury accused Currington, 39, of threatening charter boat captain Charles Harvey Ferrelle.
Ferrelle is 70.
Ferrelle was taking two customers on a tour around Tybee Island, Ga. on April 15 when a man, later identified as Currington, began “yelling threats and profanity towards him” from a waterfront property, according to a Savannah-Chatham Metropolitan Police report.
Ferrelle told Tybee Island police that “when he came back by the property, the same male subject was in his boat with a camera and that the subject followed Mr. Ferrelle to [dockside restaurant] AJ’s Dock, and that the male suspect got out of his boat and the verbal abuse started again along with threats that he was going to ‘fuck’ Mr. Ferrelle up.”
Currington, a native of Rincon, Ga., owns a home in a gated community near Tybee Island, 18 miles east of Savannah.
Ferrelle said “he feared for his life” and sought assistance from the Chatham County Marine Patrol for a tour he had scheduled for the next day, according to the police report.
“If I hadn’t gotten into my slip fast enough, I believe he (Currington) would have run me over,” Ferrelle told Marine Patrol Officer Daniel Walker, according to the report. (Parentheses in report).
When asked what could have triggered the incident, Ferrelle said “he had no idea.”
A woman called the next day to report the same incident from a different angle, according to the police report. The woman, who said she was caretaker for an elderly man on Tybee Island, complained that a boat that had sped by Currington’s property had almost knocked the man in the water.
“Well, what is it we can do to keep people from coming up on our docks or swamping our docks,” she asked Officer Walker, who reported that Currington had asked him the same question during Oktoberfest.
(Savannah organizes an Oktoberfest festival on its famous River Street every October).
Walker concluded the report by saying he had yet to get Currington’s “side of the story.”
Two days after the alleged incident, Currington sent a Twitter message that said, “harrassing [sic] artists often at their home by boat should be illegal. thas all i know [sic],” according to local news reports.
The bench warrant was issued Wednesday, according to a spokesman for District Attorney Heap. The arraignment is scheduled for May 28.
Currington thanked his fans for support via Twitter, and said he could not comment further.
Currington’s Top 10 country hits include “Pretty Good at Drinkin’ Beer,” “That’s How Country Boys Roll” and “People Are Crazy.” He lives in Nashville.
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