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Monday May 4th, 2015 8:10AM

Club Escape burglary investigation turned over to sheriff's office

By Dean Dyer and Rob Moore
HELEN - Helen Police Chief Jim Couch said Wednesday night the investigation into an apparent burglary at Club Escape on Main Street has been turned over to the White County Sheriff's Office.

That announcement followed a meeting between Couch and White County Sheriff Neal Walden Wednesday afternoon.

Helen Police Investigator Ricky Gunter, who suffered chemical burns Monday while investigating an apparent burglary at Club Escape on Main Street, is recovering at home and is feeling a little better, Couch said earlier Wednesday.

Couch said the Hall County Hazardous Materials team was called in Tuesday, as a precaution, to check the structure and check the level of vapor.

On Monday, Couch said officials believe muriatic acid was involved and is the substance that resulted in Gunter's injuries.

During their investigation, officials located containers for at least two gallons of the chemical.

Couch said the levels are acceptable if a HazMat suit and face mask is used by those entering the building. There is no evident structural damage.

Additionally, Couch said he has consulted with the district attorney's office about the case.

He spent time Tuesday with D.A. Jeff Langley and Assistant D.A. Jeremy Clough.

Couch said officers are waiting for chemical levels to go down.

White County Public Safety Director David Murphy has provided HazMat equipment for the police department to use as the investigation continues.
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