Bazzell faces grand larceny charges

January 20, 2010 9:36:00 AM



STARKVILLE -- Starkville Academy interim baseball coach Shane Bazzell was being held in the Lowndes County Adult Detention Center Tuesday on charges of felony grand larceny. 


Bazzell was arrested Jan. 15 by the Lowndes County Sheriff''s Office for allegedly stealing an all-terrain vehicle. No further details were available. Grand larceny entails the unlawful taking of over $500 in property. 


Bazzell was suspended indefinitely by Starkville Academy Jan. 17. The school released a statement from Headmaster Doc Stephens stating: "As would be the case with any employee, he will be suspended indefinitely until definitive information is acquired." Starkville Academy assistant baseball coach Neal Henry has taken over as interim head coach for Bazzell. 


Lowndes County Justice Court reported Tuesday no date has been set for Bazzell''s preliminary hearing. His case could then be turned over to Circuit Court.  


Starkville Academy athletic director Glenn Schmidt confirmed Tuesday that Henry will coach the team in Bazzell''s absence. "He was our assistant coach and was already here on staff," Schmidt said of Henry. 


Lowndes County Sheriff''s Department detective Eli Perrigin said that in October a missing four-wheeler report was filed with the Lowndes County Sheriff''s Department. 


On Jan. 15, the owner of the missing four-wheeler came to the Lowndes County Sheriff''s Department building to inform the department of where the missing four-wheeler might be. 


Perrigin said the missing four-wheeler was located in the front yard of Bazzell''s residence in Columbus. 


It was confirmed Tuesday that Bazzell also has holds from Chickasaw County and the Mississippi Bureau of Narcotics. 


A hold has been placed on Bazzell by Chickasaw County officials for a reported narcotics charge, meaning that bond has yet to be set for the former high school All-American at New Hope High School. 


Bazzell was hired on Nov. 5 to replace former Starkville Academy coach Justin Brewer, who left the Volunteers to accept an assistant coach''s position at Copiah-Lincoln Community College.  


Bazzell went 17-1 and recorded a school-record 194 strikeouts to pitch New Hope to a Class 4A state championship in 1998. He was drafted by the Oakland Athletics in 1998 and pitched in the Oakland and Texas Rangers'' minor league organizations. 


Bazzell retired after a nine-year career in professional baseball. 


-- Danny P. Smith and Jason Browne contributed to this story.