Armed robbery suspects arrested after manhunt in Montezuma
Authorities in Montezuma have arrested several people in connection with an armed robbery and manhunt.
Around 11:00 a.m. on Thursday, officers of the Montezuma Police Department were asked to help a Macon County Deputy at the intersection of Highway 26 and Peed Pond Road due to an accident.
Police say the driver and the passenger involved in the accident had left the vehicle. One suspect was reportedly running towards a residence on Peed Pond Road while the other suspect had crossed over Highway 26 and entered a wooded area.
Officers noticed a pick-up truck, which had ran off the roadway on Highway 26 East, with the engine was still running. Officers entered and searched the residence and found the suspects.
31-year-old Benjamin James McLemore of Warner Robbins was arrested without incident and taken to the Macon County Jail. As officers began searching the residence, a call came in to 911 dispatchers that a victim had been shot. Officers were then dispatched to the Flint River Community Hospital ER.
Upon arrival, officers learned the gun shot victim was shot in the right hand at 705 Milford Street, Montezuma, Georgia by two males who were driving the same pick-up truck that was found on Peed Pond Road.
The victim, Randall Coker of Montezuma, stated he was trying to sell a home security camera system over the internet to the male subjects when they tried to rob him of the home security camera system at gun point.
Coker also stated they fought over the gun and was shot. Croker was treated and released from Flint River Community Hospital.
Police then placed a Be On The Lookout (BOLO) alert for the second subject who was believed to be armed and dangerous.
"A BOLO about the description of the subject and that he had gun was issued. We requested assistance from the Georgia State Patrol, Dooly County Sheriff Office and Houston County Sheriff Office. We wanted all the officers coming to assist us to come prepared and protected due to the robbery, shooting and the burglarizing of a residence," said Montezuma Police Chief Eric Finch.
Officers from several agencies searched the area off Highway 26 for nearly four hours.
"We received the biggest break of the day when a citizen saw a suspicious vehicle riding in the area with a Houston County License Plate," said Finch.
The vehicle was later stopped by Captain Charley Cannon of the Montezuma Police Department due to the vehicle not having a valid tag. Officers learned that the driver, identified as 29-year-old April Attaway of Warner Robins, was in the area to pick up the second subject who was identified as 34-year-old Jason lamar White of Perry.
A telephone call was placed to White by Attaway. Police were able to pinpoint his location through the 911 systems by using computers and cellular phones.
"Technology which is out there today is just great. We were tracking him on our computers and cell phones through Google Earth and every move he made, we were able to push him out of the woods where we arrested him on Highway 26," said Chief Finch.
White and Attaway were both transported to the Macon County Jail.
Officers went back to 707 Milford Street in Montezuma to collect more evidence in the case. Police located a firearm and shell casings which was believed to be used to shoot Coker.
Police also arrested 25-year-old Marcus Wesley Brannen of Montezuma. Brannen was charged with a probation violation. Coker, the victim, was also arrested on a probation violation due to a warrant out of Columbus for not being registered as a sex offender.
White and McLemore were charged with armed robbery, aggravated assault, possession of a firearm by a convicted felons. Police say White was also wanted out of Houston County for warrants of aggravated assault and being a sex offender. Attaway was charged with the apprehension of a fugative.
All suspects are being housed at the Macon County Jail with additional charges still pending.
"Myself and Sheriff Charles Cannon would like to thank all the officers who came to assist us. Today, we were able to take several career criminals off the streets and hopefully they will be locked up for a long time," said Chief Finch.