DeKalb County Police are investigating a shooting that took place yesterday on I-20 near the Glenwood Avenue exit and resulted in the death of rapper OG Double D.
Eyewitnesses told DeKalb authorities that someone inside a white SUV fired shots at the black luxury vehicle before fleeing the scene. The incident occurred during rush hour just after 5 p.m.
Police also recovered shell casings from multiple rounds that damaged the Maybach. The car, a luxury sedan worth more than $400,000, had a rear Florida license plate and a front vanity plate that read "Blessed."
An off-duty Atlanta Police officer reached the scene first after he noticed the vehicle stopped in the far-right lane. The officer, who found the doors locked, broke the vehicle's rear window to help the victim. OG Double D, who was affiliated with fellow Atlanta rapper Future's Freebandz record label imprint, had suffered several gunshot wounds and was sent to Grady Memorial Hospital, where he later died.
The DeKalb County Medical Examiner's office told CL that the victim's name had not yet been released, but some people have speculated that he may be rapper OG Double D, who was affiliated with fellow Atlanta rapper Future's Freebandz record label imprint. We reached out to Future's publicist and sent an email to OG Double D's booking contact.
DeKalb County Police Spokesman T.S. Hunt told CL that the department has not yet found a suspect or determined a motive but are investigating the crime. Police encourage anyone with additional information to come forward.
UPDATE, Friday, April 12, 10:23 p.m.: OG Double D's booking contact confirmed via email that the rapper was the unidentified victim.
UPDATE, Monday, April 15, 11:22 a.m.: In case there was any lingering uncertainty, the DeKalb County Medical Examiner said this morning that James B. Lewiel, also known as OG Double D, was previously unidentified victim.
This post has been modified to reflect additional details that developed after the story was published.
As part of "Operation Guarding Innocence," GBI partnered with dozens of law enforcement officials at the federal, state, and local levels over a three-month period. Between those arrests, the efforts led to 87 child pornography possession charges. In addition, they also seized more than 200 computers, smart phones, and other devices.
"Search warrants are being executed today in 37 Georgia counties in connection with the distribution of child porn over the Internet," GBI spokesman John Bankhead said in a press release. "This is the largest operation of its kind in Georgia conducted by the State's ICAC Task Force."
Atlanta Police spokesman Gregory Lyons says that the city's officers arrested one man, a Peoplestown resident, who was charged with possession of child pornography. A full report, he added, was not available at this time.
"Basically, the GBI provides other agencies with leads and information to obtain search warrants to execute," he says regarding APD's collaboration with the GBI.
Founded in 2002, the ICAC has worked cases that include not only child pornography but also online sexual predators. It helps local and state police agencies develop appropriate strategies toward combating these crimes and has helped arrest nearly 1,000 suspected offenders since it was first established.
The protesters gathered around 6 p.m. near the 1500 block of Hardee Street outside Edgewood Courts Apartments following allegations that police used excessive force while arresting a man on Monday night. A cell phone video of that incident filmed by police watchdog group CopWatch shows several officers hitting a man with batons and using pepper spray after the suspect resisted arrest.
An APD statement said that an "angry mob of people" went after police vehicles that were dispatched to investigate the gathering, damaging two vehicles with "fists, bricks, and even a hammer." Spokesman Carlos Campos told CL that no formal complaints regarding the alleged police brutality had been filed yet.
Anthony Jenkins, the stepfather of the man who was arrested Monday night, told CBS Atlanta he was attacked by police after asking why a family member had been arrested. He also said that more than a dozen police cars had showed up on Monday evening.
"They beat him, beat him in the head with batons, he's got a blood clot in his eye and I don't know if he has gotten treatment since they locked him up," Jenkins told CBS Atlanta.
Campos said police officers left the scene and reconvened at a nearby MARTA station to avoid escalating the situation. So far, one person that police say hit a squad car with his fist has been arrested and charged with disorderly conduct. Officers are still investigating who threw the bricks.
APD Deputy Chief Renee Propes said that she plans to open an investigation into the matter. There's a press conference regarding the incident at 3 p.m. We'll post an update once that's over.
UPDATE, 4:34 p.m.: APD Police Chief George Turner said in a press conference that no formal complaints have been filed at this time. He also said that the APD has launched an official investigation to determine if there was any misconduct by its police officers.
The chief also walked through Monday and Tuesday night's events. He declined to elaborate on ongoing investigations into suspects responsible for damaging the squad cars.
At a press conference this afternoon, United States Attorney Sally Yates said that officers were charged with a range of offenses. Officers involved worked for a number of police departments, including Atlanta, Forest Park, DeKalb County, Stone Mountain, MARTA, and the DeKalb Sheriff's Office.
Atlanta Police spokesman Carlos Campos said in a statement that Senior Police Officer Kelvin Allen was a 20-year veteran who recently patrolled in Zone 6.
"The revelation of an Atlanta Police officer's alleged involvement in a federal drug trafficking sting is disturbing, said Campos. "The Department has been, and will continue to be, cooperative with federal authorities to ensure that Atlanta Police officers involved in any illegal activity are brought to justice. Officers are held to the highest levels of accountability, and this alleged conduct violates our standards."
MARTA Officer Marquez Holmes had served with the transit agency's police department for a decade. Spokeswoman Cara Hodgson added that MARTA "will not tolerate corruption in its ranks" and will fully cooperate with the U.S. Attorney's investigation.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives worked together throughout this operation, which began as they looked into a local street gang's drug trafficking. Agents uncovered the corruption early in the case and proceeded to follow police who were offering protection, security, and vehicle escorts for large cocaine transactions. Yates said payoffs were as high as $7,000.
She also went on to describe accounts of "dirty cops" who wore their uniforms, drove patrol cars, and carried their issued firearms while assisting in drug transactions. The officers involved were a combination of men and women, some of whom ranked "as high as sergeant." She added that the civilians arrested today served as middlemen who in some cases helped recruit the police officers.
In addition, she called the corruption "very disturbing" and "abhorrent," but insisted that it was not symbolic of the way thousands of other honest cops in the metro area conduct their work.
Earlier today, WSB-TV reporter Mark Winne said that suspects were brought to the FBI's Atlanta field office in handcuffs this morning. He added that this case may very well be "the biggest police corruption scandal at least since the early '90s."
UPDATE, 4:23 p.m.: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution just posted a press release from Yates' office that details the allegations, which you can find after the jump.
On Oct. 15, 2011, MARTA Officer Robert Waldo responded to a call about a fight outside the Vine City MARTA station near the Georgia Dome, where a series of high-school football games were being played. The officer fired several shots at Joetavius Stafford, who earlier had attended the game, and struck him three times - once in the chest and twice in the back.
The killing sparked protests and outrage, as some witnesses claimed Stafford was shot in the back while lying on the ground. According to Howard's investigation, "[i]ntense interviews of several witnesses established that this assertion was simply untrue." In addition, the DA's office says, an autopsy "concluded that Stafford was likely in an upright position when the Officer's shots were fired."
The DA's office says its investigation consisted of "multiple interviews with more than 40 witnesses, a thorough review of key DNA and other scientific results, as well as expert analysis from an independent board-certified crime scene reconstructionist and blood spatter engineer."
The long statement from Howard's office about the investigation's findings begins below and continues after the jump. We'll update when we hear word from others involved in the dispute.
An examination of the series of events that occurred immediately prior to the shooting death of Joetavius Stafford provides key insight into the officer's ultimate use of deadly force. Approximately three hours before the officer-involved shooting, Joetavius Stafford and a group of friends arrived at the Georgia Dome for a local high school football game. Stafford and his group were eventually kicked out of the facility after engaging in a wild chair and fist-throwing fight with another group of men. The Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI) discovered through phone records that just before the fight in the Dome began, Stafford asked another friend to bring him a weapon. After Stafford was expelled by Dome security, a group of three men including Stafford's brother Rodney, arrived in an area across the street from the Dome in Joetavious Stafford's own vehicle with the handgun he requested and other weapons.
Expect to see more Atlanta Police officers patrolling parts of the city — including neighborhoods which have recently seen upticks in brazen crimes.
Thanks to a $500,000 federal grant, says the APD, more officers will be deployed over the next 60 days in four key parts of the city: Atlanta University Center Corridor, with an emphasis on Beckwith Street and Greensferry Avenue; Peachtree Street Corridor between Midtown and Buckhead; The Mall West End Corridor, Including Oak and Lee Streets and Oglethorpe Avenue; and Old Fourth Ward, Virginia Highlands, Inman Park, and Candler Park neighborhoods, including Auburn, N. Highland, and Euclid Avenues and Boulevard.
The department's also working with Georgia Tech and Georgia State University to prepare for students' return to campus in the fall.
Says the APD:
Citizens can expect to see an increased officer presence in those areas, including units on bicycles and motorcycles, on foot and in patrol cars. The goal is to increase contact with citizens and reduce crime, with a particular focus on robberies, burglaries, auto thefts and larcenies from vehicles.
The Department will also be deploying officers to enforce traffic, quality of life and code enforcement violations. The overtime detail will augment, not replace, the Department’s 24-hour presence throughout the City of Atlanta.
Included in the APD's release about the initiative was a quote from Police Chief George Turner, about fewer crimes being committed in the city.
”This is a multi-faceted, comprehensive approach to crime-fighting that we anticipate will make a significant dent in crime over the next two months... While we have had great success in reducing crime in the past few years, our work isn’t done until everyone in the City feels safe — in their homes, on the streets or visiting any one of our great attractions.”
That reads much differently from the messaging we heard from his predecessor, Richard Pennington:
A local family is alleging wrongful death in the shooting of nineteen-year-old Joetavious Stafford at the hands of a MARTA police officer.
On October 15, 2011, Officer Robert Waldo responded to a shot fired during a fight outside the Vine City MARTA station, and fired several shots himself. Believing Stafford was armed, Waldo shot the teen once in the chest and twice in the back, according to the autopsy. District Attorney Paul Howard's office has said a gun was found at the scene, but it remains unclear if it belonged to Stafford. The victim's brother Rodney Stafford told WSB-TV that Joetavious was already on the ground when Waldo shot him two more times in the back.
Some excerpts from the suit, which names both Waldo and MARTA as defendents ...
"Waldo's actions, in shooting Joetavius Stafford, were done oppressively, maliciously, corruptly or without authority of law ... As a direct and proximate result of the tortious acts and omissions of Defendant MARTA and Defendant Waldo, Joetavius Stafford experienced conscious pain and suffering, and ultimately a wrongful death ... Waldo did not reasonably believe that Joetavius Stafford posed an immediate threat of physical harm to ... Waldo or others."
Waldo resigned his post in March, and Howard's office is continuing to investigate the shooting.
While working at the jail 2011, Deputy Marvie Dingle, 36, accepted a $700 cash payment from an undercover agent to deliver "seven grams of a substance he believed to be cocaine," according to the FBI.
"It's unfortunate to law enforcement when the badge is being sold out for personal gain," Fulton County Sheriff Ted Jackson said in a release. "This does not reflect upon the majority of employees who are dedicated, hardworking, loyal, and honest."
The lapse in judgment earned Dingle a 41-month stay in federal prison, plus two years on probation. In a separate incident, Dingle took in another $1,500 to help an undercover agent deliver a kilo of the substance to a man in Dunwoody.
It's unclear if the deputy actually possessed the drug in either instance. Both the U.S. Attorney's Office and the FBI's Atlanta Division were unable to be reached for clarification, but we'll update as soon as we hear back.
Sure, there was talk some years ago of mounted police patrolling the 22-mile loop of parks, trails, and (one day) transit. But we never heard of anything long term. Lighting along the most developed segments of the $2.8 billion project will only be installed as funding becomes available.
Thanks to a federal grant, however, the Atlanta Police Department says it will be able to assign officers to a special force tasked solely with patrolling the Beltline.
In a statement, a police spokesman says the APD has been awarded a three-year, $1.8 million federal grant - which requires a $966,075 match from the city - that will allow the department to hire 15 military veterans as police officers. Fifteen existing officers will ultimately be shifted to a new team, the "APD Path Force," which will enforce the law within the Beltline's footprint.
"These 15 officers will work in partnership with public, private and other City of Atlanta departments to develop long term initiatives that will alleviate crime, increase the quality of life and develop security and safety ideas that will promote participation and patronage of the Atlanta BeltLine," a spokesman said in a press release.
"This grant award will provide 15 officer positions and will assist us to provide police services to the city at large, while providing employment opportunities to those who have selflessly served our country," Police Chief George Turner said in a statement. "I am pleased that we were able to secure this grant; it is a boost in helping us to reach our goal of becoming the safest big city in America."
The APD hasn't set a date for when the Path Force will be deployed.
The AJC just reported that Quentric S. Williams, the man accused of shooting and killing Mitt Lenix at Starlight Drive-In early Tuesday morning, was taken into custody in Gwinnett County this afternoon.
Quentric S. Williams, 32, was taken into custody in a hotel at the corner of Steve Reynolds Boulevard and Club Drive, according to police. Williams, of Lilburn, is accused of shooting 28-year-old Mitt Lenix, a martial arts expert and entertainer, late Monday night.
According to a DeKalb County incident report, the woman who was at the movies with Lenix told officers their car wouldn't start, so Lenix approached a nearby vehicle for help. She said she heard "two pops" and Lenix scream, and saw him lying facedown on the ground moments later. A witness and EMT attempted to assist Lenix before emergency crews arrived. Lenix was taken to Grady where he died from his injuries.
More details as we get them.
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