Newton County man allegedly pulls gun on auto mechanic

COVINGTON — Nobody likes those auto repair bills, but one Covington resident took that to the extreme Monday. The manager of Mr. Transmission auto repair shop on U.S. Highway 278 notified the Newton County Sheriff’s Office Monday around 3:15 p.m. that a customer had pulled a gun on one of the mechanics.

According to NCSO Public Information Officer Deputy Cortney Morrison, the customer came into the shop to pick up his vehicle after leaving it for repairs.

“When it came time to pay, the customer said, ‘I don’t want to pay right now. First I want to test drive it and make sure it’s operational,’” Morrison said. “The manager said ‘That’s fine, but one of my employees will ride with you.’”

Morrison said the customer drove the car and one of the mechanics went with him as a passenger.

“He starts driving around and gets on Interstate 20 and pulls off the road,” Morrison said. “He then reaches behind the passenger seat and pulls out a handgun. He advises the victim that he can either get out of the car or he’s going to shoot him.”

The Mr. Transmission employee exited the vehicle near the Ga. 142 exit and called his manager, who reported the incident to the NCSO.

Warrants have been issued for Jacque Bias, 50, of 15 Stone Commons Way for armed robbery and theft of services.

In other crime news, a 16-year-old was walking on Greenway Drive in Silos of Ellington subdivision Friday around 4:15 p.m. when he said he was stopped at the intersection of Greenway and Lantana Lane by a man wearing a mask, according to the NCSO.

Morrison described the mask as a gold “movie-type” mask and said the victim reported that the man was also carrying a pistol in his hand and holding it down next to his body.

“He said the suspect pointed the gun at him, racked a round into the chamber and told the victim to, ‘Empty your pockets,’” Morrison said. “The victim removed his cell phone and the suspect took it.”

Morrison said the suspect was last seen on foot disappearing between two houses on Greenway Drive.

Anyone who may have information on this incident is asked to call the NCSO at 678-625-1400 and ask to speak to an investigator or go to the website at www.newtonsheriffga.gov.