COVINGTON — Attempting to steal tires and hub caps off new cars in a local car lot has landed two men in the Newton County Detention Center.
A private surveillance company that monitors the parking lot at Ginn Motor Company on the Access Road alerted the Covington Police Department around 1 a.m. Friday that two men were seen on camera lying under vehicles taking tires off two Chevrolet Camaros.
When CPD Officer Brandon Wilkerson arrived, he found a van with the sliding side door open parked beside the Camaros and two men in between the cars.
“I drew out my service weapon, pointing it at the subjects, giving loud verbal commands for them to stop and put their hands up,” Wilkerson reported in the incident report.
He said the two men briefly put up their hands and then took off running.
Wilkerson stated he began chasing the two suspects, but they split off when they came to the area of Capes Drive, with each heading a different direction.
The officer continued to chase the man later identified as 26-year-old Omega Roberson of 222 Feld Ave., Decatur.
“I ran behind Roberson into the woods where I drew my Taser and deployed my Taser at Roberson,” he stated. “Roberson fell to the ground stating, ‘OK, OK. You got me.’ My Taser never struck Roberson.”
While detaining Roberson until another officer arrived with a patrol car, Wilkerson noted the suspect was not wearing any shoes or socks.
A K-9 officer and deputies with the Newton County Sheriff’s Office arrived at the scene and began searching the woods where the second suspect, Cedric Freeman, 25, of 3568 Craggy Perch in Douglasville, had fled.
The officers reported hearing a noise in the woods behind the Holiday Inn and were able to locate Freeman lying in the brush.
“Freeman looked up at (the) deputy and said, ‘OK, you got me,’” Wilkerson reported.
The two men were transported back to where their van was located next to the Camaros at Ginn Motor Company. Laying on the ground by the Camaros were a four-way lug wrench, lug nuts and a pair of shoes.
Inside the suspects’ van were several cinder blocks, a floor jack, and a license tag that officers believed was taken off the van to conceal its identity, Wilkerson stated.
Officers walked around the car lot to check other vehicles and noticed that a Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck was missing all hubcaps and the lug nuts were sitting on the ground. A cinder block had been placed behind both rear tires.
The general manager of Ginn Motor Company was called to the scene and he estimated the value of all the tires and hubcaps the two men attempted to steal was approximately $9,500.
Freeman and Roberson were arrested and charged with theft by taking, possession of tools during the commission of a crime and obstruction of officers.
In other news, the director of a daycare center on Ga. Highway 212 reported to the Newton County Sheriff’s Office that they found a cigar bag containing a small clear bag of suspected marijuana inside a diaper bag belonging to a child enrolled there.