A series of recent carjackings that spread from Midtown to the downtown connector to unincorporated Stone Mountain resulted in several armed robberies and a non-English speaking man being shot in the back of the leg most likely because he didn’t understand what an armed suspect was saying to him.
The crime spree began shortly after midnight this past Friday, Jan. 11, when a female, talking on her phone in a well-lit area on 11th Street, was approached by a man with a gun who quietly robbed her of her phone, purse and personal belongings.
A second gunman then appeared and demanded the keys to her 2001 white Honda Accord. According to the Atlanta police, she “threw her keys and ran away.” The crime occurred a block south of the Crescent Street area that is home to many popular Midtown restaurants, bars and clubs.
Very shortly after, a couple travelling south on I-75/85 in a 2005 red Suzuki, stopped to assist what they thought was a stranded motorist that they reported had collided with the concrete barrier dividing the interstate.
Police now believe it was the suspects in the Midtown carjacking as the duo again brandished weapons and robbed the couple of cell phones, wallets and $700 in cash. They stole the Suzuki, which they later drove to the Walmart on Rockbridge Road during the early morning hours of Saturday, Jan. 12.
According to Gwinnett County police, two separate incidents then occurred involving the suspects – a robbery and a shooting.
First, around 2:50 a.m., a 20-year-old male victim arrived at the location, but was stopped by the gun-wielding suspects after exiting his 2010 Honda Fit. As in the previous two incidents, the suspects robbed the victim of his personal belongings and the keys to his car.
However, just prior to the robbery, a 35-year-old Albanian Walmart employee walking to the store to begin his shift, witnessed the first victim and the suspects talking. According to the Gwinnett police, the second victim, who only speaks Albanian, did not see a gun and was not aware what was occurring.
As he passed closely by, the employee was addressed by one of the suspects, but not understanding, he continued walking on. As the second victim continued toward the entrance of Walmart, a suspect fired one shot, striking the second victim in the back and upper part of one of his legs.
At that point, both victims ran into the Walmart, and the suspects sped away in the Honda Fit, which was recovered, along with a handgun matching the description of the weapon used in the shooting, Sunday night in northwest Atlanta off of Joseph E. Boone Boulevard.
The stolen vehicles were checked for fingerprints and further evidence.
The shooting victim was transported to a local hospital by ambulance and his injury is considered non-life threatening.
The suspects are both described as black males, younger in age. One is described as standing about 5-foot-5 with a limp, and the other between 5-foot-3 and 5-foot-5.
Anyone with information on this case is asked to call Crime Stoppers at (404) 557-TIPS (8477).