CPD ar­rests 3 in BP gas sta­tion bur­glary

The Covington News - - THE SECOND FRONT - DANIELLE EVER­SON de­v­er­son@cov­news.com

Three men were ar­rested Thurs­day af­ter a re­ported bur­glary at a BP gas sta­tion on Turner Lake Road.

A re­port from the Cov­ing­ton Po­lice Depart­ment iden­ti­fied them as Mer­lin Smoth­ers, 28, Larry Jones, 37, and Gi­a­cobi Kelly, 37.

Po­lice were dis­patched to the gas sta­tion just af­ter 3:30 a.m. af­ter an alarm went off at the sta­tion, re­ports said. Of­fi­cers forced en­try into the build­ing and de­ployed a K9, which tracked a scent from the rear of the busi­ness and down to Old Brown Bridge Road.

Dur­ing the in­ves­ti­ga­tion, the re­port said, an of­fi­cer no­ticed a sus­pi­cious ve­hi­cle com­ing from Old Brown Bridge Road. It was oc­cu­pied by Smoth­ers, Jones, Kelly and sev­eral other uniden­ti­fied sub­jects. An of­fi­cer re­port­edly ini­ti­ated a traf­fic stop on the ve­hi­cle, and af­ter a short pur­suit, the ve­hi­cle stopped and all of its oc­cu­pants fled on foot. Deputies from the Newton County Sher­iff’s Of­fice were called to as­sist CPD of­fi­cers in lo­cat­ing the sus­pects.

Smoth­ers, Jones and Kelly were ap­pre­hended in the im­me­di­ate area of the fi­nal stop lo­ca­tion, the re­port said.

Po­lice re­port­edly found that the thieve gained en­try by bust­ing a hole in the rear cin­derblock wall, into the re­stroom area. The re­port said an orange safe was sit­ting on an orange dolly be­hind the busi­ness. Ceil­ing tiles in the re­stroom were re­moved, and alarm wires in the sus­pended ceil­ing were cut. The CPU tower con­tain­ing the video sur­veil­lance hard drive was miss­ing, the re­port said, and there were drag marks from be­hind the counter to the en­try/ exit hole, which re­port­edly in­di­cated that the orange safe had been un­der the counter.

The store man­ager re- port­edly told of­fi­cers that the safe be­longed to the store, but was empty. The man­ager also said three brown pa­per bags con­tain­ing a to­tal of $3,000 to $4,000 were miss­ing.

Smoth­ers, Jones and Kelly were charged with bur­glary, ob­struc­tion, and pos­ses­sion of tools for the com­mis­sion of a crime.

For­mer Dirty Dogs em­ployee charged in bur­glary

A Cov­ing­ton man who re­port­edly was fired from Dirty Dogs Café was ar­rested af­ter a bur­glary at the busi­ness. A re­port from the Cov­ing­ton Po­lice Depart­ment said an of­fi­cer was dis­patched to the busi­ness on Reynolds Street Dec. 29 af­ter an alarm went off.

The of­fi­cer checked the front of the build­ing and used a flash­light to il­lu­mi­nate the in­te­rior, but did not no­tice any­thing out of place. How­ever, ac­cord­ing to re­ports, when the of­fi­cer checked the back door, he im­me­di­ately no­ticed an open door that had been dam­aged be­yond re­pair, and other of­fi­cers were dis­patched to the scene.

Ac­cord­ing to the re­port, upon ar­rival, the own­ers asked if po­lice could see the cash drawer, which had been placed in a cer­tain area for the next work­day’s shift.

The of­fi­cer looked in that par­tic­u­lar area and no­ticed that the cash drawer wasn’t there. The own­ers also no­ticed there was an iPad miss­ing, along with an iPod Touch that was also in the cash drawer.

The own­ers told of­fi­cers that Deme­tre West, 21, had been fired due to mone­tary dis­crep­an­cies on Dec. 27, the re­port said. The own­ers told po­lice that the next day, West came to the busi­ness de­mand­ing his last pay­check, which was about $150.

Ac­cord­ing to the re­port, the own­ers told po­lice that they re­fused to pay West, and that he did not take kindly to their re­sponse.

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