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Saturday, July 4, 2009

 

11 arrested in theft of jeans valued at $10,000

11 arrested in theft of blue jeans

A tipster alerted Atlanta Police; suspects were removing clothes’ tags.

By Mike Morris

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Saturday, July 04, 2009

A tip led Atlanta Police on Friday to an arrest of 11 people suspected of being blue jean bandits, and about $10,000 in stolen jeans, a spokeswoman said.

The tipster alerted police of suspicious activity in the backyard of a house in the 900 block of Farrington Road, Sgt. Lisa Keyes said.

Officers arrived to find 11 people removing tags from shirts and hundreds of high-end jeans, Keyes said.

Six of the suspects tried to hide in a crawl space over the home’s ceiling, but all were arrested, police said.

Much of the merchandise still had labels and security tags on it, Keyes said. Police also found two stolen cars —- one apparently taken in an armed robbery, she said.

Earlier Friday, police linked two Atlanta men arrested after leading police on a high-speed chase Thursday afternoon to a gang of burglars targeting high-end clothing boutiques, Keyes said.

Dominique Copeland, 21, and Quantavious Guffie, 18, waived their initial court appearance at the Fulton County Jail Friday morning.

The men are being held without bond, awaiting a preliminary hearing before a Fulton County Superior Court judge at a later date.

Keyes said Friday that investigators have linked the pair to Thursday morning’s attempted break-in at eModa, a Midtown clothing boutique that was hit twice last month by smash-and-grab burglars.

In each of the May burglaries, thieves made off with thousands of dollars in high-end blue jeans and other clothing. After the second burglary, the owners of eModa reinforced a metal gate inside the back door of the store. Early Thursday, would-be thieves smashed the glass door, but were unable to get past the metal grating.

Investigators are still trying to determine if Copeland and Guffie are involved in other smash-and-grab burglaries, Keyes said.

She said both are “known affiliates” of 30 Deep, a street gang that has been connected to at least one of the previous burglaries at eModa.

Copeland has been charged with felony obstruction, reckless conduct, auto theft by receiving, entering an auto and six counts of criminal damage to property in the second degree.

Guffie is facing charges of theft by receiving, felony obstruction, entering an auto and giving false information.


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