If you're going to break into cars, it's probably not a good idea to draw attention to yourself.
By using a flashlight.
At night on a major street.
In front of a police officer.
But that's the scene an Atlanta police officer patrolling the Little Five Points area saw while on patrol on the evening of Nov. 15 around 9:30 p.m.
The officer who was patrolling the 300 block of Moreland Avenue in Little Five Points noticed someone using a flashlight in the parking lot across the street from 337 Moreland Ave. NE. The man was going from vehicle to vehicle, shining his flashlight throughout each while a woman stood watch at the edge of the parking lot.
Seeing the officer, she motioned for her parter to flee and the pair jumped into a waiting silver car with a third person and the trio tried to flee.
The officer stopped the vehicle and discovered the trunk loaded with what turned out to be stolen items:
- Two laptops, including one belonging to the Fulton County School system
- A guitar
- A Samsung tablet
- A book bag with the Fulton County Schools logo on it with schools-related papers inside
The Fulton County laptop and school items were stolen from a car parked in the lot behind East Atlanta Thai & Sushi in East Atlanta Village earlier that night.
One of the suspects, William Wesley Pearson, 34, admitted to stealing the items, police said.
He was promptly arrested, as were his accomplices, Alice Mae Blackwell, 26, and Grgory J. Sigmon, 20.
All three are charged with illegally entering an auto, theft by receiving stolen property and possession of tools to commit a crime.
They were taken to the DeKalb County Jail.
Atlanta police have stressed the importance of not leaving items such as laptops and GPS devices and smartphones in vehicles or in plain view.
A recent rash in car larcenies in East Atlanta Village, for example, is being directly attributed to folks leaving their electronics in their vehicles, police said.