Tifton Gazette


July 17, 2014

Three juveniles detained after report of trespassing

TIFTON — Trespassing on a property that's being remodeled led to three juveniles being detained and the arrest of a fourth offender.

According to an incident report filed at the Tifton Police Department, Officer Lynn McCulley reported Tuesday night that available units were sent to Clint Circle for a burglary in progress. The complainant reported that some subjects entered the home.

McCulley arrived on the scene with another officer when dispatch informed them that the subjects were believed to still be in the home. She said she went to the back of the residence with her weapon drawn and as she entered the backyard, she heard a door open and then saw two black subjects and two lighter-skinned subjects running toward the woods behind the house.

McCulley said she ordered the subjects to get on the ground, and three of them got on the ground while one continued running into the woods. She said once she realized that the three who stopped running were juveniles and not armed, she holstered her weapon and began placing handcuffs on the offenders.

McCulley notified other units responding that a black male had ran into the woods. Once the three juveniles were secured in her vehicle and another officer's vehicle, she asked them who ran. One of them said it was an adult and that is why he ran.

McCulley reported the juveniles had an odor of marijuana on them. She said when she asked about it, one of the juveniles said the adult who ran had the marijuana.

One of the juveniles' parents arrived on the scene. McCulley then proceeded to enter the woods to look for the other offender. While in the woods, she was notified that the offender, 18-year-old Aaron Blake Harp of Ocilla, was the stepbrother of the juvenile whose parents had arrived on the scene. The juvenile's mother said she would contact Harp's mother.

The inside of the residence was then checked for damage and there was an odor of marijuana in the back room where the back door was located. Due to the home being remodeled, it was hard to tell if anything was damaged or taken, McCulley reported.

The juveniles were transported to the TPD while McCulley stood by waiting for the homeowner to arrive. When he arrived, he reported that nothing appeared to be missing or damaged, but the home is being remodeled so things were all over the residence. The homeowner said both doors were locked when he last left the home.

McCulley then went to the TPD. The Department of Juveniles Justice was contacted. One of the juveniles said they entered the residence through an unlocked window because they wanted to play pool. Once inside, the three juveniles said they smoked some marijuana and then fled when they saw the police were outside.

The juveniles were released to their parents. Harp's mother brought him to the department to turn himself in. When McCulley asked him why he ran, Harp replied that he was afraid. He said he never entered the residence but stood by the back door while the others entered. He said the back door was unlocked and he thought the house belonged to a friend of one of the juveniles and that they had permission to be there.

Harp also said he knew nothing about anyone having or smoking marijuana. He was taken into custody and then transported to the Tift County Jail. The report shows that Harp was arrested for obstruction of officer and criminal trespass.

In another matter, a complainant at the Tifton Mall reported early Tuesday morning that she witnessed a group of boys jumping on the hoods of cars in the T.J. Maxx parking lot. Officer Quinton Peacock reported that he found the group of four boys in Publix and returned them to T.J. Maxx to examine the vehicles.

One of the subjects said he was the only one jumping on the cars and that he jumped on a silver Ford Focus. Another subject also admitted to jumping on some of the cars. All four of the boys were taken to the TPD where their parents were called to pick them up. The parents of the two boys who admitted to jumping on the cars were informed by police that they would be contacted in reference to payment for the damages. All three vehicles that were damaged had multiple small dents on the front hoods.

Also, a woman reported Tuesday night that while in the 300 block of Old Omega Road, her vehicle was damaged. She reported that her vehicle was parked in the parking lot of Old Omega Road Apartments with no damages to it earlier that day. When she later went to her vehicle, she discovered that the hood had a large dent.

The report states that this is one of several incidents like this that occurred in the area. The woman said she's seen several younger black males hanging in the area when these incidents have occurred.

To contact reporter Latasha Ford, call 382-4321.

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