Suspected gang affiliation
Four men arrested after shots fired
by Wes Mayer
Four men believed to be members of a local gang were arrested by Newnan Police officers following a shooting late Wednesday.
There was nobody injured in the shooting, but one residence in the Eastgate Apartments complex was damaged by a single round that went through the bedroom and made a hole in the wall.
According to Officer Aaron Howard with the Newnan Police Department, around 8:50 p.m., officers were dispatched to the Eastgate Apartments about shots were heard by an off-duty officer. While en route, officers were also given a description by dispatchers of the suspects’ vehicle, a dark sport utility vehicle with four black male occupants.
At the intersection of Dodson Street and Octavia Place, Howard saw a Jeep Cherokee leave the Eastgate Apartments and drive at high speed toward Martin Luther King Jr. Drive, so he followed the vehicle and made a traffic stop after it turned onto Ball Street, he said. After the vehicle stopped, Howard ordered the driver, identified as Brandon Tyrel Harris, 22, to step out of the vehicle.
Backup officers arrived and placed Harris in handcuffs. The other three occupants of the vehicle, Airian Devante Geter, 21, Randy Cortez Snelling, 23, and Quante Montrez Jennings, 22, were then removed and placed in handcuffs as well, Howard said. Officers advised the men of their rights, and Harris agreed to speak to Howard.
Howard first asked Harris where they were coming from, and Harris told him they were just coming back from the store. Howard also asked Harris if there were any weapons in the vehicle, and Harris said he didn’t know because the vehicle wasn’t his. While Howard spoke to Harris, Sgt. Marcos Gonzalez noticed suspected drugs were sitting in plain sight on the driver’s floorboard, so officers began to search the vehicle for other drugs or firearms.
According to Howard, officers found a brown paper bag in the back seat of the car, and inside, they found three handguns – a Jimenez Arms 9mm, a Hi Point .45 caliber and a Smith & Wesson .38 Special. Coweta County 911 found the Hi Point handgun was reported stolen from Johnson Avenue in Newnan. Officers also found a small baggie of suspected marijuana stuffed in between the cushions of the back passenger’s seat.
All four men were then charged with aggravated assault with a firearm and were transported to the Coweta County Jail. Jennings was also charged with theft by receiving, possession of marijuana and possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime, according to jail booking records.
During the officers’ investigation, Howard determined all four men were members of the gang “People Nation,” and they are all associated with different “Blood” gang sets including “Piru” and “3:13 Purple Flame.” According to Howard, three of the suspects, Harris, Snelling and Geter, had tattoos that indicated they were members of these gangs, such as a five-point star and “3:13.” Jennings was also wearing all red clothing, which commonly represents the “Bloods.”
Because of this, all four men were additionally charged with violating the Georgia Street Gang Terrorism and Prevention Act.