UPDATE: DPD – Resident Report of Armed Robbery was Actually a Suspect Fleeing From Arrest Warrant


On 08/05/13 at approximately 10:24 am, DeKalb County Sheriff’s Deputies were attempting to serve an arrest warrant at a residence in the 200 block of Cambridge Avenue when the wanted person fled on foot toward Oakhurst Park and deputies pursued.  A taser was deployed and the suspect was taken into custody without further incident.  The suspect and a deputy were treated on scene for superficial injuries.

UPDATE: DPD’s Jennifer Ross says…”Standby for the real story…it was NOT a robbery and/or shooting.”  Stay tuned.


Waiting to hear back from Decatur PD, but Arriba reports “gunshots and an attempted robbery near Oakhurst Park this morning (possibly on Leyden.)”  He says that his wife “called 911, and the police were there immediately.  They apprehending one suspect, the other one got away.”

He also followed up to report that “the police dispatcher called my wife back and said there was a second incident on Cambridge, also to make sure these weren’t the same incidents.”, so there could have been two events this morning.

Anne also wrote in and reported “my friends were playing tennis and saw the robbery in progress, heard shots, and called 911 leading police to the house.

Stay tuned.  We’ve followed up with Decatur PD and will let you know when we hear back.

41 thoughts on “UPDATE: DPD – Resident Report of Armed Robbery was Actually a Suspect Fleeing From Arrest Warrant”

      1. Does “everybody” include DM and the DPD report he based his story on? The story was based on highly reliable sources, and the comments on that reliable story were perfectly appropriate.

        1. The original entry was based on a report from Arriba, not the DPD. Read the original post:

          “Waiting to hear back from Decatur PD, but Arriba reports “gunshots and an attempted robbery near Oakhurst Park this morning (possibly on Leyden.)” He says that his wife “called 911, and the police were there immediately. They apprehending one suspect, the other one got away.”

          I don’t know Arriba, outside of his/her presence on this board. Does this mean that everyone who comments on this blog is a “highly reliable source?”

          It’s a tense environment out there right now. I understand that. But let’s not add to the tension with reports of “gunshots and attempted robbery” when the actual situation is nothing of the kind.

    1. Or they want to warn others to be careful if in the area or going to it. There WAS a fugitive running away, police activity, and tasering involving the area of Oakhurst Park. I’d rather get an early warning that’s not quite correct than go into a dangerous situation completely unawares.

    2. I disagree, Bulldog. If someone hears what he thinks are shots in my neighborhood, I’d like to know about it sooner rather than later. Even if the gunshots end up being taser shots or whatever.

      I think it was clear that this was a developing story. And I’m glad to have the information early so that I can just avoid the area altogether.

      1. So you’d rather have incomplete and inaccurate reporting than the correct, factual story?

        Sounds like the state of cable news these days. Who cares if you’re right, just throw it up on screen and everybody will believe it.

        1. “So you’d rather have incomplete and inaccurate reporting than the correct, factual story?”

          can i get the full factual story right now? no? then i’ll settle for incomplete and inaccurate if that’s the best i can get until all the facts come in.

          not sure about everyone else, but i can differentiate between ‘reports of…’ and hard facts.

        2. This is a blog, not a news outlet. I appreciate DM’s efforts to get the full story – and the accuracy of what was being reported was duly noted (“waiting to hear” from police but here’s what’s being told from these specific sources) as well as updated as facts seemed to be in flux – so I see no reason to fault DM for what was posted. I would agree with this quibble if it were a news report that relays the hearsay as if it were etched-in-stone fact in order to beat other “news” outlets to the story. It’s my pet peeve that we so routinely get half-stories or flat out erroneous stories from so-called journalists who seem to have lost the real meaning of fact-checking or confirming anything. But in this case it was merely an effort to alert folks of a situation as it unfolded and never pretended to be more. Thanks DM!

          1. SR, I’m not upset with DM at all. You’re right, it’s a blog, and DM said right from the beginning “waiting to hear back from DPD.” As far as I’m concerned, DM was fair.

            What I don’t like is the feeding of the rumor mill from the commenters. Gunshots fired! There’s an armed robbery! Our city isn’t safe!

            No reason to say anything on the subject until DM got the factual report, which had nothing to do with any of the above.

  1. What about the gunshots (heard by friend’s of mine) and the other suspect? Seems like there were 2 incidents this morning….

    1. The deployment of a Taser can sound similar to what people think a gunshot sounds like. The device has a mechanism to “shoot” out the contacts that transmit the shock. Not sure of the exact specifics, but I’ve been tased as part of a demonstration at work and there is a loud noise involved. Perhaps that is what people heard and thought were gunshots.

  2. “A taser was deployed and the suspect was taken into custody without further incident.”


    Why does it seem as if every police report concerning the use of force uses the passive voice? Why not just tell us who deployed the taser?

    1. How could it have been anyone other than the cops who deployed the taser? If you’re fleeing on foot, you aren’t going to turn around and tase your pursuer, especially when there are multiple pursuers, as was the case here. If anything, you’re far more likely to turn and shoot a gun.

      1. I think the point was that the passive voice is an indirect way of stating things. Why not say “The police deployed a taser and took the suspect into custody without further incident.” Every writing style course and book tells you that the active voice is more clear and less convoluted than the passive voice. But most of the management and admin world, especially in government but really in all fields, uses the passive voice because it less directly implicates cause and effect, person and action, action and consequence.

        1. I don’t think writing style courses are required for police work. I agree that police tend to describe their actions in the most ambiguous way possible. In this case, however, I thought it was pretty easy to determine who did what.

          1. I dunno, the consistency makes it seem like they do train to use passive voice when describing the use of force. I agree in this case it seemed logical to assume it was the police who deployed the taser, which only begs the question: why can’t they write it that way? It’s no big deal, but kind of annoying.

            1. They probably state things as passively as possible to avoid saying they did something they didn’t do. Minor falshoods and inconsistencies result in a cases being tossed out all the time. The more specific the officer (or anyone, really) tries to be, the more likely they’ll make errors.

              1. Good point about the police wanting to be careful about saying something that might work against them in getting a conviction in court. Although I’d argue that imprecise language can trip you up too. My pet peeve is probably more about Dilbert-speak, “Goals were not met.” as opposed to “We totally blew it and didn’t come close to making any of our unrealistic and poorly conceived unmeasurable goals.”

    2. Deploying a taser doesn’t mean using it. It just means putting it into place. I guess in this case the taser was employed as well, since people reported hearing something like shots.

      1. The taser was deployed for two tours with the National Guard. The cops cold shot that dude.


    3. “Why not just tell us who deployed the taser?”
      It was not Decatur PD. They don’t have tasers.

  3. I hear gunfire near my home on practically a weekly basis. I don’t live in City of Decatur, but I’m not far.

  4. Is there any more news on this? I’m still confused…was it one event or two separate things? Was a gun fired or not?

    1. Clarification from Sgt. Ross…

      This was the same incident. The pursuit started on Cambridge Avenue and ended near Oakhurst Park. It was a moving incident and a deputy deployed the taser during the chase and the suspect was apprehended after that point. There was no evidence of gunshots. Also, the deputies who had been in the area prior to the pursuit did not report hearing any gunshots. The sound of a taser being deployed can be mistaken for a gunshot.

  5. And to further clarify and calm, the suspect was tazed for running away. The police were there to serve a warrant for failure to appear in court on a non-violent, separate charge.

    I submit that this goes to Bulldog’s point above. We did not have a gunfight at a playground, as might have been inferred 24 hours ago. We had a knucklehead try to avoid seeing a judge.

    Drat. This was supposed to go under DM’s clarification.

    1. I didn’t read anything that would lead me to infer there was a “gunfight at a playground.” But considering there was a lady robbed at gunpoint at the park a few weeks ago, (and all the other break-ins and robberies as of late too numerous to keep track of) it’s not like it’s out of the realm of possibility either.

      A brief word of mouth report came in, the story was clarified in short order, I don’t see why this needs to be dragged out as it has been honestly.

  6. Speaking as a professional journalist, I can tell you that there are consequences for publishing erroneous information. We need only look back to the reporting surrounding the Boston Marathon bombing for some relevant examples of this.

    Nothing about the passive voice in this context suggests any kind of conspiracy. The people involved, who were apparently with another agency, did not provide all the facts to DPD. Rather than perpetuate the problem by publishing even more incorrect information, they’ve opted to hedge until all facts can be determined.

    The people in your government are also a part of your community. They care just as much as you do and probably take crime personally. Many of these officials live here. I’ve never been one to wave pom poms for any government, but I don’t think the comments here are fair to people who are trying to get you the correct information in a timely fashion.

    When you say, “I don’t care if I have incorrect information, as long as it’s timely” you are, in effect, saying “I don’t want you to challenge my assumptions about what happened because I want to remain justified in my concern.”

    Concern is always justified. Caution is always appropriate. Common sense is always warranted. Facts are always necessary. A heated discussion about nothing accomplishes nothing.

  7. “Facts are always necessary. A heated discussion about nothing accomplishes nothing.”

    Yes. Thank you.

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