Deputies are looking for three men who attempted to rob a Newton County man of drugs or cash at gunpoint and shot at a fleeing car before escaping themselves, according to the Newton County Sheriff's Office.
The victim of the attempted robbery, Jaime Alvarez Morando, 48, of Covington was arrested by Henry County authorities Monday evening and charged with felony possession of marijuana and possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony. Additional charges are anticipated, according to NCSO Lt. Bill Watterson.
On June 12, shortly before 7:30 p.m., the three armed robbers went into Morando's residence, located near the border of Rockdale and Henry counties. The assailants found Morando and two other Hispanic males who were visiting in the house. The perpetrators struck Morando in the head and attempted to find either cash or drugs, but were unable to, partly because of a language barrier Watterson said.
The men also shot at a car outside the residence that sped away, which appeared, to a witnesses, like a kidnapping, leading them to call 911 Watterson said. Two of the shots went into a nearby home. No one was injured.
When deputies arrived on the scene around 7:30 p.m., another carload of people unrelated to the incident also arrived at the house and were taken in for questioning, along with the two visiting Hispanic males.
During the execution of a search warrant, investigators found 2.7 pounds of marijuana in the master bedroom and more than $23,000 in a plastic bag in the attic.
Both Morando and the perpetrators fled the scene before deputies arrived, along with the speeding car and its passengers.
Investigators looked for Morando until he was arrested Monday evening during a traffic stop in Henry County and taken into custody without incident. He was interviewed by investigators from the NCSO and Georgia Bureau of Investigations.
Authorities are still looking for the three perpetrators, described as three black men in their 20s of three varying sizes.
Anyone with information related to the incident can contact the NCSO Criminal Investigations Division at (678) 625-1400 or leave an anonymous tip at www.newtonsheriffga.org under "anonymous tip."