Deputies look for armed robber suspects using mace (Jan. 6, 2014)
UPDATE: The second person who had been arrested as a suspect in the pepper spray bandit case was released after investigators determined his half brother had been using his identity. The half brother, Cortney Sharondez McDowell, 23, of Henry County, had an arrest warrant served by Henry County Sheriff's Office deputies and was booked into the Henry County jail Thursday, around 3:45 p.m.
Henry County Police had reportedly come into contact in the course of their investigations with Collins and a black male - McDowell - who gave the name and birthdate of his 27-year-old half brother. The warrant in Henry County was issued in the 27-year-old's name. However, once investigators started talking to him, "it didn't sound like he was the right guy," said a Rockdale County Sheriff's Office spokesperson. The 27-year-old told investigators his half brother had used his identity in the past and may have used it again. The 27-year-old was released and the 23-year-old McDowell was arrested.
(Jan. 15, 5:15 p.m.) The second suspect in the string of pepper spray armed robberies in Rockdale and Henry counties, Cordero Demetriez Woody, was arrested and booked into the Henry County jail Wednesday just before midnight. The 27-year-old Henry County man reportedly turned himself in and was charged with armed robbery.
Check back later for more.
(Jan. 15, 5:57 p.m.) One of the "pepper spray bandits" wanted for a string of armed robberies using pepper spray and a machete or axe in Henry County and Rockdale County recently was arrested today by Henry County Police with help from Rockdale County Sheriff's Office investigators.
Johnny Jay Collins, 36, was arrested at his Henry County home Wednesday afternoon and booked into the Henry County jail with a charge of armed robbery.
The RCSO investigator working on the case was able to find the names and identities of two suspects over the weekend and had contacted Henry County investigators earlier this week, said a RCSO spokesperson.
Henry County PD served a search warrant on Collins, with help from RCSO deputies. Based on the items found in the house and further investigations, Collins was placed under arrest Wednesday afternoon.
The other suspect is still at large but has an active warrant for his arrest.
The duo are suspected in robberies of two convenience stores on Dec. 26 in Henry County wielding an axe and pepper spray.
In Rockdale, a store on Ga. Highway 138 south was robbed Jan. 4 by two suspects who sprayed the clerk in the face with pepper spray. On Jan. 6, two suspects came to a convenience store on Ga. Highway 155 in Rockdale and attacked the clerk outside with pepper spray and took the money in the cash register.
If you have information regarding these incidents or the suspects, contact the Rockdale County Sheriff's Office crime tip line at 770-278-8188, or contact CrimeStoppers at 404-577-TIPS (404-577-8477). The Sheriff's Office is offering a cash reward for information leading to the arrest of the suspects.