By Joel Hall
Clayton County Police are still looking for answers in the case of a Decatur woman, who was allegedly robbed and forced to drive at gun point, after two men cut her off on Garden Walk Boulevard.
On Sunday, at approximately 4 a.m., Shondda Atkins-Harris, of Kingsbrook Court in Decatur, stopped for gas at the QuikTrip at 5390 Riverdale Road. Afterward, Atkins-Harris went to the McDonald's adjacent to the QuikTrip, but left after deciding the line was too long.
It was then, heading south on Riverdale Road, she realized she was being followed by a gray, 1980's Chevrolet Monte Carlo, with a drive-out tag and a defective left tail light.
As Atkins-Harris turned east onto Garden Walk Boulevard, two, black, male suspects allegedly pulled in front of her car and came to a sudden stop. Upon stopping, the two men approached Atkins-Harris' vehicle and demanded her money.
Atkins-Harris originally denied she had any money, until the shorter of the two suspects brandished a firearm. While at gunpoint, Atkins-Harris said she removed $27 from her wallet and gave it to the suspect. The suspect also took a silver-colored bracelet and a pair of silver-colored earrings.
According to the police report on the incident, Atkins-Harris was held at gun point by one of the suspects from the passenger seat of her white, 2006 Nissan Altima, as she was forced to drive for approximately three blocks, while following behind the other suspect in the Monte Carlo.
The report did not say how the woman escaped, however. But at about 4:45 a.m., Clayton County Police Officer W.A. Thrift responded to a 911 call from the woman's boyfriend, Jalil Hutchins, who resides on Riverdale Road. Hutchins reported getting a suspicious phone call from Atkins-Harris, and believed she had been kidnapped.
After multiple attempts to contact Atkins-Harris by cell phone, Thrift was able to establish contact with her. She informed him that she had been robbed, but was unharmed. As a result of the robbery, Atkins-Harris had became lost, but was directed to the officer's location by cell phone.
Police spokesperson, Tim Owens, said there are still many unanswered questions in the investigation, such as why Atkins-Harris didn't call police upon realizing she was being followed, and exactly where the suspect was let out of her car.
"There's so many questions in [the report] that I would want answered," said Owens. "It didn't say where she let them out, and that is going to be a critical question."
The Clayton County Police North Precinct is only three-quarters of a mile from where the incident took place, and Owens wondered why Atkins-Harris did not head in that direction.
"If I was being followed, I would move toward people, not to one of the darkest roads out there," said Owens. He suggested that Atkins-Harris may have not known her way around, since she resides in Decatur.
The police's Criminal Investigation Division will conduct a follow-up interview with Atkins-Harris later this week, Owens said.