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Pedestrians kidnapped, robbed by six on Jonesboro Road

By Daniel Silliman

dsilliman@news-daily.com

Two men and a woman say they were kidnapped, robbed and assaulted by people they thought were police.

The three were walking down Jonesboro Road in Forest Park Wednesday night around 8 p.m., going to McDonalds, when a black Crown Victoria and a white Crown Victoria stopped, and six armed men got out.

According to Forest Park Police, four of the men were black, two of the men were white and all of them were carrying "long guns." Some of the men had badges hanging around their necks and one had a police-style utility belt. The two Fords were unmarked and none of the men's clothing had the words "police" or "security" printed anywhere, but the three pedestrians thought they were being stopped by law enforcement.

"That was their first impression," said Forest Park Police Lt. Amy Wright, "when these vehicles rolled up on them."

The police department declined to give the names or ages of the victims, identifying them only as Hispanics from Rex.

The three told detectives they were stopped by the six armed men, their wrists were bound and they were thrown into the backs of the Fords. They were robbed and the men reportedly asked them repeatedly for more money, Wright said.

"They wanted more money," the lieutenant said, "but the victims didn't have any more money."

The three pedestrians were told to keep their heads down and were driven around for more than an hour. At one point, Wright said, two of the three were forced out of the car and, when they didn't have any more money to give the men, they were struck in the face with the butt of a gun.

Sometime before 1 a.m., Thursday, the three were dropped off on the curb in a warehouse district in Dekalb County. After contacting the Dekalb County Police, with the help of a passerby, the Forest Park Police were contacted.

Wright said detectives were searching for details Thursday afternoon, and looking for more information about the band of armed men.

The detectives are looking for possible surveillance camera photos of the black and white Crown Victorias, during the long drive. The detectives' best lead, at this point, Wright said, is the unusual type of crime and the odd group of perpetrators.

"It's unusual, grabbing people off the street. That part, that takes it to a whole different level ... Six perpetrators? That's a little bit extra manpower than they would need in a pedestrian robbery."

Police are asking for the public's help in identifying possible suspects. Anyone with information is asked to call Detective A. Cruz, or Detective J. Delk at (404) 608-2366.