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Alleged shoplifter shot, tasered

By Daniel Silliman

dsilliman@news-daily.com

A man allegedly attempting to steal a stereo was shot once and tasered twice, Clayton County police said.

Derrick Grigley, a 39-year-old Hapeville man, reportedly ran out of a Jonesboro Autozone on Friday with a woman chasing behind, yelling, "stop him!"

According to the woman's report to police, Grigley walked into the 24-hour auto parts store at about 2:45 a.m., asking to use the restroom. After he was in the back for a while, the clerk, a 35-year-old Atlanta woman named, went to check on him. "She found the suspect in the rear of the store," according to a police report. "She noticed he had the paper to a Kenwood radio in his back pocket. She advised she could see the bulge under his shirt."

The clerk told Grigley to put the stereo -- an in-dash, car stereo reported to cost about $90 -- down on the counter. He said "Man, I don't have anything," according to the police report, and then allegedly ran outside and tried to get into a white truck. The driver of the truck yelled at the man to get out, and Grigley reportedly ran away on foot.

Officer Willie Deese was in the parking lot at 860 Southway Drive, in front of the auto parts store, having just completed a traffic stop, according to his police report. He heard the Autozone clerk yell "stop him" and chased the fleeing man in his patrol car.

"I drove my marked patrol vehicle towards the suspect, coming within approx. 10 ft. beside him with my window down, and yelled 'stop.' The suspect continued to run," Deese reported.

The officer got out of his vehicle, and continued the chase, he reported. He followed the running 39-year-old around the corner of the building, saw him "throw something to the ground," and knocked the man down. Deese said he stood over the man, pulling his pistol and telling him to "stay on the ground," but Grigley got up and grabbed at the officer's gun.

"His left [hand] grabbed at my weapon making contact with the barrel in a motion to pull it out of my hand. At this time I feared for my safety and fired one shot and the suspect fell to the ground," Deese reported.

According to Capt. Greg Dickens, police spokesman, Grigley was shot in the left arm, by the officer's .40-caliber gun.

Though shot, the man allegedly kept fighting to get away. As a second officer ran up, Grigley was reportedly on his feet again, trying to run, and the officer "deployed the taser." He was knocked to the ground, according to the police report, and Deese put a handcuff on one wrist, but the 39-year-old tried to get up again, and was tasered a second time with a "drive stun," according to the police report.

"I then regained control of the one cuffed [arm] and placed my foot in the middle of the suspect's back to gain control of both arms, securing them in handcuffs. Moments later, other officers arrived on the scene. The suspect continued to try to get to his feet. He was held to the ground," Deese reported.

According to Dickens, the use of force is under internal review, though it initially appeared to comply with department policy. Deese is on paid administrative leave, pending the department review.

Grigley was arrested on charges of theft by taking, obstruction of an officer and attempting to take a firearm from an officer, according to police.