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Seven indicted in Joe’s Crab Shack robbery

By Kathy Jefcoats

kjefcoats@news-daily.com

JONESBORO — Seven defendants are named in a 52-count indictment returned in Clayton County Superior Court Wednesday.

The charges stem from an alleged June 15 armed robbery of Joe’s Crab Shack in Morrow. The counts include multiple charges of armed robbery, kidnapping, false imprisonment, aggravated assault, possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime and pointing a pistol at another and name seven victims.

Defendants Alex Donavon Randell, 22, of Decatur, Ahkeem Rashiid Simmons, 24, of Atlanta, Jonathan Keith Hammonds, 24, of Ellenwood and Danterrell Dandre Ray, 25, of Atlanta are being held on the charges in the Clayton County Jail.

Other defendants are Shakrystin Brinae Brown, Brittany Darcia Patterson, 22, of Decatur and Jazmine Latisha Washington, 23, of Lithonia.

Morrow police Detective Paul Wages said Brown worked at the restaurant at the time of the robbery and was one of the “victims.”

Wages alleged in arrest warrants that three gunmen entered the restaurant about 12:25 a.m. June 15 through the front door, which was intentionally left unlocked by an employee. Wages said the gunmen took cell phones and cash from all the workers except one — Brown — and money from the safe. When officers arrived in response to a 911 call about the robbery, Brown acted “extremely nervous,” said Wages.

“She was acting extremely nervous, more so than the other victims,” wrote Wages in the application for arrest. “She paced and fidgeted. She tried to get close to investigators as they processed the scene and interviewed other witnesses. Investigators had to tell her several times to move away from the area as she tried to fish for information.”

Through the investigation, officers learned that Brown went outside just before the armed robbery, talking on her cell phone, he said. When she returned, she did not secure the front door, which is in direct contradiction to company policy, said Wages.

“This allowed other suspects unfettered access to the restaurant,” according to the application. “She was the only victim not roughed up or have items taken.”

Police said Brown was the “inside man,” who helped facilitate the robbery and not a victim.

Further investigation revealed Patterson and Washington arrived at the restaurant about an hour before the robbery and parked in the back to act as lookouts, the warrants allege.

Police identified the gunmen as Ray, Hammonds and Randell. The getaway driver was identified as Simmons, said police.

Police said each suspect got $200 with the exception of Washington, who got $150.