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Teens held at gunpoint by Clayton County officer observed in gas station parking lot with a weapon

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A BB gun recovered by Clayton County police “closely resembled a live semi-automatic pistol.” The weapon was thrown into the bushes by a group of teens after they were seen with it in a gas station parking lot on Flint River Road.

JONESBORO — Five teenagers held at gunpoint by a Clayton County police officer Monday evening were identified as the same five teens seen with a gun in the parking lot of a business on Flint River Road.

According to a clerk at the Quik Stop, the teens were inside the store “trying to steal.” In a 911 call to police, the clerk identified one of the young men as having a gun.

A CCPD officer arrived at the store and was told by the clerk the boys had run through the woods toward Thomas Road.

In the incident report, the officer stated he saw the teens walking on Thomas Road and “fearing they might be armed and for my safety, I pulled out out my service weapon and pointed it at the juveniles.”

The group was asked to stop and put their hands up. The officer then stated he kept his service weapon “in the low ready” position and waited for back-up to arrive.


The low ready position is defined as "keeping the gun in front you with your arms somewhat extended, but pointed lower than your target using a two-handed grip," according to the Range365 web site.

While waiting, the officer said a crowd had formed and began yelling with a few attempting to walk up behind him, all of which can be seen and heard in video recorded by a bystander.

“I attempted to keep the juveniles focused on me,” the officer said in the report. “I explained to the juveniles to stay calm and focus on me because they knew why I was there. I stressed that one of them could still be armed and I haven’t dispelled that threat.”

Once back-up arrived, the officer said he holstered his service weapon and began to help pat them down. None of the teens were armed, but when questioned about the gun they were in possession of, as seen in the video recorded at the gas station, one of the teens led police to where he had thrown it in the bushes.

“The handgun was located,” the officer stated in the report. “It was a BB gun, however, it appeared real. I stressed to the juveniles that carrying a real looking BB wasn’t safe and very dangerous.”

According to Lt. Cherie West, CCPD public information officer, the BB gun “closely resembled a live semi-automatic pistol.”

West said police got in touch with each of the teens parents and spoke with them on scene before releasing them. No charges were filed against the teens.

“We want to remind our Clayton County citizens that we are committed to protecting and serving each and every one of our citizens through decades of established trust and effective communication,” West said in a release from the department.

In an earlier social media post, police Chief Kevin Roberts said the department remains “committed to being transparent and accountable to the community.”

In addition to photos of the BB gun, CCPD also release the two 911 called received and body cam video footage.

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(1) comment


The officer was doing his job and did it well under the circumstances known and related in this story and the supporting video. Chief Roberts and the local county authorities, you have a good officer and should stand behind him...he did nothing wrong and everything right in this not give in to pressure from those on the anti-police bandwagon and from others who don't know the facts. We need good officers like this.

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