Customers chase down four armed robbery suspects - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Customers chase down four armed robbery suspects

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By Christian Jennings - bio | email

THOMASVILLE,  GA (WALB) – Four men are in the Thomas county jail after investigators say they robbed a fast-food restaurant with a gun and a machete. The men were caught after three customers tracked them down the highway and led police to them. And the whole robbery was caught on tape.

Armed robberies usually last no longer than a minute and more often than not the suspects get away. But that wasn't the case Sunday morning around 1:30 at the Thomasville Whataburger when three people put their fears aside and saved the day.

You're looking at not only a group of fast food customers in this Whataburger surveillance video, but three heroes. Sunday morning as the group walked up to the Whataburger counter to place their orders two guys walked through the front door with weapons.

"One was presenting a hand gun, the other a machete," said Thomas county Sheriff's Investigator Jason Carroll.

The man in the blue jacket quickly ran out the door, his friends close behind him. That's when the robbers went to work demanding money from a pregnant employee.

"She kept her cool, she didn't try to be a hero and she gave them the money," said Investigator Carroll.

The hooded robbers ran out the door and met up with a third person in the parking lot.

"The three together ran to the back across a grassy field and there was truck waiting for them on Liberty street," he said.

Little did the now four suspects know, the three customers were watching their every move from the inside of their parked SUV.

"The three witnesses followed them , the whole time on the phone with a dispatcher," said Carroll.

The brave group chased the robbers for five miles.

Deputies caught up and pulled the suspects over on Ozell Road. They arrested two 16-year-old boys, and the two boys they say went inside the Whataburger, 17-year-old Broderick Brown and 18-year-old Darrien Fleno.

"This one had a good ending," said the Investigator. All thanks to two guys and a girl who weren't going to let criminals get away on their watch.

Those three thrill-seeking customers worked up an appetite chasing down the robbers. They went back to the Whataburger and enjoyed a late-night meal on the house.

Sheriff's investigators don't encourage chasing armed robbers. They say the safest thing to do is just call 911.


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