Arrests made in East Tift Avenue home invasion -, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Arrests made in East Tift Avenue home invasion

Shawn Frazier, 25 Shawn Frazier, 25
Shaquille Mathis, 19 Shaquille Mathis, 19

An attack on a woman that prompted talk of vigilante justice may be partially solved with two arrests.

The Albany Police Department says that two suspects, Shawn Frazier, 25, and Shaquille Mathis, 19, were brought in Tuesday afternoon, interviewed, and booked into the jail around 7:00 p.m.

Both men are charged with aggravated assault, armed robbery, and burglary.

A third suspect, Carlos Mathis, 17, was also arrested in the case, and charged aggravated assault, armed robbery, and burglary as well.

APD has not told us if more arrests are expected.

The victims of the attack say about ten teenagers, wearing masks and armed with guns, kicked in the front door on their East Tift Avenue home, and the family and neighbors promise they'll do whatever it takes to protect themselves from gangs.

The violent robbery brought out raw emotions and harsh, threatening words, as friends and neighbors surround a still frightened Mireum Merit, just hours after a masked teenager held a gun to her neck.

When asked if she thought they would shoot, Merit nods her head yes and then starts to cry.

Tommy Evans and other family friends are there to protect her, and they're mad. "If the police don't do their jobs then we have to do it for them."

What does that mean? "What that means is we have to take matters in our own hands," Evans said.

 Dread Johnson fought with the armed robbers who kicked in his front door. "I got five dollars for you poor hustlers. Come on back to me. I give you what you want. That's all."

Merit said she saw about ten teenagers, dressed in red, white, and black, as they dragged her outside. "And had me on the ground, by my neck with the gun to me. They was trying to make me go in the back yard but I wouldn't go back there."

Merit's daughter ran next door to call for help, and watched the robbers. "They took their shirt off their face," Kayla Hester said. "I recognized one of the little boys from the neighborhood. He ride by here all the time on his bike. The other one stay down the road somewhere."

The family friends say home invasion robberies like this happen too often in this neighborhood.

"Some of it you hear about, some of it you don't. Why? Because of the simple fact people say OK, you call the police they ain't going to do nothing. And these children know this, and that's why they keep on doing what they doing," Evans said.

The friends say the gang likes to call themselves "Little Third Graders." All they took was a Wii game, but made a lot of people very angry.

"A scared man don't hide his face. Y'all come holler at me. That's all," Johnson said. Angry people saying they have had enough, promising to protect themselves. Merit said today she is making plans to leave Albany, and move back to Florida.


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