News Blog

DPD Seeks ID Of Woman In Fraud Case

The Dalton Police Department is asking for the public’s help identifying a woman who used stolen bank account information and a fake ID to rip off nearly $2,000 from a couple in Texas. The transaction was recorded on a bank’s surveillance system.

The crime was reported to Dalton investigators on March 23rd by Regions Bank’s security division. The crime occurred in late January entered the Regions location on West Walnut Avenue and attempted to make a withdrawal from a savings account belonging to a couple that lives in Rowlett, Texas. The suspect presented a Texas driver’s license belonging to the wife who did not have access to the savings account. That driver’s license was later determined to be a fake. The suspect then presented information for the Texas couple’s joint checking account and requested to withdraw $1,900 from that account instead. The suspect wore a pink cast on her right wrist and asked for the bank teller to fill out the withdrawal slip, complaining the injury made her unable to write well. The teller completed the form and the suspect forged a signature on the slip.

The Texas victims’ bank account information has also been used at Regions Bank locations in Texas and Florida and it is unclear how their account was compromised. The suspect in the Dalton case is a white female who appears to be in her late 30’s or 40’s with sandy blonde hair which she wore in a messy pony tail. She wore a pink cast on her wrist. A picture of the suspect is included with this release. Anyone who can identify her is asked to please contact Detective John Helton at 706-278-9085, dial 9 and enter extension 143.

Below: The suspect was recorded by surveillance at the Regions Bank on West Walnut Avenue

New Officer Joins DPD

A familiar face around the Dalton Police Department is now wearing an unfamiliar uniform. After serving the department as a civilian employee for more than two years, this morning Katia Gonzalez was confirmed by the Public Safety Commission as the agency’s newest police officer.

Officer Gonzalez is a 2016 graduate of Dalton State College with a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice. While studying at Dalton State, Gonzalez started work for the DPD as an intern through a partnership between the college and the police department. After completing her internship, Gonzalez was hired as a part-time records technician in May 2014 and remained employed with the agency until applying to become an officer after her college graduation. Officer Gonzalez completed the 10-week Georgia Public Safety Training Center Police Academy last week. She is also a 2012 graduate of Dalton High School.

Officer Gonzalez’s training now continues with the DPD’s “mini-academy” and then she will hit the road for some on-the-job training in the department’s Field Training Officer (FTO) program. During the FTO program she will ride and train with and be evaluated by veteran officers.

Below: Chief Jason Parker stands with Officer Katia Gonzalez before Tuesday morning’s meeting of the Dalton Public Safety Commission 

DPD Seeks Pair In Aggravated Assault Case

UPDATED: 3/24/17 – Hall and Rodriguez turned themselves in on their warrants

The Dalton Police Department is looking for 17-year old Jeremy Wayne Hall and 18-year old Susana Rodriguez. Both are wanted on warrants related to an aggravated assault that happened February 11th in Dalton. The pair had previously agreed to turn themselves in on their warrants two weeks ago but have not done so.

The original incident happened during the early morning hours of February 11th at the apartment complex at 703 West Crawford Street. 19-year old Cameron Hall and 26-year old Shanda Jackson had been accused by residents of the apartment of stealing their property. Late on the evening of February 10th, Cameron Hall and Shanda Jackson confronted and fought the residents of the apartment. Then, after 3:00 am on the morning of the 11th, the pair returned armed with baseball bats along with a group that included Jeremy Hall, Susana Rodriguez, and 27-year old Joshua Molina. Two victims at the apartment were attacked by members of the group with baseball bats, suffering lacerations on their heads and injuries to their arms.  Cameron Hall, Shanda Jackson, and Joshua Molina have already been arrested on charges related to the assault.

Jeremy Wayne Hall has a warrant for his arrest on an aggravated assault charge and Susan Rodriguez has a felony warrant for making false statements during the investigation of the incident. Pictures of both individuals are included with this release.

Below: Jeremy Wayne Hall and Susana Rodriguez

DPD Explorer Cards Go On Sale Thursday, March 23rd

UPDATE (3/23/17, 12:45 PM) The supply of Explorer cards has sold out at the Police Services Center

The new 2017-18 Dalton Police Department Explorers discount cards will go on sale Thursday morning (March 23rd) at the Police Services Center and also at select area businesses. Proceeds from sales of the cards, which cost $5 each, go to fund the DPD’s Explorers Program.

This year’s cards can be redeemed for discounts or other services at Bob’s Burgers, The Perfect Cup, The Sweet Spot, Outback Steakhouse, O’Charley’s, Bruster’s Ice Cream, Buckin’ Burrito, Tijuana’s Mexican Restaurant, The Chop Shop, Crescent City Tavern, Los Reyes Mexican Restaurant, Fuji Steak and Sushi, Hamilton’s, Panda Express, Schlotzsky’s, Las Palmas, Zaxby’s, Dalton Vacuum, Retro Bowl, Fashion Cleaners, Love Empanadas, The Local Restaurant, Chelsea’s on Thornton, Trailheads Outdoor Gear, and Taylor’s Tire and Service.

Explorer cards can be purchased at the Police Services Center at 301 Jones Street from the Records section in the front lobby between 8:00 am and 5:00 pm beginning on the morning of March 23rd while supplies last. Cards can also be purchased at the Zaxby’s locations on Northgate Drive and College Drive while supplies last.

The Dalton Police Explorers program allows young men and women to gain training and experience in the law enforcement field. The program also provides young people with opportunities for community involvement and development. Program activities include law enforcement training, organized recreational activities, and competitive events. Officers David Saylors and Matias Castillo currently oversee the program. Explorers must be between 14 and 20 years old, maintain at least a C average while remaining in school until graduation or obtaining a GED, and must attend regular meetings which include physical training.

The Dalton Police Department thanks all of the sponsors of the Explorer cards for their generous support of the program.

Below: A look at the new DPD Explorer Cards (click to see a larger version)

DPD Seeks ID Of Braves Fan

The Dalton Police Department is asking for the public’s help identifying a man who took cash left behind by a forgetful Walmart customer. The man, man who wore an Atlanta Braves jersey and hat, was recorded taking the cash and despite the fact he may have tried to return it to the victim, he left the store with the cash in hand.

The incident happened shortly after noon on March 18th at the Shugart Road Walmart. A man using the self checkout kiosk requested $40 cash back, but forgot to take his money when he left the checkout. Next up in line were a white male wearing a Braves jersey and hat with thick dark-rimmed glasses and a graying goatee and a white female wearing a purple top. The Braves fan is recorded taking the cash from the dispenser and walking toward the exit after handing something to the woman. The man then turned around and walked back to the checkout, completed his purchases with the woman and left the store. It’s unclear whether the man was attempting to return the money to the victim, but the cash was never turned in or returned to its owner.

Georgia Code 16-8-6 is titled “theft of lost or mislaid property” and reads: “A person commits the offense of theft of lost or mislaid property when he comes into control of property that he knows or learns to have been lost or mislaid and appropriates the property to his own use without first taking reasonable measures to restore the property to the owner.”

If you know the man in the surveillance pictures, please call Officer John Gurrieri at 706-278-9085, dial 9 and enter extension 242. Officer Gurrieri can also be reached by email at jgurrieri@cityofdalton-ga.gov.

Click image below to see a larger version

DPD Seeks ID Of Suspects In Car Break-Ins

The Dalton Police Department is asking for the public’s help identifying two people who attempted to cash stolen checks that were taken in a series of car break-ins that happened in February. The cars were broken into in Dalton and the suspects tried to pass the stolen checks at two banks in Tennessee.

Three cars parked at the Lakeshore Park tennis complex were broken into on the afternoon of February 12th between approximately 2:00 and 4:00 pm. All three had a window broken out using an unknown object, and all three had purses or wallets stolen. Among the items stolen were a brown Prada purse valued at approximately $1,800, and another purse containing an iPhone and a Tag Heuer watch valued at approximately $1,700. The next day, two of the victims were notified that someone had attempted to cash checks stolen in the break-ins at banks in Hixson, Tennessee and East Ridge, Tennessee. In both cases, they were unsuccessful. Investigators retrieved surveillance images of the attempted transactions. The suspects were driving a white or silver in color BMW SUV with a luggage rack on the roof. The vehicle was driven by a white male and a Hispanic female in the passenger seat tried to cash the stolen checks using the victim’s stolen driver’s licenses as ID. A picture of the suspects as well as a distinctive sticker on the windshield of the SUV are included with this release.

Anyone who can identify the suspects is asked to please call Detective Brian Shirley at 706-278-9085, dial 9 and enter extension 189.

This case is another good reminder to never leave valuables in plain view inside your vehicle, even if you are only planning to leave the vehicle unattended for a short time. Always lock your car and keep valuables stored out of sight of any potential thieves.

Below: The suspects and a distinctive sticker on the windshield of their car (click images to see a larger version)

Man Steals TV, Other Items From K-Mart

 

The Dalton Police Department is asking for the public’s help with identifying a man who is apparently amassing quite a collection of televisions at the expense of the K-Mart on Glenwood Avenue in Dalton. He stole a 43 inch Samsung television from the store on March 8th and investigators believe he is the same man who stole two others from the store in February.

 

The most recent theft happened on March 8th when the suspect was recorded loading a 43 inch Samsung TV into a shopping cart along with other items. The suspect, a black male wearing dark jeans and a black shirt over a white t-shirt with white sneakers, then pushed the cart out of the store. Employees realized the television was missing the next day while performing an inventory check. When they searched surveillance video, they found a recording of the theft.

 

The same store reported the theft of two televisions last month. On February 20th, a black male wearing a black hoodie and black jeans with white shoes stole a 40 inch Samsung TV and a 48 inch Samsung TV by pushing them out of the store through the garden center area. Investigators believe the suspect in those thefts is the same man from the March 8th incident. Loss prevention staff at the store told an investigating officer that those thefts were the fifth and sixth thefts of TVs from the store in recent months.
Pictures from the March 8th theft are included with this release. Anyone who knows the identity of this suspect is asked to please call Officer John Gurrieri at 706-278-9085, dial 9 and enter extension 242. He can also be reached by email at jgurrieri@cityofdalton-ga.gov.

Below: Images of the suspect are included below.

Batgirl Turns To Life Of Crime

UPDATE: A suspect was identified in this case thanks to multiple phone calls and emails with tips.

Times truly are tough when even a caped crusader takes to stealing. Unfortunately, Batgirl (or perhaps just a female imposter wearing a Batman logo hoodie) apparently succumbed to the lure of greater riches and strayed from the path of justice when she stole money left behind at a self-checkout at Walmart and also apparently shoplifted several items before leaving the store, perhaps headed back to the Batcave.

The incident happened March 6th at the Shugart Road Walmart. After a woman finished checking out at of the self-checkout kiosks she realized that she’d left behind $20 in cash back. When the victim returned, the cash was gone. Surveillance video showed that the next woman in line (Batgirl) took the money. While reviewing surveillance video from the store to get a clear picture of the caped crusader’s face (fortunately, the Batmask was apparently at the cleaners), loss prevention staff and a Dalton officer found video of the suspect also walking around the store and concealing several items in her purse. Investigators are unsure why she wasn’t using her utility belt. After concealing the items in her purse, the suspect paid for one item, took the forgotten money, and left the store. A surveillance picture of the suspect is included with this release.

Known Batgirl alter egos Betty Kane, Barbara Gordon, and Stephanie Brown were eliminated as suspects.

Applications Open For Next Teen Defensive Driving Class

Applications are now being taken for the Dalton Police Department’s next Collision Avoidance Training (CAT) defensive driving course for teen drivers. The next class will be held April 21st and 22nd and costs $25 per participant.

The CAT program is an advanced defensive driving and vehicle control program designed for teenage drivers. The program is open to all teens at least 16 years old with a valid Class D driver’s license. Parents are encouraged to enroll their teens several months prior to their 16th birthday This program does not fulfill the Joshua Law requirements.

The 10-hour course is taught by trained and certified Dalton Police Officers over a two-day period including 2 hours of classroom instruction and 8 hours of one-on-one behind-the-wheel training. Classroom instruction will be held on Friday evenings and behind-the-wheel training will be held on Saturdays. Registration fee for the two-day course is $25.00 per student. The class will be limited to ten (10) drivers per class. Additional classes can be scheduled for groups.

Students must use their own (or parent/guardian’s) vehicle for behind-the-wheel training. The idea is for the students to learn to handle the vehicle they will typically be driving. Behind-the-wheel training is conducted on a closed course, at speeds of 35 mph and below. Students may use cars, trucks, minivans or SUV’s, but vehicles with modified suspension, oversized tires or other unsafe components will not be permitted on the driving range.

At the end of the class, students who have successfully completed all driving range skills will receive a Certificate of Completion. Certificates can be presented to most auto insurance companies for discounted insurance premiums, or proudly displayed.

The curriculum was developed around the fact that most crashes involving teenage drivers are classified as “avoidable” and are due to a lack of experience or training.

This course is designed to give the student a better understanding of the responsibilities and liabilities of the driver, vehicle dynamics, friction and the effects of intoxicating substances on their ability to operate a vehicle.

Students will work with law enforcement on the following life-saving skills during the behind the wheel section of the course:

  • Evasive maneuvers
  • Threshold/emergency braking
  • Forward and reverse serpentine
  • Cornering and backing

For more information on this program or to enroll your teen, please contact PFC David Saylors at 706-278-9085 Ext. 124, dsaylors@cityofdalton-ga.gov.

Application Form 1

Application Form 2

DPD Officers Take The Plunge, Win Best Dressed, Meet Shaq

Officers from the Dalton Police Department took the plunge on Saturday, jumping into the chilly waters of Acworth Beach to raise money for Special Olympics Georgia. Five officers from the DPD pledged to brave the frigid water in exchange for donations to SOGA. They also won a special award for their fashion choice.

Assistant Chief Cliff Cason, Captain Chris Crossen, Sergeant Ricky Long, and Officers Terry Smith and Bart Chandler donned penguin costumes for the event Saturday and waddled into the cold water. The group won the event’s Best Costume award. Officers also got to meet Shaquille O’Neal who was on hand to help promote the event.

Above: Officer Terry Smith, Assistant Chief Cliff Cason, Officer Bart Chandler, Captain Chris Crossen, and Sergeant Ricky Long post with Shaquille O’Neal at Saturday’s Polar Plunge (note: our guys aren’t that tall, Shaq was standing down hill behind them)

The combined fundraising effort of the Dalton Police Department and students from Dalton High School and Dalton Middle School raised approximately $4,000 for SOGA. Andrea Barron’s class at Dalton High School (nicknamed “The Best of the Best”) spearheaded the fundraising at DHS which was named the top fundraising school in the state.

The DPD’s fundraising effort for the Special Olympics is continuing with the Law Enforcement Torch Run project. You can help by purchasing Torch Run hats or running shirts from the DPD or donating through pledges of support for officers who will run in a Torch Run relay April 27th, the day before Whitfield County’s summer games. The route will take participating officers on a route through the city of Dalton.

The 2017 Law Enforcement Torch Run shirts are sky blue dry-fit running shirts with the Law Enforcement Torch Run logo and an image of a Special Olympics athlete carrying the torch.  The hats are available in two styles. One is tan and the other is in a digital camouflage pattern. The hats cost $12 each and the shirts cost $15. The shirts are available in all sizes. Both the hats and shirts are on sale at the Police Services Center at 301 Jones Street.

Each year, the Law Enforcement Torch Run (LETR) is the largest fundraising effort for SOGA.  More than 100 law enforcement agencies across the state take part through various fundraisers which culminate with a series of relay runs with the Special Olympics torch. In 2015, the LETR effort raised more than $866,000 in Georgia. Over the years, Georgia’s LETRs have raised more than $11 million for the Special Olympics.

Funds raised through the Torch Run fund many aspects of the Special Olympics operation. Much of that money goes to send athletes to compete in the statewide Special Olympics Games. It costs $85 to send one athlete to one of the state games meets. At these games, children and adults with intellectual disabilities get to compete in high quality sports, interact with peers, and experience new places. Participation in the games means athletes work towards a goal, learn and master new skills, and develop good habits that could improve their health and lives.

Special Olympics Georgia does not receive funds from local, state, or federal funds. SOGA also does not receive United Way funding. Funding for SOGA, which operates competitions year-round for their athletes, comes from donations and fundraising events such as the Law Enforcement Torch Run. Neither Special Olympics athletes nor their families pay fees to compete. More than 26,000 athletes are currently being served by SOGA.

Below: DPD officers test the waters before taking the plunge