Athens police make arrest in armed robbery of Martinez man

ATHENS, Ga. — One of two suspects has been arrested in connection with an armed robbery Sunday morning of a Martinez resident at a student housing complex near the University of Georgia campus.

Athens-Clarke police obtained an arrest warrant for the second suspect in the 4:45 a.m. robbery at River Mill apartments off Oconee Street.

The victim had been visiting a friend in Athens, police said.

While bar-hopping Saturday night, they met two men they didn’t know who gave them a ride to the home of the victim’s friend at River Mill.

The Martinez man, 25, and his friend went inside the apartment for a few minutes. But when he returned outside carrying an iPad, the two strangers were still in the parking lot. They approached the man and at gunpoint demanded the computer tablet and cash, police said.

When the robbers drove off in a small car, the victim immediately called 911 and an officer said he spotted the vehicle as it traveled east on Lexington Road.

The officer made a U-turn and followed the car as it turned onto Gaines School Road in east Athens. He continued to follow the car along several side streets until it stopped and the driver got out and ran, police said.

With his gun drawn, Sgt. Jason Taft approached the car with the passenger still inside.

“I yelled for him to stop moving and that I would shoot him as he kept moving his hands out of sight,” the officer wrote in his report.

As the suspect continued moving toward the door, the officer believed he was preparing to run so he broke cover from behind his patrol car’s door and ran toward the vehicle.

“As he stepped out onto the ground I ... quickly closed the distance, ordering the suspect to the ground several times,” Taft reported. “He was not complying so as I got within arm’s reach I knocked him to the ground with my left hand.”

After handcuffing the suspect, police identified him as Darryl Olajuwon Fleming, 27, of Cooper Road.

Officers searched Fleming and the car. They found the stolen computer tablet, a jar filled with marijuana and two small bags of pot, police said. The $50 that had been taken from the victim was in Fleming’s pocket.

The gun reportedly used in the robbery was not recovered.

Police identified the driver of the car and suspected gunman as 29-year-old Dennis Lee Collins Jr., of Fourth Street.

Fleming was charged with armed robbery, aggravated assault and possession with intent to distribute marijuana, police said. Arrest warrants charge Collins with the same offenses.

Collins, who has an extensive criminal history, was released from prison in October after serving a year for a robbery conviction. He was on probation at the time of Sunday’s holdup.

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