Sheriff says narcotic officers had been watching man for a month

Wednesday, Nov. 18, 2009 5:42 AM
Last updated 8:34 PM
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[BEGINVIDEO 2187]

Nestor  Special
Special
Nestor

Video from the press conference.

[ENDVIDEO]

Richmond County Sheriff’s deputies shot and killed a man while serving arrest warrants Tuesday night – the second fatal shooting by deputies in less than a week.

Three narcotics officers, Philip Hambrick, Jason Saal and Mike Swint, are on desk duty after shooting Michael Nestor, 30, multiple times after he tried to strike one of them with his car, Sheriff Ronnie Strength said in a press conference Wednesday morning.

The sheriff did not release photos of the officers, saying he didn’t want to jeopardize any ongoing cases. According to Sheriff Strength, the events unfolded this way:

The narcotics officers had been watching Mr. Nestor for about a month when they arrived at his home at 1918 Ohio Avenue on Tuesday at about 9 p.m. Wanted on several drug charges, including possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute and possession of methadone among others, Mr. Nestor spotted the deputies as they walked toward his driveway. He was sitting in the driver seat of his Oldsmobile when Investigator Saal approached from the rear and Investigators Hambrick and Swint came to his driver-side door with weapons drawn. They ordered him out of the car but Mr. Nestor backed toward Investigator Saal and the officers fired.

Early indications are that Mr. Nestor was struck in the left arm and the neck, Sheriff Strength said. Mr. Nestor’s car traveled about 200 feet where he abandoned the vehicle and collapsed in a nearby yard.

Sheriff Strength said the investigators were not wearing their standard uniforms but did have on badges and department-issued rain jackets. They identified themselves as officers when they approached the car. No dash-cam video is available of the shooting because the officers parked a short distance from Mr. Nestor’s home and approached on foot to avoid alerting the suspect.

GBI investigators were searching his car Wednesday and the sheriff said he did not yet know whether they had found any weapons or narcotics inside. He did confirm that Mr. Nestor did not have a weapon on himself. Sheriff Strength said that he’d heard unconfirmed reports that Mr. Nestor may have been carrying a small amount of an unidentified narcotic.

According to the Georgia Department of Corrections website, Mr. Nestor served just over a year in Dooly State Prison in Unadilla, Ga. from August 2002 to September 2003 on methamphetamine possession charges in Cobb and Gwinnet counties.

Mr. Nestor’s fatal shooting by sheriff deputies is the second such incident in less than a week and the fourth in less than 12 months.

The Georgia Bureau of Investigation is still looking into last week’s shooting of a 41-year old Terry Ramsey on November 12. Two deputies involved in that shooting, Sylvester Rosier and Chadwick Plueger, returned to active duty Tuesday night.

The sheriff defended his deputies’ actions and said he did not foresee any policy changes on the use of deadly force. Two other fatal shootings in 2008 were deemed justified by the GBI.

“We don’t wake up in the morning saying ‘let’s go out and see if we can get in a shoot-out,’” Sheriff Strength said. “Most of these guys are not thinking about that, they’re thinking about going home at the end of the day also.”

Background information and disciplinary files on the three officers were not immediately available Wednesday but at least one of the them had been previously disciplined. Investigator Hambrick was suspended 10 days for posting a picture of himself with his department-issued Glock handgun on his Myspace page in 2006. A fellow deputy was fired and another suspended as part of the same investigation.

When a reporter from the Chronicle called to find out more information about the deputies and their training, the sheriff’s secretary said he would not be taking anymore calls about the shooting Wednesday afternoon.

------

Editor's note: An earlier version incorrectly identified the man killed by deputies as Michael Nester.

RELATED

Police set high bar for using deadly force (Feb. 4, 2009)

RECENT POLICE SHOOTINGS

A look at other shootings involving Richmond County officers:

NOV. 24, 2008 - Investigator Tim Tobias fatally shot Joseph Gooden, 26. The 21-year veteran was working a special-duty assignment at Captain D's restaurant on Wrightsboro Road when Mr. Gooden, armed with a BB gun, robbed the restaurant. Mr. Gooden was killed in the shooting.

DEC. 14, 2008 - Deputies Jose Rivera Ortiz and Michael Hodge were responding to a tip about a man with drugs and weapons in an SUV when they boxed in Justin Leonard Elmore, 23, using their patrol cars in the Cherry Tree neighborhood. Deputies said Mr. Elmore rammed Deputy Hodge's car and drove toward Deputy Ortiz. The deputies fired on Mr. Elmore and he died several days later.

DEC. 25, 2008 - Deputy Scott White shot and wounded Georgette Reid during a hostage situation on Sunny Day Road in Hephzibah. Ms. Reid was fighting with her live-in girlfriend when she struck her in the head with a hammer and took her 4-year-old son hostage with a knife. As Deputy White entered the room, he shot Ms. Reid in the shoulder and pulled the boy away.

NOV. 12, 2009 - An Augusta man free on bond awaiting a murder trial was killed by Richmond County Sheriff's deputies Thursday when he refused to put down the knife he held to his wife's throat. Police said Terry Ramsey, 41, was shot when deputies responding to a phone call from his 14-year-old son, found him threatening his estranged wife Tameka Ramsey. He died at 4:49 a.m. at Medical College of Georgia Hospital. The Georgia Bureau of Investigation is investigating the shooting at 814 Metcalf St., and both deputies -- Chadwick Plueger and Sylvester Rosier -- have been placed on desk duty.

-- From staff reports

Reach Adam Folk at (706) 823-3339 or adam.folk@augustachronicle.com.

Comments (324) Add comment
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storiesihaveread
358
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storiesihaveread 11/18/09 - 07:05 am
0
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Oh lord let the fun begin.

Oh lord let the fun begin.

smartie
0
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smartie 11/18/09 - 07:10 am
0
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i've heard all the details i

i've heard all the details i need. give 'em some more bullets, and send 'em to serve some more warrants.

robbie1
0
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robbie1 11/18/09 - 07:17 am
0
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I;m not sure I'd want to be

I;m not sure I'd want to be the guy that stood behind the car. How do you decide which officer will do that? Rock, paper scissors?

ColdBeerBoiledPeanuts
7848
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ColdBeerBoiledPeanuts 11/18/09 - 07:32 am
0
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robbie, it's a very

robbie, it's a very complicated process of lizard, kevlar, spock!

Opinionated one1
0
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Opinionated one1 11/18/09 - 07:35 am
0
0
Justice is served.

Justice is served.

nofrills
0
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nofrills 11/18/09 - 07:42 am
0
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I know its all the police

I know its all the police fault, if they hadnt went to serve his warrants then he wouldn't be dead. Oh those bad police officers. I got a call in to Rev Sharpton.

Notreally
4
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Notreally 11/18/09 - 07:52 am
0
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If he tried to hit the

If he tried to hit the officers then they should have shot him, what get's me is so many of you regular posters love to bring up Sharpton and Jackson's name and expect a riot or something to happen after news spreads. Smartie I hope no one in your family or even you die in any violent manner. So Get back in the night you ain't white.

enana031
0
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enana031 11/18/09 - 08:01 am
0
0
Where are you Justus?

Where are you Justus?

humbleopinion
0
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humbleopinion 11/18/09 - 08:03 am
0
0
Obviously these white

Obviously these white officers had a bias when they went to serve the warrant and had probably discussed who would get the privilege of executing this innocent man. It is the white man that brings African -Americans into the world of drugs and violence just for their sordid amusement. There. I just beat Justus4 to it again!

smartie
0
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smartie 11/18/09 - 08:06 am
0
0
notreally, it's not a

notreally, it's not a black/white, thing, my brother. i didn't know this guy. i sympathize with someone that's hit rock bottom. but, if someones got to die, better that it be the one that's probably on his way to kill someone anyway. who knows, notreally, these deputies may have saved my, or your life.

smartie
0
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smartie 11/18/09 - 08:18 am
0
0
yeah, yeah. i'll thank my mom

yeah, yeah. i'll thank my mom and dad for teaching me not to argue, or try to logic, with a fool.

Martinez
154
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Martinez 11/18/09 - 08:19 am
0
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Sharpton and Jackson will

Sharpton and Jackson will gain my respect when they show up to talk about violence period - no white on black, black on black, white on white captions needed. In communities all across america the biggest danger is directionless drug selling or drug using under 25 crowd with guns and a false sense of bravato.

Notreally
4
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Notreally 11/18/09 - 08:20 am
0
0
smartie you are a mess, you

smartie you are a mess, you put people down in your first few post then come back and try to be logical LOL.... OMG again, GET BACK IN THE NIGHT YOU AIN"T WHITE. Oh and tell your mom and dad again thanks for donating their SSI.

stillamazed
1488
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stillamazed 11/18/09 - 08:23 am
0
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I think the reason that

I think the reason that people throw in Jackson and Sharpton's name out there is because they always show up when something like this happens, forget the fact that the person who got shot is a no good drug dealing criminal, that doesn't care who he hurts with his drugs as long as he is putting some cash in his pockets.

Notreally
4
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Notreally 11/18/09 - 08:23 am
0
0
They should have taught you

They should have taught you smartie that trying, playing and wanting to be WHITE and you black isn't good. I would hope they taught you that no matter what you still will be called the N word regardless of your wanna be white status. In your life time I know you have been called that ever so famous name. So GET BACK IN THE NIGHT YOU AIN"T WHITE.

CobaltGeorge
159354
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CobaltGeorge 11/18/09 - 08:24 am
0
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justus4 - Another [filtered word]shot?

justus4 - Another [filtered word]shot? Another family in morning over the loss of there will brought up son...another great use of deadly force incident...another life not in our society, another beautiful day.

onlynaugusta
41
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onlynaugusta 11/18/09 - 08:30 am
0
0
Why investigate? Cops are

Why investigate? Cops are always right according to the law. It would have made more sense to shoot the tires out instead of the individual. Just because you can kill doesn't mean you have to. More Black men are being gun down for incidents that law enforcement could handle in a better manner. I've never read where cops have gunned down a white suspect.

jericojones
0
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jericojones 11/18/09 - 08:33 am
0
0
Good job cops!!! Take a day,

Good job cops!!! Take a day, give them extra bullets and serve all outstanding warrants in RC. Take a few more off the streets.

thinkingperson79
0
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thinkingperson79 11/18/09 - 08:34 am
0
0
Why is this ALREADY about

Why is this ALREADY about race. Shut up, your not helping the racial situation by making all these comments. If and when someone makes it a racial thing THEN comment on that.

ripjones
2
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ripjones 11/18/09 - 08:36 am
0
0
Federal Hydra-Shoks -- I love

Federal Hydra-Shoks -- I love 'em. Remember people that in the future, it is not a smart thing to do, trying to run down a Law Enforcement Officer. Case in point. Once they release the guy's name, we can see what a pillar of the community, I'm sure he was...

ripjones
2
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ripjones 11/18/09 - 08:40 am
0
0
OnlyinAugusta - Shooting

OnlyinAugusta - Shooting tires is a risky business. Sometimes the bullet can richochet off the tire itself or the rim. Plus, haven't you ever seen "Cops". The stupid criminals will drive great distances on the rims, rather than be arrested. This way, he will never try to back over another officer -- because he's DEAD.

lifelongresidient
0
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lifelongresidient 11/18/09 - 08:47 am
0
0
one less felon we have to

one less felon we have to clothe, feed and give a free place to stay...officers, keep your aim true and your powder dry. now the felon can join justin elmore and they can smoke blunts together

55 F-100
1
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55 F-100 11/18/09 - 08:48 am
0
0
All of you cretins need to

All of you cretins need to learn this lesson...aim your spreewells at two armed LEO's and accellerate towards them, and you will be dead right there! Give the officers marksmanship commendations and pay raises for making Augusta-Richmond County a safer place to live.

ashlyn11
0
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ashlyn11 11/18/09 - 08:51 am
0
0
Cops 3, Perps 0.... I'm

Cops 3, Perps 0.... I'm starting to like this trend!!!

blues550
376
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blues550 11/18/09 - 08:54 am
0
0
One less dirtbag. The
Unpublished

One less dirtbag. The deputikes need to get a share of the monies the government will save in jailing, prosecuting, giving early rel,ease and then cathing the perp again once he gets ouot of jail. But wait there's more...he might have been innocent. Message: don;t run from deputies.

WMartin
119
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WMartin 11/18/09 - 08:56 am
0
0
Nice shot guys. Justice

Nice shot guys. Justice served. Get these dirt bags off our streets and into the cemetary!!!!! Thanks for saving the tax payers some money!

juantez
235
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juantez 11/18/09 - 08:59 am
0
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You got the point. I put it
Unpublished

You got the point.
I put it that way for all you smart a**

GnipGnop
12242
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GnipGnop 11/18/09 - 09:07 am
0
0
Rebecca Lynn Key..shot by

Rebecca Lynn Key..shot by RCSO after brandishing a gun after a standoff....she was white....http://chronicle.augusta.com/stories/2004/10/09/met_430782.shtml

jericojones
0
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jericojones 11/18/09 - 09:09 am
0
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Dat be right, juantez. Looks

Dat be right, juantez. Looks like you are just the type they are looking for. Won't you get behind the wheel and try to run one over?

disssman
6
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disssman 11/18/09 - 09:10 am
0
0
juantez. Slowly now and try

juantez. Slowly now and try to remember what you were taught during all of your years in the third grade, now try to tell us again what you were trying to wtite. I know its hard to put two or three words together, but please try hard. BTW I am sure some of the high tech companys are looking for highly educated, articulated people just like you. You are a perfect example of why companies are leaving the area or will never come here to start with.

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