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)

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Notreally
4
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Notreally 11/18/09 - 10:29 am
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WHAT he was white *FALLS OUT*

WHAT he was white *FALLS OUT* let me go change my earlier post, Be Right Back (BRB).

Notreally
4
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Notreally 11/18/09 - 10:35 am
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In this article with Nester's

In this article with Nester's rap sheet one would think he's black. The Chronicle gives us these instances that paint this perp as being black: 1. Fatally shot, 2. Man killed by deputies, 3. Attempting to arrest, 4. Ohio Ave, 5. Wanted on several felony warrants, 6. Sheriff to released more info at a press conference later today, 7. Area known for drug activity. All of the above fit the "typical black criminal" and not that of a white male, but according to mattghughes he is.

Notreally
4
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Notreally 11/18/09 - 10:36 am
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And besides most times when

And besides most times when there is a cop shooting 95% the perp being shot is black.

poolmom
46
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poolmom 11/18/09 - 10:36 am
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People always have to bring

People always have to bring race into the issues. Our police men and women are only trying to protect themselves!

InChristLove
21712
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InChristLove 11/18/09 - 10:40 am
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jackfruitpaper (Notreally),

jackfruitpaper (Notreally), why would the teabaggers hold a rally at this man's house ..... you say the dummest things. Matt sorry for the lost of your friend and sometimes people make bad choices in life. My prayers to you and Michael's family.

Waymore
103
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Waymore 11/18/09 - 10:41 am
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Notreally, you are a bigot

Notreally, you are a bigot and a racist. Jumping to conclusions and stirring the pot.

mattghughes
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mattghughes 11/18/09 - 10:43 am
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He is white, his girl is 1

He is white, his girl is 1 week away from delivering her baby and that chid will never get to know her father. No matter what your take is on this story everyone makes mistakes in life. So please not for me but for his unborn child, have a little respect for the morning. His mother, brother and fiance are wonderful people and I would hate for them to read some of you peoples' comments. What if it werte your child or father

Roeschen
1
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Roeschen 11/18/09 - 10:52 am
0
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I am sorry his family lost a

I am sorry his family lost a loved one. I believe he should have thought more about his family and the coming baby. Obviously he did not care enough.

yak11
0
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yak11 11/18/09 - 10:58 am
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Do I feel sad for the family?

Do I feel sad for the family? yes Do I feel bad for the officers who had to perform their duty? Yes. Do I feel bad for the incredibly bad waste of Human DNA? NOPE not a bit.

eachoneteachone
0
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eachoneteachone 11/18/09 - 11:05 am
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Good killing RCSD!

Good killing RCSD!

Dixieman
10350
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Dixieman 11/18/09 - 11:08 am
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race race race

race race race race.
Sheesh.
Criminal is a criminal no matter what color.

scendlesshope
0
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scendlesshope 11/18/09 - 11:11 am
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Mattghughes...THANK YOU!!

Mattghughes...THANK YOU!!

thinkingperson79
0
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thinkingperson79 11/18/09 - 11:15 am
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He had a baby on the way and

He had a baby on the way and he was still running around like 16 year old dummy. Im sorry, not much pity for this fellow. I feel sorry for his family, but I have a hard time beliving his child was going to be taken good care of by him. I am so sick of "oh my poor poor johnny was just missunderstood and had so many problems. He made bad choices, that is all..." BULLCRAP. The chillly cheease fries at Krystals are a BAD CHOICE, trying to run over a cop or ANYONE for that matter, or dealing drugs is a blatant lack of respect for ANYONE but yourself. What makes it worse is the kid on the way. Sorry guy, no pity from me. Time for people to start taking responsibilty for themselves and there actions.

jericojones
0
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jericojones 11/18/09 - 11:15 am
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hughes, sorry, just can't dig

hughes, sorry, just can't dig up any sympathy for this scumbag or his "girl" What was their plan, let the taxpayer pay for thi kid?

grinder48
1357
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grinder48 11/18/09 - 11:17 am
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The article doesn't give the

Unpublished

The article doesn't give the race of the dead guy. How can we get all twisted up if we don't know what race shot what race? Of course it's fair to assume some totally innocent minority was shot by some prejudiced police officer, right? I do hate it for the affected families but these idiots need to learn a basic lesson ... cooperate with police. Make agressive moves toward them, you're dead. Thank you RCSD!

jericojones
0
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jericojones 11/18/09 - 11:18 am
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scendless, good person--long

scendless, good person--long rap sheet, suspected in the killing of another person, dealing drugs, etc--are you on meth now?

thinkingperson79
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thinkingperson79 11/18/09 - 11:19 am
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"deputies were attempting to

"deputies were attempting to arrest Mr. Nester at a home in the 1900 block of Ohio Avenue when he tried to hit them with his vehicle. Mr. Nester was wanted on several felony warrants."

Lets take a look at this. Unless he was unaware that cops were trying to arrest him then I think the "didnt see them" excuse has a hole in it. "several felony warrants" is more than " a few bad choices and a drug problem". Sounds like you guys defending him were some EXCELLENT friends to let it get this far.

CobaltGeorge
138669
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CobaltGeorge 11/18/09 - 11:23 am
0
0

Yes, everybody makes a

Yes, everybody makes a mistake in life and usually learns from that mistake. In this case we have a human that has done many previous mistakes and formed a pattern in his life. More than likely if he had not been stopped at this point in time it would have only progressed to higher levels of mistakes. Yes, the unborn child will not have that father, maybe the god lord will provide a much better father so this child will have the upbringing it deserves. My question is, where or what in his upbringing in life made him the [filtered word]he is (WAS). You did right, RCSD.

KSL
105760
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KSL 11/18/09 - 11:25 am
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scend, why did he try to run?

scend, why did he try to run?

Rolling Eyes
236
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Rolling Eyes 11/18/09 - 11:26 am
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Matt, I'm sorry for the grief

Matt, I'm sorry for the grief that your friend's choices are causing for his friends and family. It is an unfortunate that he chose to throw away the future he would have had as a husband and father by his lifestyle and actions. I pity the ones who loved him for what he is putting them through. There's never a good time to lose someone, but just before the holidays makes it particularly tough.

KSL
105760
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KSL 11/18/09 - 11:27 am
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Seems like he was continuing

Seems like he was continuing to make bad decisions.

InChristLove
21712
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InChristLove 11/18/09 - 11:32 am
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grinder48, go back and read

grinder48, go back and read all the post. A friend posted that the deceased was a white male. Sad to say, this man would still be alive if he had not tried to avoid the police. If Mr. Nester had several other felony warrants on him, then maybe it is best that the unborn child have a chance of being raised by a better father. A child doesn't need to be brought up in a home full of drugs and unlawfulness.

corgimom
19235
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corgimom 11/18/09 - 11:47 am
0
0

"A criminal is trying to kill

"A criminal is trying to kill me with a 3,000 lb, lethal weapon. What should I do? Should I a) shoot out his tires, so that I can still be run down, because that only works in the movies or b) shoot the driver so that my life will be saved". I'd pick B.

corgimom
19235
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corgimom 11/18/09 - 11:50 am
0
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Very good people do not do

Very good people do not do drugs. Because it turns very nice people into criminal scum. I am so sick of "he/she is a good person". NO THEY ARE NOT.

johnston.cliff
2
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johnston.cliff 11/18/09 - 11:51 am
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Mattghughes has it right when

Mattghughes has it right when he says Nester's family will be sensitive to the comments made on this site, but Nester didn't give his family much thought with his "mistakes". He put his family and unborn child at risk with his lifestyle and now his bad choices have left them without even the sorry excuse for a father, boyfriend, son. He can't redeem himself at this point.

johnston.cliff
2
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johnston.cliff 11/18/09 - 11:54 am
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Good point, corgimom. Even

Good point, corgimom. Even the most hated person seems to have some good traits, but it's the overall effect that determines whether one is a "good person" or not. Nester might have had some good traits, but he sure didn't treat his family very good. Look at the mess he's made and left them with.

mattghughes
0
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mattghughes 11/18/09 - 12:00 pm
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Ok to set the story straight.

Ok to set the story straight. Once again get your facts straight you ignorant fools. Mike was never in the air force, never in Mississippi, and he did NOT have several warrants out for him. He had quit dealing and was trying to get his life back in order. If you idiots would actually read before you start showing your true colors you would hae read that they were not shure if the Michael Nester was even the same person. So for lack of a better term...whether you are white, black, yellow, green or purple, you are all, for the most part a bunch of f@#king NI##ERS. And for those of you who don't actually know what thart meens, it meens ignorant person.......IDIOTS

Dora.Ito
0
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Dora.Ito 11/18/09 - 12:12 pm
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It's refreshing to see that

It's refreshing to see that he chose such fine outstanding folks to hang out with and be friends with. Next?

smartie
0
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smartie 11/18/09 - 12:13 pm
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matt, i believe you may be in

matt, i believe you may be in denial about your friend, here. time will tell. perhaps, making excuses for him may have enabled him to continue to lead this lifestyle. point is, man, always cooperate with the law. you'll have your day in court.

corgimom
19235
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corgimom 11/18/09 - 12:15 pm
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Matt, here's the deal. When

Matt, here's the deal. When you commit crimes, you have to answer for it. You say he changed and didn't deal drugs anymore. Great. That still doesn't change the fact that he had committed crimes, been arrested, and he needed to be accountable for what he did. If he hadn't had several warrants for his arrest, why did he try to escape? You don't get a free pass when you quit committing crimes. He was still acting like a criminal. He still had a criminal mind- he didn't want to be held responsible for what he did. IF he had really changed, he would've turned himself in and said "I want to clear this up, I've turned my life around, I'm ready to face what I did."

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