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DeKalb solicitor-general to honor crime victims

DeKalb solicitor-general to honor crime victims

DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. -- DeKalb County Solicitor-General Sherry Boston will honor and remember local crime victims during Crime Victims' Rights Week.

Boston will hold a public event on Tuesday, Apr. 21 from 12:30 p.m. to 1:15 p.m. at the Gazebo on the Square in Decatur. Two crime victims -- Charmagne Helton and Nichole Villafane -- will also be in attendance and will share their stories of survival.

For seven weeks, Helton and her two young children lived in a shelter after escaping their abusive husband and father.

"Being a victim of violence is a horrible thing, but it isn't the end of the story," Helton said. "With the right support, victims can become victors."

Villafane's 21-year-old son, Xavier "X" Arnold, was fatally shot during an attempted robbery. X, who attended the Savannah College of Art and Design, was taking photographs of graffiti on Kirkwood warehouses when he was killed. The suspect was only 14 years old.

Ex-DeKalb official pleads guilty to fraud

Ex-DeKalb official pleads guilty to fraud

ATLANTA -- A former janitorial services manager has pleaded guilty in federal court to accepting bribes in exchange for government contracts.

Patrick Jackson, 56, of Loganville was indicted last September. He was investigated by both the FBI and GBI.

Jackson worked simultaneously for two government entities -- DeKalb County and Atlanta's Georgia World Congress Center -- between 2006 and 2012. Before then, he worked for a company referred to in the indictment as Company A.

According to information presented in court, Jackson used his position and influence to secure government contracts for Company A with both DeKalb County and the GWCC. He also lived in a luxury Atlanta apartment paid for and furnished by Company A. Jackson did not tell his employers about each other or about his ties to Company A.

Victim whose car was used in fatal police chase talks

Victim whose car was used in fatal police chase talks

DUNWOODY, Ga -- The victim whose carjacked car was used in a burglary and police chase said he was almost killed by the suspect. Anthony Stokes, 17, of Decatur was killed while driving the stolen car when he slammed the vehicle into a metal pole.

It ended a crime spree that started at Perimeter Mall in Dunwoody Tuesday afternoon. Shortly after 2PM Quintin Malone was walking to his car, a 1996 Honda Accord, which was parked in the lower level of the mall. Malone works at the mall.

What happened next started a chain of events that changed not only Malone's life, but at least three others. Malone said he was confronted by Stokes as he got into his car. "Once I tried to get into the car he came out of nowhere and slammed my head against the car door and threw me down," Malone said.

Man imprisoned for $100M surety bond fraud

Man imprisoned for $100M surety bond fraud

ATLANTA -- An Orange Park, Fla., man was sentenced to time in federal prison for operating a multimillion dollar surety bond fraud scheme.

DeKalb County and the city of McDonough received some of Eric Campbell's false bonds for construction projects.

"Mr. Campbell orchestrated a scheme whereby he defrauded numerous individuals, businesses, and state and local government of money based on false representations and promises," Veronica Hyman-Pillot, Special Agent in Charge with IRS Criminal Investigation, said in a release.

From August 2012 to July 2013, Campbell used a number of corporations to sell the bonds. He convinced contractors and government agencies to work with him by saying he had the authority to execute or issue surety bonds on behalf of affiliates of insurance company Chubb. Prosecutors said Campbell embossed the fake bonds with counterfeit seals and forged Chubb officials' signatures on them.

Ex-Dunwoody cop convicted of kickbacks scheme

Ex-Dunwoody cop convicted of kickbacks scheme

DUNWOODY, Ga. -- A former Dunwoody Police detective has pleaded guilty to sharing confidential information in exchange for plane tickets, cars and other benefits.

Robert Pasquale Bentivegna, 64, of Woodstock was convicted of computer fraud. He will be sentenced June 1.

Federal prosecutors said Bentivegna searched the Georgia Crime Information Center (GCIC) for active arrest warrants for an informant connected to several illegal activities. In exchange, he received kickbacks, including airline tickets so he and his wife could travel to New York, and cars for his son and daughter.

The GCIC contains information that could allow criminals to flee before they can be arrested, according to Acting U.S. Attorney John Horn.

"Bentivegna's conduct undermines trust in law enforcement and could have exposed the public to significant harm," Horn said in a statement.

Dunwoody bank robbed at gunpoint

Dunwoody bank robbed at gunpoint

DUNWOODY, Ga. -- Dunwoody Police are investigating an armed robbery at the Fidelity Bank at 135 Perimeter Center West.

It happened Thursday, Feb. 5 at around 1 p.m. Surveillance video showed a man enter the bank and demand money from a teller. He was armed with a handgun.

Police described the suspect as a white man wearing a brown baseball cap, red hooded sweatshirt and jeans. He ran after receiving cash.

Anyone with information in this case is asked to call Dunwoody Police at 678-382-6934.

Personal Safety Tips

Personal Safety Tips

By Greg Norred, CEO, Norred & Associates

Over the course of your life, the chances of being the victim of a crime are at least one in three, higher if you live in a large city, and higher still if you’re a woman. The criminal’s objective is to maximize gain and minimize risk, and he’ll usually pick the easiest target with the most to offer. Given these odds, it pays to take precautions by following some basic safety rules: