Criminal charges were filed against Terresha Lucas, a 30-year-old Black woman
In an unexpected turn of events, this week authorities in Georgia revealed they believe a Black woman is behind the “racially charged” notes that have been terrorizing her neighborhood.
Since last December, a Douglasville, Georgia neighborhood has been gripped in fear due to racially charged messages that have anonymously been left in the mailboxes of residents of color, reports Fox News. But now officials say police said they have made an arrest and the alleged culprit is not who anyone would have expected.
Wednesday, the Douglasville Police Department confirmed that they had filed criminal charges against Terresha Lucas. Lucas is a 30-year-old Black woman who they believe threatened people in her community while posing as a Ku Klux Klan member.
In the notes, threats were made to burn down homes and kill their occupants. The author of these disturbing messages also made it a point to describe themselves as “a six-feet-tall white male with a long, red beard who did not live in the neighborhood.”
After the initial messages in December, more messages popped back up in the spring.
“By mid-March, we really didn’t have anything to go on,” explained Detectives Nathan Shumaker who spent months going door-to-door while investigating the case.
After six months of inactivity, the final messages started back up in September. At that point, it appeared the investigation had hit a dead end until Labor Day when investigators discovered evidence that linked the letters to Lucas.
These days technology often helps police catch suspects, but in this case, it was actually old-school detective work that led to a breakthrough.
“Our investigators had the drive to stick with this case and see it all to the end,” said Police Chief Dr. Gary Sparks. “That’s what we’re all about and this reflects the professionalism and integrity of the department”.
“They stayed with it and put in a lot of hours. Even when some people went to the media, which could have hampered our investigation, we still stuck with it to the end,” the chief added.
Not only did Shumaker and Futch get to know the residents personally by checking doorbell cameras and handing out flyers, but they also visited residents and had conversations about the community as a whole.
The detectives were able to determine the letters being sent all had similar handwriting, tone, verbiage, and other consistencies that suggested they were all written by one person.
And the evidence they acquired on Labor Day was so strong that shortly thereafter the investigators managed to obtain a search warrant. Then, during a search of Lucas’ home, detectives reportedly found even more evidence connecting the woman to the incidents.
Lucas was charged with eight counts of making terroristic threats and is expected to turn herself into jail this week. The motives for her actions remain a mystery.
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