Apr. 3—ALBANY — An assault charge against a man accused of shooting at Albany police officers and a street gang-related case were among the 62 indictments recently handed down by a Dougherty County Grand Jury.
Sexual crimes also featured heavily on the docket, with at least 12 of the cases involving rape or child molestation cases as the court system is moving cases forward after the relaxation of restrictions related to COVID-19.
"It's a start," Dougherty County District Attorney Greg Edwards said of moving on the backlog of cases. "It's a mountain; we have to move it a shovel at a time. But we're moving it."
Prior to being given the OK to empanel a grand jury, prosecutors had filed as many charges as possible through criminal accusations. Those involve cases such as thefts and drugs that do not require indictments by grand jurors.
There were no homicide cases on the docket for the grand jury session in late March, but two men were indicted on gang-related charges that involved assaults with firearms.
In one of those cases, Adonis Demond Warren also is charged with violation of the state racketeer-influenced and corrupt organizations (RICO) Act.
In seeking to link Warren to a pattern of criminal acts committed in furtherance of alleged gang activity, prosecutors laid out a lengthy list of prior crimes for which Warren is accused or been convicted dating back more than a decade.
Those include a burglary in 2009 and an arson related to an attempt later that year to set fire to equipment in an interview room at the Albany Police Department with a cigarette lighter; three assaults against individuals with a firearm; two incidents involving obstruction of a police office, and two charges of possession of a prescription drug with intent to distribute.
"In a racketeering (case) you put all the acts he allegedly committed, his convictions, to show a pattern of criminal activity," Edwards said.
Warren is accused of committing prior crimes and the others contained in the recent 17-count indictment in furthering his involvement with the 93rd Gangster Blood gang.
A second defendant, Vontravious Rakim Jones, is named in the other 16 counts of the indictment, including several charges alleging street gang participation. He is not charged with a RICO Act violation.
"The Blood gang and its subsets predominantly inhabit the south side of Albany, mostly south of Oakridge Drive," Edwards said. "That's Blood territory, where most of them actually reside. They've been around for years."
Most of the indictment against Warren and Jones involves allegations that they fired shots at three people because they believed they were affiliated with another street gang, Edwards said. According to the indictment, shots were fired at two women, Julia McCoy and Diamond McCoy, and Riley McCoy, a juvenile.
None of the three victims was wounded in the attack, Edwards said.
The counts in the indictment include charges of aggravated assault, violation of the street gang act and possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime.
In another case heard in March, grand jurors indicted Alfred Lavon Hadley on counts of aggravated assault on a peace officer, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony.
Hadley was one of three men riding in a car on which officers made a traffic stop on March 25, 2020. All three ran from the car, and Hadley is accused of firing shots at police while they were pursuing him.
Hadley was struck by a bullet when an Albany officer returned fire.
In another indictment, four men thought to be part of a group that has committed crimes in several Georgia cities were charged in a May 21, 2019, carjacking. The group is thought to be involved in robberies in cities including Columbus and Macon, Edwards said.
"They only hit us in Dougherty County one time, but they had apparently been doing this around the state," he said.
The four are accused of assaulting Lenorris Lewis with firearms at the time his GMC Yukon was stolen.
Naterrious Connard Lewis, Ryheem Jamelvin Bishop, Earl John Acree and Jamie Lee Whiters each was indicted on counts of armed robbery, aggravated assault, hijacking a motor vehicle, possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony and theft by receiving stolen property.