Cops: 6 weekend holdups near UGA campus believed to be connected

Six holdups that are believed to be connected happened this weekend near the UGA campus.
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Six holdups that are believed to be connected happened this weekend near the UGA campus.

Some University of Georgia students became victims of a string of armed robberies and attempted armed robberies that happened during the busy football weekend in Athens, police said.

The six holdups occurred within miles of each other near downtown and all between midnight and 1 a.m. Saturday and midnight and 1 a.m. Sunday, Athens-Clarke County police spokesman Lt. Shaun Barnett said Monday. Due to the similarity between the crimes, Barnett said police believe they were all committed by the same suspects, but they are still exploring all possibilities. Some, but not all, of the victims were students.

The three incidents early Saturday all involved two men threatening victims with guns and demanding valuables, Barnett said.

At around midnight, two victims were approached by two robbers in the 300 block of Pope Street, Barnett said. The suspects stole an undisclosed amount of cash from the victims at gunpoint, he added.

Thirty minutes later and on the other side of downtown, three victims were approached by two men in the area of Second Street and Martin Luther King Jr. Parkway, Barnett said. They demanded the victims hand over money at gunpoint, he said.

Ten minutes later, and less than a mile away, two victims were approached by two men in the 300 block of Willow Street, Barnett said. The victims were told to hand over money, but nothing was stolen during the encounter, he said.

The following day, three other holdups occurred within the same area. This time, only one suspect was involved, Barnett said. Police believe the Sunday crimes were committed by one of the men who was involved the day before.

Around 12:30 a.m., a victim was approached by a man holding a gun in the area of Vine and Hillside streets, Barnett said. Nothing was stolen during the incident even though the victim was told to hand over money.

Twenty minutes later, two victims were approached by a man holding a gun in the area of Fourth Street and Bonnie Lane, Barnett said. The suspect demanded money from the victims, but nothing was stolen.

Ten minutes later, a victim was approached by a man holding a gun in the area of Baxter and Finley streets, Barnett said. He demanded money, but again nothing was stolen during the incident.

Barnett said there were several reasons why nothing was stolen in some of the encounters: some of the victims immediately ran away, while others had nothing of value to the robbers.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Lt. David Norris at 762-400-7165 or email at david.norris@accgov.com. Anonymous tips can be made by calling Crime Stoppers at 706-705-4775. Crime Stoppers is offering up to a $1,000 reward for information leading to an arrest.

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