His nickname is “Jaygood,” but William Jeff Goodman’s rap sheet is anything but good. He’s served twice in state prison, spending more than three years behind bars for burglary, robbery and theft.
Now, the 24-year-old is one of several gang members accused of stabbing, kicking and beating a Canton man after allegedly breaking into his pickup truck, according to a Cherokee County indictment. Goodman and his accomplices are members of the Ghost Face Gangsters, a prison-based gang that has been in Georgia nearly 20 years.
The gang extends beyond prison walls. In recent weeks, at least 3 incidents have been connected to suspected members of the gang, including a deadly prison break in June that left 2 corrections officers dead.
The Georgia Department of Corrections declined to discuss the gang, and the GBI doesn’t have a gang unit devoted to monitoring their activity.
“Our agency does not provide specific or internal details about gangs within our system,” a spokeswoman for the Georgia Department of Corrections said in an email to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “We are aware that we have gangs within our system and we have procedures in place to manage them on a day to day basis.”
According to the Anti-Defamation League, there are at least 100 white supremacist prison gangs operating in the U.S., and Georgia is home to at least three, including the Ghost Face Gangsters. The group originated in California in the 1970s, according to the ADL, but an original founding member started the Georgia group in 1998.
“The growth and spread of these white supremacist gangs has become one of the United States’ most serious — but least talked about—white supremacist problems,” the ADL states in a 24-page report on this segment of gangs.
Though only some members of the group are white supremacists, the main mission seems to be crime, according to local law enforcement agencies.
Georgia mysteries: A “cold case” is a criminal investigation where all leads have been exhausted and the case remains unsolved. Cold cases are sometimes solved because someone had the courage to come forward and provide a new detail to investigators. To read more about Georgia’s unsolved homicides and missing person cases go to myAJC.com/coldcases.
On Dec. 12, a Cherokee County grand jury indicted Goodman and five other suspected Ghost Face gang members in a March assault on a man Cherokee County Sheriff’s officials described as a former gang member. Other suspects include: Houston Halton Garner III, 29, also known as “Beau;” Heather Grace Rodgers, 20, also known as “Lil Trouble;” Michael Lloyd Gravely, 26; Corey James Ray, 34, also known as “Skinny;”and Frankie Cain Gilley, 22.
All six are charged with violating the Street Gang Terrorism and Prevention Act and simple assault. Goodman and Rodgers were also charged with aggravated assault.
Rodgers, who was also indicted on charges of criminal trespassing and entering an automobile, was released Nov. 14 on a $15,000 bond and booked into the Cobb County jail, where she had an active warrant for failing to appear in court, records show. Goodman, Garner, Gravely, Ray and Gilley remained Wednesday in the Cherokee jail, where they were being held without bond.
In addition to Goodman, at least one of the other suspects is also a convicted felon, according to the state DOC. From 2014 through 2016, Gilley served two sentences after his convictions in Douglas County for theft by taking, burglary and simple battery, records showed. Additionally, the victim of the assault was a former gang member who also served time in state prison.
In a separate incident, a Ghost Face member allegedly fired three shots at a Cobb County police officer early Tuesday. The heavily-tattooed Kevin Scott Sosebee, 27, who has “Ghost Face” inked across his forehead, was later found in Carroll County after leading police on a chase. Sosebee was charged with aggravated assault and possession of a firearm and was being held without bond late Wednesday at the Cobb County jail.
Sosebee is also a convicted felon, serving in state prison from November 2013 to April 2016 for a burglary and forgery conviction in Cobb County, records showed.
In June, another Ghost Face member allegedly shot and killed two correctional officers, according to police.
While on a state prison bus, two Georgia inmates killed the officers before fleeing, launching a massive manhunt that lasted 60 hours, according to investigators. Sgt. Christopher Monica, 42, and Sgt. Curtis Billue, 58, both died in Putnam County.
The alleged killers, Ricky Dubose and Donnie Russell Rowe, traveled from Putnam County to Tennessee, where both were arrested. Rowe is from Lewisburg, Tenn., about 20 miles from where he was located. Dubose is believed to be a member of the Ghost Face Gangsters. Dubose and Rowe each could get the death penalty if convicted.
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