Man gets 20 years for title-loan robberies

A Douglasville man received a 20-year federal prison sentence for robberies of four title-loan stores in Rockdale and Cobb counties in 2014.

Avery Frazier, 49, pleaded guilty to robbing a Georgia Auto Pawn in Conyers, a Title Bucks in Conyers and two Title Max locations in Smyrna, U.S. attorney John Horn said Friday. Frazier used a gun in all of the robberies, and in two of the robberies he forced employees into a back room of the location.

“Frazier repeatedly traumatized hard-working people at gunpoint,” Horn said.

From 2013 to 2014, 34 robberies of title-loan stores occurred in several metro Atlanta areas, Horn said. In each case, the robber had a similar method of operation. The robber would wear a mask, enter a store brandishing a firearm, then demand cash. He would then force employees to move to the rear of the store, and sometimes threatened the employees, Horn said.

In early 2014, believing that the robberies were by the same person, officers from several metro police departments formed a task force and began working with the FBI, Horn said.

On Oct. 30, 2014, a Conyers police officer, responding to a call for assistance at a different location, got Frazier’s license plate as Frazier fled the robbery scene at the Title Bucks store, Horn said. Frazier was identified as that suspect and was arrested in November 2014.

During the time frame of the robberies, Frazier was a serious gambler at a North Carolina casino, according to the investigation, buying tens of thousands of dollars of casino chips, Horn said. The investigation also showed that since Frazier’s arrest, there have been no robberies of title-loan stores in Atlanta that followed the same method of operation, Horn said.

Frazier’s prison term is to be followed by three years of supervised release and paying restitution of $14,218.