Two of five men accused of killing a store owner during a robbery Wednesday are now in custody, Villa Rica police said.
But it is still hard for investigators and residents of a small town to make sense of a senseless crime.
Mitch Mobley, 45, died inside the jewelry store that bears his name, according to Capt. Keith Shaddix with Villa Rica police. Investigators believe Mobley was shot when he confronted four men who entered his store around 12:30 p.m., Shaddix said.
One of the suspects had a large hammer, used to smash a glass display case. Another suspect, 16-year-old Eric Billings of College Park, had a gun, according to police.
Shots were fired, killing Mobley. And the four alleged robbers ran, with three of them getting into a “getaway” vehicle, possibly driven by a fifth suspect, Shaddix said.
Billings, who is suspected of being the shooter, tried to run but was taken into custody, thanks to another nearby business owner. Ururahy Rodrigues, a professional mixed martial artist, owns a gym next to the Mobley Jewelry Co. and held Billings until police arrived, Channel 2 Action News reported.
Billings has been charged as an adult with murder, armed robbery and possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime, Shaddix said. He was denied bond Thursday and was being held at a youth detention center, according to the Douglas County Sentinel.
Early Thursday, a second suspect was arrested near Stone Mountain, police said. Raphael Rucker, 23, of Atlanta was charged with murder and armed robbery. Rucker was being held Thursday night in the Carroll County jail.
Throughout the day Thursday, many in the small town created a memorial for Mobley outside his store. Many customers remembered the man known for his helpful and kind approach to others. Mobley was also known for hosting golf tournaments to benefit causes such as cancer research.
“It’s a shock for all of us to see a man that everyone in this county knows and then someone takes his life like that,” Neil Grimes, a customer, told Channel 2. “He was just well-known in this community and he did a lot for this community.”
Various agencies are assisting Villa Rica police, including the Carroll County Sheriff’s Office, Carrollton police, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the FBI Safe Street Gang Task Force, and the Southeastern Regional Fugitive Task Force, Shaddix said.
Support real journalism. Support local journalism. Subscribe to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution today. See offers.
Your subscription to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution funds in-depth reporting and investigations that keep you informed. Thank you for supporting real journalism.
Download the new AJC app. More local news, more breaking news and in-depth journalism. AJC.com. Atlanta. News. Now.
Download the new AJC app. More local news, more breaking news and in-depth journalism.