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MARTA rider robbed, assaulted by men posing as panhandlers

A man told Decatur police he was assaulted and robbed by two men who asked him for change and wouldn’t take no for an answer outside a MARTA station.

The victim was exiting the train tunnel onto Swanton Way when the men approached at about 1:55 a.m. Monday, police said. After declining their request, he went toward the downtown square to wait for a friend.

The men, who officers are searching for, followed and one of them told him to “give it up,” police said.

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“One of the males positioned himself in front of the victim and struck him in the right side of his face with a closed fist as the victim tried to run from the suspects,” police said in a news release. “One of the suspects made a gesture with his hand inside of his coat pocket making it appear as though he had a firearm in his pocket.”

The second man then removed $4 and a MARTA Breeze card from the victim’s front pocket.

The men told him to run, which he did before calling 911.

Decatur police are investigating, rather than MARTA cops, because the crime took place off MARTA property.

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