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Cops kill Georgia grandpa in no-knock raid triggered by burglary suspect’s tip

  1. Rob Cypher
    When Teresa Hooks looked outside the craft room window of her Georgia home one night last week, she saw hooded figures wearing camouflage standing outside.

    The East Dublin woman woke up her husband, David Hooks, who grabbed his shotgun, believing burglars who had recently targeted the couple had come back again, reported WMAZ-TV.

    The sheriff’s deputies burst through the back door about 11 p.m. on Sept. 24 and, seeing David Hooks holding the weapon, fired 16 shots – killing the 59-year-old grandfather.

    Authorities said Hooks met deputies at the door and pointed his weapon aggressively at officers as they announced themselves.

    But Teresa Hooks said the officers did not knock and never identified themselves as law enforcement, and her attorney said David Hooks was killed behind a wall in the home — not at the door.

    Deputies were executing a search warrant as part of a drug investigation based on a tip from one of the burglars accused of stealing a vehicle from Hooks.

    The night before the raid, the search warrant stated, Rodney Garrett told investigators he stole a plastic bag from a pickup parked outside the Hooks home, believing it contained cash.

    He also stole firearms and a set of digital scales, investigators said.

    Garrett then stole a Lincoln Aviator from the Hooks home and drove the SUV to Dublin, investigators said, where he discovered the bag contained methamphetamine – not money.

    The man told police he “became scared for his safety” and turned himself in to authorities, the TV station reported.

    Garrett has since been arrested on burglary, theft of a motor vehicle, and other charges.

    An attorney for Teresa Hooks said the burglary suspect’s claims shouldn’t have been enough to justify a search warrant, and he noted that no drugs or other illegal items were found at the couple’s home.

    He also questioned the wisdom of serving search warrants to late at night.

    “That search of some 44 hours conducted by numerous agents of the (Georgia Bureau of Investigation) resulted in not one item of contraband being found,” said attorney Mitchell Shook. “He was not a drug user or a drug dealer.”

    A detective noted in the warrant application that he knew Hooks and his home address from a previous investigation, claiming a suspect told authorities that he supplied meth to Hooks for resale.

    Shook said that case was investigated in 2009, but neither the attorney nor sheriff’s deputies have said whether Hooks was charged.

    Hooks owned a construction company that worked on military bases, Shook said, which required background check clearance by state and federal authorities – including the Department of Homeland Security and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms.

    “This is not a person who needs to be involved in criminal activity for financial gain,” Shook said. “He did very well financially.”

    The slain man’s family has asked Sheriff Bill Harrell to suspend all the deputies who took part in the raid until the shooting death has been investigated.

    Travis Gettys
    Raw Story
    October 3, 2014



  1. SmokeTwibz
    Attorney: Hooks shot in the back and head during raid
    David Hooks was shot in the back and head as he was lying face down on the floor during a drug raid by Laurens County deputies.

    That's according to the lawyer representing his family.

    It's been nearly four months since David Hooks was shot to death during a drug raid at his East Dublin home.

    13WMAZ's Paula Rotondo spoke to his wife, Teresa Hooks and the family's lawyer, Mitchell Shook.

    Hooks died Sept. 24 while deputies served a search warrant at his home.

    They were looking for drugs, but didn't find any.

    Shook, who is representing his family, says the raid was illegal and has asked the FBI to investigate.

    He says officers were looking for drugs in the home, but didn't find any. Shook says the officers fired 17 shots inside the home and struck Hooks.

    He says Hooks had four wounds, two of which he says are very problematic. Shook says that's according to the Laurens County EMS records. He says the same information is found in the medical records from Fairview Park Hospital.

    "One was to the side of the head, the other, was in his back, the back of his left shoulder, based on the evidence we see, we believe that David Hooks was face down on the ground when he received those last two shots," says Shook.

    Shook says they have not received the autopsy yet from the GBI.

    Teresa Hooks, David's wife, remembers the night clearly.

    She says, "Between 10:30 and 11, I turned the light off upstairs. I heard a car coming up the driveway really fast, and I looked up the upstairs window. I saw a black vehicle with no lights. I saw 6 to 8 men, coming around the side of my house, and I panicked. I came running downstairs, yelling for David to wake up. He was in the bedroom asleep, had been for about an hour and a half. When I got downstairs to the bottom of the stairs, he opened the door and he had a gun in his hand, and he said, 'Who is it?,' and I said I didn't know. He stepped back into the bedroom like he was going to grab his pants, but before he could do that, the door was busted down. He came around me, in the hall, into the den, and I was gonna come behind him, but before I could step into the den the shots were fired, and it was over."

    She says, "Initially, I thought that I was going to die, I thought I was going to be shot, I thought a gang had broke in, and up until I heard the radios the dispatch radios, I had no idea."

    Hooks says she sat outside in handcuffs for two hours after her husband was shot to death.

    She says during that time, she had to watch her husband on a stretcher without a word from officers about what was going on.

    Hooks says she appreciates all of the support from the community.

    She says, "Our community has supported us for the most part and we really appreciate that. I think there's been a misconception of us being anti law enforcement, that's not true, we realize there has to be law enforcement and we respect law enforcement but this was wrong."

    Shook says, "We hope that the district attorney will take all of this into consideration and take this case before the grand jury and do it in a matter where the grand jury hears everything, not just the officer side of the story."

    County Sheriff Bill Harrell has declined comment on the raid since turning the investigation over to the GBI.

    In September, authorities say Hooks responded to the search by getting a weapon before he was shot. But according to the return search warrant, the shotgun Hooks had in his hands had no ammunition.

    A GBI spokeswoman says they are still awaiting lab results before completing their investigation.

    Then the case will be turned over District Attorney Craig Fraser for possible prosecution.

    Friends and supporters of David Hooks plan a rally to protest his killing. It's scheduled for 2 PM Saturday, at the Laurens County courthouse.

    December 11, 2014
    Paula Rotondo | 13WMAZ Macon News
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