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Press Release

Final Two Defendants Sentenced For 2013 Burglary Of Macon Bass Pro Shops

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Middle District of Georgia

United States Attorney G. F. “Pete” Peterman, III, announces that the final two of the four defendants who broke into the Macon Bass Pro Shops in 2013 have been sentenced. On April 12, 2017, Kenneth Atwater, 35, of McDonough, Georgia, was sentenced to serve 45 months in prison and Jabari Walters, 24, of East Point, Georgia, was sentenced to serve 48 months in prison. On March 14, 2017, Dante Thomas, 32, of Atlanta, Georgia, was sentenced to 60 months in prison, to run consecutive to an unrelated state sentence. On March 17, 2017, Tabari Walters, 24, of East Point, Georgia was sentenced to 33 months in prison. All defendants were also ordered to jointly and severally pay $14,619.83 in restitution to Bass Pro Shops. The Honorable Judge Marc T. Treadwell handed down the sentences in Macon.

All four men previously entered guilty pleas to conspiracy to commit theft from a federal firearms licensee. Through their pleas, the men admitted that on September 29, 2013, after discussing the idea of stealing firearms, they drove to the Bass Pro Shops in Macon, Georgia and parked along the side of Interstate 75 northbound, in the proximity of the Bass Pro Shops. All four men then ran up the hill and approached the Bass Pro Shops on foot near the glass window where boats are displayed. At approximately 11:49 p.m., Mr. Thomas broke and cleared the glass from the window of an emergency door using a yellow crowbar to gain access.

All four men then entered the store and ran to the firearms section where they broke the bar holding the rifles. In total, the men stole 17 firearms. They then left the store through the same door they through which they had entered and returned to Mr. Thomas’ vehicle. Mr. Thomas drove all four men back to the Atlanta area. Upon arriving in Atlanta, each of the four defendants retained possession of the firearms he personally had taken from the Bass Pro Shops.

Agents later obtained a search warrant for Mr. Thomas’ residence, where they found a yellow crowbar that matched the one used to break into the Bass Pro Shops. Agents also obtained records from Thomas’ cell phone which revealed that his cell phone pinged off cell phone towers in the vicinity of the Bass Pro Shops around the time of the burglary.

This case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives. Assistant United States Attorney Beth Howard is handling the prosecution for the Government.

Questions concerning this case should be directed to Pamela Lightsey, United States Attorney’s Office, at (478) 621-2603.

Updated April 13, 2017

Topics
Firearms Offenses
Violent Crime