Skip to main content
Press Release

21-year sentence imposed for multiple armed robberies of businesses in the Gainesville and metro-Atlanta areas

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

NEWNAN, Ga. – Ricky Eugene Reid has been sentenced to 21 years in federal prison for the armed robbery of five businesses and the attempted armed robbery of a sixth business.

“Reid’s ten month crime spree terrorized the employees of the businesses he robbed,” said U.S. Attorney Byung J. “BJay” Pak.  “The collective efforts of our federal and local law enforcement partners secured his apprehension, culminating in his convictions and this lengthy prison sentence.”

“Mr. Reid’s sentence is appropriate but it will never erase the fear and anguish felt by his victims,” said Arthur Peralta, Special Agent in Charge of ATF in Atlanta.  “Mr. Reid had no compassion for the people he terrorized and threatened to shoot, as is the case in many robbery cases.  We must come together as a community to promote the idea that crime is not the answer.” 

“This is a prime example of how fluid communication and teamwork can result in success. Our community, our officers, and our investigators displayed outstanding courage and perseverance during critical times of the investigation. The formation of professional relationships between all agencies played a vital role in Reid’s arrest. I am proud of all the collaborative efforts and teamwork involved to make our community a safer place,” said Jay Parrish, Chief of Police, Gainesville Police Department.

“The Gwinnett County Police Department is committed to ensure violent crimes are fully investigated to ensure a successful prosecution. Gwinnett Police detectives worked tirelessly alongside several other jurisdictions to help bring this violent offender to justice.  The collaborative efforts in working with the United States Attorney’s Office, the ATF and other jurisdictions, ensures these violent offenders are taken off the streets so our neighborhoods and communities are safe,” said Maj. Chris Smith, Commander of the Criminal Investigations Section, Gwinnett County Police Department.

“Ricky Reid terrorized numerous victims in multiple jurisdictions across Northeast Georgia. His arrest and criminal convictions are the direct result of the strong relationships we strive to maintain with our community members and law enforcement partners, both locally and federally. This lengthy prison sentence sends a clear message that our community will not tolerate these types of heinous criminal acts,” said Lt. Todd Templeton, Criminal Investigation Division, Oakwood Police Department.

“The arrest, prosecution, and conviction of Reid is an excellent example of leveraging the resources of local and federal law enforcement to remove a truly dangerous individual from society for many years,” said Billy J. Grogan, Chief of Police, Dunwoody Police Department.

According to U.S. Attorney Pak, the charges, and other information presented in court: Between August 26, 2018, and June 7, 2019, Ricky Reid engaged in a crime spree during which he robbed four department stores, a pizza store, and attempted to rob a fifth department store.  While robbing the four department stores, Reid fired a gun multiple times through the front door window, shattering the glass (store employees were in the immediate direction and area of where Reid fired).  Reid pointed a gun at employees during each of the robberies and forced them to empty their cash registers.  During one robbery, he pursued a store manager at gunpoint who was running away with bank bags from the register and told her “stop” or “I’ll shoot.”

Reid was eventually captured on June 7, 2019, as he was preparing to rob a sixth department store in Buford, Georgia.  When law enforcement searched Reid’s vehicle, agents located a firearm inside the vehicle as well as ammunition and black clothing consistent with what Reid wore during his prior armed robberies.  Agents eventually learned that Reid was previously employed at one of the department stores.

Ricky Eugene Reid, 34, of Oakwood, Georgia, was sentenced on June 11, 2020, by U.S. District Judge Richard W. Story to 21 years in prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release, and ordered him to pay restitution in the amount of $16,342.42.  Reid was convicted of these charges on December 4, 2019, after he pled guilty to multiple counts of Hobbs Act robbery and brandishing a firearm during a crime of violence.

Former Assistant U.S. Attorney William McKinnon and Assistant U.S. Attorney Laurel R. Boatright prosecuted this case.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, the Gainesville Police Department, the Gwinnett County Police Department, the Oakwood Police Department, the Dunwoody Police Department and the Johns Creek Police Department investigated this case.

This case was brought as a part of the Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN).  In keeping with the Attorney Generals mission to reduce violent crime, the Northern District of Georgia’s PSN program focuses on prosecuting those individuals who most significantly drive violence in our communities, and supports and fosters partnerships between law enforcement and schools, the faith community, and local community leaders to prevent and deter future criminal conduct.

For further information please contact the U.S. Attorney’s Public Affairs Office at or (404) 581-6016.  The Internet address for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia is

Updated June 18, 2020

Project Safe Neighborhoods