Lafayette, GA (WDEF) – On Sunday, January 31, 2016 the Chattooga County Sheriff’s Office received a
citizen tip regarding the armed robberies that had been occurring throughout the northwest Georgia area.
A subsequent follow up of that information resulted in Chattooga County law enforcement going to the Carousel Inn located in Trion. Based on the seriousness of the crimes, the motel guests were evacuated and the suspect room was placed under surveillance. A short time later, a search warrant was obtained for the room. After unsuccessful attempts to contact the occupants of the room, entry was made. As a result of the search, Officers placed the occupants under arrest for possession of methamphetamine.
A further search of the room resulted in items being located that, we believe, are associated with several of the armed robberies that have occurred in Chattooga, Walker, Floyd and Whitfield counties, according to Chattooga County Sheriff Mark Schrader. Investigators are working together to examine and evaluate the items that were recovered from the room. There was a firearm located in the room which fits the description of the firearm used in several of the armed robberies. It appeared that during the time deputies were waiting for the search warrant, the occupants attempted to burrow their way from one room to another. Their attempt, however was thwarted by a block wall.
The Walker County Sheriff’s Office has charged James Tyrone Carmichael, age 42, of Rome Georgia with one count of armed robbery for the Saturday afternoon January 30, 2016 armed robbery of Steve’s Quick Stop, 1516 S. Chattanooga Street, Lafayette, Georgia. He is being held in the Chattooga County Jail. Carmichael was released on from the Georgia Department of Corrections January 21, 2016 for convictions of prior armed robbery.
Also charged in connection with the Steve’s Quick Stop armed robbery is Jake Lee Skuse, age 26, of Leesburg, Alabama. Skuse has been charged with one count of armed robbery and is also being held in the Chattooga County Jail.
Det. Sgt. Pepper Stanfield, Walker County Sheriff’s Office, advises that the investigation is continuing and additional arrests are pending.
Sheriff Steve Wilson would like to thank the Chattooga County Sheriff’s Office, the Summerville Police Department and Georgia Bureau of Investigation for their assistance in this investigation.