Butler County suspect jailed for Lowndes County armed robbery
Published 11:13 pm Tuesday, April 25, 2023
A Bibb County man is safe at home, and his Butler County aggressor is jailed, following a terrifying night the victim told lawmen he lived through in Lowndes County.
Lowndes County Sheriff’s Investigator Charles McKinnon said that on April 10, a Bibb County teenager drove to Butler County believing he would meet a woman whom he had been contacting on social media.
In a press release, the Lowndes County Sheriff’s Office stated that Roger Johnson, 19, drove to Greenville where he had been told on Facebook to pick up the woman’s male cousin. Investigators allege that person was 20-year-old Deuntay Latrell Simpson.
Johnson told investigators he drove for 30 minutes after picking up the man, and then, Simpson allegedly told him to pull over.
“The suspect convinced the victim to drive to a remote area in Lowndes County where he robbed him (the victim) at gunpoint taking the victim’s wallet, cash, credit cards, phone, and vehicle leaving the victim on the side of a road at 2:30 in the morning,” said McKinnon.
Deputies responded to a call on U.S. Highway 31 in the Logan area where they made contact with Johnson.
“I call it ‘catfishing’ that turned into an armed robbery,” McKinnon said. “The victim was supposed to meet a girl, but the girl never existed.”
Mckinnon and Investigator Anthony Green worked with the Butler County Sheriff’s Department re-tracing the route that the victim remembered on the night he was robbed.
“The offender, Simpson, was interviewed, and a confession was made by Simpson about the armed robbery. Simpson is currently in the Lowndes County Detention facility on a $50,000.00 bond charged with robbery first degree, a Class A felony,” according to the press release. District Attorney Charlotte Tesmer said that a class A felony comes with a 10- year minimum sentence and up to 99 years or life, but with a deadly weapon, it carries a minimum sentence of 20 years.
McKinnon said unfortunately this type of crime is not uncommon.
“We see them all the time, but we are not always able to solve them because the victims don’t know who they are talking to online,” he said. “The victims don’t know the area, so they can’t take us to where the robbers take them. The suspects usually don’t harm their victims. They rob them and leave them with nothing, standing on the side of a road.”
The Lowndes Sheriff’s Department urges residents to use caution when engaging in conversations with unknown persons on social media platforms.
“Just be aware. Be very careful. You don’t always know who you are talking to, and it may not be who you think it is,” said McKinnon.
Green urged caution when meeting strangers in person.
“When you are going to meet a stranger, probably the best thing to do is meet them someplace public,” Green cautioned. “If they are going to introduce another person who is completely unknown, I would question that, because a person wouldn’t want to meet two people he didn’t know.”
Green said that if a person gets a feeling that something isn’t right, he or she should trust that feeling.
“Remember the old saying, if it is too good to be true, it’s probably not true,” Green said.