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Possible suspect arrested in Fort Valley rapes, break-ins | News

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Possible suspect arrested in Fort Valley rapes, break-ins
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UPDATE, 5/17/15 6 p.m.:

Fort Valley's police chief says they've arrested a possible suspect in a series of recent break-ins and rapes.

That's according to a news release posted to Facebook Sunday morning.

Chief Lawrence Spurgeon said the man was arrested outside a home on Persons Street around midnight, after a call about a suspicious person outside a home.

Lasha Gibson says after coming home from dinner with her boyfriend late Saturday night, she saw a suspicious person walking around her apartment complex.

"We saw a guy coming around the bushes, and I told my boyfriend, I said, 'Look, you see him?' So we just sat there and observed and just to see what he was gonna do," said Gibson.

Gibson says the man was pacing back and forth between her home on Persons Street and the woods.

"As he was coming out, he was taking off gloves and he took something off his face," she said. "And so he came up, he walked right up the sidewalk, and went back around the apartment building."

Gibson says that's when she knew something wasn't right and called police.

Fort Valley Police Chief Lawrence Spurgeon says when officers arrived, they arrested 26-year-old Darrell Ross.

"He was really nervous, he was like shaking, I saw his hands kept shaking," said Gibson.

Spurgeon says Ross fits the description of a man who broke into several homes in the past two months, raped two women, and assaulted at least one other.

Ross has not been charged with those crimes, but he is facing several other charges, including criminal trespass and having a gun while committing a crime.

Peach County Sheriff Terry Deese says Ross is the only suspect in the recent string of break-ins and rapes.

"He's stepped to the front of the line as a suspect," Deese said. "Now it's just a matter of evaluating the evidence we've got. We still have a lot of work to do."

Gibson says even though he hasn't been charged, police told her they think he's the one and she agrees.

"He's off the street," she said. "These people can sleep calm now, they don't have to be scared to go to sleep, they don't have to sleep with something beside their bed. They don't have to sleep with something up under their pillow."

Chief Spurgeon says Ross is charged with criminal trespass, prowling, possessing a gun while committing a crime and possessing tools while committing a crime.

Spurgeon says Ross is being held without bond in the Peach County Jail on a probation violation from a previous, unrelated burglary charge.

GBI special agent in charge, J.T. Ricketson, says agents received a search warrant for Ross's home and have been searching through the night.

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Fort Valley's police chief says they've arrested a possible suspect in a series of recent break-ins and rapes.

That's according to a news release posted to Facebook this morning.

Chief Lawrence Spurgeon said the man was arrested outside a home on Persons Street around midnight, after a call about a suspicious person outside a home.

He says they found Darrell Ross, age 26, outside the home.

Spurgeon says Ross fits the description of a man who broke into several homes in the past two months, raped two women, and assaulted at least one other.

So far, the chief says, Ross is charged only with criminal trespass, prowling, possessing a gun while committing a crime and possessing tools while committing a crime.

But Spurgeon wrote that they're investigating charges against Ross in several previous cases. He wrote that Ross fits the description given by several victims.

He's being held without bond in the Peach County jail on a probation violation from a previous, unrelated burglary charge, according to the chief.

GBI special agent in charge J.T. Ricketson says agents received a search warrant for Ross's home and have been searching through the night.

Here is the Fort Valley Department of Public Safety News release.

The Fort Valley Police Department was dispatched to a criminal trespass call that occurred at 211 Person Street inside the city limits of Fort Valley. On 05172015 sometime around 1200 am the home owner contacted authorities in reference to an unknown male being outside his window and in his back yard. The suspect was described as a black male 506- 510 in height, between 20-30 yoa, weighing betwee
n 130 lbs -150lbs ,wearing dark clothing. The suspect fit the same general description as in the previous burglaries and sexual assaults that have occurred inside Peach County in recent weeks. Officers arrived on scene and arrested Darrell Ross of Fort Valley ,Ga (age 25). Agents from the GBI responded and processed the crime scene while additional units continued searching the surrounding area. The Fort Valley Police Department was also assisted in the initial investigation by units from The Peach County Sheriff Department .

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