Word is starting to make the Internet rounds that Atlanta police have arrested a suspect in the alleged sexual assault that took place earlier this month during Dragon Con. You might remember that police circulated a picture of the suspect in hopes of identifying him. According to Fulton County jail records, Gary Jefferson Hood was arrested yesterday (Thursday) and booked on charges of Aggravated Sexual Battery and Misdemeanor Sexual Battery.
Atlanta Police Spokesperson Warren Pickard would only say:
We can confirm an arrest.
Hood remains in jail Friday, waiting to appear sometime later today before the magistrate judge. The AJC (Atlanta Journal Constitution) had this description from the police arrest report:
According to an Atlanta police incident report, the woman told officers she consumed one alcoholic drink Saturday afternoon that her husband mixed for her. At some point, she left the couple’s hotel room and went to the Hyatt Regency Hotel for a Dragon Con panel discussion.
“While at the panel, the victim began to feel hot, dizzy and confused,” police said in the report, which added the woman “has a medical condition that causes similar symptoms and believes that the alcohol exacerbated the symptoms.”
She told police she went to the main level of the hotel “to try to cool down” and was approached by a man wearing a baseball cap emblazoned with the letters “FBI.” He introduced himself as Gary.
“The victim stated that the suspect continued speaking to her and later led her over to the entrance to the Peachtree Mall,” according to the incident report. “The victim and suspect sat down on a bench overlooking the food court and the suspect began to kiss and fondle her.”
After telling the woman several times to wake up, the man led her to the Marriott Marquis hotel, where she found a friend.
“When the suspect realized that the victim knew the friend, the suspect left the victim with the friend and walked away,” the report said.
That friend told police the woman saw “Gary” and pointed him out as they walked through the hotel. While the woman hid behind a nearby pillar, the friend walked up to the man, “commented on his Dragon Con outfit” and took two photos of him, which she emailed to police.
When investigators went to the place where the attack allegedly occurred, “several security cameras were found that may have [had] footage of the assault,” according to the report.
The AJC reached out to Dragon Con for a comment. Although it is Dragon Con policy not to comment on specific incidents, Dragon Con Media Relations director Don Carroll had this to say in an emailed response:
Dragon Con is proud to offer a safe and inclusive convention for its members that is free of harassment or assault of any kind. We work with the Atlanta Police Department all year to develop and install procedures to prevent issues such as these. If and when they occur (we) insure they are handled by the appropriate authorities. APD is on site throughout the convention.
As more information about this case becomes available, we’ll bring it to you here. Quick thinking on the part of the victim’s friend and the help of the public in identifying this creep certainly helped move this case along.
Category: Nerd Culture