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Suspect arrested in 2019 restaurant, convenience store burglaries

A Lula man is now charged in a couple of 2019 burglaries after authorities received some new information.

Jody Shea, 51, is accused of breaking in to two businesses last year and taking cash, cigarettes and vape oil, according to authorities.

Hall County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Derreck Booth said authorities believe Shea broke into a Price Road restaurant between 5-7 a.m. May 29. More than $500 in damage was done to the restaurant’s window.

Booth said that after taking $100 in cash, Shea allegedly entered an adjacent apartment unit and took makeup products. The tenant was home at the time but was not injured, Booth said.

Six days later between 5-6 a.m. June 4, authorities believe Shea used a metal object to break a glass door to get into a U.S. 129/Cleveland Highway convenience store, taking roughly $500 of cigarettes and vape oil, Booth said. The damage to the door and flooring in the business is estimated to be in excess of $600. 

Shea is charged with first-degree burglary and two counts each of smash-and-grab burglary and second-degree criminal damage to property.

Hall County investigators obtained arrest warrants for Shea on April 10.

Following some tips on Shea’s location, investigators found the Lula man April 24 at a shopping area on Jesse Jewell Parkway.

“He attempted to flee on foot, but was arrested before he ran inside of a business,” Booth wrote in an email.

Regarding the time lapse between the 2019 incidents and the arrest warrants this year, Booth said investigators “received some analysis back from a search warrant and were able to conduct an interview in the case this spring.”

“This is an open and active investigation, and we’re not going to get into the content of the information that precipitated the arrest warrants,” Booth wrote in an email.

Shea was booked in to the Hall County Jail, where he remains.

The Times was unable to reach Magistrate Court officials Monday afternoon to obtain attorney information.