Burglary, Auto-Theft, and Truancy (B.A.T) Unit

On January 1, 2013, Sheriff Hill established the Burglary, Auto Theft, and Truancy (B.A.T.) Unit to investigate Burglaries, Auto Thefts, and enforce the Truancy issues in Clayton County, Georgia. The B.A.T. Unit was recently revamped to focus on burglaries and auto thefts in an effort to improve the number of cases solved and the successful prosecution of these offences. A deputy in the B.A.T. Unit functions in both a proactive and reactive role when performing their daily duties. They will respond to and conduct initial investigations of Burglaries, Auto Theft and enforce Truancy.

The mission of the B.A.T. Unit is to identify and target for prosecution individuals, organized crime groups (gangs), and other criminal enterprises responsible for acts of Burglary and any forms of Auto Theft. In addition the B.A.T. Unit uses positive patrols to locate truants and prevent criminal activity.

This is achieved by two methods: one is general patrols in "Hot" areas known for burglaries and auto thefts provides officer presence which serves as a deterrent to thieves. Another method is keeping our presence unknown to the offenders through surveillance and other law enforcement techniques.

The B.A.T. Unit is comprised of Deputy Sheriff's, and can be identified by their "B.A.T." emblems on their uniform's shoulder patch and the unit's radio call signs. A bat image was used on the shoulder patch to strike fear into the hearts of evil doers.

The members of the Clayton County Sheriff's Office B.A.T. Unit (Burglary, Auto Theft, and Truancy) consists of:

- 1 Lieutenant

- 1 Sergeant

- 4 Deputies

- 1 Administrative Clerk

Burglary

A burglary can be committed by opportunists or professionals. An opportunist can be described as those who see an opportunity to break in a residence or a car while simply walking by. A professional can be described as those who commit burglaries as a form of income. Regardless of the amateur or professional status, the planning and execution of a burglary is most common during the hours when people work. Truancy is common during those same hours. Residential burglaries rarely involve more than the prying and smashing of windows or kicking in of doors. No skills are needed.

The B.A.T. Unit monitors the areas where burglaries happen; thereby, reducing opportunity for burglaries. The increased awareness of the residents by canvasing the neighborhood and talking to residents about burglaries aids the B.A.T. Unit. They develop information about the suspects and after an investigation, arrest them.

The B.A.T. Unit exchanges information with other departments and agencies utilizing Pawn Shop Registries and the Georgia Crime Information Center. This technology is used to identify suspects who commit burglaries and theft in Clayton County and adjoining jurisdictions.

The B.A.T. Unit is specifically tasked with the investigation of residential and non-residential/commercial burglaries inside the jurisdiction of the Clayton County Sheriff's Office.

Auto Theft

The B.A.T. Unit is responsible for the investigations and deterrent of auto thefts. These duties include conducting interrogations of potential suspects, and interviews of witnesses and crime victims. They investigate "hot spot" areas known for vehicle thefts and various locations where stolen vehicles are dumped to "cool off." They coordinate with other Sheriff's Office Units using crime reduction strategies and proactive investigation techniques to prevent crime before it happens. One of their goals is to identify the offender and secure evidence of the crime to support presenting the case for prosecution. They assist other agencies and share valuable investigative information with surrounding jurisdictions to solve crimes.

They are also responsible for maintaining accurate documentation of the areas that these crimes occur and keeping investigative notes that assist the District Attorney's Office in preparation for the prosecution of cases.

In addition, the B.A.T. Unit serves warrants on any individual identified as an offender through the investigative process. As a part of the investigative process, B.A.T. Unit Deputies locate and recover stolen autos.

Truancy

Truancy is a major problem in Clayton County that can have negative effects on the future of our youth. Truancy may lead to dropping out of school; may be a precursor to delinquent and criminal activity; and places students at higher risk of being drawn into behaviors that could involve drugs, alcohol, and violence. Truancy can have a high costs to our residents through graffiti, loitering, or burglaries.

The B.A.T. Unit has developed a coordinated response to reducing the truancy and juvenile delinquency. They also recognize that parents and teachers must be involved and held responsible for the children's school attendance.

If you have additional information that will help in locating burglars, auto thieves, or truants please call the Clayton County Sheriff's Office at 770-477-4480.

When calling to report a stolen vehicle:

- Only the registered owner or the authorized user should report a stolen vehicle.

- You must have the license plate number or Vehicle Identification Number (VIN).

- Don't know the license plate or VIN? Try looking on your Insurance Card, Registration, or Title.

- When you call to report a stolen car, the call-taker will ask for the above information, a description of what happened, and a description of the vehicle. The more detail you can provide such as unique damage, aftermarket wheels, special colors, etc. the better.

- The call-taker may ask about the current status of the car to determine if your car was towed or repossessed, rather than stolen.

- Ask the call-taker for the case number.

- The call-taker will enter the information and dispatch a unit to respond to you or take a report of a stolen vehicle over the phone.

- Report the loss to your insurance company and give them the case number.