Charged APD officer took victim’s report

Published 12:15 pm Monday, April 3, 2023

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Tracy K. Hall

Richard Irvin Franklin, II resigned the Americus Police Department (APD) upon being charged by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI) for criminal damage to property in the second degree, making false statements and violation of oath of office. Franklin is 37 years old and lives in Americus.

On March 4, 2023 Franklin was dispatched to take an incident report of property he is now charged with damaging. To honor the victim’s privacy, she will be referred to as Ann. The incident reports Ann called for an officer at 11:48 am and Franklin arrived on scene at 11:51 am. According to Franklin’s report, Ann “was about to leave her residence at around 1130 hours (11:30 am) when she noticed someone had damage (sic) her vehicle.” Ann reports she parked her car around 10pm on March 3, 2023. At about 10:30 she heard a loud noise. Not knowing what the noise was, she went to bed. Also at the same time, Ann’s dog was barking. Ann “stated that she believes they used two bricks that were near her vehicle. Ann stated that the two bricks was (sic) not from her yard.  Ann stated that she did not know who may have damaged her vehicle. While on the scene, I, Officer Franklin observe (sic) damage to Ann’s REDACTED in color REDATED CAR MAKE, tag # REDACTED. Ann has 2 flat tires on the passenger side of her vehicle. Ann also has a bust (sic) out passenger side front window. Officers checked the area for doorbell cameras and residence camera. Neither was found in the area.” Franklin made note Axon camera (body cam) was available to be viewed and there was nothing more to be reported.

At some point in investigating the incident, there was a question about Franklin’s involvement in the destruction of Ann’s property.  As a point of policy, APD Chief Mark Scott referred the case to the GBI for continued investigation on March 7, 2023. Typically arrest warrants are issued by the magistrate judge, however in this case, the GBI presented their case to the Southwestern Judicial Circuit Superior Court, where a superior court judge determined there was probable cause and issued the warrant.

On March 24, 2023 Franklin resigned from the APD and was arrested by the GBI and placed in the Sumter County Law Enforcement Center. The investigation is ongoing, and the public is encouraged to contact law enforcement at the GBI regional investigative office in Americus at 229.931.2439 or the Americus Police Department at 229.924.3677. An anonymous tip can submitted by calling 1.800.597.8477 or online at tips online. For further convenience, download the See Something Send Something mobile app.

Once the investigative portion of the event is complete, the case will be referred to District Attorney, Lewis Lamb, for prosecution. Criminal Damage to Property in the Second Degree (damage is $500 or more) is a felony which carries a 1-5 year sentence. Making False Statements is also a felony and carries a 1-5 year sentence. Violation of Oath of Office is also a felony which carries a 1-5 year sentence. Franklin’s bond was set at $5,500 by Superior Court Judge, Jimmy Brown. Franklin is no longer being held at the Sumter County Law Enforcement Center.

*Writer’s note: where Ann is used in italicized font, Franklin reported the victim’s name. Additionally, the address and the description of the vehicle was also given in the report but has been redacted for privacy reasons.