The Georgia State Patrol SWAT team responded to a local convenience store during an armed robbery investigation Wednesday morning.
According to a release from Ringgold Police Chief Dan Bilbrey, customers at the RaceTrac on the 6600 block of Battlefield Parkway called 911 around 5:30 a.m., reporting a man trying to rob the place. Kenneth Anthony Dugger, 55, allegedly walked into the store and "made gestures" as if he had a gun. He ordered everyone out of the shop.
Ringgold Police officers and Catoosa County deputies responded. They found Dugger barricaded inside, according to the release, and Bilbrey asked for the SWAT team's help.
When officers with the SWAT team got inside, according to the release, Dugger lunged at them with some sort of object in his hand, "making aggressive movements" toward the officers. But the investigators figured out Dugger didn't actually have a knife. They then arrested him.
According to the release, Dugger told officers he was trying to commit "suicide by cop." Ringgold police charged him with armed robbery and obstruction of law enforcement.
Dispatch recordings of the incident, obtained by the social media account Northwest Georgia Scanner, revealed some initial confusion on whether the suspect had a gun.
"The male is inside the store, just walking around," one dispatcher said.
"[The store's clerk] said he's armed with a handgun?" another asked.
"That's what my complainant advised, that he did waive it around."
"They're not sure if they saw a gun," another dispatcher said. "Hand up under his shirt, said it was a robbery."
One dispatcher said Dugger moved to the back of the RaceTrac, where the store's security cameras were.
"He's probably back there watching us," the dispatcher said, "but we can't see him."
Another dispatcher said the SWAT was actually training nearby when Dugger arrived at the store.