ALBANY — Albany law enforcement agencies have stayed busy over the past several days, responding to burglary attempts, arresting a murder suspect and taking a large amount of narcotics off the city’s streets.


Otisa Thomas, 19, was arrested and charged with murder and aggravated assault (party to a crime). She and 33-year old Christopher Reginald Cooks were together the night Deqario Thomas was fatally wounded while in the 2700 block of Sylvester Road at an ice machine. More arrests are pending.


A large amount of illegal drugs was found at an East Albany home after investigators with the APD Property Crimes Unit, with the assistance of the department’s Gang Unit, followed up on information about a gun stolen in an entering auto case. The information led investigators to a house in the 1000 block of East Residence. The Gang Unit obtained a search warrant, seized drugs and made several arrests, including:

♦ Tony Scales, 51

♦ Marcus Dewayne Solomon, 33

♦ Brendrix Wayne Starling, 17

♦ Nicole Whitaker, 39

♦ Fredrick McGowan, 24

All were charged with:

♦ Theft by receiving, felony (firearm)

♦ Trafficking marijuana

♦ Trafficking methamphetamine

♦ Trafficking ecstasy

♦ Trafficking cocaine

♦ Possession/use drug-related objects

Officers recovered approximately 13 pounds of marijuana, 1.5 pounds of methamphetamine, 2.5 ounces of cocaine, 58 grams of suspected heroin, 215 grams of Ecstasy pills, a stolen firearm from a 2017 incident and $2,635 in cash.

The events took place on Friday after the Property Crimes Unit located and interviewed 34-year old Timothy Cook. Investigators located a stolen rifle from an entering auto case in his room at the Knights Inn. During the interview, investigators also learned Cook sold two more guns to someone at the East Residence location, which led to the search of the home. Cook was charged with entering an auto, burglary, and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.

On May 12, around 7 p.m., an AR-15 9-mm, a .308 Browning A-Bolt, a .22 Marlin 39-A, 50 rounds of .45A-CP, 100 rounds of .22, 200 rounds of 9-mm (all in magazines) were taken from a locked vehicle parked at a North Monroe Street address. The unknown suspect or suspects entered the victim’s truck after breaking a window, then stole the guns and ammunition.

This remains an active case, since only one rifle was recovered.



Officers responded to 1206 North Slappey Blvd., where several firearms and weapon accessories were taken from the Albany Vacuum business. Around 1 a.m., three males wearing hoodies and masks entered the business after breaking a window.

They took the following items:

♦ 2 — Zavier Arms AR-15

♦ 1 — Sky Jacket Defense AR-15

♦ 1 — 911 style airsoft pistol

♦ FNX 45 Airsoft Pistol

♦ Several AR magazines

♦ Several 556 rounds

♦ Demilitarized RPG Launcher

♦ Demilitarized L.A.W. rocket launcher

♦ Two training demilitarized 60mm mortar rounds

♦ 1 Sig Saurer scope

♦ 9 mm ammo

♦ Cash

♦ 1 — 200 round pack of 308 Ammo

♦ 1 — AR 100 round drum

♦ 1 — dummy rocket


As part of their continuation to rid the city streets of illegal narcotics, the Albany-Dougherty Drug Unit, conducted an operation at 508 North Monroe St. The following arrests were made:

Kion Fields

♦ Possession of marijuana with intent to distribute

♦ Possession of a controlled substance (hydrocodone)

♦ Drugs not in original container

♦ Possession of firearm during commission of a crime

♦ Possession of firearm by convicted felon

Amanda Avera

♦ Possession of a controlled substance (hydrocodone)

♦ Possession of marijuana with intent to distribute

♦ Drugs not in original container

♦ Possession of firearm during commission of a crime

Investigators also seized $10,126 in cash and a .40 caliber Smith and Wesson handgun.


On Thursday, targeting designated “hot spots” in the city, the Albany-Dougherty Drug Unit started an “aggressive patrol operation” in the 700 blocks of West Highland Avenue, where there have been multiple arrests and complaints of drug activity.

The operation resulted in two arrests:

Lonnie Leverette, 39, who was charged with possession of crack cocaine (.7 grams), and Jesse Frazier, 38, who was charged with probation violation.

The unit then changed its focus to the South Jackson/Grady Street area. During a traffic stop, officers detected an odor of marijuana and investigators later arrested the driver of the vehicle, Kavarius Brown, 20. Brown was charged with possession of a firearm by a probationer and possession of marijuana, less than an ounce (3.3 grams).

ADDU then proceeded to 201 Thornton Ave., where officers made contact with several subjects. During their contacts, the following arrests were made:

— Montrell Collins, 17, for obstruction of a law enforcement officer, possession of methamphetamine (.4 grams) and possession of marijuana (4.9 grams).

— Demarcus Green, 22, for obstruction of a law enforcement officer, possession of marijuana (4.9 grams) and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon (.38 caliber revolver).

A .22 caliber revolver was also recovered at the scene.

ADDU officers made a total of five arrests, recovered three handguns, and seized 8.2 grams of marijuana, .4 grams of methamphetamine, and .7 grams of crack cocaine during the operation.


Officers responded to Jaxx Liquors’ at 605 S. Slappey Blvd., the EZ Corner Store at 521 South Slappey Blvd. and the 1300 Block of W. Whitney Avenue about shots fired. They met the victims in the 1300 Block of West Whitney Avenue.

Diamond McCoy, 21, reported that she walked out of the EZ Corner Store to get into a vehicle with Julia McCoy, 50, and Riley McCoy, 6, when she saw two suspects walking towards her from the Jaxx Liquors’ Parking Lot. She said she saw one suspect reach into his pants and pull out a black handgun, so she jumped into the vehicle and told Julia McCoy to drive. She looked back and saw both offenders shooting at the car.

There were no reports of injuries as a result of his incident. This open case was turned over to the Albany Gang Unit for further investigation.

The suspects were described as wearing a white shirt and black pants and armed with a black handgun and wearing a black shirt and brown pants, armed with a chrome/silver handgun.

Anyone with information about any of these crimes is encouraged to call Crime Stoppers at (229) 436-TIPS or the Albany Police Department at (229) 431-2132.

Support Local Journalism

Now, more than ever, the world needs trustworthy reporting—but good journalism isn’t free. Please support us by subscribing or making a contribution today.

Stay Informed

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.