By Carol A. Gasser Moore
GEORGIA -“All Georgians deserve to be safe, and we will continue fighting to root out gang activity wherever it occurs,” says Attorney General Chris Carr. Carr has just announced the indictment of Jeffery Rice, age 26, of Athens-Clarke County, for his alleged involvement in a fatal shooting that occurred in Athens in October 2022. Rice, an alleged member of the Red Tape Gang, is facing multiple counts of Violation of the Street Gang Terrorism and Prevention Act, Felony Murder, Aggravated Assault, weapons offenses, and other charges. This case was investigated by the Athens-Clarke County Police Department.
“With our new Gang Prosecution Unit, we are using all resources at our disposal to disrupt the growing gang networks that are terrorizing our communities and putting people at risk,” said Carr. “This latest indictment is the result of our strong partnership with the Athens-Clarke County Police Department, as we work together to ensure that those who engage in violent crime are held accountable for their actions. All Georgians deserve to be safe, and we will continue fighting to root out gang activity wherever it occurs.”
Since its creation on July 1, 2022, the Attorney General’s Gang Prosecution Unit has indicted 50 alleged gang members across the state, including 11 charged in Clarke County. According to information from the attorney general, the Red Tape Gang is a local hybrid gang with ties to major national Bloods, including Sex Money Murder and the Rollin’ 20s.
The Attorney General’s Gang Prosecution Unit presented evidence to a Clarke County Grand Jury, resulting in Rice’s indictment* on January 10, 2023.
Specifically, the defendant has been charged with the following:
- 4 counts of Violation of the Street Gang Terrorism and Prevention Act
- 2 counts of Felony Murder
- 2 counts of Aggravated Assault
- 1 count of Aggravated Battery
- 3 counts of Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon During a Crime
- 1 count of Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon
- 1 count of Possession of a Firearm During the Commission of a Felony
- 1 count of Criminal Damage to Property in the First Degree
- 1 count of Driving While License Suspended
A copy of the indictment can be found here. No further information about the investigation or the indictment may be released at this time.
Last year, with the support of Governor Brian Kemp and members of the General Assembly, Attorney General Chris Carr created Georgia’s first statewide Gang Prosecution Unit. This new Unit officially began its historic work on July 1, 2022.
The creation of the Unit is made possible by HB 1134, legislation that provides the Office of the Attorney General with concurrent jurisdiction to prosecute criminal gang activity statewide. Georgia’s FY 2023 budget also includes $1.3 million to establish the new Gang Prosecution Unit.
In total, this new Unit has obtained 14 indictments charging 50 defendants across the state. This includes the indictment of eight alleged members of the Red Tape Gang in Clarke County.
The Gang Prosecution Unit is housed in the Attorney General’s Prosecution Division, which also includes Carr’s Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit and his Public Integrity and White Collar Crime Unit.
*Members of the public should keep in mind that indictments contain only allegations against the individual against whom the indictment is sought. A defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty, and it will be the government’s burden at trial to prove the defendant guilty beyond a reasonable doubt of the allegations contained in the indictment.