ATLANTA - Woodrow Rudolph Dixon, Jr., and Cornelius Bernard Wilson each have been sentenced to federal prison for planning to rob a drug stash house while dressed as police officers.
“These two planned to conduct home invasions while impersonating police officers,” said United States Attorney Sally Quillian Yates. “The safety of our citizens is a top priority for this office. Their removal from our community will make Atlanta safer.”
“Individuals brazen enough to pose as law enforcement to commit armed robberies are clear and present dangers to our community,” said Special Agent in Charge Christopher Shaefer. “These sentences send an unequivocal message that this conduct will not be tolerated and provide more evidence of ATF’s commitment to combating violent crime through use of the Frontline strategy by utilizing all available resources to make our communities safer.”
Harry S. Sommers, the Special Agent in Charge of the DEA Atlanta Field Division stated, “Drug dealing breeds violence and drug traffickers often commit acts of violence while carrying out their criminal activities. In this case, these dangerous criminals never had the opportunity to commit yet another robbery because of the dedicated efforts of all law enforcement agencies involved.”
According to United States Attorney Yates, the charges and other information presented in court: In May 2012, the ATF began investigating Dixon, based on information the agency received that Dixon was an experienced leader of a crew of men who conducted armed home invasion style robberies of drug stash houses in the Atlanta, Ga., area. At that time, Dixon was planning to have his crew rob a man named “Tony,” a man who Dixon believed to be a high-level cocaine trafficker in the Atlanta area. “Tony” was in fact an undercover narcotics Task Force Officer for the DEA, who Dixon had met when “Tony” tried to buy cocaine from Dixon as a part of an investigation.
As the ATF investigation into Dixon's armed robbery plans continued, the investigation revealed that Dixon, leading a crew, had carried out previous armed robberies of houses with the purpose of stealing cocaine or other drugs. The ATF investigation later identified Wilson as a member of the crew Dixon assembled to rob “Tony.” On June 21, 2012, the day of the planned robbery, Wilson and other members of the robbing crew met in advance to prepare for the robbery. Dixon, who had left Atlanta, directed their actions over the telephone.
To prepare for the robbery, the men dressed up in police gear, including police badges, and armed themselves with loaded firearms: a sawed-off shotgun, a .44 caliber revolver, and a .40 caliber semi-automatic pistol. They then met with two undercover ATF agents who they believed were going to lead them to “Tony’s” stash house so that the crew could carry out the robbery. Instead, once the men met with the undercover agents, they were arrested. Dixon, the leader of the crew, was arrested five days later after he returned to Atlanta.
Both Dixon and another member of the robbing crew, Kirk Floyd, were convicted on November 25, 2013, after a week-long jury trial on federal charges of conspiracy to commit armed robbery, possession of firearms in connection with the armed robbery charge, and conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine for leading a crew of armed home invasion robbers in the Atlanta area who sought to rob what the crew believed to be a cocaine “stash house.” Wilson, a member of the armed robbery crew, pleaded guilty on December 3, 2013, to federal charges of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine and possession of a firearm in connection with the drug charge.
Woodrow Rudolph Dixon, Jr., a/k/a Dro, 42, of Atlanta, Ga., was sentenced to 20 years in prison to be followed by six years of supervised release. Dixon was found guilty by a jury on November 25, 2013. Cornelius Bernard Wilson, a/k/a Dog-man, 45, of Atlanta, Ga., was sentenced to 15 years in prison to be followed by five years of supervised release. Wilson pleaded guilty on December 3, 2013. Kirk Floyd was found guilty by a jury on November 25, 2013, and is scheduled to be sentenced at a later date.
This case was investigated by the David G. Wilhelm OCDETF Strike force, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and the Drug Enforcement Administration.
Assistant United States Attorneys Mary L. Webb and William Tolliver prosecuted the case.