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August 29, 2013

'Shirtless bandit' suspect identified

The “shirtless bandit” suspected in a vehicle burglary on Saturday has been identified as Odie Dwain Ellis, 32, according to the Dalton Police Department.

Officials have obtained warrants for Ellis on charges of identification fraud, entering auto, credit card fraud and credit card theft. His most recent known address was his mother’s home, but investigators do not believe he is currently living there. Anyone with information about Ellis’ whereabouts is asked to contact Det. Chris Tucker at (706) 278-9085, ext. 165.

Police said Ellis is suspected of burglarizing a vehicle parked at the IHOP restaurant on West Walnut Avenue early Saturday morning. Stolen was a bag with three Blackberry cellphones, a Samsung Galaxy tablet computer, a lap top computer, a wedding band, a .38 special Smith and Wesson hand gun and about $3,000 in cash, according to the victims.

After returning to Dalton and reporting the incident to police, one of the victims checked her credit card online and found it had been used to make a charge of more than $100 at the Shell service station on Chattanooga Road.

Shortly after the victims reported the theft, at about 3 a.m., a man leaving the Shugart Road Walmart called police to report that he found the Blackberry cellphones and the tablet computer left in the bed of his pickup truck in the parking lot. Police responded and determined that the phones and tablet were the items stolen in this case. They were returned to the owners.

A surveillance camera caught Ellis — without a shirt — using a credit card stolen in the incident. The revealing photo ran in The Daily Citizen and other media outlets.

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