Crime

‘I was naked and bare-handed fighting a man with a gun,’ Macon official says of home invasion

What is Macon Regional Crimestoppers and how to contact them

Macon Regional Crime Stoppers serves eight counties which are: Baldwin, Bibb, Crawford, Houston, Jones, Monroe, Peach, and Twiggs. You can submit tips over the phone or online.
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Macon Regional Crime Stoppers serves eight counties which are: Baldwin, Bibb, Crawford, Houston, Jones, Monroe, Peach, and Twiggs. You can submit tips over the phone or online.

Macon-Bibb Commissioner Virgil Watkins said he awoke early Wednesday to a masked intruder standing over him “with a gun drawn to my face.”

“He just kept repeating, ‘Where’s the money? Where’ the money? Give me the money,” Watkins said. He wasn’t sure if the intruder might try to shoot him or pistol-whip him upside the head.

“I just felt like I had to do something,” said the 35-year-old commissioner. “We started tussling. I was able to knock the gun away from my face.”

The intruder fled with Watkin’s book bag, stuffed with his broken computer and a watch. Watkins said he chased him to the porch but didn’t pursue him farther as he remembered he’d been sleeping comfortably in the nude.

“I was naked and bare-handed fighting a man with a gun,” Watkins said.

The intruder, later identified as 18-year-old Xavier Matthew Lewis of Macon, was charged with home invasion, aggravated assault and armed robbery, according to a Bibb County Sheriff’s Office news release.

Lewis had kicked in the front door while Watkins was asleep, the release said. The commissioner said he didn’t know if Lewis, who was wearing a bandanna and gray hoodie, had been in his west Macon home for minutes or for some time.

Sheriff’s deputies responding to Watkins’ 8:20 a.m. 911 call spotted Lewis running on Eisenhower Parkway near Key Street. The teen shed his pants and continued to flee in a pair of shorts. He also allegedly dropped things he’d taken and tried to hide from pursuing deputies, according to the release.

Lewis jumped several fences and ran into a briar patch near Keystone Street, where deputies took him into custody, the release said.

While being questioned, investigators determined that Lewis had also been involved in the May 24 armed robbery of Lou’s Grub Shack, a food truck, when it was parked at 3342 Mercer University Drive. He allegedly brandished a pistol and demanded money from the two food truck employees.

“When one of the employees grabbed their firearm, Lewis fired one shot and then ran off without getting anything,” the release said.

No one was injured during either incident.

“Just thinking about it — all the things that could have gone wrong, like he could have shot me, or knocked me unconscious, I could have been in my bed bleeding,” Watkins said.

“But I’m so relieved that the police officers were able to catch him. I don’t have to think about, ‘Is he still out there? Is he just eying my house waiting for me to go to sleep again?’ So I get a little closure from that,” Watkins said.

Watkins said he was blessed “not to have a scratch on me. I’m not hurt.”

Anyone with information about either incident is urged to call the Bibb County Sheriff’s Office at 478-751-7500, or Macon Regional Crimestoppers at 1-877-68CRIME.

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