Police say they tracked an iPhone to apprehend and arrest two men after they allegedly robbed five women. According to the Atlanta Police Department, the incident happened in the driveway of the Biltmore Hotel on West Peachtree Street at around 11 p.m. on Thursday.
The women said they had just left a company function with their co-workers when they were approached from behind by two armed men who demanded their purses and cell phones.
At some point during the robbery, one of the women punched one of the suspects in the face.
"I went into defense mode and backed off and just pointed my hand at them and said, ‘You stay away from me,'" said Christina Baltrusitis, one of the victims.
"As a result of that punch, the suspect took off running, fled the location – still had the belongings but it kind of ended the situation," said Sgt. Curtis Davenport of the Atlanta Police Department.
The two men fled after taking the women's belongings, including an iPhone, which had a tracking device installed. Two of the victims said they work at a digital marketing company and use Skype and other technologies daily. Sara Sadd said that when police arrived, she activated tracking software on her iPhone.
Police were able to track the device to an apartment complex on the 1600 block of Stanton Drive.
"As soon as they had them secured, they put us in the car and took us there to ID them. Less than two hours later we watched them get arrested," said Sadd.
Atlanta police, with the help of the Georgia State Patrol, detained two men. The victims were brought to the location and identified the suspects as the men who robbed them.
Demarcus Smith, 22, and Jermaine Johnson, 30, were charged with robbery and are being held in the Fulton County Jail. Police say both men were on probation at the time of the incident.
Officers advised caution in being physical with robbers.
"I'm not here to say that was a bad thing that she did. It's just our opinion that we don't want citizens to put themselves in harm's way," said Davenport.
Sadd says police still have her iPhone. The other women's' belongings, contents in their purses and cell phones are still missing.
Baltrusaitis says she held on to her purse when she resisted.
Police say the investigation into the robbery continues, and that more suspects could be involved.