UPDATE (8/29/11): Warrants have been issued for the arrest of Samantha Sanford in connection with this case.
The Dalton Police Department arrested 29-year old Lavalis Sentell Ward on Friday and charged him with aggravated assault, forced entry burglary, impersonating a public officer, and kidnapping in connection with a June 19th incident. Ward was arrested without incident at the Whitfield County Courthouse where he was attending a sentencing hearing in a separate armed robbery case.
The incident happened at the McGhee Place Apartments at 775 McGhee Place at approximately 2:45 am on June 19th. The victim was in his apartment when two men started banging on the back door and identifying themselves as the Sheriff’s Office. The victim refused to open the door, instead running out of the front door and around the side of the building where he was confronted by two men, one of whom was identified as Ward. The other suspect was unknown. Ward followed the victim into the apartment at gunpoint, while his accomplice waited outside. The victim told investigators went into a bedroom to get his sleeping daughter while he heard Ward go through his apartment. He told investigators that as he exited the apartment with his daughter, he was hit in the head with a gun.
Ward is in custody, but his accomplice remains unidentified. The victim told investigators that he was a black male, standing between 6’ and 6’2” tall. The suspect wore jeans and a dark blue shirt with a blue bandanna covering his face. The suspect had close cropped hair.
Dalton Police investigators also want to talk to Samantha King Sanford, 26. Sanford has outstanding warrants for burglary in unrelated cases, and is also wanted for questioning in this incident.
The investigation into this incident continues, and anyone with information on Ward, the identity of his accomplice, or the whereabouts of Samantha Sanford is asked to please contact Detective Greg Bates at 706-278-9085, extension 137.