Atlanta, GA – Two men have been arrested in connection with the firebombing of an Atlanta police officer’s home.
Wesley Wise, 35, and his brother, 30-year-old Quinton Wise, provided a third man with $50 cash and $100 worth of crack for him to toss the explosive device through a female police officer’s kitchen window on June 26, Atlanta Police Department (APD) Major Michael O’Connor said on Thursday, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
The brothers were trafficking cocaine, and allegedly ordered the attack because they didn’t want a law enforcement officer living in the area of their “trap house,” Maj. O’Conner said.
“These two brothers basically ran the entire street,” the major explained. “People were afraid to tell on them.”
The suspect first threw a large rock through the officer’s kitchen window, then followed that with a Molotov cocktail, WSB reported at the time.
The blaze scorched most of the officer’s kitchen, but firefighters were able to stop it before it spread to other rooms, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
"Without our intervention it would have completely burned the house down,” Atlanta Fire Rescue Section Chief James Oliver told WGCL.
The officer had just purchased the home, and had not moved in yet at the time of the attack, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
“It’s a very tragic situation,” union spokesman and retired Atlanta Police Detective Ken Allen told WSB at the time. “You're at an emotional time, going through making the purchase of your home, getting ready to move in to be a part of it, and the next thing you know, you've got people in that neighborhood that are torching you because of what you do for a living.”
The suspects have also been linked to an earlier arson at another nearby home, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.
That attack took place in January, after the brothers had a dispute with a woman who was living there, according to police.
In July, the reward for information about the two arsons increased to $23,000, leading to a flood of tips from citizens.
Many of those tips involved the Wise brothers.
“There was a crackhead that was basically paid with $100 of crack and $50 cash and he agreed, in the officer’s home, to throw a Molotov cocktail through the window,” Maj. O’Connor said, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Wesley was apprehended on Aug. 14, and has been charged with possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, possession of marijuana with intent to distribute, cocaine trafficking, and first-degree arson.
Officers also seized 150 grams of crack at the time of his arrest.
“Because we were over there investigating these arsons, we figured out what the motive was behind them and then we developed information about how that house was being run,” Maj. O’Conner told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “With that information we were able to conduct a search warrant and then we kind of got lucky that Wesley was there.”
Quinton was arrested on Aug. 15, and has been charged with a single count of first-degree arson.
Investigators have also identified the suspect who allegedly threw the incendiary device into the officer’s home, but said they will not release that person’s name until he or she has been arrested.
They do have a warrant for that suspect’s arrest, WAGA reported.
“Anyone that messes with an Atlanta police officer or a member of any portion of our team, there will be a reckoning for that and that reckoning just occurred,” Maj. O’Connor told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “We never stopped working on this case.”
The officer whose home was attacked said she is glad that the brothers have been arrested, and that she is looking forward to moving into her new residence, WSB reported.