CARROLLTON, Ga. - A judge has ruled Carrollton police officers went too far in detaining and charging a teen on suspicion he might have tampered with car door handles at one of the city’s lots.
Back during the Fourth of July celebration in 2021, the 911 center got a call about some young people acting suspicious.
The caller provided a general description and location where she last saw the youth.
Jorge Marenco was at the celebration with his family, along with many others who showed up for the festivities.
Police officers saw Marenco and decided to ask him some questions. Marenco said he did not know what was going on but provided his name to the officers.
He had to do it a couple of times and "became frustrated".
A back and forth led to the police taking Marenco to the ground after he told them he wanted to call his mother over to witness what was going on.
Jorge Marenco was one of two teenagers suspected of trying to break into parked cars. The family says the teens had nothing to do with the incident. (Photo courtesy of Carrollton Police Department)
He was charged with obstruction. Attorney Cawanna McMichael-Brown called the action wrong.
Carroll County Superior Court Judge Erica Tisinger ruled the action by police to be invalid and dismissed the obstruction count.
Judge Tisinger wrote law enforcement in the type of stop that took place was tantamount to a "hunch" Marenco might be a proper suspect.
A spokesperson for the police department released a statement expressing "disappointment" over the ruling.
Carrollton police insist there was a valid foundation to the arrest. The spokesperson added the judge did not hear important information about a physical description.
But the defense attorney says Marenco was not wearing an outfit described by the 911 caller and he was not going in a direction consistent with what had been reported to the 911 operator.