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Friday, Aug. 22, 2014

Men lured into trap; cash taken

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Three people -- one inolved in a similar incident last summer -- are accused of luring two men to a Shelbyville home for sex, then stealing their money, police said Tuesday.

The men said Tabitha Lea Brown, also known as Tabitha Casteel, 20, of Courtland Avenue invited them to join her and a female friend, who has not been charged, at the Brown home Saturday night.

As the men arrived they noticed two other men -- later identified as Billy Joe Colburn, 22, of Alta Avenue and Robert Curtis Hopkins, 19, of Murfreesboro -- in the living room.

Previous incident

Colburn was involved in a similar incident in July, police said. Another man and two different woman, who posed as prostitutes, lured two men to a vacant home on Midland Road where they were robbed and stereo equipment taken from their vehicle. Colburn was identified as the ringleader by investigators.

On Saturday, the victims initially ignored the men in the living room while being led to a bedroom where their clothing was removed by the women, Sgt. James Wilkerson and officer Russ Grubbs were told.

Brown and the other woman left the room after removing the clothing, causing the victims to become suspicious and put their clothes back on, the men said. They discovered that a cell phone and $80 had been taken from their pockets.

False claim

The home was empty as the victims left, but Brown was standing outside and allegedly told the men she had taken the phone -- which they found in a bathroom -- but not the money, police said. Colburn punched one of the victims in the mouth before he, Hopkins and the two women drove away.

Brown then called police, filing a report claiming she had been assaulted by two men she didn't know. Officers later discovered she did know the men.

Colburn and Hopkins returned to the Courtland Avenue home shortly before 5:30 a.m. Sunday to find the victims standing outside a nearby residence, police said. An argument ended with Colburn taking a handgun from his car's trunk and handing it to Hopkins, who allegedly fired on the victims and shot a tire on one's car.

Suspects arrested

The victims' "really detailed descriptions," as described by police, matched those of Colburn and Hopkins, who were arrested at the home where the Saturday night incident allegedly occurred.

Colburn is charged with two counts of criminal conspiracy to commit a theft and one count each of aggravated assault, assault, burglary, theft, and being a convicted felon in possession of a weapon. He is being held on $165,000 bond at Bedford County Jail.

Hopkins is charged with one count of criminal conspiracy to commit a theft and aggravated assault, as well as statutory rape in an unrelated case. He is being held on $70,000 bond.

Brown is charged with two counts of criminal conspiracy to commit a theft and one count of filing a false report. She is also charged with failure to appear in another case and is being held on $22,500 bond.