A welfare check on Sept. 21 led the Barrow County Sheriff’s Office (BCSO) to uncover a captive situation involving a man who had boarded up the doors and windows of his home, trapping his wife, four children and disabled elderly mother inside.
His wife called the police asking for the welfare check on her husband, Thomas Brantley, after she and her four children were able to exit out of the back window.
She told officers he has a history of “large emotional swings,” according to the police report.
When officers arrived to the residence, located at 1264 Hwy. 211 NE in Winder, they immediately contacted Brantley, who was covered in blood and waving his arms around in the air. He said the bleeding was from punching a window and shattering it.
He also told police he had a firearm in his pocket, which the officers removed before detaining him in handcuffs. Within Brantley’s .38 revolver were two spent shell casings, which he confirmed he shot from outside the house, through a window and into his mother’s bedroom, where she was staying, aiming it directly to the right of her.
Officers also found methamphetamine and two homemade smoking devices in Brantley’s pockets upon search.
The home couldn’t be accessed or exited, according to police, as every door was boarded up within the residence using screws, windows were boarded and the garage was shut via a nylon strap multiple times. The front yard was overflowing with septic waste back up and the entire residence “gave off a smell of putrid garbage,” according to police.
Brantley told officers the only way to enter the residence was to open up the back window and crawl out of it.
Upon entering the residence, police reported the house was in "terrible" condition with "well over 10 animals within the home, feces everywhere, broken glass and every door boarded up."
“The house was not in a livable condition for an animal, much less a human being," said police.
The door knob to his mother’s room was tethered to a stair case spindle, not allowing her to exit the room. Due to a recent stroke and severe dementia, she wasn’t able to articulate anything to police and was found littered with bruises and covered in her own urine and feces for what police said appeared to be days.
Brantley was arrested and transported to the hospital to be psychologically assessed. The hospital deemed him an imminent danger to himself and others.
Brantley faces the following charges: False imprisonment (3); false imprisonment-victim is less than 14 years old and not offender’s child (3); possession of methamphetamine; exploitation and intimidation of disabled adults, elder persons and residents; cruelty to children-2nd degree (4); reckless conduct; maintaining disorderly house.
The following are other incidents reported to the BCSO Sept. 14-21:
• Aggravated assault; false imprisonment; battery-Family Violence 2069 Hwy. 211 NW Braselton, where a male strangled his girlfriend and struck her with an open fist and then called police claiming she was suicidal when she did not answer his phone calls.
• Violation of Family Violence Order; willful obstruction of law enforcement officer at 1604 Jessica Lane, Winder, where a woman was acting erratically towards her mother, who she wasn’t allowed to have any violent contact with per a Family Violence Order.
• Theft by shoplifting at 658 Jefferson Hwy., Winder, where a woman was caught by a store employee shoplifting diapers and baby wipes.
• DUI-alcohol; consumption/open container of alcoholic beverage in passenger area Sept. 14 at 907 Cruce Lake Drive, Hoschton, where police responded to a loud music complaint.
• Driving while license suspended or revoked Sept. 15 at University Parkway and Kilcrease Road, Auburn, where a traffic stop was conducted.
• Hands-Free Georgia Act; seat belt violation; knowingly driving a motor vehicle on suspended registration; no insurance; driving while license suspended; arrest warrant Sept. 15 at Atlanta Hwy. NW and Carl Cedar Hill Road, Auburn, where a traffic stop was conducted.
• Driving while license suspended; low speed vehicles prohibited on highway; hold for other agency Sept. 15 at East Broad St. and Lays Dr., Winder, where a man was driving a moped on the roadway.
• DUI-drugs; driving while license suspended; improper parking, standing or stopping on highway Sept. 15 at Midland Court and E Midland Ave., Winder, where a traffic investigation was conducted.
• Aggravated assault; battery-Family Violence Sept. 15 at 1300 Barrow Industrial Pkwy., Winder, where a woman reported her boyfriend struck her in the face with a closed fist while they were leaving work.
• DUI-alcohol; DUI-endangering a child under 14 years old; reckless driving; speeding; improper lance change Sept. 16 at University Parkway and Carl-Bethlehem Road, Bethlehem, where a traffic investigation occurred.
• Hit and run resulting in serious injury or death; serious injury by vehicles; improper lane change Sept. 16 at Atlanta Highway and Hardigree Road, Winder, where an accident with injuries involving a pedestrian struck by a Ford F150 pickup truck.
• Drugs to be kept in original container; possession of a Schedule IV Controlled Substance Sept. 17 at Atlanta Hwy. NW and Hill’s Shop Road, Auburn, where a traffic stop was conducted.
• DUI-alcohol; improper stopping on roadway Sept. 17 at Jefferson Hwy. and Rockwell Church Rd., Winder, where a man was reported to be asleep behind the wheel while stopped in the middle of the road.
• Drugs to be kept in original container; possession of a Schedule IV Controlled Substance
• DUI-alcohol; consumption/open container of alcoholic beverage in passenger area Sept. 17 at Loganville Hwy and University Parkway, Bethlehem, where car accident with no injuries was reported.
• Battery-Family Violence; theft by taking; criminal trespass Sept. 17 at 1310 Etheridge Drive, Auburn, where a woman reported her boyfriend had pushed her to the ground and punched her in the face.
• Driving while license suspended or revoked; failure to obey stop sign or yield after stopping; willful obstruction of law enforcement officer; hold for oher agency Sept. 17 at Hwy. 211 NE and Double Bridges Road, Winder, where a car accident involving an overturned vehicle and injuries occurred.
• Possession of a Schedule I Controlled Substance; possession and use of drug related objects; public drunk Sept. 17 at 10 Patrick Mill Road, Winder, where a man was seen stumbling around a parking lot.
• DUI-multiple substances; improper lane change Sept. 17 at 65 Jefferson Road, Statham, where a single vehicle accident with injuries occurred.
• Criminal trespass Sept. 18 at 387 Birchfield Drive, Statham, where a woman reported her ex-husband was at her residence, which a civil action court order from their divorce prohibited.
• Driving while license suspended or revoked Sept. 19 at Hwy. 82 and Hwy. 211 NE, Statham, where a traffic stop was conducted.
• Disorderly conduct Sept. 19 at 54 W Star St., Bethlehem, where a student at the Barrow County Alternative School was yelling profanities at the principal and school resource officer.
• DUI-alcohol; improper lane change Sept. 19 at University Pkwy. and Harrison Mill Road, Bethlehem, where a traffic stop was conducted.
• Possession of a firearm or knife during commission or attempt to commit certain felonies; marijuana possession less than 1 oz.; failure to obey stop sign or yield after stopping; headlight height requirements; window tint violation; possession and use of drug related objects Sept. 20 at Bowman Mill Road and Bowman Way, Winder, where a traffic stop was conducted
• Possession of firearm by convicted felon; willful obstruction of law enforcement officer; criminal use of an article with altered ID mark Sept. 20 at 235 Daley Ave., Winder, where police were advised a wanted individual was located.
• Driving without a valid license Sept. 21 at University Pkwy. and Jackson Trail Rd., Winder, where a traffic stop as conducted.
• DUI-alcohol; reckless driving; speeding Sept. 21 at University Pkwy. and Hog Mountain Road, Winder, where a traffic stop was conducted.
• Affray (Fighting) Sept. 21 at 1202 Autumn Ave., Winder, where two men were in a physical altercation.
• Aggravated assault; battery-Family Violence; cruelty to children Sept. 21 at 47 Pressley Road, Winder, where a woman used two large knives against her in front of her children during a domestic dispute.