Ex-cop accused of robbing hotel guests while in uniform appears in court

At the center of the investigation is former Atlanta police Officer Justin Thorne.

COBB COUNTY, Ga. — A former Atlanta police officer is accused of robbing guests at a hotel while still wearing his uniform.
Attorneys revealed Friday he didn't act alone.

A judge didn’t make a ruling on bond. For now, the former officer will stay in jail.

“He maintains that he was doing this because he was threatened and his family was,” defense attorney Lenny Franco said.

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That statement from Franco is a new twist to an armed robbery at the Comfort Inn on Windy Hill Road.

At the center of the investigation is former Atlanta police Officer Justin Thorne.

On Friday, he walked into a Cobb County courtroom wearing an orange jumpsuit.

A surveillance picture shows the ex-cop Oct. 17.

That’s the day Cobb County police say two guests were forced to hand over an iPhone and $800 cash.

“He allowed two individuals armed with guns to rob the people in that room, while he stood there in an Atlanta Police Department clothing,” Cobb County Assistant District Attorney Katie Southmayd said.


More information about the robbery and the two other people will be revealed later this month.

A judge wants to hear testimony from Cobb County investigators before he decides on Thorne’s bond.

“Between October and now, the train has basically become derailed,” Cobb County Magistrate Court Judge Gerald Moore said.

Before the robbery, Atlanta police say Thorne resigned on Oct. 1.

An investigation revealed he offered to take payment from a suspect with an outstanding warrant in exchange for making the warrant go away.

Thorne's mother begged the judge to set her son free.

“I don’t care what I have to do at this point, I just can’t see the fact my son is in this position. If you can just please, please help us,” Marilynn Gilbert said.