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Police say footprints lead to stolen vodka in Athens

By Holly Hollman 340-2445

ATHENS — All Athens police had to do was follow the muddy footprints to the vodka.

The two suspects accused of stealing it didn't have time to drink all their pilfered liquor.

Capt. Marty Bruce said that at 1:20 a.m. Thursday, officer Greg Parnell responded to an alarm at Athens Beverage Co. on U.S. 31. He found that someone had used a concrete block to break the glass on the front door.

The suspects didn't make it hard to trace their steps. Police followed muddy footprints from the store, down the sidewalk and to a room at the neighboring Budget Inn.

Inside, officers found Adam Wayne Blankenship, 23, in bed and Robert Taylor Williams, 35, hiding in the bathroom, Bruce said. The two men have been living at the Budget Inn, he said.

Officers found four bottles of Aristocrat Vodka allegedly taken from the beverage store and a pair of muddy shoes that matched the footprints at the crime scene, police said.

Officer Daniel McNatt recognized Blankenship's name and that Decatur police also had warrants on him. According to Decatur records, police have failure to appear warrants on him for theft, public intoxication and a gas drive-off.

Athens charged Blankenship and Williams with third-degree burglary and transferred them to Limestone County Jail.

Both men were in jail Thursday evening in lieu of $2,000 bond each.

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