Jeffrey Eugene Hale testified Tuesday in Bartow Superior Court that he drove to 30 Sutton Trail on June 13, 2010, around midnight. Hale told jurors that he waited in the truck while Garner and Charles Edmond Hendrix burglarized the home and assaulted family members.
The homeowner testified he was awakened by a loud bang at the door.
"I heard [someone] scream and say, 'Open this G-D door,'" he told jurors. He said shortly after the bangs the robbers kicked in the door.
The robbers, wearing ski masks and motorcycle helmets, forced the homeowner, his wife and sister into a bedroom. The sister testified the men attempted to restrain her but failed.
"The guy kept trying to tie me up, but the rope kept rolling down my arms and that's what those [bruises] are from," she said, referring to pictures of her bruised arms displayed by Assistant District Attorney Elizabeth York .
The victim testified she fell to the floor when one of the robbers broke her cheek with a flashlight.
"I stayed laid down [and] pretended to be knocked out," she said.
Meanwhile, the robbers were demanding drugs from the homeowner. The man testified he offered the robbers $500 to $700 in methamphetamine, but they wanted more.
"I was selling meth, not a massive amount, but enough to pay a bill," he admitted.
The homeowner said he was thrown into a wall, choked, hit with a gun and had a pillowcase put over his head.
"I was thinking it was a dream," he testified. "I can't believe it was happening and I was mad, wondering who sent them to my house."
The robbers continued to demand more drugs, guns and money. The homeowner said he then told them to take his Harley-Davidson motorcycle.
According to the homeowner, one of the robbers "blasted a shell" at him and he dropped to the floor, pretending to be dead.
"When I heard the Harley start up, I knew everyone was safe," he testified.
A neighbor testified that the homeowner ran to her house for help and she called 911.
A month after the crime, Hendrix was caught in Coweta County driving the stolen motorcycle. He testified that Garner called him and asked if he was still interested in getting drugs. He replied yes and drove from Marietta to Garner's Cartersville home. They then rode to the victim's him with Hale.
Hendrix also testified he was wearing a ski mask during the robbery, and Garner, who is also his brother-in-law, wore a motorcycle helmet.
When asked by defense attorney Don Evans if he wanted to testify against Garner, Hendrix replied, "Yes, because he beats my sister."
Hendrix pleaded guilty to attempted burglary and theft by taking. He was sentenced to 15 years, serve five and the remainder on probation. Hale pleaded guilty to four counts of burglary; he also received a 15-year sentence, serve five in prison.
The trial continues today with more testimony and possible closing arguments. Judge Scott Smith is presiding over the case.