A Macon County man was charged with especially aggravated robbery last Saturday morning, January 21, just minutes after robbing the Cash Express in Carthage, as reported by Eddie West in the January 26 issue of the Carthage Courier.
David Gray, age 33, of Parkhurst Road in Red Boiling Springs, entered the store shortly before 9:30 a.m., hit the woman behind the counter over the head with a metal pipe, and forced her to hand over cash from a register and a safe. Gray fled, on foot, with the money. The victimized employee made a call to 911 three minutes after Gray entered the store.
Carthage Police Officer Brit Davis arrived at the business less than a minute after the 911 call was received and attended to the injured employee until the ambulance arrived. The employee was taken to the Carthage General Hospital, where she remained overnight and was treated for a five-inch laceration to the head.
Moments later, according to Police Chief Steve Hopper, the police department began receiving numerous calls from the public of possible sitings of the vehicle, a white van, described by a clerk at the Smith County Discount Tobacco store.
One such report led Davis, along with sheriff’s deputies Scott Hale and Kenneth Hartsville, and Detective Shannon Hunt to the residence of Lonnie and Kelly Sanders at Bruce Scott Mobile Home Park.
Gray, who was at the home, was taken into custody along with Lonnie and Kelly Sanders, for questioning. After officers received permission from the occupants to search the residence, they found the clothes that Gray was reported wearing during the robbery, along with the metal pipe and $5,300 in cash.
Kelly Sanders admitted to driving the getaway vehicle, Hopper said. Along with Gray, she was charged with especially aggravated robbery. Gray is being held, without bond, at the Smith County jail. Sanders bond was set at $30,000. The two face a February 16 General Sessions Court date.
Lonnie Sanders was not suspected of taking part in the robbery and was not charged.