Detectives Investigating Multiple Armed Robberies

By Guy Leonard, County Times

HOLLYWOOD, Md. (Sept. 11, 2008)—Officials with the St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office now say that they have nearly all suspects in custody after a spate of three separate armed robberies that occurred the first week of the month.

Deputy Cindy Allen, spokeswoman for the sheriff’s office, said the suspect in the first robbery, which occurred at the Stacey’s Millennium Cuts on Great Mills Road Sept. 2, had just been apprehended Monday after a week of searching.

Eric Lionel Barnes, 45, of Redgate remains in police custody.

On Sept. 3, police began investigating two other armed robberies, one an attempt at the Kentucky Fried Chicken store on Great Mills Road and another at a home on Oregon Way in Great Mills.

One suspect in the residential robbery, David L. Briscoe, 19, of Lexington Park, was arrested shortly after the incident occurred and police are still looking for his alleged accomplices Wayne Darnell Winters, 36, and Mozetta Ann Claude, 37, also of Lexington Park.

On Sept. 5 detectives arrested the suspect in the attempted fast food restaurant robbery, Darvin C. Brooks, 40, of Lexington Park, who is also now in police custody.

Allen said despite last week being busy for investigators, the robberies were unrelated.

Brooks, according to sheriff’s reports, has been charged with attempted armed robbery and first-degree assault for allegedly using a handgun in commission of the crime against two employees at the Lexington Park KFC.

According to charging documents filed against Brooks by Det. Vyvyan Walker, the suspect brandished a silver handgun once he entered the restaurant, grabbed a store employee by the shirt, put the gun to the victim’s chest and demanded he open the store’s safe.

When the first employee said they could not open the safe, Brooks turned his attention to a second employee and told them to keep quiet or face bodily harm, charging documents allege.

Brooks then left the establishment and deputies arrived on the scene to investigate, and apparently, the victim’s familiarity with Brooks led to his eventual capture.

Both store employees identified Brooks as a man who was a customer and had even taken an application for employment, which he returned just days prior to the robbery.

The second employee later saw Brooks at a local grocery store, charging documents state, and identified him as the one who allegedly committed the KFC store robbery and called 911 to inform police.

Brooks saw the employee, and after observing her on the phone, he fled the store into a wooded area on Great Mills Road adjacent to the A&E Motel.

A sheriff’s deputy apprehended Brooks in the motel parking lot, charging documents show, and both employees of the KFC store identified him as the alleged perpetrator of the robbery.

In the Oregon Way incident, detectives believe that Briscoe, Winters and Claude arrived at the residence looking for two people in regards to a dispute over money, according to police reports.

While the two people they were looking for were not there, police reports indicate, the three suspects allegedly threatened to shoot the people who answered the door, three men, if they did not comply with their demands.

Police allege that the three suspects, Winters being the one in possession of a handgun at the time of the incident, went through the home and stole cash and other items before fleeing.

Briscoe, the sole suspect to have been apprehended so far, was charged with armed robbery, theft over $500 and three counts of first and second degree assault, according to police reports.

The latest suspect to be captured, Barnes, is accused of using a handgun to rob the owner of Stacey’s Millennium Cuts on the way from the business to the owner’s car.

After the victim gave Barnes their belongings, police reports allege, Barnes fled.

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