Two men charged in string of armed robberies
By Ethan Smith
Published in News on March 20, 2017 2:45 PM
After a string of armed robberies in Wayne County stretching from August to January, two men now face charges in connection to those incidents.
Press releases from the Goldsboro Police Department and Wayne County Sheriff's Office said the two men are responsible for nearly a dozen armed robberies in the area.
Authorities issued warrants on Warren Baker Jr., 31, of the Streets of Goldsboro, for one count of attempted robbery with a dangerous weapon, 12 counts of robbery with a dangerous weapon, six counts of second-degree kidnapping and three counts of larceny of a motor vehicle.
Baker is currently in the Cumberland County Jail for the armed robbery of a Dollar General and a Starbucks in Fayetteville, the release said.
The warrants have not been served on Baker at this time, the release said.
Richard Larry Turner, 49, of 321 Myers Ave., is charged with two counts of robbery with a dangerous weapon and two counts of second-degree kidnapping.
He was arrested and put in the Wayne County Jail under a $157,000 secured bond.
The police department's press release said Baker is responsible for the armed robberies of the following stores:
• ABC Store, 1316 W. Grantham St., Aug. 31, 2016. Baker allegedly entered the store, brandished a handgun and demanded money from the register.
• Family Dollar, 2529 E. Ash St., Oct. 6, 2016. Baker allegedly forced two employees back inside the store at closing time, armed with a handgun, and demanded money. He also took employees cell phones.
• Subway, 101 Patetown Road, Oct. 16, 2016. Baker reportedly entered the restaurant with a handgun, jumped over the counter and demanded money from two employees.
• Burger King, 1901 N. Berkeley Blvd., Oct. 21, 2016. Baker allegedly entered the fast-food restaurant and demanded money from employees.
• Family Dollar, 2529 E. Ash St., Nov. 30, 2016. Baker allegedly approached an employee as she opened the store. The release said he took her cell phone, demanded money once inside while brandishing a handgun, took the employee's car and fled the scene.
• Hardee's, 1109 Eleventh St., Dec. 8, 2016. Baker reportedly entered the restaurant, jumped over the counter, brandished a handgun and demanded money, but fled the store before getting any money.
• Ms. B. Johnson, 601 Royall Ave., Dec. 8, 2016. Baker allegedly approached the woman in the WAGES parking lot, brandished a handgun and demanded her car keys. He then reportedly fled the scene in her car.
• Dollar General, 1400 W. Grantham St., Dec. 9, 2016. Baker allegedly approached two employees as they closed the store, forced them back inside the business and demanded money. He reportedly had a handgun.
• Circle K, 600 N. Spence Ave., January 28. Baker allegedly approached an employee as she opened the store, brandished a handgun and demanded money. He then reportedly took her vehicle and fled the scene.
Turner and Baker are both charged in the Dec. 15, 2016 robbery of the Dollar General at 2551 U.S. 13 North, and the January 10 robbery of the Dollar General at 100 Genoa Crossing Road.
The release said employees were approached at the U.S. 13 North Dollar General as they left the store and were locking the front door. One of the men then forced the employees back inside the store, held them at gunpoint and took money from the safe, the release said.
In the January 10 robbery, one of the men allegedly approached the employees as they left the store and were locking the front door, then forced them back inside while holding them at gunpoint and took money and cigarettes.
Maj. Tom Effler with the Wayne County Sheriff's Office said Baker is believed to have been the man who actually went inside the businesses and carried out the robberies, while Turner waited outside in a vehicle to drive away from the scene.
Maj. Anthony Carmon, head of the Goldsboro Police Department's Investigative Services Bureau, confirmed that Baker is also charged in connection to these two robberies.
Effler with the Wayne County Sheriff's Office said authorities do not currently know if Turner is connected to the other nine robberies Baker allegedly committed, but that Turner could be charged in the future if more information comes out.
Effler said the arrests were made after the sheriff's office criminal analyst started investigation tidbits of information and pulling threads together to develop suspects.
"She kept putting a lot of things together," Effler said. "It was different odds and ends she started getting and it all started clicking together."
These cases were jointly investigated by the police department and local sheriff's office, as well as the Duplin County Sheriff's Office.