PORT DEPOSIT — Investigators have arrested the alleged getaway driver in an attempted armed robbery at a Port Deposit-area convenience store — where one of the two suspects who had gone into the business fired a shotgun blast through the ceiling while struggling with a cashier over the weapon, police reported.
That employee, who was not injured during the incident, is credited with foiling the robbery attempt, which occurred at about 12:15 a.m. Tuesday at the Landhope Farms store in the 1200 block of Jacob Tome Highway, police said. The two holdup men fled from the store and got into a silver Ford Taurus, which sped away, after the cashier had wrested the shotgun from the gunman, police added.
Cecil County Sheriff’s Office detectives arrested the alleged getaway driver, Nicholaus Joseph Roth, 25, at his Essex residence Thursday after linking Roth to the Ford Taurus that a store surveillance camera had videotaped outside the store, police reported.
“As the two suspects are exiting the store, the vehicle leaves the parking space and backs up toward one of the cameras to the rear of the store. The camera is able to clearly obtain the (license plate number),” according to Cecil County District Court records.
CCSO Det. Tyler Price, lead investigator, ran that tag number through a Motor Vehicle Administration database, which showed that the 2015 Ford Taurus is registered to Roth, police said. Assisted by Baltimore County Police Department officers, CCSO investigators executed a court-approved search warrant Thursday at Roth’s residence, where they arrested him, police added.
During a police interview after he had been taken into custody, Roth admitted to taking part in the attempted armed robbery, court records show.
“Roth confessed to having knowledge that the occupants of the vehicle were intending on committing an armed robbery at the Landhope Farms store. Roth confessed to having knowledge that one of the occupants was in possession of a shotgun and that his occupant intended on using the shotgun during the robbery. Roth stated that he drove the silver colored Ford Taurus to and from the Landhope Farms store on the night the robbery occurred,” court records allege.
The two suspects who had gone into the store and attempted to rob it remained on the loose Sunday, as did a woman who, based on store surveillance camera footage, was inside the Ford Taurus with Roth during the incident.
Roth, who remained in the Cecil County Detention Center without bond Sunday, is charged with armed robbery, robbery and conspiracy to commit armed robbery, according to court records, which indicate that he is scheduled for a June 28 preliminary hearing.
The attempted holdup occurred at approximately 12:15 a.m. Tuesday, when two men partially concealing their faces with bandanas entered the store and approached the checkout counter, police said.
Investigators described one of the suspects as heavyset, the other as thin, police added. The thin suspect was barefoot, police noted.
“The thin subject pointed the shotgun directly at (the cashier) and demanded money from him. The thin subject punched (the cashier) in the face, before shoving the barrel of the shotgun into his neck. (The cashier) began defending himself at this point and grabbed the shotgun and a struggle ensued over the shotgun. During this struggle, the thin suspect fired a buckshot-style round from the shotgun, striking the ceiling of the store,” Price outlines in his statement of probable cause.
After the cashier had gained control of the shotgun, the two suspects fled from the store, police reported.
Anyone with information that might help investigators identify the suspects who are still at large is asked to call CCSO Det. Tyler Price, lead investigator, at 410-392-2124.