TV viewers help police nab brutal robbery suspects
October 27, 2004
Americus-- Surveillance video from the Flash Foods robbery was watched by thousands of people.
"The video was very instrumental, because we had excellent video, audio of the suspects, it was huge for us to be able to have that and play that out throughout South Georgia," said Americus Police Lt. Richard McCorkle.
It aired on WALB just a few hours after it happened and Dawson convience store clerk Shirley Randall saw it too. "I have always been scared for myself before that, because it happens at convenience stores all the time."
But, this clerk did a double take when she saw the story. "What really made me know who they were talking about was the car, the car they said they was in," said Randall. "And me and my coworkers saw the car when it stopped here."
Their Volvo was the getaway car for four Edison men-- a car that stopped at Randall's Dawson Inland Convient Store a few hours before the Americus robbery. "One of them came and spoke to me about something and then one by one like every ten seconds they just walked out and got back in the car. They didn't buy anything. No gas, no nothing." The men drove to the Flash Foods Store thirty miles away in Americus, robbing it and savagely beating two female clerks.
The Dawson clerk thinks its a fate that might have been meant for her. "We thought they was. After it happened, we thought that was intended to do but we were just too crowded at the time."
"Its a difficult case when you are talking about a robbery that occurs here and our suspects are 60 miles away," said McCorkle. "You have to have a little bit of luck on your side, which we had in this case." A little luck, in the form of a convieance store clerk who thinks she is lucky too.
Twenty-five-year-old Lakedrick Johnson is the man police say actually beat the clerks. Johnson, along with 30-year-old Anthony Bridges, 24-year-old Bobby Williams, and 28-year-old Trevor Hart, are charged with one count robbery and two counts aggravated assault. They are all from Edison, but they're in the Sumter County Jail.