Originally created 02/16/02

Car part leads to arrests



A part that fell off a fleeing car during a police chase a week ago led officers to charge two Augusta men with the robbery of a convenience store Thursday and two earlier robberies, a Richmond County Sheriff's Office major said.

On Friday, police arrested Laron Mickens and Corey White, both 18 and both of the 2400 block of Ridge Road, and charged them with armed robbery of the Corner Store at 2302 Wheeless Road, Maj. Ken Autry said.

Mr. Mickens is accused of entering the Corner Store around midnight Thursday wearing a black ski mask and gloves and robbing the store at gunpoint. After the robbery was reported, officers saw a vehicle in the vicinity fitting the description of one used in the robbery of Joe's Package Store at 3001 Peach Orchard Road on Feb. 8. In that robbery, a sheriff's deputy patrolling the area saw the robber run from the store and get into a dark-colored Nissan Sentra, which sped away. The deputy pursued the car for a while but lost it.

"He loses the car, but during the chase a splash guard fell off the car from the fender well, and we were able to take that and tell what kind of car it came off," Maj. Autry said.

After Thursday's robbery, when officers spotted the car near the store and stopped it, they saw that one of the men inside fit the description of the man who had just robbed the Corner Store, Maj. Autry said.

"We got the car, and the car is missing a part similar to the one that fell from the other car," he said.

Police also charged Mr. Mickens and Mr. White with the Feb. 7 robbery of KC Package Store on Old Waynesboro Road. In that holdup, the robber walked into the store, pulled a semi-automatic gun and fired a shot into the counter. He left with a bottle of gin and some money, police said.