Suspects in marijuana safe case accept deal

Apr. 30, 2014 @ 08:13 PM

The last two suspects involved in an unsuccessful drug robbery accepted plea deals in Vance County Superior Court on Wednesday.

Torian Robertson, 23, of 524 Stone St., pleaded guilty to common-law robbery in front of Judge Paul Ridgeway, who sentenced him to 19 to 32 months – or 1 1/2 to nearly three years — in prison.

Robertson also pleaded guilty to assault inflicting serious bodily injury related to a separate incident that occurred in jail while he awaited trial.

He faced multiple counts of felony robbery with a dangerous weapon, felony possession of stolen goods, felony breaking and entering, and felony possession of a stolen firearm. Those charges were dismissed.

Glen Jones, 20, of 5338 Raleigh Road, Lot 108, pleaded guilty to a felony charge of fleeing to elude arrest in front of Ridgeway on Wednesday in Vance County Superior Court.

Jones and Roberston are co-defendants with Orrie Williams, 24, of 3974 Jacksontown Road, and Geoffrey Gattis, 19, of 203 N. Beckford Drive. The four men were arrested for attempting to steal a safe with marijuana locked inside from Kenneth M. Newcomb and two others at 2931 Thomas Road, Lot 12, on Aug. 28, 2013.

Assistant District Attorney Allison Capps said in court a deputy from the Vance County Sheriff’s Office responded to a breaking and entering call at the Thomas Road residence around 6:30 p.m.

One of the occupants reported he was in the living room when several men arrived at his home, Capps said.

One of the intruders ordered him to ground at gunpoint, assaulted him and demanded to know where the safe was, Capps said.

The other residents reported another man came around the trailer with a shotgun and ordered the occupants to the ground, Capps said.

The outside robber was later identified as Gattis, who reportedly said he knew marijuana was sold from the house and was kept in a safe in the living room.

Newcomb said he smoked marijuana with Gattis earlier that day, according to Capps.

Deputies responding to the armed robbery encountered a vehicle matching the description given in an alert and conducted a traffic stop on N.C. 39. Williams attempted to run but was caught, and all four men were arrested.

Deputies seized the safe with marijuana from the vehicle, as well as a .22-caliber rifle and .28-caliber shotgun.

Williams pleaded guilty in Vance County Superior Court on March 18 to one count of common-law robbery and one count of assault with a deadly weapon upon a government official. He received the same sentence as Robertson.

Gattis pleaded guilty to common-law robbery in February. He was sentenced to about one to three years in prison.

 

Contact the writer at smansur@hendersondispatch.com.