07/14/05 — Man indicted in robbery of gift shop

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Man indicted in robbery of gift shop

By Jack Stephens
Published in News on July 14, 2005 1:45 PM

A 19-year-old man from Fayetteville has been indicted by the Wayne County Grand Jury on charges of robbing two people in a gift shop almost two years ago.

Curtis Arlandea Washington is accused of holding up the Old Quaker House Gift Shop on U.S. 70 East on July 29, 2003.

Curtis Arlandea Washington


An shop employee told investigators that two men entered the store. One went behind the counter, brandished a handgun and demanded money while the other acted as a lookout. The robber then took money from two people and ordered both to stay in a back room. The pair then fled.

Washington was the third man indicted in connection with a string of armed robberies and assaults in 2003 in eastern North Carolina. One man has pleaded guilty for his role in the same holdup. Marcus Devon Bryant, 26, of Spring Lake was sentenced to 120 to 153 months. He also was sentenced to 120 to 153 months for the armed robbery of the Olde Country Store on U.S. 70.

Bryant also was sentenced to 55 to 68 years in prison for the rape of a shopkeeper's wife on Aug. 6, 2003.

A second man, Dennis Earl Washington, 28, of Fayetteville, also was charged with first-degree burglary, armed robbery, attempted armed robbery, first-degree rape and first-degree kidnapping in the case. He has not been tried.

These crimes and similar armed robberies of Asian and minority business owners in neighboring counties in 2003 led to a summit meeting of law authorities from Goldsboro, four nearby cities and Wayne and Johnston counties in Kinston.

Meanwhile, a young Goldsboro man also was re-indicted by the grand jury on a charge of attempted first-degree murder.

Cedric Levern Smalls, 21, of West Chestnut Street was accused of shooting Rashid Tarif Adham Taymullah, 39, of North George Street early Jan. 1 in an apartment in the 100 block of Vanderbilt Circle. Taymullah was treated for his injuries and later released from Wayne Memorial Hospital.

Smalls was not arrested until March 10, when he was apprehended by Wayne County sheriff's deputies during a traffic stop.

Smalls also was indicted on charges of first-degree burglary and assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill while inflicting serious injury.

The grand jury handed up 47 true bills of indictment, including 18 on drug charges, during its monthly meeting. Fifteen people were indicted on such property charges as breaking and entering, larceny, possession of stolen goods and burglary.

Five people were indicted on illegal weapons charges and two each were indicted on fraud or sex offenses.

Three people were indicted as habitual felons. If each is convicted of a fourth, non-overlapping offense, then his sentence would be lengthened significantly.

The grand jurors could not act on four bills, because witnesses were not present. They did not return a true bill on another indictment for a firearms violation, but the defendant, Tiszon Olajuwon Evans, 19, of U.S. 13 South, was indicted for first-degree rape.