01/14/07 — Three face charges in area store robberies

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Three face charges in area store robberies

By Lee Williams
Published in News on January 14, 2007 10:45 AM

KINSTON -- Three Kinston men accused of robbing Hispanic businesses in the Lenoir, Greene and Wayne County areas are now behind bars, thanks to the efforts of several law enforcement agencies.

Denis Emanuel Lopez, 19; Jose Garcia Escobar, 29, and Jose Lenin Maldonado, 23, all of Pollock Street in Kinston, are at the center of an armed robbery investigation that spans three counties. The men, who hail from Honduras, are being held in Wayne County Jail on a $100,000 bond.

The arrests were the culmination of information from Lenoir County Detective Eddie Eubanks, Wayne County Sheriff's Office Chief Investigator Capt. George Raecher said.

Eubanks told Wayne County sheriff's officials he received a tip about who was responsible for the robberies of several Hispanic businesses in Lenoir, Greene and Wayne County. Officers from Lenoir County picked up the suspects at their home, Raecher said.

"Wayne County Sheriff's Detectives Sgts. Tammy Odom and Robert Chunn went to Lenoir County to assist in the investigation and attempt to determine if the three were involved in a robbery in our county," Raecher said.

Three men were accused in an armed robbery that occurred at El Tianguies Mexican Store, 1484 N.C. 111 South, Dec. 22. About $1,000 cash was stolen during the robbery.

Odom and Chunn traveled to Kinston to determine if the three men in custody were responsible. As the investigation unfolded, authorities learned the suspects were al-legedly involved in an armed robbery in Greene County. As a result of the joint investigation, the three men were charged in the armed robbery of El Tianguies.