News from the Tennessee Valley State, Local and National news
SUNDAY, JULY 29, 2007

Robbery turns into high-speed chase

By Bayne Hughes · 340-2432

A robbery and high-speed chase through Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge and into Decatur ended in the arrest of two men Saturday evening.

Chief Deputy Mike Corley of the Morgan County Sheriff’s Department said Joshua R. Terry, 18, of Priceville Mountain Drive in Priceville, and Toby Helms, 18, of Larkwood Drive in Decatur allegedly robbed Skeeter’s General Store on Upper River Road, Somerville, at about 7:12 p.m.

Corley said a white male entered the store, got a cold drink out of the cooler and then pulled a silver handgun on the clerk. She then handed him checks and cash out of the cash register.

“He ran out of the store, and the other subject was waiting for him in a red Blazer,” Corley said.

A witness in the parking lot wrote down the vehicle’s tag number. Corley said the fleeing suspect dropped some of the cash and checks in the parking lot.

Deputies then spotted the vehicle and chased it onto the refuge. A Priceville police officer aided deputies in their attempts to cut off several exits.

The suspects managed to get to Old River Road, and a member of the sheriff’s canine unit spotted the vehicle traveling west on Alabama 67 toward Decatur.

Deputies reported speeds reached over 90 mph before the suspects turned north on Sixth Avenue Southeast in Decatur.

Decatur police then took over the chase. The suspects turned left on 14th Street Southeast and went immediately left on Veterans Drive before police surrounded the vehicle behind the Corr Wireless store at 7:37 p.m.

Deputies impounded the vehicle and took the suspects to the Morgan County Jail.

“We recovered checks and a large amount of cash,” Corley said. “There were no injuries or property damage.”

Corley said a crime-scene technician and an investigator were at the store investigating the robbery, while another investigator was interviewing the suspects. Charges were still pending at The Daily’s press time.

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