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One traffic stop solves two robberies

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A Stafford County man charged with two armed robberies that occurred in a 10- to 20-minute span was arrested early Friday after he sped past a deputy shortly after the second holdup.

Sheriff’s Office spokesman Bill Kennedy said the first robbery occurred about 11:20 p.m. Thursday at the Five Twelve C Store at 1075 Garrisonville Road in North Stafford. The shaken store clerk reported that a man wearing a black ski mask and a black hoodie approached the counter and pointed a handgun at him.

He forced the clerk to open the register and hand him an undisclosed amount of money. The suspect then stuffed the money into his pockets and ran out of the store.

Kennedy said police were investigating that robbery when a call came in a short time later about a second robbery on the same road.

A masked suspect with the same description entered the Lake Arrowhead 7–Eleven at 2237 Garrisonville Road, displayed a gun and demanded money. He got cash and was seen leaving the parking lot in a blue SUV.

First Sgt. Robbie Grella was stationed at the intersection of Rock Hill Church Road and Van Horn Lane as part of a perimeter that had been set up after the first robbery. Shortly after midnight, a blue SUV went past Grella at a high rate of speed and made an abrupt turn onto Rock Hill Church Road.

Grella got behind the vehicle and learned from a dispatcher that the vehicle matched the one seen leaving the 7–Eleven robbery. He got the tag number and stopped the vehicle in the 2000 block of Poplar Road.

Other deputies arrived to assist, and evidence linking the driver to the robberies was found in the vehicle, Kennedy said.

James Arthur Jones III, 20, who lives in the 1600 block of Hartwood Road, was charged with two counts of robbery, two counts of using a firearm in the commission of a felony, two counts of brandishing a firearm, possession of stolen property and wearing a mask in public.

He was placed in the Rappahannock Regional Jail under no bond.

He was arraigned Friday in Stafford General District Court, and a preliminary hearing has been set for March 11.

Keith Epps: 540/374-5404


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