Texarkana Gazette

Man charged in robbery of local convenienc­e store

- By Lynn LaRowe

TEXARKANA, Ark. — Prosecutor­s in Miller County have formally charged a man accused of firing a shot at a clerk during a convenienc­e store robbery in Texarkana, Arkansas, earlier this month.

In addition to charges of aggravated robbery, aggravated assault and possession of a firearm by a felon, Jonathan Dewayne Carroll is facing enhanced punishment ranges stemming from his use of a firearm and his criminal past. Deputy Prosecutin­g Attorney David Cotten signed off on the charges this week.

Carroll, 26, allegedly pulled a drink from a cooler in the back of the Speed-X located at 2404 N. State Line Ave. at about 6:30 p.m. Jan. 12, according to a probable cause affidavit. Carroll was reportedly wearing a black hoodie, a black mask, blue jeans and lime green gloves when he approached the counter with the drink.

After the clerk scanned the beverage and told him how much he owed, Carroll allegedly pulled a black silver-tipped handgun from his waistband and pointed it at her.

“He then pointed at the register and told her, ‘Give it,’” the affidavit states.

The clerk told police that she “just looked at” the man holding the gun before he fired a single shot which missed her but struck the cigarette bin. The clerk ran to the back office and her manager called police.

The robber fled without getting any cash.

As officers responded to the emergency call, one noticed a man walking in a red tee shirt and shorts walking south on Laurel Street behind the store. Finding it odd that someone would be dressed that way on a winter evening, the officer decided to question him.

“I pulled up behind the subject and turned on my takedown lights. The subject kept walking at which point I tapped my air horn to alert the subject I was behind him,” the affidavit states.

The subject, later identified as Carroll, allegedly ignored the lights and noise from the cruiser and continued to walk away. Carroll allegedly put his hands by his face as he turned to face the officer while walking away from him backwards. The officer threatened to deploy a chemical agent and another officer arrived to assist in the arrest.

A search of Carroll allegedly yielded a loaded 9 mm firearm and a black face mask.

A black hoodie with lettering matching that seen in surveillan­ce footage was discovered in an alley near the store. A spent bullet was recovered from a filing cabinet located directly behind the store’s cigarette rack and a shell casing was found on the floor.

The aggravated robbery charge facing Carroll is typically punishable by 10 to 40 years or life in prison. Cotten included a habitual offender enhancemen­t with the charge upping the punishment range to 10 to 60 years or life. Additional­ly, an enhancemen­t for use of a firearm in commission of aggravated robbery could result in a sentence of up to 15 years which must be served consecutiv­ely to any term Carroll receives for aggravated robbery.

An aggravated assault charge connected to the firing of a weapon at the store clerk is typically punishable by up to six years in prison and a fine up to $10,000. A habitual offender enhancemen­t ups that punishment range to up to 12 years in prison. A firearm enhancemen­t filed with that charge could result in an additional sentence of up to 15 years which must be served consecutiv­ely to any sentence he receives for assault.

Possession of a firearm by someone previously convicted of a felony is typically punishable by up to six years in prison and a fine up to $10,000. A habitual offender enhancemen­t filed with that charge ups the range of punishment to a 12-year maximum.

A warrant for Carroll’s arrest on a motion to revoke probation he is serving for a felony domestic violence assault in Bowie County, Texas, remains pending. Carroll was sentenced in May 2017 to a 10-year probation.

Carroll’s bail in Miller County is currently set at $50,000. He is being held in the Miller County jail and is scheduled to appear next month before a circuit judge.

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