MARYVILLE (WATE) – The police chiefs of Alcoa and Maryville say two suspects have been charged in connection to three armed robberies in a 15 mile radius of each other over the past few weeks.
Timothy J. Dorsey, 26, and Crystal D. Graves, 25, are each charged with three counts of aggravated robbery and three counts of conspiracy to commit aggravated robbery.
The robberies happened on Saturday, February 21, at Smokeyz Discount Tobacco, 2753 Alcoa Highway; Monday, February 23. at Plantation Market, 2758 Sevierville Road; and Monday, March 2, at Subway, 1933 Topside Road.
Two search warrants were served around 6 a.m. Thursday at homes on Bear Hollow Loop Road and Morganton Road. A Blount County SWAT team assisted on Bear Hollow Loop Road.
April Ramsey, a manager at Smokeyz Discount Tobacco is happy.
“I feel relieved like a little bit of my sense of security is back now, you know,” said Ramsey.
Ramsey says she was at the register when her store was robbed a few weeks ago.
“It was terrifying, it was scary to know that somebody would come in and not care about your life all for a few dollars,” said Ramsey.
She says the robber got away with more than $950. Since the robbery a few weeks ago, operations have changed at the store. Only the drive-thru is open at night. The lobby is closed so that workers can feel safe.
“Now they can’t put somebody else’s life in danger,” said Ramsey.
Alcoa Det. Kris Sanders says catching the suspects was a joint effort. The suspects were arrested early Thursday morning. Sanders say mannerisms caught on camera played a huge role.
“One of the things we saw in the video were a lot of consistency in the suspects mannerisms, the way he moved throughout the course of the robbery, the way he held the handgun,” said Det. Sanders.
Sanders says they believe the robberies weren’t the first time the suspects entered the stores.
“I would say more along the line of customers, regular customers, that sort of thing,” said Det. Sanders.
The possibility of the thief being a regular customer is very concerning to Ramsey.
“It’s an eerie feeling to know that they’ve been in here and have befriended me and I’ve been friendly to them for them to come back and rob me,” said Ramsey.
Dorsey and Graves are each being held on $75,000 bond. A court hearing is scheduled on March 19.