OCEAN PINES – A Berlin man along with three other suspects were arrested on armed robbery, assault and other serious charges this week after area police were able to connect them to a pair of hold-ups at convenience stores in Ocean Pines and Willards.
Last Thursday, Worcester County Bureau of Investigation (WCBI) detectives and deputies from the Worcester County Sheriff’s Office responded to the Shore Stop convenience store on Route 589 near Ocean Pines for a reported armed robbery. The investigation revealed two suspects, later identified as Akeem Mason, 17, of Painter, Va., and Dalton Entzminger, 17, of Accomack, Va., entered the store with Mason armed with a handgun and robbed the clerk.
The two suspects stole an undetermined amount of cash and cigarettes from the clerk before exiting the store and fleeing in a vehicle. A short time later, the same suspects, along with Jordan Criner, 23, of Berlin, and Takeyah Mason, 21, of Melfa, Va., robbed the Dash In convenience store in Willards in Wicomico County using the same basic method.
Wicomico County Sheriff’s deputies apprehended the four suspects a short time later and held them on charges related to the Willards armed robbery. The four suspects were then connected to the armed robbery of the Shore Stop near Ocean Pines. Each has been charged with numerous counts including armed robbery, assault, conspiracy to commit armed robbery and handgun charges. Each is being held in Wicomico County without bail.
After the arrest, WCBI detectives were able to connect Criner to a pair of armed robberies in the area in August, including the same Shore Stop convenience store on Route 589 near Ocean Pines. In addition to the charges related to last Thursday’s robberies, Criner has now been charged in Worcester County with 16 total counts including armed robbery, assault, conspiracy to commit armed robbery and handgun charges for his alleged role in the August hold-ups in Ocean Pines and Pittsville.
Around 1 a.m. on Aug. 25, two masked men entered the Shore Stop on Route 589, brandished a handgun and demanded money from the clerk. The clerk complied and the suspects fled the scene with an undisclosed amount of cash. About a half an hour later, the same suspects entered the Shore Stop store in Pittsville and robbed the clerk. After last Thursday’s armed robberies in Ocean Pines and Willards, detectives were able to connect Criner to the August armed robberies in the same areas.