Man involved in police chase charged with robbery

December 03, 1998|By DON AINES

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. - Pennsylvania State Police have charged a man involved in a Tuesday evening high-speed chase in connection with a strong-armed robbery Sunday night at the Wal-Mart store in Guilford Township.

Robert Lee Suders Jr., 18, 106 Meadow Drive, Shippensburg, Pa., was arraigned on robbery and other charges after he was taken into custody Tuesday following a pursuit that ended with the crash of a stolen car.

Suders was charged with robbery, aggravated assault, theft, receiving stolen property and criminal conspiracy in connection with the 9:40 p.m. robbery outside the store at 1730 Lincoln Way East.

Police filed identical charges against Randy Edward Beecher Jr., 19, of 7263 Lincoln Way East, Fayetteville, Pa.

The report said Kim Smith, 36, and Brenda Hege, 46, both of Chambersburg, were approached from behind by two men and pushed to the ground. Smith's nose was broken, and her purse, containing $11 and credit cards, was stolen.


Suders and Beecher are scheduled for preliminary hearings on the charges on Dec. 10 before District Justice Gary Carter. Both were being held in lieu of $100,000 bond at Franklin County Prison.

According to state police, a white 1991 Toyota Celica GTS was stolen from Brandt Motors, 4847 Lincoln Way West, St. Thomas, Pa. The report said the driver identified himself as Suders.

An employee of the dealership said the car was taken for a test drive at 12:45 p.m. and not returned. The employee said the same man had driven the car before.

At about 7:15 p.m., a Washington Township police officer was on a speed enforcement detail when the car was clocked doing 90 miles per hour southbound on Midvale Road, according to Sgt. Barry Keller of the township police. The chase continued onto Amsterdam and Mill roads, east on Pa. 16 and then onto Old Forge Road.

The chase continued north where the officer lost control of the cruiser and struck a telephone pole, Keller said.

Washington Township Administrator Michael Christopher said Officer Larry Minnich was treated at Chambersburg Hospital and released early Wednesday.

State police picked up the pursuit, which the report said went briefly into Adams County, north into the Caledonia area, east into the Chambersburg area and south on U.S. 11.

The chase ended just before 8 p.m. when the car overturned north of Greencastle, Pa. Suders suffered minor injuries in the accident and was treated and released from Chambersburg Hospital.

An unidentified juvenile female passenger also was treated and released from the hospital, state police said.

Suders had not been arraigned on charges stemming from the chase as of Wednesday afternoon.

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