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Man's escape effort foiled in W.Va. court

June 26, 2003|by CANDICE BOSELY

martinsburg@herald-mail.com

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - The man accused of robbing a 7-Eleven store last month tried to escape from Magistrate Court Wednesday, but was stopped by two bailiffs, a bail bondsman and a deputy who happened to be in the courthouse, according to records.

Dale Anthony Shoop, 32, of Mount Tabor Road in Hagerstown, was in court for a preliminary hearing on a felony charge of armed robbery.

Shoop is charged with robbing the Berkeley Station Road convenience store on May 4 and getting $26.

After learning his bail had been revoked at the request of bondsman Eric Mitchell, Shoop attempted to run up the steps from the court's basement, according to court records.

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He made it two steps before bailiffs Jeff Wilkins and Bob Masters tackled him, Wilkins said. Mitchell assisted, as did Deputy R.B. Rhinaman with the Berkeley County Sheriff's Department.

Court records indicate Shoop is 6 feet, 2 inches tall and weighs 220 pounds.

The armed robbery preliminary hearing was not held, and Shoop was charged with a felony count of attempted escape from a court bailiff. Bail for that charge was set at $50,000.

Shoop had been free on $50,000 bail at the time.

Shoop was charged with robbery on May 14 after a witness alleged to police that he was the man who robbed the store.

In a van found at the home of Shoop's girlfriend, police seized clothes, shoes and a ski mask like the one worn during the robbery, said Lt. K.C. Bohrer of the Berkeley County Sheriff's Department.

Bohrer said the robbery charge may be handled in U.S. District Court because Shoop is a convicted felon and a registered sex offender in Washington County.

A conviction on a charge of armed robbery carries a minimum sentence of 10 years in prison. A conviction on a charge of attempted escape carries a sentence of up to five years in prison.

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