03/09/10 — Two charged in thefts

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Two charged in thefts

By Nick Hiltunen
Published in News on March 9, 2010 1:46 PM

A Poplar Street man accused of brandishing a utility knife and "charging" a Rosewood Wal-Mart loss prevention officer Satur-day evening and then leading police on a high-speed chase faces charges, and a female accomplice also was jailed for her involvement in the altercation, police said.

Darrell Braswell, 40, is charged with three felonies, including armed robbery, conspiracy to commit armed robbery and speeding to elude arrest, in addition to eight other related misdemeanors. He was jailed under a $290,000 bond.

Susan Hunter, 43, of East Elm Street, faces two felonies, including aiding and abetting a felony and conspiracy to commit armed robbery. She was also found carrying drug paraphernalia, and was jailed under a $75,500 bond, police said.

Police said Officer Dillon Fleming was in the parking lot of Wal-Mart when the security personnel who were allegedly accosted approached him.

The loss prevention officers told Fleming that Braswell had made off with merchandise from the store and threatened them with a utility knife when they confronted him.

The officer saw the vehicle and tried to stop it, but Braswell drove at a "high rate of speed" down U.S. 70 toward Goldsboro, police said.

Maj. Mike Hopper said Braswell's exit from the retailer's parking lot was dangerous.

"When he left there (Wal-Mart) he drove eastbound in the westbound lane all the way to McDonald's, we were lucky he didn't hit anybody."

Braswell then reportedly sideswiped a vehicle near the intersection of West Grantham Street and Claridge Nursery Road while on West Grantham, officers reported.

The chase ended when Braswell hit railroad tracks in the 600 block of West Oak Street, which caused "extensive damage" to the vehicle he was driving, officers said.

Finally, with assisting officers from the Wayne County Sheriff's Office now helping in the pursuit, Braswell was arrested in the 100 block of Rockefeller Court, police said.

Ms. Hunter had been apprehended at Rosewood Wal-Mart, police said.