DURHAM, N.C. (WNCN) — Authorities are looking for a suspect in a brazen cellphone store robbery in which $54,451 worth of iPhones were stolen in Durham County.
The incident happened in mid-June at the AT&T store at 5431 Page Road, located just outside Durham city limits near RDU Airport, according to a search warrant from Durham police.
The suspect in the June 20 robbery — in which 65 iPhones were stolen — came into the store just after 4 p.m. armed with a handgun, the warrant said.
The man “racked the slide and pointed it toward employees” forcing them and a customer to all lie down on the store’s floor before being ordered to go to a back office, the warrant said.
“Employees were ordered to place all of the iPhones in the inventory safe into two cardboard boxes,” the warrant said, adding the suspect forced a worker to help him carry the box to the getaway car.
The suspect fled in a red Nissan Versa sedan, which had a fake license plate, the warrant said.
Three days later, the same Nissan showed up parked “directly beside” another cellphone store robbery getaway car used in a cellphone store robbery at T-Mobile at 6409 Fayetteville Road in Durham, according to the warrant.
In that robbery, a man entered the T-Mobile store with a handgun and “racked the slide” and ordered all workers to go into a back room.
A man was caught a few minutes later after a GPS tracking device planted by T-Mobile, led to the location of the getaway car — which was stolen — on the 1500 block of Clermont Road, the warrant said.
About 35 cellphones were in plain view in that car, which was tracked after leaving the T-Mobile store, police said. They said the man taken into custody also had a handgun.
The red Nissan Versa, the subject of the search warrant, was parked there too, the warrant said.
Police said the same Nissan was caught on surveillance video at the AT&T store.