Daily Progress, Jacksonville, TX

Local News

October 4, 2013

Two suspects in county liquor store robbery still remain at large

CUNEY — Warrants have been issued for the arrest of two men alleged to have threatened and robbed a small group of people on the premises of a local liquor store on Sept. 17.

The two men had a third male accomplice who has yet to be identified, police said. A female driver also was arrested and released in connection with the robbery investigation, reports show.

Cuney Police Chief Michael Trawick said authorities specifically are searching for suspect siblings Fitzgerald Allen, 26, and Christopher Allen, 20. Both are area residents and both remained at large Thursday.

Robbery victim Lakena Chea, whose father owns the Arun Rise Liquor Store on U.S. Hwy. 175 – the store that was robbed – said in an email she hopes reporters will try to “help us try to get these individuals caught and brought to the justice that they deserve.”

The robbery took place before 9 p.m. Sept. 17. Three African-American men – two of whom are believed to be the Allen brothers – made entry to Arun Rise all dressed in black from the wooded area to the west of the store.

The three then confronted store owners and an employee in the parking lot, brandishing an unknown model handgun in the face of a female employee while also  shoving a male employee to the ground, police said.

That employee was treated for minor bruising associated with his fall at a local hospital and later released.

While the men made their escape, store owners called the police.

According to the Chief, the three men then got into a car parked on CR 3509 – alleged to have been driven by 27-year-old Bridjhuna Rashaye Thirkill of Jacksonville.

Local law enforcement was nearby, Chief Trawick said, and intercepted their vehicle as it turned west onto 175.

The three men jumped out of the car and sprinted into the woods, according to the chief. But Thirkill was arrested and subsequently booked into Cherokee County jail on charges of aggravated robbery.

As of Sept. 18, Thirkill had been released on $50,000 bond from Cherokee County Jail, records show.

Chief Trawick said the men made off with “several hundred” dollars in cash (at least) and escaped back into the wooded area.

Che said he hopes exposure from this story gets will help authorities locate and capture the two fugitives.

“It's hard to get people aware when it's not plastered all over the media,” Chea said. “ … How can people be on the lookout if they don't know about it? I tried to find any information about it on my own online, but didn't find anything.”

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