Tip leads to arrest of suspected Church’s Chicken robbers

Published 10:05 pm Friday, November 9, 2012

Armed robbers converged on Church’s Chicken in Selma Thursday evening, making away with an undisclosed amount of cash. But, a tip called into CrimeStoppers Friday led the Selma Police Department to make two arrests in connection with the Thursday robbery and another that occurred in late October. --Sarah Cook

An anonymous phone call made to CrimeStoppers has apparently led the Selma Police Department to arrest two suspects believed to be part of an armed robbery at Church’s Chicken Thursday evening and the Maxway Department Store on Oct. 27.

At around 8:42 p.m. Thursday, three suspects entered the Church’s Chicken on Broad Street, displayed guns, fired shots into the ceiling and then made away with an undisclosed amount of money.

On Friday, after receiving the tip from the Dallas County Sheriff’s Department through CrimeStoppers, officials with the Selma Police Department began their search for the suspects.

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“After receiving the names and the nicknames of the suspects, detectives went to the one of the addresses — and then another address — where they recovered the guns, mask, gloves and clothes used in the Church’s Chicken robbery,” Riley said.

Selma’s Lt. Johnny King said his detectives then discovered connections between the suspects and the Maxway robbery.

“Upon further investigation, the detectives that these same suspects were the ones who robbed the Maxway Store on Oct. 27 at gunpoint,” King said.

No one was injured in either robbery, and police are continuing their search for the remaining suspects that were part of the Church’s Chicken and Maxway robberies.

One of the suspects arrested was 27-year-old Selma resident Willie James Lowe. In addition to the charges he now faces in connection with these Selma robberies, Lowe faces additional problems since he was reportedly on federal probation at the time.

“At the request of his federal probation officer in Mobile, Lowe has been transported to the federal holding facility in Uniontown,” King said.

Lowe is being held under a $2 million bond and charged with two counts of first-degree robbery and firearms possession.

Detectives also arrested 21-year-old Selma resident Corey James and charged him with two counts of first-degree robbery in connection with the two robberies. He is currently being held in the Dallas County Jail under a $2 million bond.

Police also recovered a .380 pistol and Tech 9 semi-automatic weapon at the time of the arrests.

First-degree robbery is a Class A felony in the State of Alabama, and since a firearm was used in the offenses, the punishment could range from 10 to 99 years in state prison.

“None of this would have been possible without the tip received through CrimeStoppers and the great communication with the Dallas County Sheriff’s Department,” Riley said.