One person has been arrested, and authorities are searching for two West Virginia men in connection with the Friday night shooting death of a local convenience store operator.
Detectives with the Mount Airy Police Department issued warrants on three suspects in connection with an armed robbery and shooting death at a Mount Airy convenience store.
The Mount Airy Police Department issued arrest warrants for Emanuel William Foster, a 23-year-old black male of 3690 Coal Heritage Road, Bluefield, W. Va., and Joshua Robert Berry, a 28-year-old white male of 3690 Coal Heritage Road, Bluefield, in connection with the armed robbery and shooting death of 58-year-old Donald Claude Ardner Friday night.
Police have said they believe Ardner was gunned down during an armed robbery at Zip Foods convenience store located at 449 North Andy Griffith Parkway.
In addition to the two suspects, Sarah Lynn Looney, a 24-year-old female also of 3690 Coal Heritage Road, Bluefield, was charged with conspiracy to commit armed robbery and accessory after the fact to murder. She turned herself in to the the Bluefield Police Department Saturday night.
The Mount Airy Police Department and The North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation are still investigating the death.
Lt. Jeff Inman of the police department said that at around 11:51 p.m., officers with the Mount Airy department responded to a call at the Zip Foods convenience store.
“Upon arrival, officers determined that an armed robbery had occurred, and a male victim… was located at the scene,” Inman said.
Police believe the victim, Ardner, ran the business.
Officers believe two male suspects dressed in dark clothing and armed with an assault-type rifle entered the store and robbed it at gunpoint, Inman said. Police believe they were traveling in a dark-colored passenger vehicle, and that one of them may have been injured during the robbery.
“Mr. Ardner died at the scene as a result of the injuries he sustained,” Inman said.
Police were not releasing additional information Saturday. They are asking anyone with information about the crime call the department at 336-786-3535.
Reach Keith Strange at email@example.com or 719-1929.