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Robbery suspect caught by lawmen

A Thomson man suspected of robbing a restaurant this month remains jailed.

Justin Devon Samuels, of the 2800 block of Wrens Highway, was taken into custody shortly after the armed robbery of Zaxby's, 1929 Washington Road, according to a report filed by Deputy Marc Thompson of the McDuffie County Sheriff's Office.

The robbery occurred shortly after 10:30 p.m. Dec. 7, when the restaurant was closed.

Mr. Samuels, who was caught by Deputy Bret Bentley, was charged with armed robbery.

Deputies Thompson, Bentley and Robert Hoffman were dispatched to the restaurant during the robbery. Before they arrived, the robber left.

He had been wearing black clothing, including a ski mask.

While patrolling behind Second Baptist Church, Deputy Bentley spotted the suspect and placed him under arrest.

Deputies Bentley and Hoffman were helped by Officers Adam Dye and Matt Massey, of the Thomson Police Department.

Deputy Sgt. First Class Mike Hobbs also responded to the scene.

Deputy Hoffman later found a black bookbag and a BB gun in the front seat of a Buick LeSabre.

Deputy Thompson went to the restaurant to process the crime scene.

An employee told him he had gone out the back door to take out trash and was met a black man, dressed in black clothing and carrying a handgun in the parking lot.

The employee said the robber forced him back inside the restaurant at gunpoint.

The robber then forced him and two others into a cooler.

The night manager, who was in the office, later was approached by the robber, who held the handgun to his face before giving him a bag and forcing the manager to put money into it.

The robber left through the back door with the money.

Web posted on Thursday, December 24, 2009

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