Two teenagers have been charged with committing three robberies at an Exxon gas station in Columbia, according to Howard County Police.
Demetrius Burney, 18, of Montgomery Run Road, has been charged with multiple counts of armed robbery, assault and theft, police said. The second suspect, a 15-year-old from Jessup, is facing similar charges as a juvenile.
Detectives received information leading to Burney as a suspect. They served warrants at his home and at the juvenile suspect’s home and located evidence, including “clothing, multiple knives and a handgun-style pellet gun,” according to police. The investigation led detectives to connect the two teens to all three robbery cases.
Police have been investigating the case since the first robbery on Dec. 13 at the Exxon station in the 8200 block of Snowden River Parkway in Columbia. A woman reported that at around 4:30 a.m., while getting gas, she was approached by two suspects with knives.
The woman told police that one suspect forced her to the ground at knifepoint while the other rifled through her car and wallet. She told the suspects she had nothing valuable and the two ran off.
Six days later, another woman reported that, while getting gas around 2:20 a.m., she was approached by two suspects with knives. The woman reported that one suspect forced her to the ground and held her at knifepoint while the other took her cash and cell phone.
The victim said one suspect held a knife to her throat and demanded she get in her car. She screamed and the suspect struck her face. She contacted police after the suspects ran off.
On February 5, police said the two suspects, believed to be the same teens, entered the convenience store at the Exxon with their faces partially covered around 1:30 a.m. One suspect was armed with a knife and the other with a handgun. They jumped over the counter and forced an employee to open the register so they could take cash. The robbery was captured on video.
Burney is being held at the Howard County Detention Center on $750,000 bond. The juvenile suspect was released on community detention with electronic monitoring.