Virginia Beach, VA – A citizen with a legal gun in a 7-Eleven put an end to a multi-store armed robbery spree when he shot two of the three suspects who tried to rob the store where he was shopping.
Police believe the string of robberies began at about 10:54 p.m. on July 24 at a 7-Eleven located at 10185 Warwick Boulevard, WTKR reported.
The clerk told Newport News police that three men entered the business and one of them was armed. He said the men demanded that he open the cash register.
The suspects took cash and tobacco products and then left, according to WTKR.
Virginia Beach police responded to 7-Eleven located at 1010 Pacific Avenue at about 12:28 a.m. for the report of another armed robbery.
The suspects stole cigarettes and smoking devices at their second target, WTKR reported.
Yet another 7-Eleven store, this one located at 3235 Chesapeake Boulevard, was robbed by the same men at about 1 a.m.
The clerk told police that the three men were armed with guns and demanded money. The clerk gave it to them and they left, WTKR reported.
Police responded to another 7-Eleven armed robbery call at about 2 a.m. for the store located at 6667 E. Virginia Beach Boulevard.
That clerk told police that two armed men had demanded money and he had complied, WTKR reported.
The robbery spree came to an end at about 2:10 a.m. when the suspects attempted to rob a 7-Eleven located at 130 South Newtown Road, according to Virginia Beach Police Public Affairs Officer Linda Kuehn.
Police arrived at the store to find two suspects suffering from gunshot wounds.
Michael Moore, 18, was pronounced dead at the scene. The other wounded suspect was transported to the hospital where he was treated and then released into police custody, WTKR reported.
Witnesses told police that two armed men were robbing the store clerks when a customer with a gun confronted and ultimately shot them.
The customers who were in the store when the shooting occurred told WTKR they considered the customer with a gun who shot the suspects a “hero.”
An officer found the third suspect nearby and arrested him, Office Kuehn said.
Ronald Lee Brookins Jr., 18, was charged with two counts of use of a firearm in the commission of a felony, two counts of conspiracy to commit a felony, abduction, and wearing a mask in public, according to WTKR.
Brookins told the judge that he is active-duty Navy during his arraignment.
Deric Breon Simmons, 19, was charged with two counts of robbery and two counts of use of a firearm in the commission of a felony, WTKR reported.
Norfolk and Newport police have linked the same suspects to at least three more 7-Eleven robberies that were conducted during the same time window.
Portsmouth and Suffolk police were investigating whether Brookins and Simmons might be responsible for similar unsolved robberies in their jurisdictions, according to WTKR.