Authorities searching for suspect after robbery, chase in Johnston County

January 4, 2019

Authorities were searching for a suspect after a robbery led to a police chase Thursday night in Johnston County.

A man armed with a handgun demanded cellphones from employees of an AT&T store at 1247 N. Brightleaf Blvd. in Smithfield at about 7:20 p.m. No customers were in the store at the time, but the robber herded employees into a back office before fleeing, police said.

Johnston County deputies were able to locate the suspected getaway car on the U.S. Highway 70 Bypass and pursued it to the N.C. Highway 42 intersection, police said. The car then ran off the road, and the driver jumped out and fled on foot.

Nobody was injured in the robbery or chase, authorities said.

Smithfield police identified the robber as Brian Lamonte Clark, 22, and they obtained warrants charging him with robbery with a dangerous weapon, felony larceny and two counts of kidnapping. The Johnston County Sheriff’s Office also obtained a warrant charging Clark with felony fleeing to elude arrest.

Clark wasn’t in custody Friday, and anyone with information about his whereabouts is asked to call the Smithfield Police Department at 919-934-2121 or an anonymous tip line at 919-989-8835.

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