Hope police resolved a phantom armed robbery at a local truck stop Monday as investigators continued to probe a weekend report of an armed robbery at a pizza store.
Hope Police Department Assistant Chief Kim Tomlin said in a statement released Wednesday that Ieisha Blake, 21, of Hope, was arrested by HPD investigators on an allegation of filing a false report and theft of property in connection with an armed robbery she had reported to police on Sept. 28 at the Triple J Truck Stop.
HPD investigators allege that Blake was the clerk at the store who reported a robbery by a man with a gun on that date.
“Blake originally told Hope police officers that she was taking the trash out when she was approached by a black male who had a gun and demanded that she go back into the store and get him money and cigarettes,” Tomlin said. “After changing her statement several times, Blake eventually admitted to investigators that she and a person she identified as Earl Waters planned and executed the theft.”
Tomlin said HPD officers are currently seeking Waters in connection with the investigation.
“Anyone having information on the location of Earl Waters, 25, of Hope, is encouraged to contact the Hope Police Department or Sergeant Jesus Coronado at 870-722-2561,” she said.
Blake was reported as no longer in custody at the Hempstead County Detention Center at press time.
In an unrelated investigation, HPD officers were called to the Domino's Pizza store at 1002 S. Main St., shortly before midnight Saturday responding to a robbery in progress, Tomlin said.
“Officers made contact with Dominos employees who stated that as they left the store after closing for the day they were approached by an unknown black male dressed in all black clothing,” she said.
Tomlin said the suspect accosted one employee and began to demand money from the group.
“The suspect placed something believed to be a weapon to one of the employee's lower rib area and again demanded money,” she said. “The suspect, then, pointed what is believed to be some type of weapon at a second employee and demanded money.”
Tomlin said the employees told the man the business receipts were locked in a safe inside the store.
“The subject demanded that they open the store,” she said. “The subject took a wallet from one of the employees. After the suspect and the two employees re-entered the store, the audible alarm went off and the suspect fled from the store in an unknown direction of travel.”
Tomlin said the robber was described as standing approximately 5'7” tall, wearing a black hooded shirt and black gloves, as well as a mask that covered his face with the exception of his eyes.
Page 2 of 2 - “Anyone having any information about this, or any crime, is encouraged to contact the Hope Police Department, or Detective Andrew Watson at 870-722-2563,” Tomlin said.