Two men have been arrested in connection with the robbery of Popeye’s Chicken at 2700 S. Olive St., on Wednesday night.
The robbery occurred at 11:50 p.m. Wednesday. Otis Daniels, 18, was taken into custody while police were searching the area after the robbery, and Antonio Bailey, also 18 and a former Popeye’s employee, was arrested at 12:24 a.m. Friday.
Deputy Prosecutor Cymber Gieringer said the incident began when two employees went out the back door to take trash to the dumpster and were confronted by three armed men wearing dark clothing and ski masks.
The employees were forced to lie on the ground and one of the three suspects stayed with them while the other two suspects entered the back door of the store and confronted two employees while demanding money, Detective Chris Wieland of the Pine Bluff Police Department said in a probable-cause affidavit.
Gieringer said one of the suspects asked for and received the key to the business safe, then fled after taking money.
According to the affidavit, an officer searching the area was flagged down by a person at West 24th Avenue and Oak Street who reported hearing voices in his back yard and when officers went to check, the suspects ran into a group of bushes.
Gieringer said Daniels was taken into custody behind Domino’s Pizza at West 23rd Avenue and Olive Street wearing a white shirt and dark pants, and had cash and rolled coins in his pocket. He allegedly said that he had just been released from the juvenile detention center and that he “found the money” but officers determined that his story was not true.
Wieland said in the affidavit that a search of the area resulted in finding the till from the cash register, dark coats and tops, bank deposit slips and additional cash.
Bailey was identified as one of the suspects involved by an employee who worked at the restaurant with him.
Pine Bluff District Judge John Kearney set a $50,000 bond for both Daniels and Bailey after ruling that prosecutors had probable cause to charge them with aggravated robbery and theft of property.
At Gieringer’s request, Kearney also ordered Daniels and Bailey to have no contact with the restaurant or any of the employees and victims until the case is settled.
The Public Defender’s Office was appointed to represent both men.