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Shoplifting incident turns into robbery charge after Middlesboro man leads police on a brief pursuit

From WRIL -

Charles Woodby - BCDC

On Monday evening October 10, 2022 at 6:07pm, Middlesboro Sgt. Jeremiah Johnson engaged in a vehicle pursuit of a robbery suspect. Prior to the pursuit it was reported that 41-year-old Charles Woody of Middlesboro had taken $3.95 worth of merchandise without paying, from the Dollar General Store just off of Cumberland Avenue.

When a female employee asked for the merchandise to be returned, she stated that Woodby brandished a blue/silver colored 9mm handgun and said: "that's all I have". He then left the store with the stolen product - a bottle of Visine - in an older gray/gold vehicle traveling West on Cumberland Avenue.

Sgt. Johnson spotted the vehicle on Cumberland and then it turned onto New Wilson Lane. The officer then attempted an emergency traffic stop, but Woodby accelerated ahead onto Blakeman Drive, Gumwood Road, and stopped on West End Road where Sgt. Johnson quickly arrested him.

A search incident to arrest revealed the stolen merchandise in his pants pocket. A search of his vehicle yielded a Kimber 9mm Special Edition handgun reported stolen by the Claiborne County, Tn. Sheriff's Department.

The sergeant observed that Woodby was exhibiting signs of intoxication and Woodby admitted to smoking Marijuana and had taken Xanax along with his prescription medications. He refused any field sobriety tests.

Charles Woodby was lodged in the Bell County Detention Center charged with operating a motor vehicle under the influence - 2nd degree (aggravated circumstances), receiving stolen property (firearm), failure to maintain insurance, shoplifting, tampering with physical evidence, speeding 20mph over the limit, fleeing or evading police - 1st degree (motor vehicle), robbery - 1st degree, and possession of a handgun by a convicted felon.

Assisting in the incident was Officer John Kinder.

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