By BOB OLIVER
HEIGHTS — A 39-year-old Detroit man awaits a preliminary examination of the evidence against him for charges stemming from an armed robbery at a north side restaurant.
Curtis Woods was arraigned Sept. 23 in 20th District Court before Judge David Turfe on charges of armed robbery, felony firearm and firearm possession by a felon after he allegedly robbed Taco Bell, 8112 N. Telegraph, on Sept. 20. He will also be charged as a habitual offender due to previous convictions.
According to the police report, the robbery occurred about 10 p.m. after the man entered the restaurant through the front door and approached the manager.
The manager told police the man entered wearing a black mask and carrying a black revolver with a laser pointer on its side.
The man ordered everyone inside to the back of the restaurant except the manager, who was ordered to walk behind the registers and open the safe that was located below them.
After the safe was opened, the man took a handful of cash — approximately $525 — placed it in his pants pocket and fled the restaurant through the south doors. He then got on a bicycle and rode east on Ann Arbor Trail.
Officers responding to the scene from the east observed a man on a bicycle wearing clothing similar to that described on the suspect riding near West Parkway, just over the Dearborn Heights-Detroit border.
An unmarked DHPD patrol car turned west on West Parkway and approached the suspect head on. The officer observed that the suspect had something in his right hand or arm that he was holding against his body.
The suspect then recognized the car to be a patrol car and turned south on Beaverland Street and rode onto the sidewalk. With the patrol car in direct pursuit, the suspect pulled into a driveway, dropped the bike and began running through the backyard of the residence.
More police officers arrived on at the scene and began searching the area for the suspect.
Officers searching on Bramell Street, which is the first street to the east of Beaverland, observed the suspect walking through a yard and sitting on the front porch of that house.
They moved in and arrested the suspect without incident.
After arresting Woods, the officers conducted a search of the area and were able to find a loaded .38-caliber revolver, a laser pointer, a white long-sleeve shirt and a gray T-shirt in the yard between Beaverland and Bramell. They also found a black do-rag that the suspect used as a mask during the robbery and stolen cash in a flower bed next to a house.
(Bob Oliver can be reached at [email protected].)