UPDATE: Four in custody after Dayton armed robbery, chase - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

UPDATE: Four in custody after Dayton armed robbery, chase

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RHEA COUNTY, TN (WRCB)- Investigators in Rhea County are trying to figure out if an armed robbery Friday morning in Dayton is tied to an armed robbery last month at a pawn shop in Sale Creek.

The robbery happened a little before noon Friday morning at the Verizon Wireless store off U.S. 27.

After brushing grass of his shirt, a suspect taken in for questioning for the robbery does not have much to say.

"Verizon's still trying to go through everything to see what they have missing," says Dayton Police Chief Chris Sneed.

Chief Sneed looks through the dozens of stolen phones and tablets worth thousands of dollars. Just before noon, he says two men entered the Verizon store in Dayton.

"One of the suspects had a handgun, had forced two of the employees to the back," says Sneed.

They started grabbing as many phones as they could. Moments later, they hopped in a blue Pontiac with two other women and took off. 

A Dayton police officer chased them up Black Oak Ridge Road into Hamilton County, onto a gravel, dead end road.

"At that point the officer took three in to custody. One of them actually ran off in the woods. So he took three into custody. But at that point their car actually caught on fire," says Sneed.

They were able to recover all the stolen merchandise and track down the fourth suspect.

Police are also working closely with Hamilton County investigators to see if the robbery is connected to the armed robbery of a Sale Creek pawn shop in April.

"We're trying to piece together and see if this has any ties to the robbery they had in the Sale Creek area," says Sneed.

"Anytime there's a robbery, you know, it's a scary thing," says William Roberts.

Roberts has a relative that works at the Dollar Tree next to the Verizon store.

He says he is not surprised at what happened but is glad the suspects were caught.

"You know, if you do wrong, you know...if you can't do the time, don't do the crime," says Roberts.

"Glad they're in custody and glad they're in jail. And that's where they hope to keep them," says Sneed.

Police have still not released the names of the suspects.

The chief says armed robbery charges and other possible charges are pending.

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