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Trio charged with Vale store break-in


Staff Writer

Three out-of-county men, including one teen, have been charged with breaking into a convenience store on the county’s western end last month, according to the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office.

Deputies said the suspects worked together to steal knives, cigarettes, rolling paper, lighters, tobacco pipes and other items from the Triple B One Stop on N.C. 274 in Cherryville.

The incident took place around 4 a.m. on Jan. 25.

Two days later, the Sheriff’s Office issued a press release on the break-in along with images of two of the suspects recorded by store surveillance.

Footage also showed one of the individuals, wearing a ski mask, break a window in order to access the store, deputies said.

He then passed items through the window to a second person waiting outside the facility, according to an agency press release.

The second individual had on thick glasses and also covered portions of his face during the incident, deputies said.

During the investigation, detectives gained tips that led them to a home on Charleston Trail, where the suspects were known to frequently gather, officers said.

Both Toby Richard Jones, 18, of 2417 Daves Road in Shelby, and Christopher Kyle Laughter, 21, of 430 Byers Road in Forest City, were arrested in the case.

A third person, Michael Wayne Matney, 20, of 110 Knob Creek Drive in Lawndale, has also been charged, but deputies have yet to serve him warrants.

Matney is currently behind Cleveland County bars for a probation violation, the Sheriff’s Office said.

Each suspect faces one felony count each of breaking and entering a building, larceny after breaking and entering and possession of stolen goods.

Laughter and Jones both remain behind Lincoln County bars, Laughter under a $5,000 secured bond and Jones under a $25,000 secured bond.

Detectives Matt Burgess and Jon Propst investigated the case.


Image courtesy of KaAnSuli | Lincoln Times-News

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