Hartsville man arrested for armed robbery case in Southern Pines NC


SOUTHERN PINES, NC (WBTW) – A man from Hartsville has been arrested in connection to an armed robbery case in North Carolina that took place in July.

According to the Southern Pines Police Department, 42-year-old Christopher Demarcus Bethea of Hartsville was arrested in connection to an armed robbery at the Zales Jewelers that took place on July 28 in Southern Pines.

Police say that a man entered the store shortly after 5:40 p.m. and pointed a firearm at one of the employees demanding the contents of the ring counter be put in a bag. The suspect then moved the two employees to the bathroom and ordered them to tie themselves up with nylon ties he had brought. The suspect then fled the store to a waiting vehicle.

Bethea was arrested on November 2 and is charged with robbery with a firearm and two counts of second-degree kidnapping. He is currently in custody in Greensboro, North Carolina and is being held under a $585,000.00 secured bond.

Police also arrested Gilbert Smith of Fayetteville. At the time of his arrest on July 30, police say he was in possession of property stolen from the jewelry store. After a search of his home officers recovered the remaining stolen property, with the exception of two rings. Smith is charged with robbery with a firearm and possession of stolen property.

Southern Pines Police Chief Bob Temme said “The Southern Pines Police Department has worked tirelessly to establish and maintain outstanding working relationships with law enforcement professionals, not only locally, but throughout the country. The importance of unified law enforcement relationships and efforts has once again been highlighted in this investigation. It was these relationships that ultimately brought both Gilbert Smith and Christopher Demarcus Bethea to justice.”

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