ROBESON COUNTY, N.C. (WBTW) — Two people were arrested after at least one sheriff’s office vehicle was hit by gunfire early Monday morning in a residential area during a pursuit that started while they were investigating a series of alarm calls at stores in the southern part of the county, according to the Robeson County Sheriff’s Office.

The sheriff’s office didn’t release the names of the suspects and said more information would be released later Wednesday.

Deputies began pursuing the vehicle at about 3:20 a.m. after trying to pull it over in the area of Highway 41 South and Old Stage Road in Fairmont. While chasing it through a residential area on Highway 41 S., the sheriff’s office said someone inside fired multiple shots at the two deputies, hitting both vehicles.

Deputies continued pursuing the vehicle onto Interstate 74 westbound but eventually called off the chase because of the shooting and because the vehicle was “driving recklessly between vehicles that were traveling on the interstate,” the sheriff’s office said.

The sheriff’s office said the vehicle is a four-door, silver or light-colored 2015-19 Nissan Pathfinder. It also had a 30-day temporary license plate.

The entire pursuit lasted about six minutes, according to the sheriff’s office.

“These suspects are considered armed and dangerous and will be treated as such until apprehended,” Wilkins said. “It was quite obvious their crime spree was thought out and they had no concern for the motoring public, residents sleeping in their homes or deputies as they fired multiple rounds at deputies throughout the pursuit. In the interest of safety for all, a decision was made to discontinue the pursuit.”

The first store alarm was at 1:39 a.m. at Almanac Grocery at 2700 Almanac Road in Lumberton. The second one was at 1:47 a.m. at the One Stop Gas and Grill at 4410 Almanac Road in Lumberton, the sheriff’s office said.

A short time later, at 2:09 a.m., another alarm was reported at the Orrum General Store at 1507 S. Creek Road in Orrum. That was followed by two more alarms — one at 3:01 a.m. at McLellan Grocery at 4724 Tobacco Road in Orrum and one at 3:07 a.m. at Marshalls Friendly Stop at 13955 Hwy 41 S. in Fairmont.

The U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and Fairmont police are assisting with the investigation. 

Anyone with information about the investigation is asked to call the Robeson County Sheriff’s Office at 910-671-3170 or 910-671-3100.

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