Two men have been charged in the robbery earlier this month of a Columbia Exxon in which one of the robbers reportedly attacked the clerk by throwing hot coffee on him, Howard County Police said Thursday.
Michael Elliott Dickey, Jr., 20, of the 8800 Flowerstock Row in Columbia, and Kyle Brandon Wills, 19, of Baltimore, have been charged with armed robbery, assault, theft and gun charges after a fingerprint recovered at the scene linked the pair to the robbery, police said.
According to a news release, the 24-year-old gas station clerk told officers that two men robbed the Exxon, located in the 8200 block of Snowden River Parkway, at about 3 a.m. on Jan. 5.
The clerk said one of the men entered the business and asked if the coffee was hot and poured himself a cup, according to police.
The clerk reported that, as he opened the cash register to process the transaction for the coffee, the man threw the hot coffee at him. The second man then pushed the clerk to the floor, police said.
The two men took out handguns, stole money from the register, and fled.
Police said the clerk was not seriously injured.
Crime lab technicians were able to link a fingerprint recovered at the scene to Dickey, police said.
Dickey and Wills are known associates, police said, and had recently been arrested in connection with an unrelated incident in another jurisdiction.
Surveillance video from both incidents revealed that the two men in the Exxon robbery were wearing the same clothing Dickey and Wills were wearing in the other incident.
Dickey is being held at the Howard County Detention Center on $250,000 bond. Wills was released on $100,000 bond.
The Jan. 5 robbery was the second robbery reported at the Exxon this month, and the third since September. The most recent incident occurred on Jan. 19, when a man brandishing a knife stole cash and two to three cartons of cigarettes.
In September, the store was robbed by two men, one of which had a knife. In that incident, one of the men also stole two cartons of cigarettes, police said.
Police spokeswoman Sherry Llewellyn said the department has arranged for a crime prevention officer to assist the gas station in the future.