Suspect in custody after July 4th armed robbery at Waynesville Walmart

Suspect in custody after July 4th armed robbery at Waynesville Walmart

A suspect is in custody after an armed robbery at the Waynesville Walmart on Thursday, July 4.

Charles Edward Lewis Jr., 37, was charged with robbery with a dangerous weapon.

Waynesville police said that at 10 a.m. on Independence Day, the suspect walked up to the Walmart customer service counter and handed the clerk a note demanding cash and stating he had a gun.

“He threatened to hurt one of the cashiers… For the lady that works there, I’m sure it’s very scary and frightening,” Waynesville Police Chief David Adams said.

Adams said the suspect was calm.

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“He didn’t really draw attention to himself. There was no one behind him in line,” he said. “You’d think he’d done this before … he was calm at first.”

Adams said Lewis Jr. started walking away with money before dropping it.

“He dropped his gun and the money. He picked it up. And that’s when he fled. He left in a black Cadillac Escalade… no license plates visible,” Adams said.

He said detectives followed the suspect’s trail to Harrah’s Cherokee Hotel & Casino Resort. Jackson County officers arrested Lewis Jr. there on Sunday, July 7.

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“He was also arrested on some outstanding warrants, I believe, out of Mecklenburg County,” Adams said.

Adams added that the Cherokee Police Department and the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office assisted in the case. He said a robbery like this, at a Walmart, is rare in this area and he’s grateful the incident didn’t escalate.

“He didn’t threaten anyone else. No one got hurt. Thank God,” Adams said.

Waynesville police said Lewis Jr. remains in the Jackson County Jail.