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Deputies investigate robbery, shooting at Spring Lake doughnut shop

Posted July 26, 2009
Updated August 7, 2009

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— Cumberland County sheriff's deputies were investigating an armed robbery in a doughnut shop Sunday morning in Spring Lake. Sheriff's office spokeswoman Debbie Tanna said Rashed Rai, 66, was shot and killed at the Donut Connection, 104 S. Bragg Blvd., at around 4 a.m.

Investigators say the suspects entered the business wearing dark blue bandannas on their faces. Rai, his sister and a customer were inside the Donut Connection when the robbery occurred. Rai was shot and killed as the robbers escaped with an undetermined amount of money, deputies said.

The first suspect was wearing a stripped shirt and had a blue bandanna covering his face. He was holding a shotgun wrapped in masking tape.

The second suspect was wearing a dark blue Carolina Panthers hoodie and had a blue bandanna covering his face.

The third suspect was described as a tall man who was also wearing a blue bandanna over this face.

Anyone with information regarding the crime is asked to call the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office at 910-323-1500. You may also leave anonymous information on TIPSLINE at 910-484-TIPS (84770).

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  • gandalla Jul 27, 2009

    Mayor Clark should be ashamed of herself she has failed the city of Spring Lake and now has blood on her hands for failure to lead the city. By allowing an incompenet police leadership to stay in power but also by being so hard headed and not paying the CC Sherifs the money they need to patrol their town.

  • lkanzig Jul 27, 2009

    it was only a matter of time before something tragic like this happened. spring lake needs to have its mayor and council run out of town for this. its a shame that the police dept was so corrupt there that the sherriffs dept has to try to cover it as well.

  • Clownsruletheworld Jul 27, 2009

    A man trying to do the right thing, violently loses his life needlessly over what amounted to chump change. Anyone who will take a life so callously need not ever grace society with their presence in the future. Murdering beasts such as this are the very antithesis to the concept of civil society, and I defy any apologist for them to convince me otherwise. Eventually citizens will cease to tolerate behavior such as this, I hope that day is sooner rather than later.

  • NANAGEE1 Jul 27, 2009

    WELL SAID GLASS HALF FULL. MAYBE WE AS CITIZENS AND TAX PAYERS OF SPRING LAKE SHOULD CHECK INTO TAKING MS. ETHEL'S SALARY AND APPLYING IT TO THE COST OF PAYING THOSE DEPUTIES, AND GETTING OUR POLICE FORCE IN SHAPE. MS. CLARK HAS A DO NOTHING ATTITUDE AND SO DOES THE BOARD.

  • RonnieR Jul 27, 2009

    It would seem that since SL is paying the PD anyway, they would patrol and call 911 if they see anything suspicious. The judge did not, AFAIK, take away the officers citizenship. So they can do a citizen's detention, as any citizen can do, if the situation warrants.

  • bluford2 Jul 27, 2009

    This is so sad and so tragic. My condolences go out to the family.

    Spring Lake has now become the Wild, Wild West and the criminals are taking full advantage of the lack of a law enforcement presence. If something isn't done to protect citizens and business, we will be hearing more stories such as this and more of folks taking the law into their own hands.

  • msmac0622 Jul 27, 2009

    My heart & prayers go out to this family. I remember calling late one night to inquire about the business orders, and it was a direct line to the owner. He was extremly pleasant, and offered to take my order over the phone, and give me a military discount so the donuts I needed for a meeting would be ready first thing in the morning. I have gone there several times, and the staff are always so sweet. Even during the middle of the night when we had to travel up to an ER near UNCG to my injured child, they were available for coffee to keep us awake for a long unplanned trip. They are a dedicated, hard working family serving their community. I pray God will give them peace, as I know this is such a tragic time for this family. I also pray God will get justice for them.

  • Glass Half Full Jul 27, 2009

    Do the Mayor and Town Council still see no need to pay to have dedicated Sheriff's Deputies assigned to the Town of Spring Lake? How many more merchants or citizens do you want to lose before you take action? His blood is on your hands.