Local News

'America's Most Wanted' fugitive arrested in Pittsboro

Posted May 30, 2008

— Chatham County sheriff’s deputies arrested a man who was featured on the television show "America’s Most Wanted" in March 2008.

Derrick Shawnte Benjamin was wanted by the Richland County sheriff’s office in South Carolina for receiving stolen money from an armored car robbery in Richland County, S.C., in May 2007.

Deputies received information that Benjamin was living in Siler City, and investigators were able to verify the tip.

Cpl. Jose Cruz arrested Benjamin after stopping his vehicle at N.C. Highway 15-501/87 and Old Sanford Road on Thursday. Benjamin identified himself and was cooperative, deputies said.

Benjamin was charged with a felony charge of fleeing from justice and misdemeanors for possession of marijuana and carrying a concealed weapon.

He was being held in the Chatham County Jail on Friday, with no bond for the fugitive charge and  $100,000 bond for the other charges.

Deputies also filed misdemeanor drug charges against the driver of the car in which Benjamin was riding. Tamara Jena Johnson, 22, of 110 Amy Lane in Siler City, was released from jail under a $1,000 secured bond.

Authorities said Benjamin was one of six people involved in the robbery of an armored truck near Columbia with more than $18 million inside. Investigators say it was an inside job and the thieves only made off with about $10 million.


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  • Dr. Dataclerk May 30, 2008

    Fools rush in -- clearly this criminal was not thinking at all. But I bet you the sheriff department is tickle. Probably the best thing that's happen to them since Webster has been on board. Well, I guess we will see the action on America's Most Wanted on Saturday night. lol I see the young lady was charge. Will they ever learn.

  • renesbmw May 30, 2008

    he should have snick that money here and there on his person and skipped to mexico or canada.............in mexico money talks, and they don't care if you got a bank statement or not...........not that i would know :>

  • jobchick2004 May 30, 2008

    Wow . . .

  • Adelinthe May 30, 2008


    Blessed he's off the streets. Praying he leads investigators to the others.

    God bless.

    Rev. RB

  • mep May 30, 2008

    Another example of how criminals dont really think things through. Obviously Siler City is not the best place to hide and spend your 10 million. I would have opted for someplace warm and sunny... like Brazil!

  • Calvin May 30, 2008

    ....it's probably harder to live off of cash than you think. For major purchases (home, car, etc.) you have to provide bank statements, proof of employment, etc. Otherwise people talk when you pay for these items in cash.

  • NCMOMof3 May 30, 2008

    I'm with the rest of the posters on here,,you steal that much money and you stick around here? Sure, stick around long enough for suspicion to move one but years? Quietly move away and make a life for yourself elsewhere. When my mom was a bank teller and her bank was robbed, one of the bank robbers took his share and gave it to his mom, who promptly redeposited the money back into her bank,,,the bank that was robbed!

  • Dark_Horse May 30, 2008

    This idiot had his cut of a $10 million haul and he only moved a state away from the scene of the crime??? lol

  • djcnty8 May 30, 2008

    My question is why did he go somewhere other than one state away? If I am on the run, especially with that kind of money, I am going somewhere that I can not be sent back.

  • TStills May 30, 2008

    He obviously didnt put any of those "Benjamins" towards plastic surgery!

    I will say that, if he is going to commit a crime, he at least had the common sense to do it for a large chunk of change. Im thinking back to the two rocket scientists earlier in the week that were trying to pass forged Waffle House pay checks. Not that I condone what he did.