Local News

Police investigate two armed robberies near Duke Gardens

Posted July 25, 2013

— Duke University police released sketches Thursday of two men sought in connection with an armed robbery at Duke Gardens earlier this month.

Police also said a second, unrelated armed robbery took place at the gardens Thursday afternoon.

Chief John Dailey called the robberies "highly unusual."

"We know it's upsetting. It's upsetting to us. It's upsetting to your administration. It's upsetting to the community," Dailey said. 

The first incident happened about 5:30 p.m. July 15 near the Lewis Street access to the gardens. The access is used as a cut-through and not frequently taken by visitors, police said.

Two people told police they were robbed by two men carrying silver-colored handguns. One man was described as between 5 feet 8 and 5 feet 10 inches tall, thin with short braided hair, wearing jeans and a white tank top. The second man was about the same height, heavier and also wore jeans and a white T-shirt.

In Thursday’s armed robbery, which happened shortly before 1 p.m. in about the same location, near the Lewis Street entrance to Duke Gardens, the suspects carried a knife and a handgun.

Police increase patrols at Duke Gardens after robberies Police increase patrols at Duke Gardens after robberies

The first suspect was described as about 5 feet 8 inches tall, thin, 17 to 20 years old and wearing a black shirt, black pants and hat or rag on his head. The second suspect was about 5 feet 11 inches with an average build, 17 to 20 years old and wearing black pants and a black shirt.

Anyone with information on either crime is asked to call police at 919-684-2444.

Stephanie Rosser said the robberies won't deter her from walking her dog Bailey at the gardens.

"I think they are isolated incidents. The police are clearly doing their best to find out who did it," she said.

Dailey said his department is working closely with Durham police.

"We have extra patrols, both police and security officers – some of those in uniform, some of those might not be as visible," he said.


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  • bo5 Jul 26, 2013

    I guess the problem is that if you are going to give a description at least give a complete description or all the information that you have. If you are going to leave items out of the description then why put any description in the article at all. If you don't want to put race in (or if the victim wasn't sure) at least say something like light skin, etc. The victim obviously knows since there are pretty good sketches provided in the article.

  • gingerlynn Jul 26, 2013

    lets_ne_ral, well the sketches kind of give it away even if WRAL won't say it.

  • jeffdewitt Jul 26, 2013

    Capt. O, yes I know. But the only way we are going to get these news organizations to do their jobs properly is call them on it when they do things like this.

  • lets_b_real79 Jul 26, 2013

    "Are they not allowed to say "Black"?" - Statisticsdontlie

    How do you know they were black?

  • Statisticsdontlie Jul 26, 2013

    Are they not allowed to say "Black"?

  • rsgolo Jul 26, 2013

    I have noticed many a time that WRAL will mention the race when the suspect is of an ethnicity other than African-American.

  • whatelseisnew Jul 26, 2013

    ""How can you describe a suspect without mentioning their race? Really??"

    This is new reality, get used to it."

    Haven't you heard. All skin color will now be referred to as "transparent". So if you are robbed, remember to give height, weight, hair color, eye color, clothes, and inform the police officer the person was transparent. Do not even mention if the person's hair was straight or curly, that might lead the police to make an incorrect assumption.

  • Capt. Obvious Jul 26, 2013

    Wait a minute, a criminal had a gun in a gun free zone?

    Atleast he didn't have it at a resturant or bar... it would be like the wild west..

  • Mitch Jul 26, 2013

    So you can describe the color of the perpetator's clothes but not their skin color? You know, people sometimes change their clothes.

  • Capt. Obvious Jul 26, 2013


    When race is not mentioned it only means one thing.

    They were not white or hispanic, or a white hispanic.

    Anyone with info please step forward and forget that no snitching stuff...