Local News

Second suspect caught in robbery, rape at Fayetteville auto parts store

Posted November 17, 2013

Paul Merinord Smith, 20

— Fayetteville police said Sunday they have captured a second suspect wanted in the Nov. 2 armed robbery and rape of a female clerk at the Advance Auto Parts store on Owen Drive.

Smith Paul Merinord, 20, of Dunn, was being held at the Cumberland County Detention Center under a $500,000 secured bond.

Police previously apprehended Cortese Tramond Davis, 23, of Spring Lake, who was also wanted in connection with the crime. Davis was taken into custody Nov. 8 at a home on Blue Street in Fayetteville.

Police said two men went into the Advance Auto Parts store at 2400 Owen Drive at about 8 p.m. Nov. 2 and asked for information about an auto part. While one of the clerks began checking for the part, one of the men pulled out a gun and demanded money.

The two robbers then moved two clerks to the rear of the store, and one raped a female clerk while the other held a male clerk at gunpoint, police said.

The robbers fled with an undetermined amount of cash.

About an hour later, two men matching the description of the Fayetteville robbers held up an Advance Auto Parts store in Lumberton, police said.

Lt. Todd Joyce of the Fayetteville Police Department called the case “very disturbing” and “heinous.”

Davis and Smith were both charged with first-degree rape, two counts of first-degree sexual offense, first-degree kidnapping, robbery of a business with a dangerous weapon, robbery with a dangerous weapon (employee) and conspiracy.

Davis received a $1.3 million bond.


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