Local News

Homeless couple arrested in 7-county crime spree

Posted November 5, 2015 4:57 p.m. EST
Updated November 5, 2015 5:11 p.m. EST

— A homeless couple was arrested in Fayetteville last week in connection to a crime spree that spanned several counties.

Woodrow Sidney Taylor, 32, and Carla Faith Armstrong, 38, who are both listed as homeless, are believed to have been responsible for multiple motor vehicle thefts and break-ins beginning Sept. 25. The crimes occurred in Fayetteville, Aberdeen, Southern Pines, Dunn and Smithfield. Thirteen law enforcement agencies have said the couple is responsible for similar crimes in their jurisdictions.

Police said that the couple stole tens of thousands of dollars’ worth of personal property, at least one hand gun and five motor vehicles. Authorities said that they mainly targeted cars with unlocked doors in the parking lots of shopping centers and driveways. Dunn police said that Taylor and Armstrong had used people’s credit cards to stay in hotel rooms and buy food.

On Oct. 28, Fayetteville police were notified that Taylor and Armstrong were involved in the theft of a four-door Pontiac Grand Prix. On Oct. 30, at 11:38 a.m., a Fayetteville police officer noticed a car matching that description traveling on Miller Avenue near Isham Street.

The officer recognized the occupants of the car as Taylor and Armstrong, who sped up and initiated a chase.

“[The officer] saw him actually driving through what appeared to be a yard,” said Fayetteville Police Investigator Robert Ramirez. “He saw that and made eye contact. He immediately said ‘Hey, that’s our guy, Woodrow Taylor.’ The guy even had the audacity to wave at the police officer. The police officer got behind him, and he immediately took off.”

Taylor and Armstrong led police toward N.C. Highway 24 East, where North Carolina State Highway Patrol troopers placed stop sticks across the roadway in an attempt to attempt to stop them.

Police said Taylor drove across the stop sticks and continued to flee on Highway 24 East until troopers stopped the car using a PIT maneuver. Taylor crashed and attempted to flee on foot but was detained. He was taken to Cape Fear Valley Medical Center for injuries sustained during the chase and crash.

Armstrong remained in the Pontiac, and she was arrested without incident. She was evaluated by medics at the scene before being taken to the Fayetteville Police Department.

According to Dunn police, the Pontiac contained items from burglaries in that city.

Prior to their arrest, the Fayetteville Police Department said that the couple was wanted on several warrants from multiple agencies for larceny of a motor vehicle, possession of a stolen motor vehicle, breaking and entering of a motor vehicle, possession of stolen goods and misdemeanor larceny.

Taylor and Armstrong were being held at the Cumberland County Detention Center. Taylor’s bond was set at $110,000 and Armstrong’s was set at $66,000. As charges continue to pour in, their bonds are expected to increase, authorities said.