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Arrest Made In Beating, Robbery Of Fayetteville Dry Cleaning Owner

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FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. — An arrest has been made in the robbery and beating of the owner of a Fayetteville dry cleaning business.

On Tuesday, sheriff's detectives arrested Anthony Lebron Gladden, 23, of 464 Huckleberry Drive in Fayetteville. Police say Gladden and another suspect went into Hamont Cleaners Friday to rob and beat Grace Overby.

"He said, 'This is a stick-up.' I looked at him and laughed and said, 'You are kidding,'" she said. "He picked me up by my ribs and threw me."

Overby said the suspects left her in the corner for dead, ran through the business and out the back door.

Gladden is charged with first-degree kidnapping, robbery with a dangerous weapon, assault with a deadly weapon inflicting serious injury, felony conspiracy, possession of a firearm by a felon and carrying a concealed weapon.

Sheriff's detectives are still attempting to identify a second suspect who is described at a black male in his early to late twenties, 5-foot-9-inches to 5-foot-10-inches tall, 200 pounds. Police said he has a medium complexion, short hair and sometimes wears a gold plate on the top row of his teeth.

The suspect is also described as have a heavy "Georgia" accent. At the time of the robbery he was wearing black jeans, a black long-sleeve sweat shirt and a black skull cap.

Police said the unidentified suspect is believed to be a known associate of Gladden's and lives in the Honeycutt Road-McArthur Road area.

Overby has not missed a beat. She said she attended her 50th wedding celebration Saturday.

"Fifty years is a long time. They weren't going to put me down. I was going to show them I had a hard head, too," she said.

Overby said she is working hard, getting caught up on paperwork so she can reopen Thursday, but she said it is tough for her to get a lot done. After 30 years in business, people are calling and stopping by to check on her.

Still, Overby's family is not surprised she is fighting back.

"She's got it in her. She's tough as nails," said Dolores Overby-Tew, Grace's daughter.

Overby's family has been begging her to retire. She said the robbery may have convinced her. She is thinking about closing the doors of the store for good at the first of the year.

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