CLEVELAND – The gunman who shot a Johnston County used car dealership employee during an attempted robbery has been found guilty. Following a one week trial, Scott Lee Bridges of Raleigh was convicted by a jury and sentenced to prison by Superior Court Judge James F. Ammons.
On October 5, 2018, two suspects entered E-Zee Auto Sales at 12433 Cleveland Road, Garner. At least one of the assailants had a handgun. An employee of the business, Isai Ntirenganya, was in the process of selling a car to a female when the two men entered.
The suspects demanded money, but before Mr. Ntirenganya could hand over any money, he was shot in the back of the neck. The customer and the assailants fled the area after the shooting. Mr. Ntirenganya was able to stumble across Cleveland Road to Lane & Associates Family Dentistry where staff members treated him for his gunshot wound until emergency personnel arrived.
The Johnston County Sheriff’s Office arrived and secured both businesses as well as nearby schools. No suspects were located at that time. Mr. Ntirenganya spent two days at WakeMed but made a full recovery.
Following an investigation by Sheriff’s Detective Blaine Hicks, authorities located the female customer who identified Scott Lee Bridges of Raleigh as the shooter.
Bridges went on trial recently with Assistant District Attorneys Jason Waller and Kristin Terwey represented the State, and Mr. Brian Knott represented the defendant.
After a week of hearing evidence, a jury convicted Bridges of attempted robbery with a dangerous weapon, assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill inflicting serious injury, conspiracy to commit robbery with a dangerous weapon, and possession of firearm by felon.
On July 21st, Judge Ammons sentenced Bridges to serve a minimum of 96 months to a maximum of 128 months active for the felonious assault plus an additional active prison term of 84 to 113 months for the attempted robbery. These sentences will run consecutively. The other charges were consolidated into the two sentences.
Authorities were never able to locate and charge the second robbery suspect.