Robbery Suspect Returns Months Later And Apologizes

CLAYTON – Clayton Police have arrested a man in a 9-month-old robbery case.

The Speedway store on Highway 42 East was robbed of cigarettes and $160 in cash on October 24, 2019 by a man wearing a hood, bandana and jogging pants and holding a dark handgun with a long barrel. Police had responded immediately and even used the K-9 unit to track the suspect, but the track grew cold. Detectives had discovered some boxes of cigarettes and dollar bills that could have been dropped by the suspect and dusted them for prints. The surveillance video and face coverings obscures the suspect’s face.  So in late April 2020, having no other leads, the case was listed as inactive.

Then recently, an officer on a coffee break was in the Speedway. Clerks in the store provided new information about the possible suspect. They stated that the suspect from the October robbery had come into the store and apologized for the robbery. They didn’t share a name, but stated that they would know the suspect if they saw him again as he frequented the store and often argued with the clerks.

The officer then went and researched calls and found that officers had responded to that Speedway several times and talked to a Dominique Hernandez. The clerk later identified Hernandez in a line-up as the man who had robbed the store in October and further review of surveillance footage confirmed the clothing being worn by the suspect belonged to Hernandez.

Dominique Hernandez, 24, of Forest Glade Court, Clayton was arrested on July 16th by Smithfield Police at a location on Berkshire Road and charged with one count of robbery with a dangerous weapon and one count of assault by pointing a gun.  He was confined in the Johnston County Jail on a $55,000 secured bond.