MORGANTON -- A Marion man was charged with armed robbery in Burke County after a witness said he stole the wallet of a man who had wrecked his moped, according to a Morganton Department of Public Safety report.
Officers charged the suspect, Charles Young, 33, on Monday, nearly two weeks after the crime was committed.
Capt. Jason Whisnant said officers had to wait before charging him because the victim still was injured and on pain medication from the wreck.
The wreck happened Sept. 27 in the 100 block of Holly Place in Morganton, the report said. Officer J.B. Bess arrived at the scene and found Roderick Caldwell, 23, of Morganton, on the ground next to a moped turned on its side.
Caldwell was unresponsive and had a bleeding knot on his head, the report said. The pocket of his shorts was turned inside out as if someone had taken something out of it.
The 911 caller, Kevin Hamm, also was at the scene and told Bess he saw a silver Ford Mustang stopped beside the moped. Hamm asked the driver of the Mustang if everything was OK, and the driver said the moped had fallen over, the report said.
As Hamm began driving away, he noticed the driver got out of the car and began going through Caldwell’s pockets, the report said. This was the first time Hamm noticed someone was on the ground.
Hamm said it looked like the man was taking Caldwell’s wallet, the report said. When Hamm started coming back toward the Mustang, the driver sped away toward Lenoir Road. Hamm then called 911, the report said.
Officers also found a pistol on the ground near Caldwell, the report said. The gun was missing its magazine, and Whisnant said officers believe the gun belongs to Young.
EMS arrived and transported Caldwell to a local hospital before he was airlifted to a Charlotte hospital, the report said.
MDPS officer Miller located the Mustang at the Jett Express in Morganton later that night, the report said. The report said Young was found with a gram of marijuana, and Whisnant said he was charged for drug possession that night.
Young was charged with felony armed robbery Monday and was placed in a local jail under a $20,000 bond, according to an arrest report. Whisnant said Young still was in jail as of 4:30 p.m. Wednesday.
Officer Gillstrap arrived at the scene Sept. 27 and conducted a reconstruction of the wreck, the report said. The cause of the moped wreck still is under investigation, and officers are trying to rule out an intentional collision, Whisnant said.
Young was convicted of robbery with a dangerous weapon in 2002, according to a North Carolina Department of Public Safety offender search.