Four arrested in weekend Lockport robbery case
A little after midnight, Jessica Burgess, 28, formerly of Lockport, entered the Gulf Gas Station on Walnut Street in Lockport and asked the clerk for a pack of Newport cigarettes. As the clerk handed her the pack, he asked for ID. Burgess then allegedly pulled out a can of pepper spray and sprayed the clerk.
She called out to two accomplices whom were waiting outside. The two, later identified as James McClendon, 50, 2918 21 St., Niagara Falls and Ashley Bivins, 21, 21st Street in Niagara Falls were in black clothes, black hats and scarves.
As they entered the store the clerk fled. McClendon attempted to grab the clerk and prevent his escape but he broke free, running from the store calling out for help. Patrons from Pat’s Place Tavern heard the clerk’s cries and responded.
While in the store, the three worked unsuccessfully to open the cash register.
Patrons in the parking lot were able to capture Burgess, while the other two fled east.
McClendon was also chased and captured by several patron about a block away on South Street. One of the patrons was a female and was punched in the face by the suspect, however it was reported she was undeterred and held him in a chokehold until help arrived.
The third suspect, Bivins, alluded capture and it was later determined that a get-a-way car operated by a fourth suspect, Chelsee Williams, 18, of Niagara County Community College dorms, had fled the area.
McClendon was charged with third-degree assault.
Burgess, 2918 21st St., Niagara Falls was charged with second-degree robbery, second-degree assault and fourth-degree conspiracy.
Members of the Lockport Police were assisted by Niagara Falls CIB and Intel staff on Monday in locating the other two suspects.
Williams and Bivins were located and both charged with second-degree robbery, second-degree assault and conspiracy.
Police learned the four suspects planned and waited for the store to be clear of customers, before executing their plan.
The loss of inventory and damage estimate is not yet complete.
Store video and civilian efforts assisted greatly in this investigation bringing about four solid arrests.
All four have future dates in Lockport City Court and eventually Niagara County Court.