The Herald Bulletin

March 4, 2014

Serial armed robber gets 73 years

By Jack Molitor
The Herald Bulletin

---- — ANDERSON — A serial armed robber who hit four different stores in less than a month in May received a lengthy prison sentence this week.

DeAundra M. Patterson, 27, of Anderson was sentenced Monday to 73 years by Madison County Circuit Court 6 Judge Dennis Carroll after being convicted in February of a number of felonies in connection with the incidents. Patterson was found guilty of five counts of armed robbery, two counts of battery, resisting law enforcement and operating a motor vehicle after a lifetime suspension in a jury trial on Feb. 7.

Patterson was arrested on May 27 after the fourth robbery, which happened at Save On Liquor on Broadway. Police engaged Patterson in a car and foot pursuit, and one officer was injured during the chase before Patterson was taken into custody. Clues from the latest robbery led detectives to believe Patterson was involved in other recent incidents around the city.

According to the probable cause affidavit, officers were dispatched to the liquor store that night at about 7 p.m. and learned that Patterson had fled the area in a red SUV. Authorities chased the SUV from Silver Street to Ashbourne Road, where they lost the vehicle. Anderson Police Department officer Matt Jarrett later found Patterson and the SUV near the area, tried to stop him and was hit by the SUV when Patterson made a sharp turn in reverse.

Patterson then continued to flee, heading east on Cross Street until he sideswiped another vehicle, bringing the chase to a close. Police matched Patterson's description and the items found in the SUV with surveillance footage from the liquor store. APD detective Michael Anderson also noticed a pattern similar to three earlier robberies in May.

The Ricker's in the 2500 block of Central Avenue was robbed on May 5 and May 15, and the Discount Tobacco in the 2600 block of Columbus Avenue was robbed on May 13. In each case, the right-handed suspect matching Patterson's description carried a bag into the store, threatened the employees with a black and silver semi-automatic handgun, wore gloves and a ski mask, took Newport cigarettes and demanded all the money in the safe.

Several victims testified during the one-day trial, including a minor who testified that Patterson pointed the gun at him while escaping from the last robbery. Patterson was handed the heavy penalty by Carroll because of an extensive criminal background and the severity and volume of the robberies. Anderson police believe he might also be responsible for other unsolved armed robberies around the city.

"I think it's a victory for the residents of Madison County," said deputy prosecutor Stephanie Wade, who tried the case against Patterson. "It wasn't just the severity of the crimes, he put a lot of people at risk by leading police on that chase."

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