More robbery charges against Verbena teen

Published 8:00 pm Wednesday, September 2, 2009

The Verbena teenager arrested twice already for allegedly burglarizing a Clanton business and robbing a Verbena store will face charges in connection with a third crime.

Timothy Jake Wells Jr., 19, will be charged with robbery and theft of property for the mid-July hold-up of a gas station off Interstate 65, according to Clanton Police Chief Brian Stilwell.

Chilton County sheriff’s deputies arrested Wells on Tuesday evening, about 10 hours after the Ye Old General Store was robbed. The store is located at the corner of county roads 59 and 24.

Stilwell said Wells was already a person of interest in the Shell station robbery.

Evidence recovered Tuesday by the sheriff’s office, including a shotgun and clothes, gave detectives reason to charge Wells with the Clanton robbery.

“Some information and property was found that tied him to that robbery,” Stilwell said.

A second man, Tommy J. Knight, 18, of Clanton, has also been arrested and charged with robbery and theft of property in connection with the Shell station robbery.

Wells was first arrested July 1 after apparently trying to steal a 4-wheeler from Action Motorsports in Clanton, Stilwell said.

That morning, Clanton police arrested Wells and charged him with burglary and theft of property. He has been out on bond since.

Two weeks later, the Sunny Shell Station was robbed around 3:45 a.m. A man carrying a shotgun and wearing a hood and mask entered the store and demanded money from the cashier.

Fast forward to Tuesday, when Wells allegedly entered the Verbena store armed with a shotgun and wearing a blue hood. After demanding money from the clerk, he fled in a brown Honda Accord with about $200, according to the sheriff’s office.

Wells lives within two miles of the store, and Chief Deputy Shane Mayfield said Tuesday that evidence links him to the robbery.

Clanton detectives don’t believe Wells is involved in any more of the robberies that have occurred near the Interstate in recent weeks.

Stilwell said the charges are the result of good teamwork between Clanton police and the sheriff’s office.

“We are a small county. All our departments are way too small for what we have to do,” said Stilwell. “The sheriff’s office did a wonderful job. We all worked together to make this happen.”

Anyone with information should call Clanton police at 755-1194.