Investigators say three men arrested in connection to a Hickory jewelry store robbery have been charged with a previous robbery at a local business in Statesville.
The Hickory incident was reported about two weeks ago, at Bisanar Co. Jewelers on the 200 block of Union Square NW, according to the Hickory Police Department.
Police say the three suspects broke out the front door to get inside the store.
They left in a tan Lexus, which they crashed while leaving the scene.
While police tried to chase the suspects on foot, the three apparently separated and an hour after the chase began, the local Yellow Cab Company got a call from a man saying he and another man wanted to go to Greensboro.
About the same time police alerted the cab company just in case they spotted anything. When informed of the call from someone wanting to go to Greensboro, police went to the pickup point and waited for the taxi to arrive.
When the two men got inside, police moved in. The suspects tried to run again but were quickly caught.
An hour later, another man called the cab company needing a ride to Greensboro. Police were waiting once again and the third suspect was arrested.
Meanwhile when the Lexus was searched, thousands of dollars in jewelry and other evidence was found. Officials at the local jewelry store do believe it is their merchandise.
The smash and grab style of theft from Bisanar's is similar to a theft there last month and to at least eight others statewide in the past six weeks. Police have not tied the three to any of those crimes yet but have put the word out to the agencies that might want to join in the investigation.
Xavier Alexander Onwuka, 21, of Greensboro, Rashid Sita, 22, of Durham and Justin Williams, 22, of Durham were taken into custody and given bonds ranging from $10,000 to $46,000. A first appearance in court is set for Wednesday morning.
On January 30, police in Statesville said the methods used, and the mens' descriptions, in the Hickory robbery matched that of what took place at Statesville Jewelry & Loan on December 13.
The trio was then charged with breaking, entering, and felony larceny, as well as larceny of a firearm for the Statesville crime.