Authorities say Stephens City man confessed
By Candace Sipos -- firstname.lastname@example.org
WINCHESTER -- A Stephens City man who authorities say has confessed to Monday's robbery of two convenience stores was ordered held without bond Thursday.
Joshua James Steven Turner, 26, appeared before Judge David S. Whitacre via video conferencing Thursday in Frederick County General District Court. Turner was arrested Wednesday on warrants obtained by the county Sheriff's Office with the assistance of the Northwest Regional Drug Task Force, according to Winchester police Sgt. Frank Myrtle.
Turner was charged with robbery, petty larceny and attempted malicious wounding in connection with an incident in the county, according to court documents. Sheriff's Office Capt. John Heflin said Turner was arrested at his home in Stephens City without incident.
City police charged him Thursday morning in the subsequent robbery in Winchester, Myrtle said.
Turner is accused of robbing clerks at Bo's Express, 3612 Valley Pike, in Frederick County, and then Handy Mart, 2605 Valley Ave., Winchester, approximately three hours later.
According to court documents, the suspect stole about $102 from Bo's Express. During the incident, he choked and pushed the clerk over the counter multiple times before leaving him on the floor.
Police received several tips on robberies. One confidential informant told a detective with the task force that Turner committed both robberies, according to the documents.
The informant said he was with Turner the night of the robberies, and Turner asked to borrow his gray hoodie and got a ride from an unknown white female. When he returned, Turner told the informant to put away the hoodie and not wear it.
Later that night, Turner asked the informant to give him a ride to the Handy Mart. When he came back from both trips, he had money he previously didn't have, the informant told police.
Assistant county Commonwealth's Attorney Andrew M. Robbins requested that Whitacre not allow Turner bond, because the video of the county robbery "shows a significant amount of violence perpetrated against the clerk," he said.
Turner asked to be allowed bond, because he said he has "a severe drug addiction" and has been in contact with officials to start a 30-day rehabilitation program at Edgehill Recovery Retreat Center in the city.
"I'm not a flight risk of any kind," he said, disputing Robbins' claims of significant violence during the crimes. "I didn't have any weapons," he noted.
He said he hasn't been in any trouble with the law since he was 18, and has never been charged with anything as serious as the current charges.
Robbins said he wasn't necessarily worried about Turner fleeing, but rather "the danger to the community," especially because Edgehill is not a secured facility.
Whitacre suggested that Turner get involved with the 90-day drug rehabilitation program at the jail.
He set Turner's preliminary hearing date for March 27 at 1 p.m.