By Conrad Dudderar
A Moore felon has been charged in connection with the armed heist of a Yukon retailer.
Justin Joe Bowling, 40, was formally charged March 28 with robbery with a dangerous weapon in Canadian County District Court.
The felony crime is punishable by not less than five years in prison; Bowling faces a longer sentence because of previous convictions.
The charge stems from a Feb. 17th robbery at Whatchamacallit Tools, 1141 Garth Brooks Blvd. Yukon police investigated the incident inside the Chisholm Center store.
Canadian County Assistant District Attorney John Salmon alleges Bowling stole a mobile phone and merchandise, identified in a police report as two Makita 40-volt battery packs and a Stanley brand hammer.
The defendant first tried to leave with the merchandise through the store’s back storage room, according to the police report.
But the door was locked so he tried to run out the front doors.
An on-duty store employee identified as “RJ” tried to keep Bowling from stealing the items by standing in front of the doors, according to an arrest warrant affidavit.
“The defendant ‘bull rushed’ RJ, which caused both of them to fall to the ground,” a police investigator wrote in the affidavit. “During a brief struggle, the defendant grabbed a hammer and raised it as if he were going to strike RJ.”
The employee then backed away from Bowling to avoid being hit.
Prosecutors allege the defendant’s actions placed the victim “in fear of immediate and unlawful injury to his person in order to overcome his resistance and rob him of his cell phone and merchandise belonging to Whatchamacallit Tools.”
Bowling allegedly left out the front doors of the business with the stolen property, the court affidavit reads.
NOT THE FIRST TIME
Whatchamacallit Tools also was victimized by Bowling and an accomplice in a Jan. 28 robbery, according to the investigator’s affidavit.
The pair “entered the store and stole several items, using a screwdriver to remove the items from the wall and concealing them on their person before leaving without rendering payment,” the document reads.
Several lithium batteries were taken in this first heist.
Canadian County Special Judge Charles Gass has issued a warrant for Bowling’s arrest, setting bond at $10,000.
Bowling has previous felony convictions in Oklahoma and Caddo counties for grand larceny, possession of controlled substance and false declaration of ownership in pawn shop.
Bowling served time in prison in 2012, 2015 and 2016 and has been on probation, state Department of Corrections records indicate.