One man was charged by city police Thursday night with robbing a convenience store, while another was accused of pepper-spraying one of the investigating officers.
Police Det. Lt. Thomas DiMezza said the King's Fuel shop at 313 E. Main St. was robbed about 9:20 p.m. The store clerk and an eyewitness described the suspect as wearing a plaid shirt and having a Rastafarian-type hair style, while the eyewitness also provided the license plate number of the car used to escape.
DiMezza said the suspect vehicle was spotted by Charlton police at the intersection of routes 67 and 147, and they followed the vehicle until it was stopped at the intersection of Route 5 and Interstate 890 in Glenville. Jeffrey Engle, 43, of County Highway 103, was charged with felony first-degree robbery and is being held in city police lockup pending arraignment this morning in City Court.
Investigators recovered some of the stolen money and found a Rastafarian-type hat and wig allegedly used in the crime on Chapman Drive east of the city. Police also located the shirt the suspect allegedly wore on Widow Susan Road in the town of Amsterdam. The gun has not been located, but it is believed the suspect also threw the gun out of the car somewhere along Chapman Drive or Widow Susan Road.
While police were investigating the robbery, they say another man was arrested after he pepper sprayed one of the investigating officers. DiMezza said that while two detectives were obtaining security videotape from the convenience store, a man walked in and gave store staff a hard time when he was told the store was closed. The man left the store after the detectives identified themselves as police but threatened det. Sgt. Greg Culick in the parking lot of the store, DiMezza said.
Culick also said he noticed what may have been a weapon in the man's hand, DiMezza said, and when he approached the man, the man sprayed Culick with pepper spray, then fled. He was stopped a short distance away by another officer, DiMezza said.
Sal Burton, 35, of 352 Clinton Ave., Albany, was charged with obstructing governmental administration by means of a self-defense spray device, a felony. He is also being held pending arraignment.