Suspected Charlotte serial robber taken into custody at landscaping job

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Police have arrested a man wanted in connection with a string of robberies across Charlotte.

Officials with the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department said 35-year-old Lucas Hawkinson was taken into custody Tuesday at his workplace, a landscaping business near the South End neighborhood.

CMPD officials said in a press conference Wednesday that Hawkinson was found with the help of his employer.

Officials said Hawkinson was questioned at CMPD headquarters and charged with seven counts of robbery with a dangerous weapon.

CMPD officials said Hawkison is a heavy drug user and that he has a violent criminal history from another state.

The arrest comes days after CMPD officials announced that another business had been hit by a man they believed was behind several robberies.

[MAP: String of business robberies across Charlotte]

"I'm actually really excited to tell them, obviously it'll shake somebody up to have to go through that situation, so it's a big relief for the crew, for sure,” said Mike Pilotte, who owns Papa Murphy’s on Lancaster Highway.

Police sources said Hawkinson also robbed a Subway restaurant on Park Road last Thursday.

On Monday, a man went into the Carriage Cleaners on Colony Road, held employees at gunpoint and demanded cash, investigators said.

Investigators said the man was so quiet when he held up places that customers may not have been aware of what was going on.

"It's a credit to CMPD,” Pilotte said. “Those guys are true professionals."

"He's committing crimes that are extremely violent crimes, again, an armed robbery,” CMPD Sgt. Brian Scharf said. “He has a gun he's pointing it at somebody. He's demanding money. A lot of things can happen, whether it be intentionally or accidentally."

Police believed Hawkinson was connected to five other robberies in Charlotte that started Nov. 15.

Below is the list of robberies that CMPD is investigating:

  • On Nov. 15, at approximately 11:55 a.m., a man entered the China Fun business, located at 9020 Albemarle Road in the Hickory Grove Division, and robbed the business at gunpoint of cash.
  • On Nov. 17, at approximately 5:20 p.m., a white man entered the Smoothie King located at 3020 Prosperity Church Road in the University City Division. The man proceeded to rob the business of cash at gunpoint.
  • On Nov. 19, at approximately 6:25 p.m., a white man entered the Papa Murphy's located at 16015 Lancaster Highway in the South Division. The man then attempted to rob the business but was unsuccessful and fled the scene.
  • On Nov. 20, at approximately 5:14 p.m., a man suspect entered the Dairy Queen located at 3020 Prosperity Church Road in the University City Division. The man brandished a firearm and attempted to rob the business but was unsuccessful and fled the scene.
  • On Nov. 28, at approximately 6:47 p.m., a man entered the Starbucks located at 545 Providence Road in the Providence Division. The man proceeded to rob the store of cash at gunpoint.

Officials said Hawkinson has been transferred to the custody of the Mecklenburg County Sheriff’s Office and that additional charges may be forthcoming.

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