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Two men were arrested on Wednesday, May 8 following a robbery and chase by law enforcement officers.
At 9:43 a.m., Monticello Police Department (MPD) dispatch received a called-in report of a robbery that had just occurred at the L&E Grocery store, located on Chestnut Drive, in Monticello.
According to the report issued by the MPD's Chief Fred Mosley, the grocery store's owner, an 84-year-old man, got in his vehicle and given chase to the suspect following the robbery.
The suspect and victim traveled down North Railroad Street, and while pursuing the suspect, the grocery store owner provided a description of
the suspect to dispatch, who relayed the information to responding law enforcement officers.
The suspect was reported to have been a black male, wearing black clothing, who was running alongside North Railroad Street. The grocery store owner advised dispatch that the suspect was weaving between bushes alongside the roadway in an attempt to elude the pursuing victim.
MPD's Lt. Jack Pitts arrived in the area of the crime and noticed two vehicles traveling at a high rate of speed; at some point, the suspect had gotten into a vehicle and the victim continued to provide pursuit.
The first vehicle (a red SUV) was occupied by the original suspect as well as an additional male, and the second vehicle (a black truck) was being driven by the victim.
After observing the two vehicles, Lt. Pitts activated his emergency lights and siren in an attempt to stop the vehicles, with other Monticello Police Department officers and deputies from the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office (JCSO) eventually joining the chase.
Law enforcement officers pursued the two vehicles from North Railroad Street onto East Washington Street, and throughout the downtown portion of Monticello.
Civilian traffic around the Courthouse Circle was momentarily halted before the pursuit eventually came to a stop after officers followed the two vehicles onto North Jefferson Street.
The suspects and the victim were stopped on North Jefferson Street, directly across the Brick House Eatery restaurant.
Officers from both the MPD and the JCSO took the two suspects into custody.
A search of the suspect's vehicle exposed the money that had been stolen from the victim, as well as an undetermined weight (but less than 20 grams) of marijuana.
JCSO's Deputy Bethae conducted a search of the driver, discovering a small amount of marijuana on the driver's person.
Both suspects were transported to the Monticello Police Department for questioning, where both suspects admitted to having committed the robbery.
Dequan Bellamy was charged with robbery by sudden snatching, possession of marijuana less than 20 grams, possession of drug paraphernalia and petit theft less than $300.
Kelvin Norman was charged with robbery by sudden snatching, possession of marijuana less than 20 grams, possession of drug paraphernalia, petit theft less than $300, felony fleeing and eluding a police officer.
According to law enforcement officers, gunshots were fired during the incident, but the case is still under further investigation – no injuries were reported due to the discharged firearm.