BELLINGHAM, Wash. — Bellingham Police Department (BPD) officers were dispatched about 3:30am, Wednesday, March 30th, to a report of an armed robbery at a retail business near the intersection of Yew Street and Alabama Street in Bellingham.
According to BPD Spokesperson Claudia Murphy, officers were told that 2 men had just robbed a cashier at gunpoint and demanded cash, cigarettes and scratch lottery tickets. The cashier reported having a gun pointed directly at their face.
Store surveillance video showed 2 male suspects leaving the store on foot and nearby traffic cameras showed a blue Volkswagen Beetle driving from the scene at the same time according to Murphy.
BPD officers in the area saw a Volkswagen Beetle turning abruptly, about 2 blocks away, onto E Connecticut Street and were able to follow it north on Xenia Street.
A high-risk traffic stop was performed by BPD officers with assistance from Whatcom County Sheriff’s Office deputies in the parking lot of an elementary school less than a half-mile from the business. As a result of the stop, 4 people were detained. They were identified as Alexander Thomas Hughes, age 18, Joshua Jo Whitney, age 31, Jabez Sinclair Singleton, age 18, and a 17-year-old juvenile.
Subsequent interviews and further investigation revealed that Singleton and Hughes went into the business and Singleton pointed a handgun at the cashier while demanding cash and e-cigarettes. When told there were no e-cigarettes, he demanded regular cigarettes and scratch lottery tickets.
Surveillance video showed the cashier was handing over the items requested while Hughes got behind the counter and grabbed some lottery tickets and at least 2 cartons of cigarettes. Throughout the robbery, Singleton kept the pistol pointed at the cashier. The video also showed the distinct clothing Singleton (multicolored pajama pants, dark jacket) and Hughes (jeans, puffy black down jacket) were wearing.
Whitney was determined to have been the driver of the Volkswagen and the juvenile was a passenger. Both were arrested for their parts in the robbery.
Whitney gave permission for a vehicle search and much of the stolen property was found in the car. In addition, a loaded pistol used in the robbery was location and Singleton admitted it belonged to him.
Officers received information that similar robberies were reported in Lake Stevens and Everett. Suspect information from these robberies has been shared between the law enforcement agencies involved.
Jail records indicate Hughes, Whitney and Singleton had been booked into Whatcom County Jail by BPD and charged with suspicion of 1st degree robbery and 3rd degree theft. Singleton and Hughes were also charged with suspicion of possession of a dangerous weapon and Singleton was also charged with suspicion of being a minor in possession of a firearm. Murphy said the juvenile was also arrested and charged with suspicion of 1st degree robbery and 3rd degree theft.