A Monday afternoon robbery of a Winston-Salem business owned by the brother of King resident Annette Long Covington, who owns the Long Jewelers of King, has left one suspected robber dead, according to Winston-Salem police.
Covington said in a Facebook post that all of her family and staff were okay.
“Many of you have heard about the armed robbery of Long Jewelers of Winston-Salem this afternoon,” she wrote. “I cannot provide details, but I want to let everyone know that all of my family and all staff are fine and unharmed.”
Winston-Salem police responded to the incident at around 3:30 p.m. Monday after receiving calls reporting a shooting on Hanes Mall Boulevard. At the same time police received a call reporting a robbery at Long Jewelers.
When police arrived at the scene they discovered a dead man, apparently from a gunshot wound, in the parking lot near Long Jewelers.
According to a press release form the Winston-Salem Police Department released Tuesday,
three masked suspects entered Long Jewelers located at 111 Hanes Square Circle. Two of the suspects brandished firearms and threatened the customers and employees of the business.
“While one of the suspects stood guard at the entrance to the business, a second suspect smashed display cases and began to remove jewelry,” reads the release. “The third suspect continued to terrorize the employees and patrons of the business while brandishing a firearm. A person in control of the business was in the back of the store when he realized that the business was being robbed. The person in control of the business was aware that the suspects were armed with firearms and that the lives of customers and employees were being threatened.
“The person in charge of the business retrieved a firearm and began to walk toward the front of the business,” adds the release. “The person in charge of the business then confronted one of the armed suspects. In fear of his life, and the lives of the business’s employees and patrons, the person in charge of the business discharged two rounds from the firearm. The suspect was wounded and fled the store on foot, along with two other suspects. The wounded suspect collapsed just outside the business and succumbed to his injuries. The remaining suspects fled the area on foot.
Police identified the dead man as Matthew Shawon Elliott, 30, of Statesville, noting that he has two prior felony convictions in North Carolina for robbery with a dangerous weapon.
The case has been reviewed by Forsyth County District Attorney Jim O’Neill. Mr. O’Neill determined that no criminal charges were warranted in regards to the shooting death of the suspect.
Authorities remain focused on identifying and apprehending the two other suspects in this matter. The investigation into the robbery of Long Jewelers remains active and authorities ask that anyone with information regarding this incident call the Winston-Salem Police Department at 336-773-7700 or CrimeStoppers at 336-727-2800.
Nicholas Elmes may be reached at 336-591-8191 or on Twitter @NicholasElmes.