Food Lion near Laurel Bay robbed, manager pistol-whipped

Just after 7 a.m. Saturday, the Beaufort County Sheriff's Office responded to a call at the Food Lion near Laurel Bay.

An armed robbery and assault had occurred just moments earlier and, upon arrival, deputies spoke with five store employees and three customers who stated the store had been robbed by two unknown black males armed with handguns.

At approximately 7:10 a.m., the two suspects entered the store and proceeded to the office where the store manager was working. The suspects made entry to the office, where they pistol-whipped the manager and demanded access to the safe. The manager complied, and after taking an undisclosed amount of cash and lottery tickets the suspects left the office.

Both men proceeded to herd the remaining store employees and customers into the office with the manager. The suspects then took the car keys of the store's assistant manager and fled the store, using the keys to steal a black 1996 Ford Explorer.

The stolen vehicle was recovered a short time later, abandoned in the parking lot at Burton Wells Park. The injured store manager was transported to Beaufort Memorial Hospital where she was treated and released for moderate facial injuries.

The suspects were described as black males between the ages of 20-30. One was reported as being approximately 6'04", 250 lbs wearing a black jacket, blue jeans, and a black bandana with white lettering over his face. The second suspect was described as approximately 6'00", 160 lbs wearing all black clothing and a black ski mask with a spider web design on it.

The Sheriff's Office is asking anyone with information to contact either Investigator Sgt. J. Fraser at 843-255-3416 the Beaufort County Dispatch Center at 843-524-2777.

Keen readers will recall that the Lady's Island suffered a robbery attempt in July of this year.

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