PINEHURST - Pinehurst Police have taken into custody a man the chief calls a person of interest in a carjacking involving a teenage girl.
Chief Fred R. Hanauer III says Tuesday night his officers arrested Kevin Scott Holmes, 25, of Orange, who is listed as a person of interest in the aggravated robbery of a 16-year-old female student during the evening of Friday, September 14.
Two Pinehurst officers took Holmes into custody at the Kwik Stop convenience store on Strickland Drive. He was a passenger in a vehicle.
They're holding the suspect on an unrelated theft charge out of Jefferson County. Formal charges are pending for the robbery.
Police are gathering information about the possible involvement of a woman who was with Holmes when the teenage girl was victimized by a carjacker.
Chief Hanauer credits the citizens of Orange County with providing a number of tips that helped lead to the arrest.
The West Orange and Orange Police departments assisted in the arrest.
"A crime of this magnitude cannot be taken lightly and we will do all we can to see that those who commit these crimes are held accountable," said Chief Hanauer.
According to the chief, on Friday, September 14, the Pinehurst Police Department responded to an aggravated robbery that occurred at a trailer park in the 3800 block of Pheasant Drive.
The suspect gave a male and a teenage girl a ride from a convenience store in the 800 Block of Strickland Drive and then displayed a handgun and ordered the young girl out of her car. He also took her cellular telephone and a purse containing credit cards and cash.
Chief Hanauer says based on tips from the community following the release of video footage from the convenience store as well as photographs obtained from prior arrests, the Department identified Holmes as a person of interest.
Chief Hanauer offers the following advice:
Besides NEVER giving rides to strangers, Hanauer offers these tips to avoid being victimized.
1. Don't go out for walks alone. If you need fresh air and it's late have someone accompany you.
2. Make sure that someone knows where are headed and how late you expect to be out.
3. Stay away from dark, isolated places.
4. Walk under lights. Steer clear of dark places like unlit doorways, alleys, and bushes that make good hiding places for robbers.
5. Hold your head and shoulders high. A confident person makes a bad choice for a victim.
6. Be alert to the things going on around you.
7. If you see something suspicious, report it.
8. Leave the fancy jewelry and wad of cash at home or the bank. Don't carry it around with you.
9. If a robber tries to take your stuff, let him have it. Your life is more important.
10. If you are confronted by a robber try to remember distinguishing characteristics. That way you can give the police a more accurate description.
Follow your gut. If something doesn't feel right, it probably isn't.