Asheville restaurant robber gets 7 years in prison

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ASHEVILLE, N.C. – Curtis Andrew Wallace, Jr., 30, of Asheville, was sentenced to 84 months in prison today for the armed robbery of an area restaurant, announced Andrew Murray, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of North Carolina.  U.S. District Judge Max O. Cogburn, Jr. also ordered Wallace to serve three years under court supervision after he is released from prison.

Chief David Zack of the Asheville Police Department (APD) joins U.S. Attorney Murray in making today’s announcement.

According to filed court documents and today’s sentencing hearing, on December 30, 2019, APD officers responded to a call at the Domino’s Pizza restaurant located at 1438 Patton Avenue, in Asheville, in reference to an attempted armed robbery. APD officers who responded at the scene were able to see Wallace through the glass window of the store. Court records show that when Wallace saw the officers, he attempted to exit through the back door of the store, where he was met by other APD officers. Wallace retreated inside the business and attempted to escape again through the front door. Officers confronted Wallace at the entrance and took him into custody.

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According to court documents, following Wallace’s arrest, APD officers entered the restaurant and located five store employees lying face down inside the store’s walk-in freezer. One of the employees told APD officers that Wallace ran in the store wielding a machete and ordered everyone to get on the floor in the back office or they would be harmed. Wallace demanded money from the safe and ordered the employees to lay face down inside the restaurant’s freezer. Over the course of the robbery, Wallace kicked several employees, one of them in the face, and threatened to “start chopping heads off” if they did not comply. Wallace proceeded to rob the store employees and to take money from the store’s cash register.

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On September 25, 2020, Wallace pleaded guilty to interference with commerce by threat or violence, commonly referred to as Hobbs Act Robbery. Wallace has a prior federal conviction for the 2011 robbery of an Asheville-area bank.

Wallace is currently in federal custody and will be transferred to the custody of the Federal Bureau of Prisons upon designation of a federal facility.

In making today’s announcement, U.S. Attorney Murray thanked the Asheville Police Department for their investigation of the case.

Assistant United States Attorney John Pritchard, of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Asheville, prosecuted the case.

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