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Pair arrested for using hammers during robberies

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Two people have been arrested in connection with robberies at several area business, where a hammer was used as a weapon.  Gage Washington and Erin Johnson were stopped during a traffic stop Tuesday near Hershey.  Police say the pair matched the descriptions of suspects wanted for robberies in Dauphin, Lancaster and Lebanon Counties.  Derry Township Police Chief Patrick O’Rourke says the hammers were never used to strike anyone during the robberies.

Below is the press release from Derry Township PD:

On Tues, 3/5, Derry Township Police Detectives received confidential information regarding the identity of two persons involved in multiple robberies as well a description of an associated vehicle and license plate number. The subsequent identities of the suspects and their vehicle description (gray Chevrolet Cobalt coupe) were broadcasted to regional law enforcement agencies.

At 5:51pm, a robbery occurred at the Merle Norman Cosmetics Store on Allentown Boulevard in Lower Paxton Township and the suspect description matched that of the suspect involved in [6] prior robberies in Derry Township, Palmyra, Campbelltown and Mt. Joy Township.

In response to the Lower Paxton robbery, Derry Township Police Units subsequently manned the ingress routes to Hershey/Hummelstown, and at 6:07pm a Derry Township patrol officer observed a vehicle matching the description and registration plate gleaned from earlier investigation entering Derry Township on Hanover Street at Hersheypark Drive. A TRAFFIC STOP was initiated at which point the vehicle occupants were taken into custody.

It was later learned that a witness to the Lower Paxton Township robbery observed this same vehicle fleeing the scene.

Arrested were:

ERIN JOHNSON, female, age 20 – last known residence was in Palmyra, Lebanon County

GAGE WASHINGTON, male, age 21 – last known residence was in Hummelstown Borough, Dauphin County

Both subjects were cooperative with investigators of their involvement in all [7] robberies attributing the acts to drug addiction.

JOHNSON was charged with multiple counts of Conspiracy & Robbery and lodged in Dauphin County Prison on $100,000 bail.

WASHINGTON was charged with multiple counts of Conspiracy, Robbery and Simple Assault by Physical Menace and lodged in Dauphin County Prison on $250,000 bail.

A pending search warrant on the seized automobile may yield additional charges in the future.


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