CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- A Hurricane man was arrested on charges of first-degree armed robbery, said Capt. Sean Crosier of the Kanawha County Sheriff's Office.
Kelly's Cafe at 7030 MacCorkle Ave. in Jefferson was robbed early Monday when a man confronted a clerk, said he had a gun, and ordered her to open the cash register. The clerk told police the man then brandished a gun and demanded more money. When she had no more cash, he fled on foot with an undisclosed amount of money.
The robbery occurred shortly after midnight. About 2:20 a.m. Monday, a man who fit the description of the suspect was located at Nitro Walmart. Nitro Police and Kanawha County Sheriff's deputies arrested Justin Lee Brafford, 31, of Hurricane. During their investigation they found a large sum of money, a semi-automatic pistol and camouflage clothing.
Brafford, who was arrested and charged with first-degree armed robbery, later confessed to his involvement, Crosier said. Brafford was taken to South Central Regional Jail to await arraignment.
Kelly's Cafe was one of three gaming parlors robbed in western Kanawha and Putnam counties within a few hours' time. Investigators are looking for connections between the crimes.
A spokesman for the Winfield detachment of the West Virginia State Police said Texas Jim's in Teays Valley was robbed at gunpoint by a man just after 11:30 p.m. Sunday.
In what's believed to be an unrelated robbery, authorities are searching for the woman said to have robbed a Cross Lanes gaming parlor.
Thanks in part to tips from the public, deputies were able to identify her as Kimberly Ann West, 31, of Elyria Ohio the day after the robbery, Cpl. Brian Humphreys said in a release. West, who also is known as Kimberly Ann Vest, has ties to the Cross Lanes area but is believed to have fled the state headed back to Ohio.
It happened just before 9:30 p.m. Sunday at Ivy's Video Parlor, 4340 W. Washington St. in Cross Lanes. An employee reported the robbery.
West had been playing one of the video lottery games for several minutes before ordering a Mountain Dew. She then went into a restroom and returned with a black handgun at her side. West demanded instructions for opening the cash register, stole $297, and fled.
West is described as a white female, 5-foot-4-inches tall and weighing about 180 pounds. She has medium length brown hair and is in her mid-30s. She was last seen wearing a dark hooded sweatshirt and gray sweatpants. She left in a gray Toyota, possibly a Corolla, and was traveling east toward Charleston.
A warrant issued Monday for her arrest charges her with armed robbery.
Anyone with information on that incident is asked to call Deputy J. T. Snyder at 304-357-0169.