Couple pleads not guilty following armed robbery

Couple pleads not guilty following armed robbery By: David Lias
Plain Talk By David Lias Plain Talk A man and woman from Arkansas pleaded not guilty Friday to a string of charges in connection with the July 1 armed robbery of Davis Pharmacy. Matthew Doolin, 25, and Julie Doolin, 26, both of Mountain View, AK, didnâ�?�?t appear in the Clay County courtroom in Vermillion at the same time Friday. But they both entered similar pleas before Circuit Court Judge Arthur Rusch. Matthew Doolin, represented by Public Defender Phillip Peterson, entered an innocent plea to one count each of first-degree robbery, second-degree kidnapping, falsely reporting a threat, aggravated assault and grand theft and two counts of possession of a controlled substance. Thirty minutes later, Julie Doolin appeared before Rusch and enter not guilty pleas to one count each of first-degree robbery, second-degree kidnapping; aiding, abetting or advising the false reporting of a threat; aggravated assault and grand theft; and two counts of possession of a controlled substance. Julie Doolin is represented by Vermillion attorney Linda Kogel. Both Matthew and Julie Doolin were led to the third floor courtroom by a sheriffâ�?�?s deputy. They wore orange jumpsuits and shackles that were never removed during their brief time before the judgeâ�?�?s bench. Rusch scheduled a motions hearing for the two suspects at 1 p.m. Aug. 17 in the Clay County Courthouse. At the conclusion of Julie Doolinâ�?�?s arraignment, Rusch also noted he had received no motion from either suspectâ�?�?s attorney requesting that the couple be tried together. â�?�?We will be going forward with separate trials,â�? Rusch said. The two suspectsâ�?�? trials are scheduled to begin at 9 a.m. Nov. 17 in Vermillion. The drug and grand-theft charges involve possession of Oxycodone and Xanax, with a value of more than $1,000. Shortly before 9 p.m. July 1, the Vermillion Police Department received a report that a robbery had occurred at the pharmacy. Information that developed during the ensuing investigation indicated one male and one female suspect, both of whom were armed with handguns. The two suspects came into the pharmacy with pistols and tied up two persons with tape, said Tom Lavin, owner of Davis Pharmacy. Lavin said the two suspects wanted only drugs, then fled out the back door. One of the two victims freed himself and called police, who arrived quickly on the scene, Lavin said. The suspects ran to a vehicle parked in the Jonesâ�?�? Food Center parking lot and sped away. The suspects knew what they were looking for when they entered the pharmacy, Lavin said. The investigation ultimately led to a North Sioux City officerâ�?�?s discovery of a vehicle matching the description in the North Sioux City area. Upon the officerâ�?�?s attempt to stop the vehicle, the suspects fled and a pursuit ensued. Union County authorities ultimately stopped the vehicle and apprehended two subjects. The suspects were held in connection with the robbery as the investigation continued. On the six common charges, each defendant faces the following maximum sentence on each count: â�?¢ First-degree robbery, a Class 2 felony, 25 years in the South Dakota State Penitentiary and a $50,000 fine. â�?¢ Second-degree kidnapping and aggravated assault, each a Class 3 felony, 15 years in the South�?  Dakota State Penitentiary and a $30,000 fine. â�?¢ Possession of a controlled substance (two counts) and grand theft, each a Class 4 felony, 10 years in the South Dakota State Penitentiary and a $20,000 fine. The two defendants remain in custody. Julie Doolin is being housed in the Union County Jail in Elk Point. Matthew Doolin is currently behind bars in the Clay County Jail in Vermillion. Agencies involved in the investigation, in addition to the Vermillion Police Department, included the Clay County Sheriffâ�?�?s Department, Union County Sheriffâ�?�?s Department, Jefferson Police Department, Elk Point Police Department, North Sioux City Police Department and South Dakota Department of Game, Fish & Parks. Heather Heimes of the Vermillion Plain Talk contributed to this report.

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