Windsor man charged in armed robberies

Published 12:36 pm Tuesday, August 16, 2011

WINDSOR—A Windsor man attempting to sell lottery tickets he allegedly stole from a Wakefield convenience store has been charged with two armed robberies.

Darien Pittman, 24, is accused of holding up the J.B. Food Mart at 29463 Walters Highway, Carrsville, just before it closed at 9:30 p.m. Thursday and the 7-Eleven in Wakefield at 103 W. Main St. at about 3:30 a.m. Friday.

Diamond Tynes, 19, of Smithfield also will be charged as the alleged getaway driver.

“According to her, he didn’t tell her what he was doing,” said Isle of Wight County Sheriff’s Deputy Det. J.P. Hopko. “But she saw him with a mask, gun and the lottery tickets.”

Police nabbed Pittman after he allegedly asked someone to cash in the stolen winning lottery tickets at Southern Food Store in Windsor, where he was banned from entering, Hopko said.

The lottery alerted the store that the tickets were stolen and police were called, he said. When they arrived, Pittman was inside the store questioning the delay on cashing his lottery tickets and arrested without incident.

Investigators as of Tuesday had not tied Pittman to a July 19 holdup at the 7-Eleven on Carrsville Highway next to Joe’s Pizza and Pasta Palace outside Franklin and a 7-Eleven in Sussex one day later. Authorities indicated the four robberies could be related.

“We’ve got two detectives from Sussex County to discuss that as of right now,” Hopko said.

Pittman is charged in Isle of Wight County with armed robbery, grand larceny and using a firearm while committing a felony. The Sussex County Sheriff’s Office did not return a phone call to confirm charges there, although Hopko said Pittman was connected to the robbery.

Pittman was taken to Western Tidewater Regional Jail in Suffolk.