On Sunday, May 13, 2012, Columbia County Sheriff’s Office deputies arrested a Virginia man for robbery and other charges.
At approximately 2:30 p.m., a man entered the Chevron located at 3828 N. Highway 441, Lake City, FL. The suspect approached the clerk and demanded money. The clerk refused to give the suspect any money. The suspect became enraged and smashed the credit card reader on the counter and then punched through a glass display case. The suspect attempted to steal the cash register but was unsuccessful. The suspect exited the store and fled the scene in a brown Chevrolet pickup truck. Witnesses at the scene were able to provide a detailed description of the vehicle. The suspect was last seen entering westbound Interstate 10.
Columbia County emergency communications personnel acted quickly to broadcast the description of the suspect and his vehicle to local and surrounding law enforcement agencies. Columbia County Sheriff’s Office Deputies positioned themselves on the highway corridors that the suspect could have possibly been travelling on. Sergeant Keith Jackson of the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office observed the suspect vehicle travelling south on Interstate 75. Sgt Jackson and Corporal Jay Swisher were able to conduct a traffic stop on the suspect when the suspect exited onto S.R. 47. The suspect was taken into custody without incident.
Deputies observed injuries to the suspect’s right hand that was consistent with the glass display case being damaged. The suspect’s clothing and vehicle also matched the description provided by witnesses. Deputies discovered that the suspect had $1,3000.00 of his own money on his person. A small amount of marijuana was discovered in the suspect’s vehicle as well.
The suspect was transported to a local hospital for medical treatment of his injured hand. The suspect refused any treatment and was transported to the Columbia County Detention Facility.
Daniel Ray Messersmith, 12/26/1964
21549 Green Springs Rd., Abingdon, VA
Charges: Robbery, Criminal Mischief, Possession of Less than 20 Grams of Cannabis, Possession of Drug Paraphernalia.