Deputies: Man robbed 78-year-old Belhaven woman with AK-47

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BELHAVEN, N.C. (WNCT) – A man who robbed a 78-year-old woman with an AK-47 rifle in Belhaven Tuesday has been arrested along with his accomplice, the Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office said.

Michael Respess, 20, and Joshua Carpenter, 19, both of Pantego, have been charged with first-degree burglary and robbery with a dangerous weapon. Respess was also charged with driving while impaired.

The woman told deputies a gunman wearing a mask, gloves and an AK-47 robbed her in her home on Dallas Paul Road.

Deputies said about 30 minutes after clearing the robbery scene, Beaufort County Communications received a report of a motor vehicle crash on Highway 32 north.  The caller reported the driver got out of the vehicle with two guns in hand, got into another vehicle and left the accident.

Deputies said Respess, who they identified as the driver, returned to the accident and was arrested after deputies determined the car matched the description of the car used in the robbery, and they recovered the rifle used in the robbery.

The Sheriff’s Office arrested Carpenter after they said an interview with Respess revealed him as an accomplice.

Both men were being held in the Beaufort County Detention Center in lieu of $75,000 bail.

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