Hendersonville Police Search For Robbery Suspect - NewsChannel5.com | Nashville News, Weather & Sports

Hendersonville Police Search For Robbery Suspect

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by Emily Luxen           

HENDERSONVILLE, Tenn. - An attempt to buy a Christmas gift ends in a woman getting robbed.

Hendersonville police said on Sunday at 4 p.m., Shawna Belcher came to the Essex store at 500 West Main Street to purchase a gaming system from Michael Damien Brinkley, 34.  Brinkley was a relative of one of Belcher's co-workers, and the two agreed to meet in the busy parking lot.

Police said when Belcher arrived at the store, Brinkley got in her car and insisted they drive around to the back of the store to complete the transaction.

"When she drove around back, he grabbed her by the throat and demanded the money," said Det. Jason Steffy with the Hendersonville Police Department.

Brinkley took off with an undisclosed amount of money.

Belcher said she wasn't concerned about safety because she knew the suspect.

"It never crossed my mind," said Belcher.  "We were in a busy parking lot, and it was the middle of the day.  The whole thing was terrifying."

Det. Steffy said when purchasing an item from another individual it is always a good idea to meet in a well-lit, visible and busy area.

"If something does go wrong you can scream to get help and attention," said Det. Steffy.  "Stay in populated areas where you can be seen."

Belcher hopes others learn from her experience.

"I would tell people to be cautious," said Belcher.  " It is the holidays, and many people are hard up and obviously willing to go to all sorts of extremes to get money."

Hendersonville police said Brinkley has a criminal history, and has been known to float around the area.

Anyone with information on Brinkley's whereabouts should call the Hendersonville Crime Stoppers at 615-573-5400.

Email: eluxen@newschannel5.com
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