Petersburg robbery suspect caught in Suffolk

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, November 30, 2005

A thwarted Petersburg convenience store robbery ended late Monday when the suspect collapsed in Obici Hospital’s emergency room.

Gabriel A. Cookey, 22, of Waverly stumbled into the hospital around 10:15 p.m., suffering from gunshot wounds received during the attempted robbery of a Quik Stop in downtown Petersburg two hours earlier.

Cookey is recovering from his injuries in Sentara Norfolk General Hospital, where he was taken after an unknown driver dropped him off outside Obici’s entrance, said Lt. Debbie J. George, spokeswoman for the Suffolk Police Department. His injuries are not life-threatening, she said.


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When he is released from the hospital, Cookey will face a string of charges from Petersburg and Chesterfield County authorities, said Sgt. T.E. Young, an investigator with the Petersburg Police Department.

Warrants are on file in Petersburg charging Cookey with armed robbery, two counts of using a firearm in the commission of a felony, carjacking, conspiracy and abduction. Charges are still pending in neighboring Chesterfield County, a spokesman said.

The Suffolk Police Department will not be filing any charges against Cookey, said George.

Around 8 p.m. Monday, an armed Cookey and an accomplice grabbed a hostage outside the convenience store. Then Cookie went into the store and held up the clerk behind the counter at gunpoint, Young said.

Instead of handing over the cash Cookey demanded, the clerk pulled out a handgun and shot him in the cheek and left leg, Young said. No charges are expected against the store clerk.

Cookey and his accomplice, who is still at large, fled on foot in separate directions. Cookey stole a car at gunpoint from two men in downtown Petersburg and got on Interstate 95 North, exiting about 10 miles away in Chester and abandoning that vehicle.

He then carjacked a second car in Chesterfield County by firing a gunshot into the windshield of a oncoming car, Young said. When the car stopped, Cookey pushed the driver out and began traveling toward Suffolk.

Cookey abandoned the car sometime before reaching Suffolk, apparently stopping at someone’s house he was familiar with, George said. Authorities in Petersburg have recovered both abandoned vehicles.

Police believe that person, driving a blue 1999 Chevrolet Monte Carlo, dropped Cookey off outside Obici’s entrance, she added.