The crime spree began Feb. 25 when a man walked into the High's Store on Broening Road in Dundalk, left claiming he had forgotten his wallet and returned 15 minutes later with a mask and a gun cleaning out the cash register and demanding two packs of cigarettes to go.
Police say about a week later, 32-year-old Nick Dean Hornberger and Amy Lynn Holland, 28, would hit four more businesses in a span of less than 14 hours, completing their spree with a robbery at Tony's Pizza on Holabird Avenue the following day.
They say Hornberger would either display a handgun or would carry an object inside a plastic bag, implying it was a gun, before making his demands.
"In all of the armed robberies cash was taken,” said Cpl. John Wachter, a spokesman for the Baltimore County Police Department, “In two of the armed robberies, the suspect also took Newport cigarettes. No reports of shots fired and no injuries during any of the incidents."
Police say detectives cracked the case when surveillance video from two of the robberies showed a red or maroon Malibu in the area.
Deputies located a car matching that description at a local motel and arrested the suspects when they showed up at the vehicle.
A grand jury has indicted Hornberger for 39 different crimes in association with the robberies, and Holland for 18, since it's believed she only served as a getaway driver in half of them.
Police say it was only a matter of time until the suspected robbers were caught.
At a Dunkin Donuts on Kenwood Avenue, they say Hornberger attempted to rob the cashier, but they locked the front door with a remote device, and he was happy to leave with nothing when they finally unlocked it.
The pair are being held without bail at the Baltimore County Detention Center.
Police said the indictment deals with the following robberies:
- Feb. 25: High’s, 6800 block of Broening Rd., Dundalk: At 11:26 p.m., police said Hornberger entered the store, displayed a handgun and demanded money and then two packs of Newport cigarettes. The suspect took an undisclosed amount of money and cigarettes before fleeing the scene.
- March 5: Royal Farms, unit block of North Dundalk Ave., Dundalk: At 12:40 a.m., the Hornberger entered the Royal Farms store and demanded money. He was carrying a “Family Dollar” shopping bag that had an object inside that appeared to be a weapon. The suspect took an undisclosed amount of money before fleeing the store.
- March 5: 7-Eleven, unit block of Eastern Blvd., Essex: At 6:55 a.m., Hornberger entered the 7-Eleven store and demanded money. He had been carrying a plastic bag containing an object that the cashier believed to be a gun. The suspect took an undisclosed amount of money and fled the store with Holland as the driver.
- March 5: 7-Eleven, 7900 block of Wise Ave., Dundalk: At approximately 10:17 a.m., Hornberger came into the 7-Eleven store carrying a white bag and asked for a pack of Newport cigarettes. When the cashier turned back around from getting the cigarettes, the suspect had raised the bag as if there was a gun inside it and demanded money. The suspect took an undisclosed amount of money and a pack of Newport cigarettes before walking out of the store.
- March 5: Dunkin Donuts, 6300 block of Kenwood Ave., Rosedale: At 2:30 p.m., Hornberger entered the Dunkin Donuts store and asked for two donuts. While the cashier was getting the donuts, the suspect implied that he had a weapon in a bag that he was carrying and demanded money. The cashier locked the front door via a remote locking system and the suspect attempted to leave. The cashier unlocked the front door and the suspect was able to flee the scene but did not get anything. Holland served as the driver, police said.
- March 6: Tony’s Pizza, 6900 block of Holabird Ave., Dundalk: At 6:25 p.m., Hornberger entered the Tony’s Pizza store and whispered to the cashier that he wanted to get a pizza deal. After the cashier explained the deal, the suspect whispered that he was going to rob her and not to tell anyone. The suspect also pointed a handgun inside a plastic bag at her. The suspect took an undisclosed amount of money and fled the store. Holland served as the driver, police said.