Some people who’ve faced pricey vehicle repairs may have felt like they were being robbed by their mechanic. But most weren’t actually threatened at gunpoint.
Cary police, though, have accused a 21-year-old Apex mechanic with sticking a gun in a customer’s ribs and robbing him while the two were going to an auto parts store to purchase a fuel filter.
Zachary John Sharp of 2732 Southwinds Run in Apex was charged with one felony count of robbery with a dangerous weapon, according to records filed with the City County Bureau of Identification.
A search warrant made public Monday at the Wake County Clerk of Courts Office outlined the unusual circumstances of the armed robbery.
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On Dec. 28, the alleged victim, Jordan Casey, called 911 to report he had been robbed at gunpoint at 222 Glendon Way in Cary. Casey explained to officers that his uncle had told him he needed money to get back on his feet. The uncle called Casey, he said, because he had recently inherited a large amount of money from someone in his family.
Casey told the officers he agreed to give his uncle $5,500 but that he needed to go to the bank and withdraw part of the funds, according to the search warrant.
Casey said he left the bank and was on his way to his uncle’s home when he began having car trouble. The car managed to make it to his uncle’s house. Casey then called Sharp because he knew the Apex man either owned or worked at a car repair business, the search warrant said.
Sharp arrived at the uncle’s home behind the wheel of a gray Lexus with black rims. He looked at Casey’s car and determined that it needed a fuel filter.
Casey told the police that he rode with Sharp to the auto parts store. On the way, he told Sharp why he was at his uncle’s home and the amount of money that he was giving his uncle to help him.
“Casey stated that shortly after he told Sharp the story, Sharp began digging in his center console and then Casey felt something push into his ribs and Sharp then demanded him to give him the money,” Cary detective John Maia stated in the search warrant.
Casey later told the police that based on what he felt pushed into his ribs, he though Sharp had a gun in his hands. The money earmarked for his uncle was in his back pocket.
“Sharp told him that if he wanted to live that he would give him the money,” Maia wrote in the search warrant application. “Casey took the money out and handed it to Sharp.”
The gray Lexus never made it to the auto parts store. Instead, Sharp drove to a Biscuitville on N.C. 55 in Cary, where he made a U-turn and drove Casey back to his uncle’s home, according to the search warrant. Casey said before he got out of the car, Sharp warned him not to say anything about the robbery.
Police later that day visited Sharp’s home. They saw the gray Lexus that Casey had described and explained to Sharp why they were there. Sharp told the officers that he did not want to answer any questions and went back into his garage, where the Lexus was parked with the engine on, according to the search warrant.
The officers later arrested Sharp at a nearby Target store.
Investigators obtained the search warrant to review data from an Apple iPhone that was in the Lexus when he was arrested, according to the search warrant.
Capt. Randall Rhyne with Cary police was unable to confirm Monday whether Sharp actually owns or works for an auto repair shop.
Sharp was released from custody the same day of his arrest after posting a $55,000 bond, a jail spokesman reported Monday afternoon.