Teen Arrested in June Robberies

By Lee Hermiston, Reporter

IOWA CITY, Iowa - An Indiana teen has been arrested in connection with two pizza delivery driver robberies from this past summer.

According to Iowa City police criminal complaints, 18-year-old Benevia L. Armstrong, of Indianapolis, faces two counts of first-degree robbery for her role in two robberies on June 28 and 29. Police said on both of those occasions, Armstrong and four other suspects ordered a pizza to be delivered to the 1000 block of Jensen Street on the west side of Iowa City.

On both occasions, when the driver arrived at the address, the five suspects - one of which was carrying a baseball bat - approached the driver, hit the car and threatened the driver, according to criminal complaints. Police said Armstrong would then enter the passenger side of the car and take food and money. All of the suspects would later split the food and money, police said.

In September, police arrested 19-year-old David Abrams, Jr., of Cedar Rapids, in connection with the June 29 pizza delivery driver robbery. At the same time, police charged Abrams' brother, 16-year-old Darius E. Davidson, in connection with a cab driver robbery in August, which also occurred on the west side of Iowa City.

Several similar robberies were reported on the west side of Iowa City between June and August and resulted in at least one other arrest, 15-year-old Willie Dean of Iowa City, who was also charged with robbing a cab August. Police have previously said they are investigating whether the robberies are connected.

Armstrong also faces one count of assault causing bodily injury for an unrelated incident at the Old Capital Mall bus stop on Monday. Police were called to the bus stop at 4:34 p.m. for a report of a fight. The alleged victim told police she was waiting for the bus with a friend with Armstrong and 18-year-old Alyssa V. M. Williams, of Iowa City, attacked her. The woman who was attacked had hair pulled out and suffered cuts to her cheek and lip.

Police said the fight stemmed from an incident at school last year. Williams was also arrested and faces one count of assault causing bodily injury, a serious misdemeanor.

First-degree robbery is a class B felony punishable by up to 25 years in prison.
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