Tip leads to arrest in robbery at Hungry Howie's


Published: Tuesday, January 3, 2012 at 11:33 a.m.
Last Modified: Tuesday, January 3, 2012 at 11:33 a.m.

The Union County Sheriff’s Office is crediting an anonymous tip for helping solve an armed robbery at a pizza store during which one person was injured.

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Brence T. Stewart

It happened Friday around 11:20 p.m. at the Hungry Howie’s at 280 W. Main St., according to a news release by the sheriff’s office. Lt. Lyn Williams said a man armed with a knife ambushed an employee outside the store as it was being closed for the night. The employee was forced back inside, where the intruder demanded money.

The employee was slightly injured, according to the sheriff’s office, and the suspect left with an undetermined amount of cash.

Deputies got an anonymous tip Saturday that led them to Brence Tieree Stewart, 35, of Lake Butler. After reviewing a surveillance video and after employees identified Stewart as the robber, he was arrested on charges of armed robbery, grand theft and battery.

He was being held at the Union County jail Tuesday on a bond of $160,000. Stewart’s criminal history, according to Florida Department of Corrections records, includes convictions for sexual battery on a victim between the ages of 12 and 15 and for robbery. He was most recently released from prison in 2008.

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