Monday, March 4, 2024

Man found guilty of McDonald’s armed robbery

Richard McLaughlin. (DA’s office).

NEW HANOVER COUNTY — A jury found a man charged with armed robbery of the McDonald’s at Eastwood and Military Cutoff roads in 2015 guilty in New Hanover County Criminal Superior Court on Oct. 7. 

Almost seven years ago, Richard McLaughlin, a 48-year-old Pennsylvania man, robbed the fast-food restaurant with two co-conspirators. They entered the establishment after closing with the help of an employee, who was also charged in the incident. A third co-conspirator brandished a firearm and chased a victim out of the store while McLaughlin raided the safe. 

“This victim ran for his life and video surveillance showed that he barely got away,” said Connie Jordan, the assistant district attorney assigned to prosecute this case, in a press release. “The jury’s verdicts have made communities across the U.S. safer this week and we are so grateful for their service.”

Judge Lisa Bell of Mecklenburg County presided over the trial and sentenced McLaughlin to serve a minimum of 18 years and a maximum of 23.66 years in prison.

McLaughlin has a history of armed robberies. After the McDonald’s incident, he was in federal custody out of state until December of 2021 for two other convictions in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. The U.S. Marshals Service transported McLaughlin back to New Hanover County in December 2021 to face these charges.

In 1993, McLaughlin was convicted in New Hanover County of assault with a deadly weapon with the intent to kill inflicting serious injury and common law robbery for robbing a taxi driver with a knife and cutting the driver’s face, which required 25 stitches.

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