Saturday, September 26, 2020
Sept. 26, 2020

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Third suspect in Vancouver robbery case makes court appearance

By , Columbian Breaking News Reporter

A third suspect wanted in connection with a Vancouver robbery of a man who was trying to buy cocaine earlier this year made a first appearance Tuesday in Clark County Superior Court.

Aaron D. Donald, 22, faces a single allegation of first-degree robbery. Judge Daniel Stahnke set bail in Donald’s case at $100,000, court records say.

Vancouver police were dispatched shortly after 6 p.m. March 26 for a report of an armed robbery near Ellsworth Elementary School, 10412 S.E. Fifth St. Robert Carter told police he was robbed by three men, two of whom were armed with guns, according to a probable cause affidavit.

Carter said he contacted a man, identified in court records as Jonathan J. Wright, 25, through Snapchat to buy cocaine. Wright and Miguel E. Melendez, 21, picked up Carter in a blue Crown Victoria before rendezvousing with a third, unknown man at the elementary school, according to the affidavit. From there, the group went to a nearby Arby’s restaurant.

Once they had parked, Wright, who was in the passenger’s seat, got out of the car while talking on the phone. Melendez turned around with a black pistol, pushed the barrel of the gun into Carter’s throat and threatened to kill him, stating, “I just got out of DOC (prison),” the affidavit says.

The group assaulted Carter and took his backpack containing $1,600 in school books, $1,500 cash, about a half-pound of marijuana and work clothes, court records say.

The suspected robbers were pulled over a short time later. Melendez was arrested; Wright and the third suspect ran away. Officers searched the area and found Wright. A probable cause affidavit in Donald’s case identifies him as the third man and says he “eluded capture” on the day of the robbery.

Carter pointed out Donald in a photo lineup and told police he’d spoken with him on Snapchat prior to the robbery, according to the affidavit.

A Clark County Sheriff’s Office arrest warrant says Donald was located and taken into custody on Monday. His arraignment hearing is scheduled for Sept. 25.