String of armed robberies strikes concern in Hickory Hill

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- Some people in Hickory Hill are on edge after a string of robberies.

Four people were robbed between November 19-22, and police reported the female victims were sexually harassed.

"Well I live in Memphis, so you know anything is possible," Avary Ready said.

"It's rough around here man," Lemira Scott said.

A string of armed robberies came to an end Saturday night.

Police said Jarron Lawson, Drewdarius Cathey, and Deandre Smith were responsible for the crimes.

"That's pretty bold man. It takes a lot of balls man," Scott said.

There were four victims robbed and attacked three separate incidents.

Officers said the robberies all had the same mode of operation.

The victims were targeted while sitting in their cars at apartment complexes.

Police said the suspects would yank open the door and point a gun at the victims' heads.

"That just tells me I got to be aware," Ready said. "Especially during this Christmas holiday season."

The affidavit of complaint also revealed the men are accused of groping the female victims before they were robbed.

"I mean, whew, it's horrible and I pray for them," Yasmine Cooper said.

The trio are accused of getting away with jewelry, purses, a phone, and cash.

They were later caught on Saturday night at the intersection of Hickory Hill and Knight Arnold.

"Knowing that anything can happen anywhere," Cooper explained.

Neighbors told WREG the string of robberies are a wake up call.

"You don't know whats going to happen out here. People are desperate you know. Protect yourself. Be more aware of yourself," Ready concluded.

The three men are expected in court on Monday.

The Memphis Police Department could not confirm if this crime is a growing trend but wants viewers to be aware of the following tips to keep safe.

1. Always be aware of your surroundings, vigilant of activity around you and attentive to individuals approaching, walking purposely and with confidence.
2. Do not allow yourself to be distracted by activity such as talking on your cell phone, listening to music or reading.
3. Try to travel with others, walk in well-traveled areas, and at night in well-lighted areas.
4. Protect your electronics by not displaying them.
5. Resist the urge to multi-task while walking; wait to make phone calls, check your email and listen to music at your destination.
6. If you purchase an electronic device check on the availability of a tracking system for the device (usually free at time of purchase).
7. Do not use ATMs that are located in remote areas, use ATMs during the daylight hours in well-populated areas.
8. Do not display large amounts of cash when paying for items, and do not display excessive jewelry.
9. Men: if you carry wallet, place the wallet in your front hip pocket or inside jacket pocket- do not carry in your back pant pocket.
10. Women: when you will be walking in public spaces carry a small handbag or purse that you can grasp with a hand.
11. Do not fight a suspect especially when they are armed with a weapon. Comply with demands and try to retain as many details about the suspect as possible.

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