Randall Scott Mason, 42, appeared
in Lynchburg Circuit Court on May 4, 2006, and pleaded guilty to robbing the
Zip Store on Lakeside Drive in Lynchburg. In exchange for his plea of
guilty, Mason will serve four years and six months in the penitentiary with
an additional five years and six months of suspended time over his head when
he is released.
On January 14, 2006, Mason entered the Zip Store and asked the clerk, Albert
Lerner, for several packs of cigarettes. As Lerner turned around to get the
cigarettes, Mason pulled out a knife and demanded that Lerner empty his
pockets and open the cash register. Lerner complied, giving the man $50.00
from his person and an unknown amount of cash from the register. The man
then fled the store on foot.
Police initially arrested someone other than Mason after receiving
information that the other man may have been involved. The man originally
arrested bore a close resemblance to Mason, and was misidentified by Lerner
as the robber.
On January 23, 2006, the Campbell County Sheriff’s Office notified the
Lynchburg police they had the defendant, Randall Scott Mason, in custody on
other charges and that Mason wanted to talk about the Zip Store robbery.
Investigator Carson of the Lynchburg Police Department went to the Campbell
County jail where he interviewed Mason. Mason confessed to Investigator
Carson that he had been the robber. Mason told Carson that he was riding
with a drug dealer prior to the robbery and that he told the dealer he
needed to go pick up some money from a friend. The dealer dropped Mason off
at another location in the area. Mason walked to the Zip Store and committed
the robbery, then returned to the dealer’s car and purchased crack cocaine.
Mason told police that he had dropped the knife in a storm drain at Memorial
and Westover and police subsequently recovered the weapon.
As part of a plea agreement, Judge J. Leyburn Mosby sentenced the defendant
to ten years confinement. He will serve four years and six months and the
additional time will be suspended conditioned on a two year supervised
probationary period and his continued good behavior.
The case was prosecuted by Deputy Commonwealth’s Attorney Jeff Bennett.