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Five charged with robbery at Rite Aid store that left manager dead

Oct. 3, 2013 at 12:28 AM   |   Comments

CHESTER, Pa., Oct. 3 (UPI) -- A loss-prevention officer at a Philadelphia-area Rite Aid store provided inside information in a robbery that left a manager dead, a prosecutor said Wednesday.

Five people have now been arrested, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported. Rita Pultro and David Wiggins, who allegedly carried out the robbery in Chester on Sept. 19, have been charged with first-degree murder and the others with conspiracy and second-degree murder.

Jason McClay, 40, the manager of the Rite Aid, was shot dead.

Delaware County District Attorney Jack Whelan said Tariq Mahmud, 23, of Philadelphia, who worked at the store, gave the rest of the group information on how much was likely to be in the safe, where the security cameras were located and which employees would be there at various times. Mahmud was fired after the robbery for unrelated reasons.

Whelan said investigators tracked text messages sent by Pultro and Wiggins and used Facebook to identify possible conspirators.

"We were able to piece this together like a jigsaw puzzle," he said.

Christopher Parks, 23, allegedly drove the getaway car while Ashanier White, 19, supplied the weapons. Both men are Philadelphia residents.

Pultro, a bartender, was allegedly recruited by Wiggins, one of her customers.

The group allegedly planned the robbery for at least a week. They had to postpone it for a couple of days because they did not have money for gas.

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