DUNEDIN — Authorities said Tuesday that tips from the public helped them identify a man accused of trying to steal two bottles of rum, then hitting a liquor store clerk on the Fourth of July.
Pinellas deputies arrested 36-year-old Archie W. Higgins, of 1247 Little John Lane in Dunedin on Friday, two days after they released a video showing the suspect. Higgins was charged with strong arm robbery and a probation violation.
On Tuesday, he was being held without bail in the Pinellas County Jail.
According to the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office, the man went into Luekens Liquors at 944 Patricia Ave., took two bottles of Ron Diaz Rum and wrapped them in a T-shirt he was carrying.
A female clerk followed the man out into the parking lot after he left the store without paying for the rum. When the clerk pulled at the T-shirt, the the man knocked her to the ground. The bottles fell and the man left without them.
The clerk received minor scrapes, but Pinellas deputies said they were concerned because of the man's violent reaction to the clerk.
Citizens who saw the video called the Sheriff's Office and identified the man as Higgins. Pinellas Deputy Karl Gwynne also recognized the man, the Sheriff's Office said.
Witnesses identified Higgins through photos. Higgins admitted to the robbery when interviewed by detectives, the Sheriff's Office said.
Higgins pleaded guilty to marijuana possession in 2004, according to Pinellas court records. In May, he pleaded guilty to grand theft and possession of drug paraphernalia and received 18 months of drug offender probation, court records show. He also has a pending retail theft case stemming from an April arrest.