Warren man charged with armed robbery

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A Warren man is being held at the ACI after police say he robbed a man, then threatened his mother after she tried to get her son's money back.

The 20-year-old Warren victim was walking at Water and Bowen streets on Monday, Oct. 7 when he said a man later identified as Joel Robinson, 41, of 32 Davis St., approached him, pulled out a knife and demanded his money. According to Warren Police Lt. Roy Borges, the victim initially refused to hand over any money, but Mr. Robinson said he would "shank" him, prison slang for stabbing him, if he didn't give it up. At that point, he raised the knife and the man took $140 out of his pocket and handed it over. The victim got away, but headed to his mom's house on Davis Street, where he told her about the robbery and described the robber.

"She said, 'I think he (Mr. Robinson) lives on this street,'" Lt. Borges said.

The woman and her boyfriend decided to go to Mr. Robinson's home to confront him. But when they got there, he allegedly brandished a knife and refused to turn over the money. At that point, they went to police, and a warrant was secured for Mr. Robinson's arrest. Police picked him up on Wednesday, Oct. 9.

Mr. Robinson was charged with first degree robbery and two counts of assault with a dangerous weapon. He was issued a public defender and is being held at the ACI in lieu of bail.

Mr. Robinson has an extensive record with arrests for drug possession, larceny, vandalism, disorderly conduct and conspiracy to violate drug laws. All previous charges were brought by the Newport Police Department.

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A lifelong Portsmouth resident, Jim graduated from Portsmouth High School in 1982 and earned a journalism degree from the University of Rhode Island in 1986. He's worked two different stints at East Bay Newspapers, for a total of 18 years with the company so far. When not running all over town bringing you the news from Portsmouth, Jim listens to lots and lots and lots of music, watches obscure silent films from the '20s and usually has three books going at once. He also loves to cook crazy New Orleans dishes for his wife of 25 years, Michelle, and their two sons, Jake and Max.