Fred Hogan, 26, hadn’t been to a TCBY frozen yogurt shop in years.
He and his girlfriend, 31, entered a shop at 1800 N. Locust Grove Saturday evening and a masked man grabbed his arm. The man, in a mask of Star Wars villain Kylo Ren, told everyone to get down on the floor, Hogan said.
The man swung around a machete, smacking it on the counter and demanding people give them their wallets.
“It was terrifying,” Hogan said. “It was pretty scary and it was a big machete. I thought I would die.”
Lance D. Warr, 33, reportedly stole the mask and machete from a nearby Fred Meyer (1850 E. Fairview Ave.) before using them for the robbery at TCBY.
On parole for a 2009 robbery conviction in Canyon County, he is again behind bars, held on $200,000 bond for his alleged actions Saturday. He was arraigned Monday on three counts of robbery, two counts of aggravated assault and one count of resisting or obstructing officers. All but the last charge are felonies.
Police say he also took sunglasses and a flashlight from the Fred Meyer, threatening employees of that store. At the TCBY, the man ordered customers and employees to get on the floor and took their wallets and cash before running away.
As police pursued the man through a neighborhood just west of the frozen yogurt shop, he threw the machete and it lodged in the roof of a shed, Meridian Police Lt. Jeff Brown said. Warr was arrested in the 1900 block of East Carol Street, across Locust Grove from the stores.
The mask, sunglasses and flashlight were reportedly found on Warr. The police report didn’t indicate if he wore the mask while robbing TCBY, said Lt. Scott Colaianni.
“It was a pretty crazy deal,” Colaianni said.
Hogan noted that he could see Warr’s red beard under his mask.
Monday, he was upset with Fred Meyer, which he believes could have reported the machete theft sooner and possibly headed off the TCBY robbery.
The yogurt shop robbery was reported first, Colaianni confirmed, adding, “I don’t think Fred Meyer had reported anything until after the incident happened.”
“If somebody walks out with a big weapon, I think they should (report it),” Hogan said.
A representative for Fred Meyer did not answer a question Monday about the chain’s policy when reporting thefts.
“The safety of our customers and associates is our highest priority,” spokesman Zach Stratton said in an email. “We are working closely with law enforcement and the community in this investigation and will continue to do so moving forward.”
State prison records show Warr was released on Jan. 31 of this year after serving part of a 10-year prison sentence in the Canyon County case. He may have been paroled at least one other time, as court records suggest he was convicted of battery, drug paraphernalia and concealed weapons charges in 2013 and 2014. In 2013, he was charged with grand theft and later pleaded guilty to operating a vehicle without the owner’s consent.
Warr’s next scheduled court date in the new robbery/assault case is a preliminary hearing on April 3. At such a hearing, a judge decides if there’s enough evidence to pass a case on to district court and a full trial.
Kristin Rodine: 208-377-6447