Two charged in armed robbery of Old Town Alexandria Safeway

Federal prosecutors have charged two men who they say robbed a Safeway grocery store in Old Town Alexandria at gunpoint late last year and shot at a customer as they fled to a waiting getaway vehicle.

Calvin Leon Lewis, 29, of D.C., and Ray Allen Dicks Jr., 23, of Maryland, were charged with conspiracy, interference with commerce by robbery and other related counts in an indictment that was unsealed Thursday in federal district court in Alexandria. The indictment says the pair and two others who are not named took at least $7,900 from the Safeway on South Royal Street during the frightening Nov. 17 holdup.

Police have said previously a customer was grazed during the encounter, and the federal indictment says Lewis, Dicks and another man shot at a customer while trying to get away. The customer was treated and released at an area hospital, police have said previously.

Lewis is also charged in the Nov. 14 robbery of U.S. 1 Tobacco on Jefferson Davis Highway in the Woodbridge area, according to the indictment. A male victim was also shot in that case, police have said previously. According to the indictment, Lewis and others made off with $5,000 in cash and cigarettes.

In the Safeway incident, Lewis, Dicks and another person wore masks and gloves as they went into the Safeway, then they pulled out guns and demanded money from the employees, according to the indictment. A fourth person was waiting in a getaway vehicle, according to the indictment.

Court records show Lewis was arrested in December, and Dicks was arrested Saturday. According to the indictment, Lewis after his own arrest contacted Dicks to warn him that law enforcement authorities might be looking for him. No attorney is listed for Dicks in court records, and Lewis’s attorney declined to comment.

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Matt Zapotosky covers the federal district courthouse in Alexandria, where he tries to break news from a windowless office in which he is not allowed to bring his cell phone.
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