A 23-year-old Lawrence man was booked into custody in Douglas County on Wednesday on a warrant for conspiracy. He’s the seventh person to face charges in connection with a robbery last December at Walmart, 3300 Iowa.
Christopher Coty Maier was booked into the Douglas County Jail after authorities said he turned himself in before 7 a.m. on the conspiracy charge, as well as three Lawrence Municipal Court warrants. Douglas County District Attorney Charles Branson said Maier faced one charge of conspiracy to commit robbery, and according to court records he was charged in April at the same time four other co-defendants were accused of serving as lookouts for the Dec. 13 robbery that Lonnie S. Schaefer, 23, and William O. Patterson, 19, are accused of planning and committing.
Schaefer pleaded no contest last week to robbery, conspiracy to commit robbery, conspiracy to commit aggravated arson and distribution of marijuana, Branson said. Prosecutors also accuse Schaefer, before the robbery, of throwing a bottle full of flammable liquid onto the roof of McDonald’s, 1309 W. Sixth St., in an effort to create a diversion, but the bottle only slightly burned the roof.
District Judge Michael Malone is scheduled to sentence Schaefer on Nov. 10.
Patterson, who was accused of pointing a plastic BB gun at Walmart clerks in the robbery and taking money from a register, has pleaded guilty to several charges and received nearly five years in prison.
Prosecutors accuse Maier of serving as a lookout with at least four other people: Jadin and Andrew Dean Schmutz, Nathan Moses and Billie Jessup.
Jadin Schmutz entered a plea to conspiracy to commit robbery and will be sentenced Oct. 28. Andrew Schmutz received two years of probation, but he was still in jail Wednesday serving shock time. Moses has a November trial in the case, and Jessup has failed to appear in court.
Maier is expected to have a first appearance in district court Thursday.