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Oak Harbor man pleads guilty in armed robbery

One of the two men allegedly involved in an armed robbery of Market Place Food and Drug in Oak Harbor last week has already pleaded guilty to a robbery charge, while the other got his bail reduced.

Sean Rubin, 28, of Oak Harbor pleaded to second-degree robbery in Island County Court Friday.

Judge Vickie Churchill sentenced him to six months in jail, which was recommended by both the prosecutor and defense attorney.

Rubin was the get-away driver in the bold robbery last Monday night. He and the alleged knife-wielding robber, 28-year-old Kenny Mikell of Oak Harbor, were caught after a couple of customers at the grocery store intervened.

Mikell’s girlfriend and their two young daughters appeared in court Friday. The two little girls called out for their “daddy” and then sat quietly as tears rolled down their faces.

Mikell’s attorney, Kevin McConnell of Coupeville, explained to Churchill that Mikell and his family were homeless in Oak Harbor at the time the robbery occurred.

McConnell asked for Mikell’s bail to be reduced from $50,000 to $10,000, but Deputy Prosecutor Mike Henegen objected.

“He wore a ski mask and was armed with a knife,” he said. “Had it not been for the citizens chasing him, he would have got away and it would have been hard to find him because he was wearing the mask. ... It was something planned in advance and very dangerous.”

Churchill agreed to drop his bail to $25,000.

According to Oak Harbor Police Cpt. Chief Rick Wallace, Mikell jumped over the counter where the was clerk working in the “secondary post office” of the Midway Boulevard supermarket at about 6:15 p.m. He allegedly demanded money from the clerk at knifepoint.

But then Mikell was allegedly undone by some brave citizens.

A store employee yelled out that a robbery was occurring, Wallace said, which caused Mikell to grab the money and quickly dash out.

A customer chased after Mikell, tackled him in the parking lot and tried to detain him, Wallace said. Mikell, however, attacked the customer with the knife, slashed his coat open and escaped to jump into the passenger side of a waiting car, according to the police.

Another customer followed the car and called in the location to 911. The police arrested both men on Silver Lake Road.

You can reach Jessie Stensland at jstensland@whidbeynewstimes.com or call 675-6611.

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