Robbery of a Papa John’s prompts chase, arrests

After a chase through a Baton Rouge residential neighborhood Sunday night, three men were arrested in the armed robbery of a Papa John’s pizza place on Lee Drive near LSU earlier that evening, police reported.

Jeremy Ford, 23, 347 S. 17th St., and Terrance Venson, 20, 10530 Florida Blvd. No. 460, both of Baton Rouge, and Demarcus Mathews, 19 of 38250 Kara Court, Gonzales, were all booked on counts of armed robbery, while Mathews and Venson were also booked on counts of aggravated flight and resisting an officer, said Cpl. Don Coppola Jr., with the Baton Rouge Police Department.

The robbery at the Papa John’s occurred about 10:36 p.m., when three people, wearing masks, entered the restaurant, two of them brandishing handguns, and ordered the employees to lay on ground, Coppola said. Mathews then took money out of the cash register — police aren’t saying yet how much — along with the cell phone of an employee before they all fled in a black Honda Accord, Coppola said.

Soon after, police located the car nearby. The driver, Mathews, refused to stop at first, but later stopped the car and fled on foot before being caught, Coppola said.

Venson, who was in the front passenger seat, grabbed the wheel and took off but he drove the Accord into a parked car on Glenmore Avenue, Coppola said. Ford remained in the car and was caught there, while Venson ran off on foot and was soon caught as well, Coppola said.