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Chris Watson: Maurice Robinson supplied him with crack cocaine

Testimony continues

Watson

Watson

By Shavonne Walker

shavonne.walker@salisburypost.com

Christopher Watson continued his testimony in court Wednesday morning confirming Maurice Robinson, who is on trial for murder and robbery, supplied him with crack cocaine and drugs to sell.

Watson, 26, pleaded guilty to killing Z&H Mart store owner Hecham Abualeinan during a robbery at the Mooresville Road store. Watson accepted a plea arrangement and avoided the possibility that he could have been sentenced to death during a trial.

He also agreed to testify against Robinson, whom investigators have said was the one who planned the December 2012 robbery that led to the murder.

Watson told the court during Tuesday testimony that if it weren’t for owing Robinson money for drugs he bought from the 37-year-old then, Watson would’ve never been involved.

“You got hooked on crack cocaine before you met Maurice Robinson,” Salisbury Attorney Darrin Jordan asked Watson.

“He didn’t get me hooked, but he supplied me,” Watson said.

Watson said he was already addicted to cocaine prior to meeting Robinson, but also admitted he was a drug runner for Robinson.

Watson said earlier he felt indebted to Robinson. Watson said Robinson told him after bailing him out of jail Watson owed him $10,000 because of interest on a $2,000 bond and money owed for drugs Robinson supplied to Watson for free.

Watson has also said he only went along with the robberies because he was scared for the safety of his family. Watson, along with Maurice Robinson and Kevin Canzator went to the Neighborhood Market store on West Horah Street in Nov. 22 and Dec. 5, 2012.

In each robbery, Watson donned a Halloween mask and carried a borrowed handgun, went inside and came out with cash. He told the court after every robbery he would give the money to Robinson, who would divide it.

“Maurice came up with the plan and everyone else agreed,” Watson said Wednesday morning.

The idea was to rob the Z&H Mart the same night of the Dec. 5 robbery at Neighborhood Market, but Robinson’s then-girlfriend, Ashley Bentley, was scared because there was no specific plan in place.

Bentley, who was driving that night in December told them she was not going because they had not been inside the store and there was no specific plan in place. Robinson was mad, but later decided he, Watson and Canzator would try again Dec. 10.

Watson went inside wearing a Halloween mask and using the same borrowed gun, which he got from Robinson, robbed the Z&H Mart. When the owner grabbed for the phone, Watson shot him.

Watson also testified on Wednesday he confessed to the Neighborhood Market robberies after being called in to answer questions about possible involvement in a robbery at the China Buffet restaurant in Salisbury.

Sgt. Michael Colvin told the court he’d had prior dealings with Watson and Watson matched the description of the suspect in the China Buffet robbery. Colvin had been talking to Watson when he told him about the West Horah Street robberies.

Court testimony continues later this afternoon.

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