Man posing as federal agent attacks woman to steal her cell phon - WBTV 3 News, Weather, Sports, and Traffic for Charlotte, NC

Man posing as federal agent attacks woman to steal her cell phone, deputies say

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Jimmy Ray Blackwell (Rowan Co. Sheriff's Office) Jimmy Ray Blackwell (Rowan Co. Sheriff's Office)
SALISBURY, NC (WBTV) -

A man with a lengthy criminal record who was out on bond is now in jail again after investigators say he attacked a woman on her front porch just to take her cell phone.

The incident was reported on March 22 around 6 a.m. on Old Beatty Ford Road in Rockwell, according to the report from the Rowan County Sheriff's Office.

Geri Smith, known to many in the area as one of the owners of Curt & Geri's ice cream shop, told deputies she was on her porch when a white car pulled up and a man got out and told her he was a bondsman and needed to search her house for someone.

When she refused he told her he was a federal agent to which she replied she was going to call the sheriff's office.

"That's when I told him you're going to have to get in your car and leave, I don't want you here," Smith told WBTV.

The man pushed her to the ground and stomped her head with his foot and took her cell phone, according to the report.

"I sat down in my rocking chair and I opened my phone and that's when he pushed me, chair and all over, and put his foot on my face," Smith added.  My neighbor was running across the yard and when he saw my neighbor he took off."

On Tuesday Smith was carrying visible signs of the attack, including deep bruises on her arm and the side of her face.

Jimmy Ray Blackwell, 49, has a lengthy criminal history dating back to 1981.

Blackwell was recently released from prison from charges of home invasion style robberies and kidnappings, that involved elderly victims in 2007, in Rowan County, according to the report.

In one case Blackwell came to the home of a 90 year old Word War II veteran and told him that his sheep were loose.  When the man opened the door, Blackwell forced his way in the house.

Blackwell then took the man's shotgun, loaded it, and forced him to walk around the house, going into each room and forcing the man to sit on the floor while he took several items and stuffed them into a pillowcase he had taken from the man's bed, including a prized gun the victim brought home from the war.

Blackwell pled guilty to reduced charges in 2011 and received an active prison sentence.

Blackwell is now out on bond for a charge of Common law Robbery in Davidson County.

Blackwell is currently in the Rowan County Jail under a $50,000 secured bond.

Geri Smith says she is speaking out about what happened to her in an effort to want others. 

"I just feel grateful to be living, I could be one of the victims that, you know, that didn't make it through something like this," Smith said.

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