Man carjacks 70-year-old after robbing Gastonia smoke shop, police say

Gaston Police say he is being held on a $325,000 bond.
Authorities say Matthew Norwood was arrested after leading them on a chase while driving a...
Authorities say Matthew Norwood was arrested after leading them on a chase while driving a stolen truck.(Source: Gastonia Police Department)
Published: Dec. 9, 2022 at 1:37 PM EST
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GASTONIA, N.C. (WBTV) – A Gastonia man is facing several charges after robbing a smoke shop with a knife and then carjacking a 70-year-old man, authorities said.

According to the Gastonia Police Department, officers were called to the N.C. Tobacco and Vape store on South New Hope Road for an armed robbery that happened around 2 p.m. Thursday.

Investigators said a man went into the store armed with a knife, stole items and threatened an employee.

Witnesses said the suspect, identified by police as 37-year-old Matthew Westin Norwood, was seen leaving on a bicycle.

Around 2:50 p.m., police said a call came in for a carjacking that happened outside of a home on Ridgewood Drive.

The 70-year-old victim told officers that a man approached him, knocked him down and stole his truck, according to the GPD.

He added that the suspect had a bicycle with him and threw it into the back of the truck before driving away, a news release stated.

Officers in the area said they saw the stolen truck traveling on Titman Road near Lowell-Bethesda Road. The driver initially refused to stop and authorities pursued the vehicle to Gaston Road, where the suspect was stopped.

Authorities said they identified the driver as Norwood and found evidence in the truck from the tobacco and vape store robbery.

Norwood was arrested and charged with robbery, assault, theft, felony fleeing to elude and reckless driving. Gaston Police say he is being held on a $325,000 bond.