3 arrested in armed robbery, shooting at Tempe store

3 arrested in armed robbery, shooting at Tempe store

Credit: Tempe Police Dept.

Gary Beckstead (left), Christopher Ridgway (middle) and Charles Eaton (right)

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by Catherine Holland

azfamily.com

Posted on February 13, 2013 at 10:04 AM

Updated Friday, Feb 15 at 1:35 PM

TEMPE, Ariz. -- Police in say they have made three arrests in connection with an armed robbery and shooting at a Tempe appliance store.

According to investigators, Gary Beckstead, Christopher Ridgway and Charles Eaton robbed Discount Appliance at 48th Street and University Drive on Jan. 19. An employee was wounded in the course of that robbery.

Asking for the public's help finding the suspects, police released surveillance photos of the men earlier this month.

Sgt. Mike Pooley of the Tempe Police Department announced the arrests Wednesday morning. While he could not go into detail, he said a tip point investigators in the right direction. He also said two of the three suspects knew police were closing in and had plans to leave the state.

As for the armed robbery, Pooley said it was not a random hit. Discount Appliance was targeted.

"It was a very violent crime," he said. "It was something that was planned out."

Beckstead, 44, and Eaton, 32, are both facing charges of armed robbery, kidnapping and assault. Ridgway, 33, was booked on suspicion of armed robbery.

The male employee who was shot suffered a non life-threatening injury and was expected to make a full recovery.

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