Police impersonator sentenced for robbery

By NEAL WAGNER / Managing Editor

COLUMBIANA – A 50-year-old Childersburg man will spend the next 15 years in prison after he pleaded guilty to robbing the Alabaster Walmart after he allegedly impersonated a police officer while he was intoxicated.

Frye

Frye

During a June hearing, Shelby County Circuit Court Judge Dan Reeves sentenced Robert Anthony Frye to 15 years in the Alabama Penitentiary, ordered him to pay $825.15 in restitution to the Alabaster Walmart and to avoid any contact with the store.

Frye has five prior felony convictions, and had 79 days of jail credit subtracted from his prison sentence, according to court documents.

The Alabaster Police Department arrested Robert Anthony Frye, whose address is listed in the 7000 block of Old Sylacauga Highway in Childersburg, on March 26 and charged him with felony counts of third-degree robbery and impersonating a peace officer.

He also was charged with misdemeanor counts of third-degree theft of property, attempt to elude law enforcement and public intoxication.

According to Alabaster Police Chief Curtis Rigney, officers received a report of a shoplifting incident at the Alabaster Walmart in the Propst Promenade shopping center shortly before 1:20 p.m. on March 26. Rigney said a loss prevention officer at the store approached Frye as the suspect allegedly was attempting to leave the store with $217 worth of antifreeze he had not paid for.

When the loss prevention officer confronted Frye, the suspect allegedly pushed the employee down and ran from the store, Rigney said.

Rigney said officers apprehended Frye, who was “wearing a badge on the outside of his clothing and was dressed as a law enforcement officer,” a short time later in the parking lot of the nearby Books-A-Million store.

Through a plea agreement, Frye’s theft of property, impersonating a peace officer, attempt to elude and public intoxication charges were dismissed.