Sentencing set for May in case

ESCANABA – An Escanaba woman will be sentenced in May in connection with a conspiracy to steal money from a convenience store in Wells Township last summer and a larceny from a Ford River Township home last spring.

Abby Beth Johnson, 21, pleaded guilty Friday to four counts in connection with an alleged armed robbery at the Grain ‘N’ Grape on Aug. 3, 2012, and a larceny from a Ford River Township residence April 1-9, 2012. She will be sentenced May 2 in Delta County Circuit Court.

Johnson pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit a larceny in a building (a four-year felony), attempted larceny in a building (a two-year felony), larceny $1,000 to $20,000 (a five-year felony), and larceny $200 to $1,000 ( a one-year misdemeanor).

An intensive joint investigation by area police agencies led to the arrests of Johnson and two other suspects in connection with the alleged armed robbery at the Grain ‘N’ Grape, located at 6998 U.S.2/41 & M-35. Johnson, Annaelise Marie Ambrose, 22, of Escanaba, and Cory Michael Vanderlinden, 26, of Gladstone, were all arrested on Feb. 7 by the Delta County Sheriff’s Department.

Ambrose, the store clerk, allegedly lied to police that around 10 p.m. on Aug. 3 she was robbed at gunpoint by a masked man who demanded money and then fled the scene.

This past January, sheriff officials received a tip on the above incident and other crimes through the Crimestoppers website that led to the arrests of the three defendants above.

Ambrose was charged with the following in connection with the Grain ‘N’ Grape incident: larceny in a building, aid & abet; conspiracy to commit larceny in a building; and lying to a police officer during investigation of a violent crime. Each of the three charges carries a maximum punishment of four years in prison.

Vanderlinden faces one count of accessory after the fact to a felony, a five-year felony, in connection with the alleged robbery at the convenience store.

Johnson remains lodged in Delta County Jail in lieu of two $100,000 cash bonds. Vanderlinden remains lodged in jail in lieu of a $50,000 cash bond. Ambrose was released from police custody after posting $5,000, or 10 percent of a $50,000 cash bond.

Vanderlinden and Ambrose each waived their right to have a district court preliminary examination within 14 days. No court dates have yet been scheduled for their hearings.