Suspects arrested for robbing 7-Eleven

By: Jeremy Selweski | Macomb Township Chronicle | Published January 30, 2015

 Surveillance camera footage shows the two men who robbed the 7-Eleven store near 22 Mile and Romeo Plank roads on June 20, 2014. This week, the Macomb County Sheriff’s Department arrested Michael Rentz, 24, of Shelby Township, and Mark Taylor, 20, of Clinton Township, for the crime.

Surveillance camera footage shows the two men who robbed the 7-Eleven store near 22 Mile and Romeo Plank roads on June 20, 2014. This week, the Macomb County Sheriff’s Department arrested Michael Rentz, 24, of Shelby Township, and Mark Taylor, 20, of Clinton Township, for the crime.

Photos provided by the Macomb County Sheriff’s Department

MACOMB TOWNSHIP — It took more than seven months, but police believe that they have found the two suspects who robbed a local 7-Eleven store at gunpoint last June.

On Jan. 29, Macomb County Sheriff Anthony Wickersham reported that his detectives had arrested Michael Rentz, 24, of Shelby Township, and Mark Taylor, 20, of Clinton Township, for the crime. Both men are facing a felony charge of armed robbery, which carries a maximum sentence of life in prison.

According to Sheriff’s Lt. John Michalke, “Although it took a little bit longer than other crimes that are resolved, our detectives pursued this case vigorously from the start. This case was a high priority for our detectives given the dangerous nature of the crime. This was a terrifying crime for those who witnessed it, which is why we put (the suspects’) pictures out there and asked for the public’s help identifying them.”

Wickersham originally reported that at around 3:57 a.m. on June 20, 2014, Sheriff’s deputies were dispatched to the 7-Eleven at 48989 Romeo Plank Road, near the southwest corner of 22 Mile Road and Romeo Plank, on a report of an armed robbery.

According to the 911 caller, two men had entered the store and approached the clerk. One of them was armed with an assault rifle, while the other brandished a handgun. They also wore clothing that obscured their appearance behind masks, hats, jumpsuits and gloves.

Taylor

One of the men handed the clerk a grocery bag and ordered him to fill it with money from the cash register, while the second man stole cigarettes. Altogether, the suspects took several packs of Marlboro menthol cigarettes and $80 to $100 in cash, Wickersham said.

The two men then fled the scene on foot. A Sheriff’s K-9 unit was able to track them to the parking lot of an adjacent business, Michalke said, where it appeared that they entered a vehicle and drove away. This ended their pursuit for the time being.

Detectives began cultivating information from the public, which eventually paid off seven months later, according to Michalke.

“On Jan. 22, we received some anonymous tips,” he said. “Our detectives were able to use that information to identify the suspects, and further investigation allowed them to obtain warrants. So those phone calls directly led to (the suspects’) arrest.”

The Macomb County Prosecutor’s Office reviewed the case and issued arrest warrants for Rentz and Taylor on Jan. 27. The Sheriff’s Enforcement Team then arrested the two men and transported them to the Macomb County Jail.

Taylor was arraigned later that day in Shelby Township 41-A District Court, where Magistrate Michael Osaer set his bond at $20,000 cash or surety. He posted the bond and was released from jail. He also retained legal counsel, but his attorney, Andrea Fanning, could not be reached for comment by press time.

Rentz was arraigned on Jan. 28 by Judge Douglas Shepherd, who set his bond at $300,000 cash or surety. His bond has not yet been paid, so he remains in jail. Rentz requested a court-appointed attorney, but one had not yet been assigned to him at press time.

Both suspects are scheduled to appear in Shelby District Court again on Feb. 5 for a probable cause conference. They will also return for a preliminary examination on Feb. 12.