Two men arrested last month after a head-on crash with an Independence police vehicle have been charged with a series of armed business robberies.
Curlie Pruitt III, 36, and Roy L. House, 38, both of Kansas City, are charged in U.S. District Court in Kansas City with conspiracy to commit robbery, illegal possession of a firearm by a felon and using a firearm during a crime of violence.
A federal grand jury indictment returned Tuesday alleges that Pruitt and House conspired to rob the Road Star Gas Station at 11100 East U.S. 40 in Independence, the Beeline Mini-Mart at 1005 Isley Blvd. in Excelsior Springs, and the Discount Smoke Shop at 4718 NE Vivion Road in Kansas City.
They are accused of using the same .45-caliber handgun in each robbery.
The gun was recovered on Dec. 20 inside a pickup truck occupied by Pruitt and House after the truck collided with an Independence police vehicle, according to court documents.
The wreck occurred as Independence police were trying to stop the truck after an employee of an Independence hotel feared the hotel was about to be robbed and called police.
Both Pruitt and House are convicted felons and cannot legally possess a firearm.