Burlington County Prosecutor Scott Coffina announced that a man who was convicted at trial of robbing a Maple Shade veterinary office with a butcher’s knife and then entering a supermarket and grabbing nearly $500 from a cash register has been sentenced to 13 years in New Jersey state prison.
Craig Greene, 49, of the first block of South Boulevard Avenue, must serve 85 percent of the term before becoming eligible for parole. A jury in September found Green guilty of Robbery (First Degree), two counts of Possession of a Controlled Dangerous Substance (Third Degree), Possession of a Weapon for an Unlawful Purpose (Third Degree), Unlawful Possession of a Weapon (Fourth Degree) and Theft by Unlawful Taking (Fourth Degree).
“This was a very frightening encounter for those who were confronted by this defendant,” Prosecutor Coffina said. “Fortunately, nobody was harmed, and very solid police work led to a quick apprehension.”
The investigation began on the afternoon of June 5, 2019, after Maple Shade police officers were called to the VCA Maple Shade Animal Hospital on East Main Street for a report of an armed robbery that had just occurred. Officers were told the robber came in through the front door, walked up to the receptionist’s desk, displayed the knife and stated, “Give me the money.”
He then reached down and opened the payment drawer, removed the tray insert and left the office with $162, fleeing into a residential neighborhood. A nearby school and child care facility were notified and told to shelter in place while police searched the area for the suspect.
Approximately four hours later, police were called to the Acme Market in the first block of West Main Street for a report of a man who had reached over a counter and taken $471 from a cash register before fleeing. A review of surveillance camera recordings led police to identify Greene as the robber. He did not use a weapon in the Acme robbery. He was arrested later that day as he approached his residence.
The investigation was conducted by detectives from the Maple Shade Police Department. Greene was prosecuted by Assistant Prosecutor Julian Harris.