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story.lead_photo.caption Oral Sonny Shorter Jr.

A man who repeatedly stabbed a convenience store clerk with a screwdriver during a robbery last year in Texarkana, Texas, received a 45-year prison term Monday as part of a plea bargain.

Oral Sonny Shorter Jr., 20, entered a guilty plea before 202nd District Judge John Tidwell at a hearing in the Bi-State Justice Building to charges of aggravated robbery and unauthorized use of a vehicle.

Shorter stole an SUV the day before he committed the robbery Oct. 20.

Shorter was arrested by the Texarkana, Texas, Police Department in the early morning hours of Oct. 20 not far from the scene of an aggravated robbery at EZ Mart on Texas Boulevard, according to a probable cause affidavit. A clerk working at the store was walking out of a freezer when she was attacked by a man wielding a screwdriver at about 2:30 a.m.

The clerk reported that Shorter yelled, "Give me the money," before stabbing her in the shoulder with the tool. Shorter shouted threats to end the clerk's life as she tried to convince him that she did not have the ability to open the store's safe.

"He stabs her one last time again in the other shoulder and begins trying to shake the safe open," the affidavit states.

The clerk's attacker grabbed her backpack and ran out of the store. A short time later, Shorter, who matched the description of the robber, was arrested while riding a bike on Texas Boulevard near 15th Street.

Shorter confessed and said he committed the robbery because he was "tired of being broke," that it was a "way to release his anger," and that he "just wanted a way to get out of Texarkana." Shorter admitted to stealing a blue 2018 Ford Escape the day before after being shown surveillance video that showed he was wearing the same shirt and shoes as the person who took the car. The owner reported that she inadvertently left the keys inside.

Shorter told police he slept in the car after parking it in a lot near Wisdom Animal Clinic on Texas Boulevard.

llarowe@texarkanagazette.com

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