Trial set for suspected robber

A July trial has been set for a Columbus man who is charged in connection with the robbery of a Delaware County Turkey Hill, Donatos Pizza, and Goodwill in February.

David L. Au, 37, of Columbus, was indicted by a Delaware County Grand Jury on March 9 and charged with eight counts of robbery, four second-degree felonies and four third-degree felonies. According to the indictment, Au allegedly committed a robbery at a Turkey Hill location on Feb. 3 and Feb. 5; at a Donatos on Feb. 5; and at a Goodwill on Feb. 5. He is charged with a second- and third-degree felony for each incident.

Au appeared in Delaware County Common Pleas Court on May 15 for an arraignment, where he entered a “not guilty” plea to the charges. Delaware County Common Pleas Judge James P. Schuck set his bond in the case at $250,000.

Schuck scheduled a trial for July 11 at 9 a.m. and set a change of plea deadline for the day prior.

Additionally, Kaitlyn Penwell, of Logan, Ohio, was indicted on March 9 and charged with two counts of robbery along with Au for the Feb. 5 robbery at Turkey Hill. Her arraignment has not yet been set.

Au allegedly robbed the Lewis Center Turkey Hill located at 8940 Green Meadows Drive at around 1 a.m. on Feb. 3 before returning with Penwell and robbing it again on Feb. 5 at around 1:45 a.m. Later that day, at around 1:45 p.m., an employee at Donatos Pizza located at 122 S. Sandusky St., Delaware, called police to report that a man, later identified as Au, had entered the restaurant and flashed a gun to an employee.

Police records indicate Au attempted to rob the safe until he learned it was electronically locked and instead took all the money from the drawer before fleeing the scene. City police arrived moments later and began searching for the suspect. No one was injured in the robbery, records show.

According to the criminal complaint filed in Delaware County Common Pleas Court, Au then traveled to the Goodwill located at 123 Neverland Drive in Lewis Center where he allegedly lifted his shirt to show his firearm, a gray revolver, and told the clerk, “Give me all your money or I’ll blow your head off.”

He left the store and fled the area in a vehicle but was later apprehended by officers from the Columbus Division of Police. Au was taken to the Franklin County Jail, where he is currently waiting to stand trial for a previous case in Franklin County.

In the Franklin County case, Au is charged with one count of compelling prostitution, a third-degree felony; one count of promoting prostitution, a third-degree felony; and one count of trafficking in persons, a first-degree felony. He was indicted on those charges last February and is currently scheduled to stand trial for those charges on June 14 in Franklin County Common Pleas Court.

Glenn Battishill can reached at 740-413-0903 or on Twitter @BattishillDG.