Crime & Courts

Man arrested in carjacking outside Lenoir grocery store

Lenoir police arrested a man in a carjacking Wednesday involving an elderly victim outside the Just Save grocery store on Hickory Boulevard.

Steven Len Baird, 34, of Boone, was charged with carjacking, attempted kidnapping and communicating threats and was jailed on $250,000 bail.

An 83-year-old woman had just returned to her 2000 Lincoln Continental after shopping at the store when a man ordered her to get into the car and drive him away, or he was going to shoot her, Police Chief Scott Brown said.

The woman ran from the car and into the store to call 911, Brown said.

The assailant drove the woman’s car from the lot, but within 30 seconds of receiving a call about the incident, investigators saw the car headed northbound near the intersection of Blowing Rock Boulevard and Hospital Avenue, Brown said.

Police stopped the car at a Dollar Tree, and Baird was taken into custody without incident, the chief said.

Anyone with information about the case is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 828-758-8300 or the Lenoir Police Department at 828-757-2100.

Marusak: 704-358-5067;

Twitter: @jmarusak