Feds seek Detroit man in Dollar Tree armed robberies

Mark Hicks
The Detroit News

Federal officials are seeking tips to find a Detroit man accused of robbing two Dollar Tree stores in the area at gunpoint last month.

According to a criminal complaint filed in federal court, Antonio Lee Cotton allegedly targeted the businesses a week apart.

Antonio Lee Cotton

Detroit police have said the first incident was in the 2000 block of East Eight Mile on the city's north side.

The second was in Eastpointe a week later, the U.S. Department of Justice said in a statement Friday.

"In both instances, Cotton is alleged to have entered the stores close to closing time, threatened the employees in the store with a handgun, forced the employees to give him money from the cash registers as well as the safes in the offices, zip-tied the employees, attempted to steal or in fact stole the store’s surveillance system, fled the Dollar Tree carrying a plastic bag, and fled to a Chevy Trailblazer parked distant from the location of the store," authorities wrote.

The 37-year-old took $10,270 at the Detroit store and fled the Eastpointe one with $1,400, according to the release. 

A federal arrest warrant was issued Thursday for Cotton. He is charged with the interference with commerce by robbery. 

Antonio Cotton

If convicted, Cotton faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison, officials said.

The FBI said he is considered an armed and dangerous fugitive.

"A reward of up to $10,000 may be available for information leading to to the arrest and conviction of Cotton," Mara Schneider, public affairs officer for the FBI Detroit Division, said in an email Friday.

Cotton is described as 5-foot-10, 185 pounds, with black hair and brown eyes. Investigators believe he has ties to Michigan, Ohio and Kentucky.

Anyone with information on his whereabouts is asked to call 1-800-CALL-FBI or go to tips.fbi.gov.