By NIKKI YOUNK
IRON MOUNTAIN - A Norway man has been charged with felony counts of attempted armed robbery and attempted criminal sexual conduct-first degree for an incident that occurred last month at the Krist gas station in Norway.
John Leon Leipzig, 31, is accused of entering the gas station on Oct. 8 and telling the female cashier that he wanted to rob the store. The cashier told authorities that she believed Leipzig was intoxicated at the time.
According to the criminal complaint in the case, Leipzig offered to split the money with the cashier. When she refused, Leipzig allegedly produced a pistol and said that he was not afraid to kill anybody, including her, her family, and the police.
Leipzig is also accused of trying to get the cashier to go to the back of the store and have sexual contact with him. The cashier told police that when she went outside with Leipzig, he kept attempting to grab her around the waist.
The complaint states that Leipzig eventually left after telling the cashier that he would come back later to rob the store.
Police later recovered the pistol used in the incident and discovered that it was a BB pistol modified to look like a real firearm.
If convicted on either the two felony charges, Leipzig could spend up to life in prison. He is listed as a habitual offender-fourth, which enhances the penalties on his charges.
Leipzig has previous felony convictions for breaking and entering, non-sufficient check funds, operating or maintaining a controlled substance lab, stealing or retaining a financial transaction device, resisting and obstructing a police officer, and assault with a dangerous weapon.
The convictions occurred between 2001 and 2011 in the downstate counties of Calhoun and Kalamazoo.
Leipzig will appear in Dickinson County Circuit Court on Nov. 4 for an arraignment on his current charges.
Nikki Younk's e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.