A lead Wednesday morning led to the capture of Brandon Burgess alleged to have robbed a 7-Eleven in Phelps early Tuesday.

The armed robbery suspect who was taken into custody on Wednesday following a manhunt that prompted the closure of Lyons schools, has pleaded not guilty to felony charges. 

Brandon A. Burgess, 28, of Lyons, who is accused of committing an armed robbery in Phelps, is facing charges of second-degree robbery and third-degree grand larceny. Together, those charges could mean up to 22 years in prison.

Burgess is being held on $75,000 cash bail or $150,000 bond. His next court appearance will be Monday in Phelps. 

A two-day, multi-county manhunt ended Wednesday morning in Seneca Falls. Burgess was captured after leading police on a brief foot chase just after 10:30 a.m. Wednesday.

Burgess faced charges following the robbery of a 7-Eleven on Routes 318 and 14 in Phelps about 3:30 a.m. Tuesday. The Ontario County Sheriff’s Office released a report Wednesday afternoon identifying Burgess as homeless. 

Burgess entered the 7-Eleven with an Airsoft long gun and demanded cash and cigarettes, according to the Sheriff’s Office. He fled the scene in a stolen vehicle that was taken from the town of Phelps earlier that day. The vehicle was recovered several miles away.

Burgess was ultimately taken into custody in Seneca Falls on Wednesday after a traffic stop and short foot pursuit. Subsequent investigation revealed Burgess was also responsible for the larceny of tools from a job site in the town of Phelps in the early morning hours of Sept. 18. The value of those tools was $2,800 — hence the grand larceny charge.

Investigation is ongoing with additional charges related to the theft and damage to the stolen vehicle pending.

Ontario County District Attorney James Ritts says Burgess may have had plans to evade authorities for a long time.

"He had a number of locations, not sure the exact number, but what appeared to be hideout locations," Ritts said. "These were places it's alleged he was hiding to avoid apprehension."

"We took this as a very serious threat," Ontario County Sheriff Kevin Henderson said during a press conference Wednesday morning at the jail. "The stability of this individual ... obviously there are some questions. You saw the video as much as we did as well, and we truly felt that he is a threat, and we treated it as that, and obviously, as we progress through the investigation and through the criminal case, we'll be addressing some of this."

Henderson said Burgess is someone “known to law enforcement.”

The sheriff said a lead came in Wednesday morning that the suspect was possibly in the Phelps area. “The suspect was with another party and he was in a motor vehicle. A stop was made and the suspect fled from the vehicle on foot,” he said.

Henderson said it was not yet clear whether the party Burgess was with in the vehicle would face charges. “We have that person with us,” he added.

Ritts said the type of weapon Burgess had would be a factor in the charges. Ritts said additional charges could come from ongoing investigation.

Wayne County Sheriff Barry Virts said the lockout Tuesday for the Lyons Central School District was a precaution, as was the decision by the superintendent to close school Wednesday. During the lockout no one could enter or leave buildings. “We followed school buses home,” Virts said.

“We did not believe anyone in the school to be under threat,” Virts said. Precautions were also taken in Savannah and Newark school districts.

Henderson said Tuesday that the suspect was wearing a mask with what appeared to be a long gun assault rifle, and demanded cash and some other items from the clerk,. “The individual [then] fled the scene in a stolen vehicle.” The sheriff said that that car was later found at the Ontario County/Seneca County line. Authorities from those departments, as well as the New York State Police and Geneva Police, searched the area and were unable to find Burgess as the manhunt continued into Wednesday morning.

Less than 24 hours before the robbery, police say Burgess called the News 10NBC newsroom and anonymously threatened that he was going to do something. According to a producer, the caller said "bad things are going to happen" in Lyons. Within 15 minutes of the call, the newsroom emailed the Wayne County Sheriff’s Office about it.

"You can be famous or infamous there’s a tremendous difference," Ritts said. "If you choose to announce your crimes and put them on social media the things you want to do, then do them you become infamous and that's not a good thing."

Burgess has less than 300 subscribers on YouTube, but in court Wednesday he called himself a social media star. In his video posted Sept. 15 before his crime spree, he talks about "taking" someone. He does not go into detail about who or what that means, but he does mention Lyons. Virts says extra precautions were taken to protect the community as a result.

Numerous agencies were involved in the investigation including New York State Police, Geneva Police Department, Seneca County Sheriff’s Office, Seneca Falls Police Department, Waterloo Police Department, Wayne County Sheriff Department, Palmyra Police Department and the United States Secret Service.

Includes reporting from Daily Messenger news partner, News 10NBC

EARLIER VERSIONS

A 28-year-old Lyons man is in custody following a two-day manhunt covering areas of Ontario, Wayne and Seneca counties. Armed Robbery suspect Brandon Burgess was captured Wednesday morning around 10:30 a.m. following a brief foot chase in Seneca Falls. In a press conference Wednesday morning, Ontario County Sheriff Kevin Henderson said Burgess is someone “known to law enforcement.”

Burgess allegedly robbed a 7-Eleven on Route 318 and 14 in Phelps early Tuesday morning.

"We took this as a very serious threat," said Henderson said during the press conference at the jail. "The stability of this individual...obviously there are some questions. You saw the video as much as we did as well, and we truly felt that he is a threat, and we treated it as that, and obviously, as we progress through the investigation and through the criminal case, we'll be addressing some of this."

Henderson said a lead came in Wednesday morning that the suspect was possibly in the Phelps area. “That turned out to be a good lead,” he said. “The suspect was with another party and he was in a motor vehicle. A stop was made and the suspect fled from the vehicle, on foot.”

Burgess was captured in Seneca County, in Seneca Falls. Henderson did not say whether the person who was with Burgess would also face charges, but “we have that person with us.”

Burgess is to be arraigned Wednesday at 5:30 p.m. at the Ontario County Jail. Ontario County District Attorney James Ritts said the type of weapon Burgess had will be a factor in what he is charged with — it could be first-degree, or second-degree robbery. Henderson said Burgess “was perceived to have an assault-style weapon,” though it’s possible it was another type such as an Airsoft gun.

Wayne County Sheriff Barry Virts said the lockout Tuesday for the Lyons Central School District was a precaution, as law enforcement searched for the robbery suspect. During the lockout no one could enter or leave buildings. “We followed school buses home,” Virts said. This was only a precaution, as was the decision by the superintendent to close school today, he said.

“We did not believe anyone in the school to be under threat,” Virts said. Precautions were also taken in Savannah and Newark school districts.

Henderson said Tuesday that the suspect was wearing a mask with what appeared to be a long gun assault rifle, and demanded cash and some other items from the clerk. “The individual [then] fled the scene in a stolen vehicle.” The sheriff said that that car was later found at the Ontario County/Seneca County Line. Authorities from those departments, as well as the New York State Police and Geneva Police, searched the area and were unable to find Burgess as the manhunt continued into Wednesday morning.

EARLIER REPORT, NEWS PARTNER, NEWS10 NBC

Ontario County Sheriff's Office says 28-year-old Brandon Burgess is in custody. They plan on holding a news conference later Wednesday morning to discuss more of the case.

Messenger Post Media will continue to follow this developing story.

EARLIER:

The robbery suspect whose actions have already led to a manhunt, a school lockout, and the cancellation of Wednesday's classes for Lyons schools can be heard calling himself a "freak show" in a YouTube video.

“[I'm] A complete (expletive) freak show, I’m not afraid to show anybody, I’m not... because I can’t be (expletive) caught," said 28-year-old Brandon Burgess in the video.

That video was posted on YouTube shortly before authorities say he robbed a 7-Eleven on Route 318 and 14 in Phelps on Tuesday morning.

"He was wearing a mask with what appeared to be a long gun assault rifle, and demanded cash and some other items from the clerk," said Ontario County Sheriff Kevin Henderson, describing the scene. "The individual [then] fled the scene in a stolen vehicle."

The sheriff says that that car was later found at the Ontario County/Seneca County Line. Authorities from those departments, as well as the New York State Police and Geneva Police, searched the area, but they were unable to find Burgess.

Henderson says they now believe he is in the Wayne County area, which led to the lockouts at the Wayne Central and Lyons Central school districts.

They consider him armed and dangerous and describe him as having dark hair, facial hair, and tattoos on his neck and arms.

From family and social media, a portrait has begun to emerge of Burgess, who was also known as Elliot Taylor on social media. His truck, found in Lyons, had his alias sprayed on it.

Loved ones say that Burgess has been struggling in past months.

"His father died a couple months ago," said Niki O'Sullivan, Burgess' cousin. "Ever since then, he's been lost. He's a lost soul right now."

O'Sullivan says her cousin has also become increasingly interested in Area 51 conspiracies, possibly in connection to a since-canceled Facebook event that urged people to "storm" the infamous Air Force test site.

"Really he’s just trying to be famous," O'Sullivan said, before speaking to her cousin through news cameras.

"I hope you wasn’t doing this to try to get there (Area 51), but Burg, if you’re hearing this: We love you, just turn yourself in," she said.

"We’re here for you, buddy."

Anyone with information on Burgess is urged to call 911. Authorities expect to provide more updates on Wednesday morning.