Men plead not guilty to attempting to rob Aldi store

MILWAUKEE -- The two men who were prevented by a customer from robbing an Aldi grocery store near 76th and Villard have pleaded not guilty to armed robbery charges.

Dierre Cotton is charged with armed robbery and armed robbery party to a crime. Edyon Hibbler is charged with armed robbery party to a crime. This case will now move to trial.

The two men are accused of walking into the Aldi store near 76th and Villard on the city’s north side Monday evening. Milwaukee police say Cotton came into the Aldi store armed with a shotgun, with the intent to rob the store, but he left empty-handed. 35-year-old Nazir Al-Mujaahid pulled out his weapon, and shot Cotton. Cotton and Hibbler fled the store.

Cotton suffered a gunshot wound to his leg and a graze wound on his head, so Hibbler drove him to St. Joseph's Hospital for treatment.

When police questioned Cotton, the complaint says Cotton needed the money "to pay for school." He told officers he used the gun in the robbery to scare people, and said it was not loaded.

The charges are not only for the incident at the Aldi store -- they're also from an armed robbery at a CVS store in Milwaukee on January 4th and a Radio Shack in Wauwatosa on January 19th.

Cotton and Hibbler each face up to 40 years in prison and $100,000 in fines if convicted.