Suspect arrested in robbery BALTIMORE COUNTY

September 04, 1993|By Frank D. Roylance | Frank D. Roylance,Staff Writer

One of Maryland's most-wanted armed robbery suspects was caught yesterday after a bank holdup in Towson, his escape foiled by a dye pack that exploded inside the cab he'd hired as his getaway car.

The robber couldn't get the cab moving after the driver bailed out. So he tried running. County police caught him a few blocks away. No one was injured.

Kenneth Witherspoon, 36, whose last known address was in the 1900 block of Poplar Grove St. in West Baltimore, was being held last night at county police headquarters pending a bail hearing on charges of armed robbery in yesterday's holdup at the Nation's Bank in the Loch Raven Shopping Plaza near Taylor Avenue and Loch Raven Boulevard.

County warrants also charge him in the July 20 robberies of a Royal Farms store, in the 2400 block of E. Joppa Road, and a Crown gasoline station, at Loch Raven Boulevard and Joppa Road.

Ervin Lee Robinson, 38, of the 3600 block of Beehler Ave. in Baltimore, was captured shortly after those robberies and charged. A second suspect, who police believe was Kenneth Witherspoon, escaped.

The FBI and police in Salisbury also want Mr. Witherspoon on federal and local warrants issued after the June 22 holdup of a Maryland National Bank branch there.

In that robbery, said FBI spokesman James L. H1, two men stole a Cadillac El Dorado in Baltimore City, abandoned it in Salisbury, held up the bank, then hired a cab to drive them back to Baltimore.

The second robber, and a female accomplice, have not been identified.

Baltimore City police have one warrant for Mr. Witherspoon on an armed robbery charge, police spokesman Sam Ringgold said.

In yesterday's holdup in Towson, a man hired a cab to take him to the Nation's Bank at 10:40 a.m., said county police spokesman Sgt. Stephen L. Doarnberger.

While the driver waited, police said, the man entered the bank and showed the teller a note demanding money and implying that he had a gun. No weapon was seen. With money in hand, the man left the bank and got back in the cab, where a dye pack hidden in the loot exploded, Sergeant Doarnberger said.

The cabdriver, who is not a suspect, ran. The man tried to drive away, but couldn't get the cab to move, police said, and fled on foot.

Moments later, the man was spotted emerging from woods near the corner of Donachie and Colbury roads in Glenmont and was arrested.

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