Guard's stolen revolver found, studied for evidence

September 03, 1995|By Ed Heard and Howard Libit | Ed Heard and Howard Libit,Sun Staff Writers

Howard County police have released a sketch of a man who faked confinement to a wheelchair before helping another man rob an armored truck driver in Columbia's Hickory Ridge village Wednesday.

Police also said Friday that the robbery victim's revolver was found and investigators were analyzing it for evidence.

No one has been arrested in the robbery, said Sgt. Steven Keller, a police spokesman.

According to police, the two men sitting outside the village center's Giant Food store about 11:30 a.m. Wednesday sprang up and pointed guns at a Federal Armored Express guard making a routine cash drop.

Police said the men took the guard's gun and a bag of cash -- an attack unnoticed by another guard, the driver, sitting in the nearby armored truck. The robbers then fled to a small white car, possibly a Toyota Cressida, police said.

One 46-year-old woman was in the Hickory Ridge plaza when she crossed within three feet of the robbers' escape path.

"They were running straight at me," said the woman, who refused to be identified. "The one in the wheelchair had a blue denim bag over his shoulder, and then I saw the barrel of his gun pointed straight at my chest.

"I don't think he even realized he had his gun pointed at me," she said. "They were just running to get away and swinging their arms."

The woman said she stepped into a store doorway to get out of the robbers' way.

"I didn't have time to think about it at the time, but I know I was really fortunate," she said. She later recognized one of the thieves as the man she'd seen earlier in the wheelchair, she said.

The man in the wheelchair was described as black, in his mid-20s to early 30s, 6 feet to 6 feet 2 inches tall and weighing 180 to 190 pounds. Police said he wore a light brown T-shirt and a blue and white checkered golf cap.

The other man was described as black, 5 feet 10 inches tall, with a thin build, police said.

The day of the holdup, a Montgomery County resident found the guard's weapon on Route 108 near the Montgomery County line.

Wednesday's robbery continues a growing trend of violent crime in Howard County.

In the past year, crimes have included a furniture store robbery and wounding of its two employees, carjackings, home robberies, armed robberies on residents' doorsteps and convenience store holdups.

Anyone with information should call Howard County Police at 313-2220 or the Metro Crime Stoppers hot line at 276-8888 to qualify for a $2,000 reward.

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