Police believe same man likely robbed gas station, hotel

Published 7:11 pm Wednesday, September 12, 2018

The LaGrange Police Department believes two recent armed robberies may be related.

The Summit gas station on Hogansville Road was robbed on Tuesday evening around 10 p.m. and the suspect is similar in build to the man who allegedly robbed the Motel 6 on Lafayette Parkway Saturday morning.

“We do think it is most likely the same person,” said Sgt. William Nelson with the LaGrange Police Department.

According to a LPD press release, a Summit gas station employee told police that an unknown black male entered the store, pointed a handgun at her and demanded money. The employee gave the man an undisclosed amount of cash, and the suspect fled the scene toward Hogansville Road, according to the press release.  The suspect is described as a black male, wearing a gray hooded sweatshirt and dark pants and had a white mask over his face.

A man with a similar description committed a similar crime at Motel 6 Saturday.

According to a press release from the LPD, officers responded to the motel at approximately 2:10 a.m. on Saturday. An employee told police that a black male entered the office, pointed a handgun at her and demanded that she give him all of the money. The employee gave him an undisclosed amount of cash, according to the police report.

“Somebody in our community knows who this is. We work as hard as we can to try to put the pieces together, but it’s always citizen assistance that helps us solve these crimes,” Nelson said. “Somebody out there knows who this is, so if you have some information on who it may be, call Crime Stoppers or the police department. If they call Crime Stoppers, they can remain completely anonymous and can even get a reward off of it, sometimes upwards of a $1,000 or even more, depending on the circumstances.”

Nelson said it may seem like there’s been a rash of armed robberies recently, but LPD is “significantly” down for the year.

Nelson said the LPD responded to 45 robberies at this point last year and has responded to 23 in 2018.

“We are down 49 percent on [robberies] for the year,” Nelson said.

“I think that is where when you’re down significantly for an extended period of time, when you have a couple that happen in short succession, it can give the impression that there is a drastic increase, but when you start looking at it from a historical perspective, we are still really, really down,” Nelson said.

The Summit gas station on Commerce Avenue was robbed by on Aug. 14, but the LPD does not believe the same person is responsible for both incidents.

In the first case, three black males approached a store employee and forced him inside and pointed guns at him, demanding money.

The LPD is also continuing to investigate incidents that occurred at Pizza Hut on Aug. 26 and CharterBank on Aug. 31.

“Be vigilant in taking note of your surroundings. If something doesn’t look right, call 911,” Nelson said. “Even if it is nothing, we can always come out and check it out.”

Anyone with information is asked to call the LaGrange Police Department at (706) 883-2603 or Troup County Crime Stoppers at (706) 812-1000.