Four people on St. Croix were in custody after they allegedly robbed a Christiansted store around noon Tuesday, the Police Department indicated in a press release. Two males, both age 17, were remanded to the Youth Rehabilitation Center pending their court appearance. Two other male suspects were detained, police said, adding that the second pair would be formally arrested once the interview process was completed.
Police said they recovered jewelry, several ski masks, gloves and ammunition. Officers also confiscated two weapons.
According to the press release, officers from various units converged on the scene and then tracked the suspects to where they were apprehended about five miles away. The community gave police the key information they needed for the apprehension.
Witnesses told police that two masked men – one tall and one short, dressed in black and wearing gloves – entered the Tropical Bracelet store on Strand Street in Christiansted. One of them was armed. The suspects allegedly asked for the key to the jewelry case, opened it, removed jewelry and fled the store.
Witnesses told police that the suspects got into a maroon pickup truck that had two other people in the back of the trunk. Witnesses also told police the truck’s license plate number, the report said.
An all-points bulletin was immediately issued. Officers soon spotted the vehicle in Estate La Grande Princess, they said, and police converged on the suspects’ car. At the bottom of Morning Star Hill, about five miles away from the robbery location, police blocked the road. This forced the vehicle to veer off into a side road where officers apprehended the suspects.
St Croix Deputy Police Chief James Parris commended the officers for the swift apprehension of the suspects and the confiscation of evidence, especially the firearms. He said these arrests are the combined and cooperative work of patrol, the Criminal Investigation Bureau and several other units and divisions inside the Police Department.
“This is the teamwork that we train to achieve and in this instance it was executed flawlessly,” Parris said.
He also commended the citizens who gave police the description and license plate number of the getaway vehicle.
“The witnesses kept their cool and gave police key information in these types of cases, which is the description of the vehicle and the full license plate number,” Parris said. “With police and community working hand in hand, crimes can be solved in record time.”