Wednesday, January 24, 2001

Armed robbery suspect shot after pursuit

Second suspect may be at large

By Marie McCain
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        An armed bank robbery suspect was shot by Cincinnati police in Roselawn Tuesday afternoon as he attempted to evade capture.

        The suspect, whose name has not been released, was taken to University Hospital, where he was in critical condition Tuesday night in the hospital's surgical intensive care unit after the 2:15 p.m. robbery at CinFed Credit Union Loans, 7364 Reading Road.

        The shooting took place about a block from the credit union, officials said.

[photo] Police cordon off the area along Reading Road where a bank robbery suspect was wounded Tuesday.
(Gary Landers photo)
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        Three officers in the area responded to the call of a robbery in progress and spotted the suspect running south along Reading Road.

        The officers, who were not identified Tuesday, chased the suspect on foot. The suspect ran between residential buildings at 7316 and 7312 Reading, where he was shot, officials said. Police officials did not say what the suspect did that caused officers to shoot.

        Cincinnati Police Chief Tom Streicher said two of the three officers fired shots at the suspect. It was not known how many shots were fired or if the suspect fired his weapon.

        The suspect's gun, some clothing and money from the credit union were recovered at the scene, the chief said, adding that there may have been a second suspect who escaped in a car.

        The car was described as a dark-colored four-door, possibly green or gray Saturn. No description of the second suspect was available.

        Police were expected to release more details today at a morning news conference.

        A female employee inside the credit union called 911 as the robbery took place. She hid in a back office and whispered the man's movements to a dispatcher. She said he entered the bank, ordered everyone on the floor and began going through the cash drawers, according to a 911 recording of her call.

        Outside the credit union, a second witness told a 911 dispatcher that the suspect left the office from the rear and ran south on Brookcrest Avenue before leading police through residential buildings along Reading. She told the dispatcher she heard at least three shots.

        Robert Jacobs, 27, owner of MVP Studio, across the street from the credit union, said he ran downstairs after he heard shots fired.

        “I saw a middle-aged black man running from the credit union,” Mr. Jacobs said. “It looked like he had on a green jacket and I noticed he had some gray hair.”

        Mark Zeinner, 31, who was remodeling a house at 7333 Reading Road, said he heard five shots.

        This is the second Cincinnati bank robbery in 2001 and the third in Hamilton County, officials said.

        It also was the third use of force by officers in Cincinnati's police District 4 in three months.

        Two officers have been suspended for their involvement in the Nov. 7 death of Roger Owensby, while another had his police powers suspended stemming from a Jan. 17 incident after he allegedly struck a suspect with a police cruiser.

        Cincinnati Police Lt. Ray Ruberg said at least two of the three officers involved in Tuesday's shooting will be placed on administrative leave pending standard investigations by the Internal Affairs Unit and the city's Office of Municipal Investigation.

        The loss of those patrol officers from the district will be covered, Lt. Ruberg said, adding that there are about 100 officers in District 4.

        None of the credit union employees was hurt, said John Leahy, chief executive officer for CinFed.

        Cincinnati police blocked Reading Road from Shenandoah to Losantville while conducting their investigation.

        The suspect who was shot was described as a male black wearing a green top, black leather jacket and brown overalls. He wore a black hood and carried a brown garbage bag.

       Allen Howard and Patrick Stack contributed to this report.


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