Police trooper prevents robbery at Wingate Hotel in Columbia

Friday, August 17, 2012 | 1:55 p.m. CDT; updated 4:19 p.m. CDT, Saturday, August 18, 2012

COLUMBIA — A retired Illinois State Police trooper prevented a robbery early Friday morning at the Wingate Hotel in Columbia. 

Shortly before 1 a.m. Friday, two men wearing masks and gloves entered the hotel lobby at 3101 Wingate Court. The retired trooper spotted them, showed the men his weapon and identified himself, according to a Columbia Police Department news release.

One suspect carrying a knife ran from the hotel when the trooper approached him. The other suspect took an undisclosed amount of cash from the hotel's drawer but dropped the money and fled.

The former trooper then called the Columbia police, and an officer arrived on the scene. He told the police that he last saw the suspects running toward the Candlewood Suites, about 200 feet away from the Wingate Hotel. No one was injured.

Police are still seeking the suspects, Officer Latisha Stroer said. Both suspects are white males between 18 and 25 years old.

The first suspect is of medium build and stands between 5 feet 5 inches and 5 feet 6 inches tall. He was last seen carrying a knife and wearing a black shirt, jean shorts, a mask and tennis shoes.

The second suspect is of thin build and stands between 5 feet 10 inches and 5 feet 11 inches tall. He has a large tattoo near his elbow on his left forearm. He was last seen wearing a black shirt, a scarf over his face, black pants and gloves.

Supervising editor is Ted Hart.

Like what you see here? Become a member.

Show Me the Errors (What's this?)

Report corrections or additions here. Leave comments below here.

You must be logged in to participate in the Show Me the Errors contest.


John Schultz August 23, 2012 | 12:27 p.m.

Just to be ornery here, but doesn't this violate the Missourian's policy to not report the apparent race of the suspect unless there are X number of distinguishing characteristics? I'm curious if we would have had this detail if the suspects were not white, although maybe it's start of the semester and a new crop of student journalists causing this apparent lapse.

(Report Comment)

Leave a comment

Speak up and join the conversation! Make sure to follow the guidelines outlined below and register with our site. You must be logged in to comment. (Our full comment policy is here.)

  • Don't use obscene, profane or vulgar language.
  • Don't use language that makes personal attacks on fellow commenters or discriminates based on race, religion, gender or ethnicity.
  • Use your real first and last name when registering on the website. It will be published with every comment. (Read why we ask for that here.)
  • Don’t solicit or promote businesses.

We are not able to monitor every comment that comes through. If you see something objectionable, please click the "Report comment" link.

You must be logged in to comment.

Forget your password?

Don't have an account? Register here.