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.