DECATUR — A woman who turned down pleas for money from a panhandler dressed in a Santa hat in downtown Decatur was later held up and robbed by the same man, police said.

The crime was reported at 11:15 p.m. Friday, and less than 40 minutes later patrol officers found the suspect a short distance away and arrested him.

“He matched the description of the robber and was still wearing the Santa hat,” said Decatur police detective Sgt. Chris Copeland. “The victim positively identified him as the subject who had robbed her.”

Copeland said the woman was initially approached by the man as she waited in her car outside the Lincoln Square Lounge bar in the 100 block of North Main Street. After she told him she had no money and she had gone back into the bar to look for a friend, the woman found the 56-year-old man waiting for her when she came outside again a short time later.

“He told her that he knows everybody in that bar has money,” Copeland said. “She told him she wasn’t giving him any money and then he implied he had a knife in his pocket and told her to give him money or he was going to stab her.”

The woman handed over a small amount of cash before running to her vehicle, locking herself inside and calling police, Copeland said. A search of the man after his arrest found no weapons and no sign of the woman’s stolen money.

Copeland said the man was jailed on a preliminary charge of aggravated robbery, which is subject to review by the Macon County State's Attorney's Office.

A call for comment to the Lincoln Square Lounge was not immediately returned Sunday evening.  

2018 mug shots from the Herald & Review

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Contact Tony Reid at (217) 421-7977. Follow him on Twitter: @TonyJReid


Macon County Courts Reporter

Macon County courts reporter for the Herald & Review.

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