Smithville police seek armed robbery suspect

According to police, a Black male about 5-foot-10 with a stocky build, seen here, entered the store, “demanded money and produced a handgun.” Anyone with any information is asked to call Smithville Police Department at 858-3521 and reference case No. 12200551.

SMITHVILLE — Police in Smithville are seeking the public’s help to identify a suspect from an armed robbery that occurred around 1 a.m. Saturday, June 18, in the 1100 block of South U.S. Highway 169.

According to police, the robbery occurred at the Kum & Go gas station in Smithville when a Black male about 5-foot-10 with a stocky build entered the store, “demanded money and produced a handgun.”

“The suspect fled the scene in a southern direction,” states a police release.

Later Saturday, officers visited all gas station in the city and had conversations with employees regarding safety measures, police response and the importance of the businesses making sure surveillance cameras are in working order.

”We want to ensure that all employees, especially those working alone, know what to do in event such as what happened last night,” Smithville police wrote in a social media message later in the day Saturday.

Police Chief Jason Lockridge told the Courier-Tribune Monday, June 20, details on how much money was possibly taken could not be released at this time, but that armed robberies in the city rare, occurring on average once every five years.

Lockridge said victims tend to think robberies are more prevalent, but that is likely due to confusion on the difference between robberies and stealings.

”If you leave your car unlocked and somebody takes your purse out of the car, that’s not a robbery, that’s a stealing,” he said. “People tend to say, ‘Hey, I was robbed.’ Well, you were the victim of a stealing.”

Robberies, Lockridge said, are classified as violent crimes with the FBI because they constitute a person physically taking something by force or by use of a weapon from another person.

Anyone with any information is asked to call Smithville Police Department at 858-3521 and reference case No. 12200551.

Managing Editor Amanda Lubinski can be reached at

amanda.lubinski@mycouriertribune.com or 903-6001.

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