Former Roanoke Police Officer Arrested In Robbery
The Montgomery Advertiser
Elmore County, Alabama
Mississippi law enforcement arrested a Roanoke man who is a suspect in an Elmore County armed robbery.
Elmore County Sheriff Bill Franklin said the man, Jonathan Heard, is a former Roanoke police officer. Repeated calls to the Roanoke Police Department were not returned.
Franklin said the Central Store in Central, a town about nine miles north of Wetumpka, was robbed at about 6:30 p.m. Friday night.
Franklin said the suspect came into the store several times during the day Friday, asking for “directions and things like that.”
“He came back in about 6:30 p.m. Friday armed and robbed the cashier,” Franklin said. “He left the scene driving a (Chevrolet) Avalanche pickup truck.”
He made off with an undisclosed amount of cash, Franklin said. An eyewitness at the Central Store got the vehicle’s tag number, which confirmed Heard was the owner. Then the sheriff got word of another robbery.
“While the investigation was going on we received information that another store was hit in Shorter. Right now, we feel he is a suspect in that robbery as well,” Franklin said.
Elmore County Sheriff’s Office officials contacted the Roanoke Police Department to ask if they knew Heard, and found out then Heard was a former officer, Franklin said.
One of Franklin’s deputies said he knew Heard and called his cell phone.
Heard told the deputy that he would turn himself in, but first needed to speak to an attorney.
“Apparently that was a ruse,” Franklin said. “We had units on I-85 looking for him. And he was never spotted.”
Elmore County law enforcement broadcast a regional lookout that included a description of Heard and the vehicle. Mississippi authorities arrested Heard about 4 a.m. Saturday morning in Biloxi, Franklin said.
He also said that Mississippi officials are investigating the armed robbery of a store in Moss Point, Miss., but Franklin didn’t know if that was connected to Heard.
Franklin said officials from his office will go to talk to Heard in the coming days, and will bring him back to Alabama to face the Elmore County charges if Heard agrees to waive extradition.
If Heard does not agree to come back to face the charges, the governor’s office would have to get involved.