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Suspect in W.Va. motel robbery captured in Pa.

January 11, 2007|by DON AINES

GREENCASTLE, PA. - A Hagerstown man charged with robbery and kidnapping in a November hotel holdup has been captured in Allegheny County, Pa., according to Pennsylvania State Police.

Jeffrey Allen Williams, 44, of 231 East Ave., was taken into custody Jan. 3, police said. Charges against Williams were filed with Magisterial District Judge Duane Cunningham's office Dec. 29, 2006, police said.

The affidavit of probable cause stated that police in Martinsburg, W.Va., had issued a warrant for Williams for a robbery at the Days Inn on Nov. 3, 2006.

Other charges against Williams include theft and unlawful restraint, according to the criminal complaint. Cunningham said Williams is scheduled to be brought in from Allegheny County today for arraignment.

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Williams has been charged with an armed robbery at the Comfort Inn, 50 Pine Drive, in Greencastle, at 2:45 a.m. Nov. 12, 2006, police said. Surveillance video of the robbery showed a man enter the building using a card key for one of the rooms.

The man then entered the check-in area, jumped over the counter and pulled a silver handgun on an employee. Police said the robber stole $219 from the cash drawer, maps and room keys, and a safety deposit box containing $250.

The employee was tied to a chair, gagged with a pillowcase and forced into a utility closet, police said. He was able to free himself and call police, telling them that the man appeared to be the same person who had spoken with him in the office three times the night before, according to the affidavit.

Police said another hotel employee said he had also been approached the night before by a man fitting the same description. The employee told police the man apparently was staying in a room rented by two women on Nov. 10, 2006.

The women who rented the room were later interviewed by police and said they had rented it for a man whom they only knew as "Jeff," who told them he had been kicked out by his girlfriend.

The hotel manager later confirmed the key card used by the man to get into the building had been issued for the room rented by the women.

The affidavit stated that an anonymous tip led police in Martinsburg to investigate Williams in the Days Inn robbery.

State police did not detail the circumstances of Williams' apprehension.

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