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Rankin County Sheriff Bryan Bailey issued the following statement.
Rankin County Sheriff’s Deputies along with Reservoir and Madison Police arrested two Hispanic males in connection with an armed robbery at the Dollar General located at 1905 Spillway Road.
The Dollar General Manager contacted the Sheriff’s Department at approximately 12:45 PM. He reported to African-American or Hispanic males entering the store around 12:30 PM. The second male entered the store wearing some type of hunting mask and was told by employees he could not enter with the mask on.
The first male had already entered the store and circled behind a cashier. He can be seen on video grabbing the cashier and placing a knife to his throat. He then demanded all of the money from the cash register. Once the money was taken, the two fled on foot to the east of the store.
A witness near the store was at the street checking her mail. Her attention was drawn toward the two males as they came running by, because one had a mask covering his face and one was running with a knife in his hand.
Within minutes, a second witness spots, what he described as a Hispanic male running out of the woods as if he was being chased by someone or something. Deputies converged on his location and were able to locate an adult Hispanic male lying in the woods wearing a T-Shirt, black underwear, and socks. After a brief search of the area, deputies located clothing matching the description given to deputies.
A third witness was able to provide Deputies with an address they believed the suspects had come from. Deputies were at the front preparing to make contact with the homeowner when they were advised Rankin K9, Splinter, had tracked to the rear of the same residence.
The rear door to the residence was standing open and deputies were unable to make contact with anyone inside. A cursory search of the residence was performed to ensure the second robber was not hiding inside.
A search warrant was then obtained for the residence based on witness statements and the performance of the k9. Upon executing the search warrant, investigators recovered a camouflaged mask and a fixed blade kitchen knife just inside the back door.
While searching the residence, a truck pulled up with three undocumented immigrants. All three were violating county ordinances and possessed open containers. One had active warrants with Pearl Police. They were all arrested and will have a hold placed on them for ICE to determine if they will be deported.
While finishing the search of the residence, a fourth witness contacted the Sheriff’s department to report a suspicious acting Hispanic male walking on the walking trail near Spillway Road. Deputies were able to locate and take that individual into custody within minutes.
This case was solved from the initial report to the apprehension of the last suspect in less than six hours. This is possible not just because of our outstanding law enforcement and dispatchers, but also because we have concerned Rankin County Citizens willing to help law enforcement. Each one who saw something they thought was suspicious took the initiative to place a call to the authorities.