Detectives James Scott and Kermit Quinn yesterday saw a man running with a bag get into a pickup truck about a block from the Charter One Bank in downtown Toledo.
“We looked at each other, saying something ain't right,” Detective Quinn said.
The Toledo police detectives drove one street parallel to the pickup to see where it would go. Then they heard a report of a bank robbery come over their police radios.
The man who got into the truck matched the description of the suspect who robbed the bank, 337 North Huron St. “There they go,” Detective Quinn told his colleague as they were following the pickup.
Within 35 minutes of the 10:15 a.m. holdup, police - with the help of a few citizens - arrested the suspected robber and getaway driver and recovered a bag of money.
Terrance L. Clemons, 42, of 1420 North Huron, and Vincent A. Oliver, 36, of 818 Fernwood Ave., were charged with robbery and were being held in the Lucas County jail pending arraignment in Toledo Municipal Court today.
Police said Mr. Clemons robbed the bank; Oliver drove the getaway truck.
The detectives followed the suspects, who were running red lights and stop signs. At Eagle Lane and Lagrange Street, Mr. Clemons jumped from the pickup.
Detective Quinn, sporting a suit and dress shoes, got out of his colleague's car and ran after him.
“I chased him as far as I could see. Little did I know I was standing behind the house he hid in,” Detective Quinn said.
Around Elm and Superior streets, Detective Quinn flagged down a driver for a ride because Detective Scott was following the pickup. The driver stopped at Lagrange and Ontario Street when he saw marked police vehicles.
A witness told uniformed officers that the fleeing man went into a house at 517 Elm. Officers found him hiding under a bed and recovered a black bag containing dye-stained money.
Detective Quinn said the suspect's cold-weather clothing initially caught his attention. Detective Scott said the driver, who kept inching the slow-moving pickup on Adams before stopping in the middle of the street, “gave it away.”
Investigators said the robbery of a downtown bank about two blocks from police headquarters is rare.
“Robberies of the banks downtown aren't that frequent,” Lt. Rick Reed said.
Detective Quinn said it was the first time in his 21-year career that he had come across something like yesterday's events.
In May, 2001, Detective Scott, another colleague, and a Toledo FBI agent caught a bank robber who was riding a bicycle.
“Just a week ago, we were talking about if we were driving, what would we do if we pulled up on a bank robbery,” Detective Scott said with a smile.