Woman robbed at gunpoint in parking lot
A Minden woman can rest easier today, knowing Minden Police caught the man who robbed her at gunpoint Monday afternoon.
Richard Smith III, 19, of the 200 block of West Union, has been charged with armed robbery after holding a gun on a a woman and taking her purse in the parking lot of a local health care provider.
Minden Police Chief Steve Cropper said the victim, who called in the robbery around 4 p.m., was instrumental in catching Smith by giving police a detailed description of his clothing and the direction he fled on foot.
“She indicated he ran toward Minden High School and Creekside Apartments,” Cropper said. “We had officers in a close proximity, and they did a really good job.”
Cropper said Lt. Tim Morris, Sgt. Spencer Tippen, Ofc. Danny Turner, Ofc. James Barnes, Ofc. Kenneth James and Off. Chris Henderson responded.
“Officers James and Turner were the ones closest,” Cropper said. “They were looking for someone on foot, fitting the description. They had the area surrounded pretty quickly.”
Since no one had seen the subject, officers felt he was hiding in a nearby building or apartment.
Detectives Sgt. Heath Balkom, Capt. Marvin Garrett and Sgt. Chris Cheatham were called in and officers began a door-to-door canvass of the area.
“They came to Creekside Apartments near the high school and at apartment number seven, they knocked on the door and Kendale Smith answered,” Cropper said. “Officers asked if there was anyone else in the apartment, and he indicated ‘no.’ He appeared to be very nervous and was sweating pretty badly.”
Kendale Smith reportedly stepped outside the apartment and officers asked if anyone else was in the apartment to step out.
“Richard Smith came from the rear of the apartment and gave consent to search,” Cropper said. “Inside the apartment, officers found a pellet gun that looked like a real handgun, and the woman’s purse and contents.”
Cropper said during Richard Smith’s interview, he admitted to trying to break into a car in the same parking lot on June 2.
Richard Smith was also charged with attempted simple burglary in reference to that incident.
Kendale Smith, 24, of the 600 block of College Street, is charged with accessory after the fact of armed robbery.
“Kendale Smith admitted in his interview that Richard had come there, had the gun, had the purse, told him what he had done and then Kendale lied to the police about him being in the apartment,” Cropper said.
Both men are jailed at Bayou Dorcheat Correctional Center.
A second armed robbery took place at a local hotel/motel Monday evening. Watch for that story in the Minden Press-Herald.