SB lanes of I-435 closed after bank robbery, chase - KCTV5

UPDATE

Person shoots bank robbery suspect, high-speed chase follows

Posted: Updated:
LIBERTY, MO (KCTV) -

A bank robbery suspect is in a Kansas City hospital. He was shot while trying to hold up a bank in Trimble, MO.

It all started shortly after 1:30 p.m. Friday at the First Security Bank located on U.S. Highway 169 in Trimble.

First Security Bank is not a traditional bank where just anybody can walk in, so police said the suspect was most likely buzzed in before he pulled a gun and demanded cash. That's where things took an unusual turn.

Trimble Police Chief Larry Fish said a civilian inside the bank pulled out a gun and shot the would-be robber.

According to police, the robbery suspect then ran out to a nearby parking lot, hopped in a car and took off, leading Trimble police, highway patrol and several other agencies on a chase that ended on I-435 near Northeast 76th Street when authorities laid down four sets of spike strips. Missouri State Highway Patrol took the suspect into custody where he was then taken to an area hospital.

Two right lanes of I-435 were temporarily closed while law enforcement investigated.

Several people in Trimble tell KCTV5's Stephen Mayer the robbery suspect drove to the Casey's General Store in Smithville, MO, located about 6 1/2 miles away. That's where people said he washed up, treated his wound, bought gas and took off again. The FBI and Missouri Highway Patrol haven't confirmed these details.

Residents said Trimble is a small town and lots of people have guns and concealed carry licenses.

"He could have saved a lot of lives doing that," Patricia McWilliams said.

She said she's glad someone inside the bank was able to defend customers and staff.

"If not, he could have done worse. He could have hurt a lot more people or stolen a lot more money," McWilliams said.

Trimble is a small town and people who live there said they were surprised by all the action.

"We don't see much in Trimble unless it's a wreck and not very often," Brad Foster said. "We don't need anybody prowling around that's going to do it again. I suppose he didn't have an assault weapon, but I'm sure glad they caught him."

Fish said he can't remember the last time a bank was robbed in his town and thanked everyone for their support in getting the suspect off the streets.

"Basically we're just thankful for the other agencies assisting us and helping us out. Being a smaller agency, it makes it harder to do a bigger investigation like this without their help," he said.

Fish said the man acted alone and is working to assure residents of his town that everything is OK.

"This is hopefully a once-in-a-lifetime event for us. We work hard to keep this community safe," he said.

The police chief won't say who actually shot the suspect, if it was a customer or bank employee.

Public Affairs Specialist for the FBI Bridget Patton said no one in the bank was hurt. The robbery suspect is now listed as stable at an area hospital. Patton said they won't release his name until he is charged and won't say if he actually made off with any cash.

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