3 hotels robbed over course of 4 days; officers suspect connection

By: Stephanie Baker
By: Stephanie Baker

Click for full sizeThree robberies, three hotels...over the course of just four days.

Quality Inn on Belair Road, Best Western on Center West Parkway, and Amerisuites on Claussen Road were robbed at gunpoint, all at around 8:00 in the evening.

And all of this just in time for Augusta's busiest week for hotels: the Masters.

Several seconds were caught on tape of a man pulling what officers say is a gun.

"That's pretty disturbing," says Sgt. Matthew Hehemann. He's staying with his family at Amerisuites...and just missed Wednesday's robbery by about an hour.

"I didn't know it happened until just now...but my family was here by themselves."

Manager Elizabeth Lynn says the suspect didn't seem suspicious at first. He waited until all the customers left.

"He took a gun out of his jacket and demanded money," Lynn says.

Lynn says the suspect seemed to know exactly where to find the register...where he took between $500 and $1000.

Lt. Scott Peebles says it all started Sunday at the Belair Quality Inn...that's where they got the video.

"He's robbing places with a gun. We don't know what he's capable of, who he is, but we consider him to be dangerous," Lt. Peebles says.

Lt. Peebles says the next stop was the Claussen Road Best Western Tuesday. But they can't be sure...general manager Jasmine Shah didn't get it on camera.

"If there was a security camera, it would capture their face and he may have shot her or something," Shah says.

And then, on to Amerisuites Wednesday. Elizabeth Lynn's camera wasn't working and missed the robbery...but she remembers it well.

"I think it's guests staying in the hotel, checking out the hotel...because he was just too familiar," Lynn says.

And that makes guests like Sgt. Hehemann nervous.

"Hopefully the police will step up their presence...especially with the Masters here, it will make them an easy target," Sgt. Hehemann says.

Quality Inn Sunday, Best Western Tuesday, Amerisuites Wednesday, and a man officers are still trying to find.

As Sgt. Hehemann mentioned, there is concern that this may continue into next week when Masters starts...and most hotels are completely booked.

They think the same person could have done it all because of the way he was dressed.

The white hat matches the description in all three reports. They're still looking into whether the robberies are linked.


Mailing Address: P.O. Box 1212 Augusta, GA 30903 Main Telephone: (803) 278-1212 Newsroom: (803) 278-3111 Fax: (803) 442-4561
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