CPD stops vehicle wanted in Smithton armed bank robbery

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At about noon on Thursday, Columbia police stopped a vehicle wanted in a Smithton armed bank robbery on Route 3 near Wedgewood Drive.

Columbia police pulled over a silver Mitsubishi driving northbound on Route 3. This vehicle matched the description of a suspect vehicle that was wanted for committing an armed bank robbery at the Regions Bank in Smithton around 11:30 a.m., police said.

Officers took the driver of the car, a 37-year-old Illinois man, into custody. He was detained and questioned by detectives from the Columbia Police Department as well as an agent from the FBI. Formal charges are expected Friday.

The Illinois State Police sent a crime scene unit to process the silver car and other items recovered by officers. The right lane of northbound Route 3 near Wedgewood was partially blocked until the processing was completed.

The man displayed a black handgun to a teller inside the bank and demanded cash. He left the bank on foot and drove away from the scene. The gun was recovered during the traffic stop in Columbia, police said.

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