02-05-09 Citizens Hold Robbery Suspect til Police Arrive
Boise, Feb 5, 2008, 8:40 p.m. - Boise Police arrested a man for robbing a convenience store tonight. The quick arrest was thanks to two citizens, customers in the store, who stopped and held the suspect until police arrived.
Arrested: James Edward Bridges, 46, Boise
Charged: Robbery (f), Battery on an Officer (f)
What Happened: Boise Police responded to a call of a robbery at a convenience store on the 6300 blk. of Fairview (cross of Hartman) at approx. 6:31 p.m. this evening. When officers arrived, they found the suspect, Bridges, on the ground being held by two men.
"We would never want anyone to risk their own safety, but this is a case where two citizens, acting quickly and decisively literally caught a criminal." said Lt. Ron Winegar, the Boise Police Patrol Watch Commander.
According to witnesses, the suspect walked in the store and walked directly behind the counter, where two clerks stood near two cash registers. The suspect shoved one of the clerks and began grabbing money from a till. The suspect made a motion to his pocket which the clerks took to mean he may have a weapon.
When the suspect walked to the front of the counter, one of the store customers, a 29 year old off-duty corrections officer from Boise, grabbed a six pack of bottled beer and hit the suspect over the head. That dropped the suspect to the ground. A second customer, a 31 year old man from Boise, pinned the suspect to the ground and the two held the suspect until police arrived. The two customers didn't know each other prior to this incident.
When officers took the man into custody, he fought and kicked at them, resulting in the additional battery charge. Officers did not find a weapon on the suspect.
The suspect did suffer a cut to the head due to the beer bottles. He was taken to a nearby hospital where he was treated and released. Officers then took him to the Ada County Jail.
"These two citizens saw an opportunity and really made a difference in this case. We're thankful for their help, glad the suspect is in custody and very glad no one was hurt," said Lt. Winegar.