A suspect was arrested minutes after allegedly robbing the Trustmark Bank at the corner of Main Street and Seventh Street on Monday morning.
JR Edwards, 19, of Columbus, has been charged with armed robbery, Columbus Police Chief Fred Shelton said. Bond was denied.
Police were dispatched to the bank at about 9:15. While officers were responding, a passerby called 911 to say that they were tailing the suspect.
The caller saw the suspect run out the back door of the bank and take off toward the south, Shelton said.
“They figured something wasn’t right and followed them,” Shelton said.
The caller tailed the suspect, feeding the police information all the while, and the suspect and officers intercepted Edwards around the 600 block of Seventh Street South, Shelton said, where he was arrested.
Shelton said the arrest was made within about 10 minutes of the initial call.
“We do appreciate that citizen,” Shelton said. “They didn’t get too close or too far behind and were able to give us the information to lead to the arrest and we appreciate that. If that person wants to be recognized we are going to do that.”
Shelton, who spoke last week about the difficulty of getting people to help the police, said he was pleased with how things played out Monday.
“This is a good day for Columbus,” he said. “The citizens and the police were able to work together.”
Nobody was injured, Shelton said.
“Whenever we can bring something like this to a conclusion and nobody is hurt, that is a good thing,” Shelton said.
Shelton said Edwards did not have a gun during the alleged robbery, but what kind of weapon was used is “part of the ongoing investigation.”
“There was a threat or intimidation of force,” Shelton said.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation is assisting CPD, Shelton said.
Bank robberies are federal crimes.
Trustmark President Bart Wise did not return a phone call seeking comment by press time.
This is the second bank robbery in the Golden Triangle in the past week. The Regions Bank in West Point was robbed Friday, and a suspect has been arrested in that case.
Edwards is being held in Lowndes County Adult Detention Center.