12:05 p.m. update: Two female employees were working the overnight shift at the Ricker’s gas station and convenience store at 3545 West County Road 450 South around 3 a.m. today when three masked men with handguns stormed in, said Jay Ricker, founder and owner of Anderson-based Ricker’s. The employees were not injured during the armed robbery, Ricker said. “They are fine physically, but psychologically, I think they are having a tough time,” he said. The company has a Crisis Care Network program set up to assist employees with incidents such as this and Ricker said he thought the two employees would be taking advantage of that.
10:50 a.m. update: Indiana State Police and Columbus police report two suspects are being questioned in Marion County about a multi-county armed robbery spree that began with a carjacking in Clermont in Indianapolis at midnight Wednesday, followed by armed robberies at a hotel in Seymour and a Ricker’s gas station in southern Bartholomew County.
COLUMBUS, Indiana — Police are investigating an armed robbery that occurred at a gas station overnight.
Columbus police officers were dispatched to the Ricker’s gas station located at 3545 West County Road 450 South in regard to a robbery that had occurred around 3 a.m. today, said Lt. Matt Harris, spokesman for the Columbus Police Department.
Three masked men armed with handguns entered the store and demanded currency, Harris aid. They later left the store with an undisclosed amount of cash and were last seen leaving the parking lot in a white Hummer H2 that was white in color, he said.
Columbus police officers located the vehicle a short time later on State Road 46, Harris said. When the officers attempted to stop the suspects, however, they refused to pull over and got back on Interstate 65 traveling north, he said.
During the pursuit that reached speeds of 100 miles per hour, the suspects struck tire-deflation devices that were placed in the roadway by law enforcement, Harris said. The suspects later exited the Interstate at Exit 101 and eventually crashed near an apartment building on Madison Avenue and Stop 12 Road in Greenwood. The suspects exited the vehicle, which was later determined to have been car-jacked in Indianapolis and fled on foot.
Evidence from the Columbus robbery was recovered in and around the vehicle, Harris said. Officers also learned that the same men — who were still at large — were suspects in a hotel robbery that occurred in overnight in Seymour, he said.
Here are descriptions provided by Columbus Police.
Suspect 1: Approximately six foot tall wearing a black hooded sweatshirt or jacket and a black face mask. He is a white male.
Suspect 2: Approximately 5-7 to 5-9 wearing a dark blue hooded sweatshirt, khaki pants with white tennis shoes and a red knit hat. His face appeared to be covered during the robbery. Possibly has blonde hair protruding from the hat.
Suspect 3: Approximately 5-5 to 5-7; wearing all black clothing with a black face mask. Design on his dark pants, knit hat with red and white stripes.
Police are investigating the involvement of a fourth suspect.
All suspects should be considered armed and dangerous, Harris said. Anyone with information should contact the Columbus Police Department at 812-376-2600.