EVERETT — Police often say they rely on people to be their eyes and ears in combatting crime.
Two arrests this week give credence to that adage.
In Arlington, an alert hotel employee provided a key tip that aided in the arrest of a robbery suspect. Meanwhile in Marysville, a skeptical woman questioned a car thief who claimed to be a police officer, according to allegations spelled out in court papers.
On Oct. 2, there was a late night, strong-armed robbery at a Subway restaurant in the 1600 block of Smokey Point Boulevard. A man wearing a hooded sweatshirt, a dark baseball cap and a white bandana over his face implied he had a gun and left the restaurant with a cash register drawer containing about $125, court papers said. The restaurant had video surveillance that captured the incident, which police provided to media.
Three days later, the manager of a nearby hotel told police that a guest reported seeing a backpack hidden in the trees near the entrance to the hotel. The manager indicated that he had seen the surveillance video on HeraldNet.com and that the backpack looked like the one worn by the suspect in the Subway robbery.
Police retrieved the backpack and believed it was used in the robbery. Inside was a cellphone that police linked to the suspect. They obtained recent jail booking information that matched the suspect. The man, 25, was arrested at an Arlington area casino Wednesday night, according to court records. Police said he was found in possession of heroin and methamphetamine.
In Marysville, it was a woman with a healthy degree of skepticism who provided police a starting point to catch a car theft suspect.
On the afternoon of Oct. 7, the woman surprised a man inside her green Ford Explorer. The man gave a false name and claimed to be a police officer who was picking up the car because it had been reported stolen.
She studied his face down to his “facial scruff in the form of a goatee,” court papers said. She called 911. The man ran off and a police dog tracked him to a home in the 5000 block of 102nd Place NE.
A woman at the home refused to allow police into the home without a warrant.
Police obtained a photo of two men they believe lived in the home and created a montage of faces for her to review. The woman picked out the suspect.
Police arrested him for investigation of attempted car theft and criminal impersonation Wednesday. It was three days before his 25th birthday.
Eric Stevick: 425-339-3446, firstname.lastname@example.org