Suspect may be connected to rash of robberies |

Suspect may be connected to rash of robberies

William Ferchland

An armed robbery at the front desk of a South Lake Tahoe inn might be connected to five similar incidents over the past six weeks in the Stateline area, according to authorities.

The latest robbery occurred Wednesday at 10:46 p.m. when a man entered Inn by the Lake and demanded money from the front desk clerk, said South Lake Tahoe police Detective Jeff Reagan.

The man placed a gun on the counter, pointing it at the clerk. He brought a paper bag to carry an undisclosed amount of money outside, where he drove off in a dark blue or black four-door Volkswagen sedan, possibly a Passat or Jetta, Reagan said.

A witness said the car went eastbound along Lake Tahoe Boulevard.

A gray scarf hid the man’s face from the nose down. A gray hooded jacket covered his head. The robber covered his head with the hood.

“We’re pretty thin on this right now,” Reagan said. “It seems like it’s the same person in most of these.”

Despite the coverage, authorities believe it is the same man who has approached lone walkers in the Stateline area, demanding purses or wallets while showing a gun.

Wednesday night was the first time the suspect has robbed a business. Robberies have occurred in the dark, either during the early morning or late at night.

Douglas County sheriff’s Sgt. Dan Britton thinks it might be the same man who robbed a woman of her purse at Stateline on Dec. 9. The robber tried to take a man’s wallet but the man refused and walked back into a casino.

Both Reagan and Britton advised people to walk in pairs and stay in people-crowded areas.

“Typically (robberies) happens in a secluded parking lot, away from witnesses and cameras,” Britton said.

The robber is described as 25 to 30 years old, about 5-foot-10 inches-tall and having a thin build of 170 pounds. His eyes are blue or hazel.

Anyone with information on the robberies is asked to contact Detective Reagan at (530) 542-6100 or Secret Witness at (530) 541-6805. Secret Witness offers cash rewards for information leading to the arrest and/or conviction of a suspect.

Dates and locations of robberies:

Dec. 22 at Inn by the Lake, 3300 Lake Tahoe Blvd.

Dec. 21 at rear parking lot of Crescent V shopping center

Dec. 19 along Primrose Road

Dec. 9 at parking lots of two Stateline casinos

Dec. 6 at Shephards Drive and Pioneer Trail

Nov. 9 at Keller Road and Pioneer Trail

– E-mail William Ferchland at

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