Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Nice catch

Around 2:00 a.m. on Saturday, Officer Lance Maxwell made a very nice case. In the parking lot of a local motel, he spotted a stolen vehicle with Iowa plates. We had just briefed officers on this vehicle at the 2300 assembly at HQ.

The description of the vehicle came from a regional broadcast on the National Law Enforcement Telecommunications System--NLETS--concerning a convicted serial bank robber who had left a minimum security halfway house facility in Ames, Iowa on Tuesday, and was suspected in bank robberies in Des Moines and Omaha on Wednesday and Thursday. Although we had no reason to believe this suspect would be in Lincoln, it seemed worthwhile to pull this from the daily chatter.

The briefing included this photo, to show everyone what a 2005 GMC Savana van would look like, this photo of an Iowa license plate (always good to refresh the memory) and this news story from KPTM in Omaha, because at the time it had the best photos of the suspect. These photos were displayed on the big 50" monitors in our assembly room as we talked about the suspect.

Lance took it upon himself to do some good fundamental police work--checking the motels on his beat. His initiative paid off. A perimeter was established and the on duty clerk was able to identify our suspect and pinpoint the room he was staying in. When the suspect realized that the police were present, he crawled out a window to take off, but he didn't make it very far. Within a few steps, the officer covering the north side, Tim Mika (a former bank teller himself), snagged our bank robber without incident.

This was nice heads-up police work by Lance, with a dose of information technology courtesy of NLETS and the Internet.


Anonymous said...

I firmly believe that a lot of Omaha crooks perceive LPD as a bunch of Mayberry yokels, so they come down here and try to hide out in the sticks.

Fortunately, much more often than not, they find out that their perception of you folks was seriously incorrect.

Anonymous said...

Last year I watched a driver going the wrong way on I-180. Dispatch, much to my surprise, promptly brodcast a description of this car as I described it to them. As I related the direction of travel I seen Officer Maxwell sitting on the Cornhusker H.W west bound exit. Officer Maxwell stopped this DUI wrong way driver at First and Cornhusker. He is in the right place most of the time. Perhaps he could buy my next lotto tik? Jim J

Anonymous said...

Good job Lance. Many people may not realize it but Lance Maxwell is a very good officer and has a great passion for his job. This is only one example of his fine police skills.

Brian said...

Thats a great catch for sure! In my home town of O'Neill, Ne. the police were running plates on vehicles parked in various hotels about fifteen years ago. They discovered a stolen car with a man wanted for murder inside the hotel room! It must feel good to catch a bad guy by chance! Good job!