By Errol Castens/NEMS Daily Journal
NEW ALBANY – A little more than an hour after a robber entered the BancorpSouth branch on the corner of Highways 78 and 15 on Thursday in New Albany, Marlon Devon Thomas, 39, of 1679 Echles St., Memphis, was in custody.
“He handed a note to the teller,” New Albany Police Chief David Grisham said. “No weapon was involved.”
A police department employee tracked a GPS device in the money bag west on Highway 78 until it was apparently discarded near Highway 30. Responding officers continued in that direction, Grisham said, and as they approached an older model Toyota Camry, its driver attempted to outrun them.
The car left the highway at the Potts Camp exit, and the driver fled into nearby woods. The car’s muffler apparently ignited the dry grass underneath and caught the car on fire.
Reinforcements made the manhunt a quick one.
“The dog from Marshall County Sheriff’s Department tracked him perfectly,” said Roger Garner, investigator with the Union County Sheriff’s Department. Thomas surrendered without further incident. He is expected to be charged this morning with simple bank robbery.
“He’s got a long criminal record in Memphis,” Grisham said.
Officers from several departments – New Albany Police, Union County Sheriff, Marshall County Sheriff, DeSoto County Sheriff, Southaven Police, Mississippi Highway Patrol, the state Bureau of Investigation and the state Department of Wildlife Fisheries and Parks – joined in the manhunt.
Lynn West of the New Albany News-Exchange contributed to this article.