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Police: Oconomowoc crime spree suspect in custody after manhunt

Posted at 9:22 AM, Jul 01, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-01 20:51:53-04

OCONOMOWOC — Police say a man is in custody following a manhunt in Oconomowoc that lasted over a day.

Residents were asked to shelter in place Tuesday while law enforcement officials searched for a suspect in an armed bank robbery.

"You kind of look at your phone and like, is this really real? Like, this is really telling me to shelter in place?" said Michelle Shea, a local resident who was about to step into the grocery store when she saw a public alert issued by law enforcement on her phone.

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Oconomowoc police say they were called to the 200 block of West Second Street for a possible armed robbery around 1 p.m. and learned that the suspect had fled on foot in an unknown direction.

The owner of Raw Beauty, Kira, happened to be leaving her car, ready to head into the salon for work, when she noticed a man dressed in black lingering nearby. In a Facebook post, she shared her encounter the moment the suspect attempted to steal her car.

Oconomowoc police say they learned of a vehicle that was left in the 200 block of South Main Street, followed by a hold-up alarm that was activated at the Waukesha State Bank.

Stephanie Ohlfs, Vice President and Marketing Manager of the bank branch, confirmed with TMJ4 that a robbery did occur and no employees or customers were harmed in the event.

The description of the suspect and vehicle were the same in both robberies, police say.

Soon after the bank robbery, officers said they tried to pull over the stolen vehicle, but the suspect crashed off of westbound I-94 near Golden Lake Road. After the crash, he escaped on foot.

"It seemed like we never knew where he was. And even just driving to the store, I saw police and I just thought they were doing traffic stops, so until I got the phone notification, I had no idea," said Shea.

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At 6:23 p.m., five hours after the first call, another stolen vehicle was reported on Valley Road in Oconomowoc. Police say they believe that this vehicle was used to escape.

While Oconomowoc police were investigating leads on the suspect's whereabouts Wednesday, they were dispatched to a hit-and-run call near Highway 67 and Valley Road. The hit-and-run vehicle matched the description of the one the suspect was driving, officials say. Witnesses said the vehicle was last seen east on Oconomowoc Parkway.

Police say they received credible information later on that the suspect was in the Lake Delton area.

He was located and taken into custody by the Lake Delton Police Department.

The investigation is active and ongoing.

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