Police in northwestern Vermont said a crime victim helped stop a robbery spree, by providing critical information after she was held up at gunpoint.
Jerrilyn Remillard, 73, said she came face-to-face with a masked and hooded man Monday morning. Remillard was cooking shepherd’s pie for Meals on Wheels at the Center Market in Georgia, which she has owned for nearly four decades.
“He had a pistol,” Remillard remembered. “A silver pistol.”
The great-grandmother told necn affiliate NBC 5 News that she stood up to the robber, and shouted him out of the business, but that her children told her that she shouldn’t have made such a stand.
“He said, ‘Give me your money,’ Remillard recalled. “I said, ‘I'm not giving you my money!”
After she stood her ground, the business owner said the frustrated suspect ran out the door.
Then, Remillard said she watched the getaway and got a good description of the car, its license plate, and the direction it was traveling, helping police catch up with the suspect’s vehicle.
Police identified the people in the vehicle matching Remillard’s description as Jacob Robbins, 20, Tiera Herron, 21, and Megan Russell, 25.
Each of the suspects pled not guilty to various charges against them.
Investigators said Robbins was also behind three other armed stick-ups at other stores, in addition to the Georgia robbery attempt.
One of the other targets was in Burlington, and two were in Colchester, according to police.
“It’s nice to get a lead,” said Sgt. James Roy of the Colchester Police Department. “We had put some of the surveillance videos of the two robberies on the news and didn’t get much for information, so it was nice to get the lead and get the cases resolved.”
Investigators said they believe Robbins was after drug money. They described in court paperwork how the suspect allegedly discarded clothing worn into the stores, and those discoveries yielded valuable evidence.
Court paperwork revealed Robbins’ 14-month-old child was in the car with those other suspects during the Georgia robbery attempt.
An arresting officer wrote in his report that when he allowed Robbins to say goodbye to the child, the dad started crying, and told his son, “I’m sorry, buddy.”
Remillard is doing just fine, but police will tell you it’s not a good idea to put up much of a fight with an armed robber. It’s simply not worth the potential consequences, police have repeatedly said in cases like this.