“I was looking at the Wallonia photo, because my father was in it, then I saw the thing about the ATM and the pictures. I thought I recognized the guy,” Cox said. “I went to our parts manager and asked him if he thought it was the man with the Suburban, and he said that it was.”
Wiggins identified the suspect as Robert L. VanHoose, with known addresses in Tampa, Fla., and Phoenix, Ariz. “The people at Wildcat said that they saw the pictures in the paper. Through research in his service at Wildcat, we determined the identity of the individual.”
Wiggins said that a warrant for the arrest of VanHoose had been obtained. The warrant and suspect information have been entered into the National Crime Information Center Database (NCIC). Information in the NCIC is available to law-enforcement officials nationwide.
Cox said that in the course of providing electrical service to the vehicle, his staff obtained the vehicle identification number, and noted it carried Arizona tags. He described it as a black, 1992 Chevrolet Suburban, and claimed that VanHoose and an occupant he described as a “young man” said that they were returning to Florida.
“He was sleeping in the vehicle with the young man over by Broadbent’s because they were having automotive problems. A local farm hand towed the vehicle to our shop, then (VanHoose) asked, ‘Which direction is town?’ I told him and he left on foot.”
Cox said that VanHoose did not specifically ask for the location of an ATM.
“When he got back, Parts Manager Dana Hartigan told him how much the repairs were. He flinched a bit, but pulled out a roll of twenties and paid from that,” Cox said.
Dana Hartigan was not at Wildcat Chevrolet during the interview with The Cadiz Record, and has not returned a request for comment at this time.
The suspect’s appearance caught Cox’s eye. “He was a slender fellow with a slim face. Some of the pictures in the paper were kind of blurry, but there were two where I recognized him.”
For the rest of this story, read this week's Cadiz Record.