Authorities have arrested a suspect in at least two armed robberies in the Midlands.
The Richland County Sheriff's Department says on Monday, a man with a black bandana across his face got out of a pickup and approached a woman who had pulled into her driveway along Harbor Mist Drive with her young child.
Sheriff's Deputy Curtis Wilson says, “This individual comes up to her, presents a weapon, knocks her to the ground and then steals her purse out of the back seat where the baby was. And then, of course, flees the area.”
Wilson says investigators think the same suspect on Saturday pretended to be working on a tire on his truck, then followed a man who had made an ATM withdrawal to his home in the 2000 block of Leamington Circle.
“He pulls into his driveway, truck pulls up behind him as well. The suspect gets out, presents a handgun and demands money from this victim as well.”
Wilson says 32-year-old Joseph Russell was arrested at his Irmo home after he was observed using one of the victims' credit cards at a local business.
He has been charged with two counts of armed robbery and investigators are checking into his possible involvement in other incidents in Richland and Lexington counties.