Robber's disguise may have been found alongside the White River
Hartford Police find items of interest Sunday morning near Hartford Village
HARTFORD VILLAGE - Articles of clothing discarded along the bank of the White River that were recovered by police late Sunday morning may belong to an armed robbery suspect who was arrested Thursday night in connection with the holdups of two Wilder convenience stores earlier in the week.
"We're just trying to put more pieces of the puzzle together," Hartford Police Officer Chris Aher explained as he and Officer Logan Scelza combed along the edges of Mill Road and the railroad tracks that parallel the edge of the White River as it runs up to the Interstate 91 Long Bridges near Hartford Village.
Hartford Officer Chris Aher checks what turned out to be an empty bag near where clothing was found Sunday
"It would be nice to give all the employees and store owners in the area some peace of mind after what's been going on," Aher added, explaining that he and Scelza "did find articles of clothing that may or may not be of interest" in the case that is being built against suspect Justin Hatch of North Haverhill, New Hampshire.
Hatch, 28, is currently being held without bail after he entered innocent pleas on Friday afternoon to two felony counts of assault & robbery with a weapon following his alleged confession to having pointed guns at clerks at the Cumberland Farms in Wilder on Sunday morning and then again just down the street at the Mobil Smart Shop gas station on Tuesday evening.
Hartford Police Officer Logan Scelza searches along the railroad tracks leading into White River Junction
A large contingent of police showed up with a search warrant at the Shady Lawn Motel on Friday and methodically went through the room where Hatch had been staying and the room next door, where Hatch told police that friends of his had been spending the money garnered from the robberies to buy heroin and crack cocaine from the couple who were residing there. That effort led to the arrest of three more suspects on charges that included heroin trafficking and it resulted in the recovery of a black pellet pistol police think was used in the Mobil hold up.
Hartford Police are still trying to locate the silver large-framed semi-automatic handgun that was pictured on surveillance cameras at the Cumberland Farms robbery.
Police in Norwich are also continuing their investigation into Wednesday night's robbery at Dan & Whit's general store which authorities currently believe is unrelated to the Wilder robberies.
Vermont News can be contacted at email@example.com