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Man with knife robs lot next to officers

A man brandishing a knife made off with $50 after robbing the attendant at the parking lot next to Clark County Common Pleas Court.

The robbery occurred just before noon Monday in the parking lot next to the courthouse located at 101 N. Limestone St. It also is next door to the Springfield police and Clark County sheriff’s offices.

The clerk told deputies the man approached her on foot, asking first for directions to a local scrap yard. When the clerk couldn’t help him, she told authorities he shook a knife at her and said, “Well hand me $50 then,” according to her 911 call.

After getting the cash, the thief took off on foot, cutting through an alley behind Covenant Presbyterian Church, 201 N. Limestone St.

The Springfield dispatcher flooded the scene with officers after receiving the call. Police, Clark County Sheriff’s Office deputies and Wittenberg University police canvased the area of North Limestone and Warder streets but didn’t locate the suspect. The clerk was not hurt and continued to work at the booth after speaking to police.

Many court patrons were surprised that the robbery occurred during daylight hours, and right next to the Springfield police station.

“It’s terrible. It’s pretty brazen,” said Ray Clark of Springfield, who was only inside for a few minutes to buy a title only to come outside and learn about the robbery.

“It seems like if you were going to go for some money, you’d go for a bank or something. That’s kind of crazy,” Clark said.

Nanette Cottrell said she was only paying 50 cents to park at the lot and figured someone “so bold” would go after more cash.

“There’s a little bit of change and dollars here and there. She couldn’t have had much,” Cottrell said. “I don’t know how they even thought of this one. That’s pretty desperate.”

Anyone with information is asked to call Springfield police at (937) 324-7716.

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