The Delaware County Sheriff's Office on Feb. 18 arrested a Morrow County man suspected in a weekend bank robbery after a short police pursuit resulted in a crash.
The suspect, Scott Delano Thomas, 26, of Marengo, has since been charged in a robbery of a pharmacy in Delaware, and now Delaware County law-enforcement agencies are trying to figure out if he was involved in any other recent local crimes.
Thomas is suspected of robbing the Huntington National Bank branch at 8671 Owenfield Drive in Lewis Center at 10:40 a.m. Feb. 15, according to the sheriff's office.
He was arrested Feb. 18 and later charged with two counts of aggravated robbery and one count of robbery. Delaware police Capt. Adam Moore said the city's police department is working with the sheriff's office to determine if Thomas committed any crimes within city limits.
Sheriff's office spokeswoman Tracy Whited said officials think Thomas was involved in the Feb. 17 robbery of a CVS on South Sandusky Street in Delaware. Whited said Thomas has been charged with robbery in the incident, in which two men entered the store about 4 p.m., handed an employee a note demanding money and left with an undisclosed amount of cash.
The incident shared similarities with the bank robbery, the sheriff's office said. In both, a suspect used a note rather than a weapon to threaten an employee before fleeing with cash.
Whited said family and friends of Thomas had tipped off authorities that he was still in the area following the Huntington Bank robbery.
After setting up surveillance, deputies located Thomas around noon Feb. 18 in the parking lot of the Walmart store off U.S. Route 23 in Delaware, Whited said. She said deputies decided to stand down because of the large number of people in the area, and instead followed the van Thomas was riding in as it left the parking lot heading south.
"Deputies were waiting south on 23 in case this happened (and) put out stop sticks," Whited said.
The van hit the stop sticks and struck an unmarked police vehicle before crashing into the median, coming to a halt near the intersection of Route 23 and Ohio Health Boulevard in Liberty Township.
Thomas and the van's driver, John M. Thompson III, 25, of Columbus, were arrested after the crash.
"They tried to flee, but we had them surrounded," Whited said.
She said a sheriff's deputy fired a shot during the incident, but no one was hit by the bullet.
Whited said Thomas and Thompson were taken to Grady Memorial Hospital with minor injuries after the crash. After he was released from the hospital, Thompson was charged with assault and failure to comply with the signal of a police officer.
One day before the pursuit, the Delaware County Sheriff's Office had asked for the public's help in locating Thomas, who was thought to be in the Columbus area in the aftermath of the bank robbery.
Bank employees said Thomas entered the bank and handed a note to a teller demanding money with no dye packs.
After receiving an undisclosed amount of money, he fled to a nearby restaurant parking lot and entered the passenger side of a white Honda Accord, reports said.
Witnesses said Thomas appeared unarmed at the time of the robbery, and reports said no one inside the bank was injured during the incident.
Authorities recovered a stolen vehicle thought to have been the one used in the robbery Sunday morning, Feb. 16, near the intersection of West Broad Street and Belvidere Avenue in Columbus, according to the sheriff's office.