RCMP in Central Alberta are working together to solve five armed robberies they believe are linked.
Since Dec. 22, armed robberies were reported at bars or hotels in Bentley, Red Deer, Sundre, Ponoka and Rimbey.
Descriptions of the two disguised, Caucasian suspects are similar. Witnesses often reported one had a shotgun and the other a knife, and they fled in a vehicle driven by a third suspect.
Cpl. Laurel Scott with RCMP K Division said evidence linked the crimes.
“To all the communities involved we want to say we’re actively working on these. They are a priority for us. We’ve got a task force working on them. It is important that we solve them,” said Scott, media relations officer for Central Alberta district, on Tuesday.
The Priority Crimes Task Force along with RCMP members from Red Deer, Ponoka, Sundre, Rimbey and Sylvan Lake detachments are working together.
On Dec. 22 at about 11:40 p.m., two males armed with a gun and a black hunting knife robbed a bar in Bentley.
On Dec. 28 at 2 p.m., two males with a shotgun and a screwdriver robbed the East 40th Pub in Red Deer. They put the money into a black bag that they brought and left in a vehicle driven by a third suspect.
On Dec. 31 at 11:35 a.m., two males robbed Sundre Motor Inn. One suspect was armed with a shotgun and they put the money in a black bag that they brought. A third suspect waited in a stolen SUV that was abandoned nearby shortly after the robbery.
On Jan. 7 at about 6:15 p.m., two males with a shotgun and a large knife robbed a Ponoka hotel. They fled in an SUV from Red Deer with an unidentified driver. The SUV was later found abandoned.
On Jan. 15 at about 9:50 p.m., two males robbed the Grand Hotel in Rimbey. One carried a shot gun and one carried a bag.
No one was injured in any of the robberies and no shots were fired.
Anyone with information to help identify the suspects should call Red Deer RCMP at 403-343-5575, or their local police detachment. To remain anonymous, contact Crime Stoppers by calling 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS) at www.tipsubmit.com, or by SMS.