Police on Thursday tracked down and arrested a suspect who allegedly attacked and robbed a 90-year-old man in the restroom of a local store.
The arrest was the result of the perpetrator being captured on video while using the man’s stolen debit card at a car wash just minutes after the robbery occurred.
Shawnee Police Detective Jason Crouch said the investigation resulted in the arrest of Linny Stallin, 46, of Shawnee.
Stallin was booked into the Pottawatomie County Public Safety Center on complaints of robbery, aggravated assault and battery, unlawful use of a credit card and violation of the computer crimes act, Crouch said.
Formal charges have not been filed.
The 90-year-old victim in this case continues to recover from knots to his head, along with cuts, bruises, a black eye and a possible fractured rib, said his wife, who is 83.
The couple, married 65 years, were on a routine shopping trip when the assault and robbery occurred. They were pleased to hear the news of the arrest Thursday and urge others to always be aware of their surroundings.
“I guess we need to be more careful,” she said. “We’re old folks — we trust everybody but I guess we won’t anymore.”
The woman, who said her husband is already in bad health, said he’s still a bit confused but luckily wasn’t seriously injured. She also said the suspect didn’t get away with too much.
Besides some cash from her husband’s wallet, “All he got was $10 to go through the car wash,” she added.
The couple was shopping at Big Lots March 28 and was preparing to leave when the man had to use the restroom. He parked his scooter outside the door and went inside.
While the restroom, Crouch said the victim was beaten and robbed.
His wife, who had already gone out to the car, said she thought it was taking a long time for her husband to exit and was worried he might have taken a fall. Once inside, many were trying to help as she found him bleeding from his injuries.
He was taken to St. Anthony Shawnee Hospital for treatment of his injuries,, where it was discovered his wallet was missing, she said.
Crouch said at first the victim couldn’t remember much, but despite begin dazed from the ordeal, was eventually able to give police a general description of the suspect in the case, so they began pursuing video from the store.
That video didn’t prove too useful, Crouch said, but as the investigation continued over the following days, the couple’s daughter alerted police that her parents’ debit card had been used before it was cancelled. Within about 20 minutes of the robbery, their debit card was swiped at the Tunnel car wash near Harrison and 45th Streets, Crouch said.
Page 2 of 2 - Detectives, with assistance from that business, canvassed the surveillance videos there, which led to videotape showing the suspect that was using the couple’s debit card to pay for a car wash. With the help of the camera system there, police made an identification of the suspect and traced the tag number from the vehicle he was driving. That police work eventually led to an warrant. Crouch said Cpl. James Wood and Cpl. David Gonzales arrested Stallin Thursday afternoon at his place of employment in Shawnee.
During a police interview, Stallin allegedly denied being involved in this incident, Crouch said, but when faced with the video evidence, Crouch said Stallin allegedly confessed.
Crouch said the exceptional video from the car wash was instrumental in helping police identify the suspect and solve this case.
Crouch, who said police believe this was a crime of opportunity, encourages everyone to always be aware of their surroundings.
The man’s wife agreed and said this could happen to anyone at any time. And while she said this ordeal wouldn’t keep them from shopping, “We will be more cautious,” she said.
“You always think it won’t happen to you…it can happen to anybody,” she added.
Shawnee detectives will turn this case over to the district attorney’s office for consideration of any formal charges.
Watch for updates.