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Suspect quickly nabbed in attempted robbery

By MELINDA WILLIAMS

melinda@southwesttimes.com

 

ELLISTON – A Callands man was nabbed Tuesday about half an hour after he allegedly attempted to rob the Elliston Food Mart and then became involved in a chase on Interstate 81.

Justin William Swanson, 29, allegedly entered the Roanoke Road business around 8 a.m. and attempted to force the cash register open as the clerk fled the store to call police, according to Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office Capt. Brian Wright.

When deputies arrived on the scene witnesses provided a description of the suspect’s vehicle and officers notified surrounding agencies to “be on the lookout” for the silver Honda Odyssey. Wright said Virginia State Police found the vehicle traveling north on the interstate and attempted to stop it, but it turned back southbound at a crossover near mile marker 135.

As authorities pursued the suspect vehicle, it allegedly struck two of the State Police vehicles, damaging the cars, but causing no injuries. State troopers and sheriff’s deputies brought the suspect vehicle to a stop near mile marker 126 around 8:30 and placed the lone occupant, identified as Swanson, under arrest.

According to Wright, further investigation determined Swanson was wanted in Danville on a charge of fraud and the 2014 Odyssey allegedly had been reported as stolen out of Roanoke City.

Swanson is charged with attempted robbery. He is being held without bond in Montgomery County Jail. Wright said additional charges are possible.

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