- The Washington Times - Thursday, December 2, 2004

Metropolitan Police Chief Charles H. Ramsey said yesterday he was confident that officers will catch apparently one bandit robbing guests at some of Washington’s finest and busiest Northwest hotels.

“It is a pattern that is starting to develop,” he said. “However, it is not something people ought to be overly concerned about. We’ll catch this guy. It’s a new pattern for us, but we’ll get this guy.”

During his monthly engagement on WTOP radio, Chief Ramsey said yesterday a detective is assigned full time to investigate holdups in and around city hotels.

He also said police are working with security personnel at the hotels and with the Hotel Association of Washington, D.C., to alert people about the robberies.

“If an incident occurs at one hotel, it’s immediately transmitted to the others so they are on the lookout for whatever it is that they need to be on the lookout for,” Chief Ramsey said. “They’ve been made aware. Anyone who is suspicious [and] hanging around, believe me, they will be challenged.”

He also encouraged residents and visitors to continue going into the city to shop, eat and otherwise enjoy the holiday season.

The robbery victims have given similar descriptions of a man, and the robberies have occurred either in an elevator or while visitors were waiting for one. The assailant used a gun in three of the attacks.

The most recent holdup occurred Tuesday night in the Wardman Park Marriott Hotel at 2660 Woodley Road NW. A man robbed three persons in the hotel foyer.

In each case, the robber was described as a black man about 20 to 30 years old, roughly 6 feet tall and weighing 175 pounds.

On Nov. 17, a bandit used a gun to rob two men riding an elevator at the Days Inn Hotel at 4400 Connecticut Ave. NW.

That stickup was caught on surveillance videotape, and police said they have a “person of interest” in the case. However, they have yet to link the person to the other robberies.

On Nov. 8, an armed man robbed a woman riding an elevator about 5:45 p.m. in the Melrose Hotel in the 2430 Pennsylvania Ave. NW. Police said the robber took cash and valuables worth about $1,400.

On Oct. 3, a woman was robbed about 12:35 p.m. in an elevator at the Savoy Suites in Georgetown at 2505 Wisconsin Ave. NW. But no gun was used in the crime.

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