ALTON – Police took one suspect into custody Tuesday shortly after he allegedly robbed an Upper Alton beauty supply business at gunpoint, later arresting a second armed accomplice.
Pfc. Emily Hejna, public information officer at the Alton Police Department, said the men had cloths over their faces — one with a white cloth and one with a black cloth — when they entered Tomorrow’s Beauty Supply, 1802 Washington Ave.
The men showed their firearms and demanded money, with one of the robbers striking the two employees with his gun, she said. The robbers escaped with an unreleased amount of cash and merchandise but were arrested soon thereafter.
She said the employees were not seriously injured.
Wednesday, the Madison County State’s Attorney’s Office charged both Alton men with armed robbery, a Class X felony.
The warrants identify the suspects as:
• Raquan M. Taylor, 17, of the 1100 block of Highland Avenue, who was charged as an adult.
• Qwanell Superier Jones, 19, of the 1200 block of Brown Street.
The men are being held under $250,000 bonds.
Hejna praised an observant woman customer for calling police with information and the quick work of a fellow officer for identifying and taking the first suspect into custody.
The customer, who was sitting in a car and planning to go into the store, saw the disguised men run out the door. Suspicious, she called 911 at 4:53 p.m. to report the duo, providing a description of their clothing.
At the same time, Pfc. Vincent Warlick of the Alton Police Department was patrolling in the area and found one of the men in the immediate area of the store, arresting him, Hejna said.
“The alert, observant witness was key,” Hejna said. “She called in quickly so we could get the information and apprehend the suspect. We commend her efforts. Without her, we might have had a more difficult case.”
Hejna also said Warlick, a 17-year veteran of the department, “did a great job” in quickly getting to the area of the store, locating and arresting the first suspect nearby.
“It was an instrumental role that officer Warlick played,” she said. “He did a good job. It was quick action on the part of officer Warlick.”