A security camera captured this image of the man suspected of robbing the Check N Go located in Rosewood Hills shopping center last Friday.
After receiving multiple tips, Stillwater police got a search warrant for items related to the recent armed robberies and arrested Jackson Pascal Rwezuala at the eastern Stillwater residence they searched.
At press time he was being held in the Stillwater City Jail pending presentation of charges.
By Michelle Charles
After working for almost five months without a break in the case, the Stillwater Police Department has arrested a 24 year old man suspected of committing 12 armed robberies in this area.
"All members of the department are to be commended for many long and frustrating hours spent investigating this series of crimes," SPD spokesman Capt. Randy Dickerson said in a release on Tuesday.
A task force consisting of detectives and patrol officers that focused on the armed robbery investigation over the past several months has struggled with few leads and a suspect who wore a variety of disguises and was hard to identify.
Members of that task force served a search warrant at 12:50a.m. Tuesday on a house located on the east side of Stillwater to recover what police say is evidence linked to the robberies.
Jackson Pascal Rwezuala was at the house and was arrested when police recovered items they say connect him to several of the recent armed robberies.
Eleven of the robberies occurred in Stillwater and one occurred in Perkins.
Two businesses along the N. Perkins Rd. corridor have been robbed multiple times since the string of robberies began on January 17.
Police got the break they needed when a door jamb camera snapped a clear, full-face photo of a man who multiple informants would later identify as Rwezuala leaving the Check N Go located at 211 N. Perkins Rd. after robbing it last Friday evening.
SPD released the photo over the weekend and began getting calls from people who said they recognized the man as Rwezuala.
Dickerson said the man who robbed the Check N Go initially wore a simple mask that appeared to be cut from the sleeve or leg of a garment and had the hood of his jacket pulled up.
This is similar to several of the other recent robberies.
This time a camera caught the suspect after he removed his mask and pulled the hood of his jacket down before walking out the door.
The wanted poster released late Friday described the suspect as a black male standing 5'6" to 5'10" with a thin to medium build.
The photo showed a man with short, natural hair and facial hair. Dickerson said SPD's investigation revealed Rwezuala had bought razors and shaved the hair off his head and his face after the last robbery.
Several of the items recovered from the home where Rwezuala was arrested are being sent to the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation for comparison and analysis, which could take several weeks, he said. At press time, Rwezuala was being held in the Stillwater City Jail pending the presentation of charges to the Payne County District Attorney's Office.