Horry County PD assigns task force to prevent armed robberies

Horry County PD assigns task force to prevent armed robberies

HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - Horry County police report there have been more armed robberies during the winter months compared to years past.

The most recent robbery happened at the BB&T bank on Highway 544 near Conway. The bank was targeted around 2 p.m. Monday.

Even though police have surveillance video of the robber along with many others, they say these are still very hard cases to solve.

"Sometimes that's all we have, so not only are those pictures important so are the quality of those pictures," Lieutenant Raul Denis said.

Lt. Denis says, often times, surveillance video is the only hope because eyewitnesses can only observe so much.

"You can have three different people standing shoulder-to-shoulder and you're going to get three different descriptions every time," Lt. Denis added.

However, Lt. Denis notes even if the suspects are caught on camera, it isn't a guarantee they will be able to identify them.

"It doesn't help if you're camera angles are catching the top of his head or you know his shoulder," he said.

Lt. Denis suggests the best thing to do is to install a camera at eye level and angles that catch suspects walking in and out.

Denis admits there have been more armed robberies this winter and there were nearly 30 in December.

"Thirty [crimes] a month is a serious stress on a police department, and I don't believe we are equipt to handle that many cases," Lt. Denis said.

Lt. Denis says they've recently assigned a task force dedicated to armed robberies.

"We have assigned extra man power to be out and in an over cover capacity basically," Lt. Denis explained.

Denis says these officers are focusing on targets and trends they've been seeing.

He explains these kinds of crimes are rarely easy to solve especially because this is such a transient area.

"These perpetrators seem to come through and commit their crime and disappear and no body sees or hears from them again," Denis concluded.

Police are still investigating dozens of armed robberies.

Police officers are urging anyone with information to call them immediately.

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