Police: Robber Passed Off Harmonica as Weapon

Police: Robber Passed Off Harmonica as Weapon Photo: WDIO/MGN

Updated: January 02, 2020 10:18 AM

A man accused of robbing a Thunder Bay hotel clerk told police it was actually a harmonica, not a firearm, that he showed during the robbery.


The incident happened Wednesday evening at a hotel on Sleeping Giant Parkway.  According to a news release from the Thunder Bay Police Service, the clerk said the robber showed a metal object presumed to be a firearm and made threats.

The robber fled with the clerk's cell phone, but police were able to use GPS tracking to locate the phone in the area of St. Paul Street and Red River Road.  Police say the suspect immediately told officers that he had brandished a harmonica, not a firearm, during the robbery, and directed them to a nearby parking lot where they could find the phone.

Officers located the phone and a harmonica in the area.

The 23-year-old suspect is charged with robbery with an offensive weapon, breach of probation, and failure to comply with judicial release.  He was expected to appear in bail court on Thursday.

Police say that even though many devices now come with GPS tracking, robbery victims should not attempt to retrieve their property without police assistance.

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