by Brandon LaChance
The Dwight Police Department was called around 1 a.m. on Feb. 1 about an armed robbery at the Love’s Travel Stop & Country Store located on Northbrook Drive in Dwight.
The suspect was reported to have left the Love’s parking lot in a black vehicle.
With notification of the crime and the vehicle being sent out to dispatch (VCOM) and then to surrounding police departments, the vehicle was pulled over at approximately 1:45 a.m. on Interstate 55 and Curtis D. Johnson, 39, of Aurora, was arrested for armed robbery, unlawful use of a weapon, and possession of a weapon by a felon on parole, by the Channahon and Elwood police departments.
Detective Gary Beier was on the call for the DPD.
“He was a passenger in the vehicle. There were only two people in the vehicle,” said Beier, who has been with DPD for 28 years. “Through the investigation, it was determined the driver wasn’t aware of what Mr. Johnson had done. That’s why the driver wasn’t taken into custody. The vehicle was pulled over because of the dispatch of the armed robbery.
“The quick response from Love’s, our guys getting the information out to our dispatch center and VCOM being able to get it to the surrounding agencies was huge. Without that getting out as quick as it did, we may have not caught him.”
Johnson did not attempt to rob Love’s as soon as he walked in, but instead waited to make his move.
The armed robbery attempt didn’t involve any violence and an undisclosed amount of cash was taken.
“He was in Love’s shopping, if you will, and came up to the cashier island,” Beier said. “From the surveillance camera video, you can tell he was nervous waiting for his time. “He then pulled out a fire arm, pointed it at the female clerk, and demanded the money.”
Johnson is being held at the Grundy County Jail pending a court case.