Man wanted for armed robbery, kidnapping steals truck in Columbiana, caught in Alex City

By BRAD GASKINS / Staff Writer

A man wanted for armed robbery and kidnapping in Louisiana is being held in the Tallapoosa County Jail, after allegedly stealing a work truck in Columbiana.

Lafayette, La., authorities said Robert Wright, 42, robbed a Ramada Inn clerk at knifepoint Oct. 2, forced the clerk into her car and drove away before releasing the clerk shortly after.

Wright then fled the state driving the hotel clerk’s 2006 silver Volkswagon convertible, according to Cpl. Paul Mouton of the Lafayette Police Department.

Mouton said Wright has three warrants for his arrest in Louisiana: armed robbery, simple kidnapping and unauthorized use of a motor vehicle.

When a BOLO alert was issued for Wright, Mouton said it stated that he likely was traveling to Alabama.

Next, Wright stole a work truck from Westside Lane in Columbiana the night of Oct. 5, according to Capt. Ken Burchfield of the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office.

The Alex City Police Department arrested Wright Oct. 6 but filed no charges against him, Lt. Randy Walters said. Wright was transported to the Tallapoosa County Jail on outstanding warrants from Shelby and Tallapoosa counties and Lafayette, La., Walters said.

At the time of his arrest, Wright was in possession of the stolen work truck from Shelby County, authorities said.

Wright was booked into jail on a Tallapoosa County warrant for failure to appear on a second-degree theft of property charge, said Blake Jennings, administrator for Tallapoosa County Jail.

Jennings described Wright as being 5-foot-9 and 200 pounds.

Wright initially told jail officials that he lived in Calera, but later said he lived in Lafayette, La., Jennings said.

It was not immediately clear where Wright lived. Lafayette and Alex City authorities said he lived in Pelham. The Shelby County warrant for first-degree theft lists Wright’s residence as Lafayette, La.