Judge: Man charged in Portage robberies 'frequent flyer' in courts

William Evans

VALPARAISO | Formal charges were filed Monday against the man accused of robbing three Portage businesses in three days last week.

William Evans, 26, who has previous addresses in Lake Station and South Haven, was charged with three Class B felony counts of robbery; possession of heroin, a Class D felony; possession of a hypodermic needle, a Class D felony; maintaining a common nuisance, a Class D felony; and driving while suspended, a Class A misdemeanor.

Charging documents filed Monday provide further details about the armed robberies at Speedway, 5011 Central Ave., on March 20, and at Zip Foods, 5757 U.S. 20 and Comfort Inn, 2300 Willowcreek Road on March 22.

According to police, Evans was dressed in all black, including overalls, a hoodie and black bandana that covered most of his face, in all three armed robberies.

The clerk at the Speedway told detectives that the robber pointed a black pistol at him with one hand and handed him a drawstring bag. He instructed the clerk to fill it with cash. The clerk filled the bag with cash from three cash registers and was ordered to lie on the floor behind the counter.

Police said similar circumstances were reported at Zip Food and Comfort Inn, where a surveillance video showed the robber was driving a silver station wagon with something taped in the rear window.

An anonymous tipster told police that Evans was a suspect and was driving a silver Volkswagen station wagon, and that he had been to a relative’s house recently to retrieve his black overalls.

Evans’ car was spotted by police about 4 p.m. Friday near Central Avenue and Willowcreek Road. After he sped away from the area, he was stopped on U.S. 20 a few minutes later.

Police impounded Evans’ car and found a black Phantom BB gun, that matched the description of the gun given by the victims.

Police Chief Troy Williams said eight bags of heroin were also found in the car.

Be the first to know

* I understand and agree that registration on or use of this site constitutes agreement to its user agreement and privacy policy.