Minden Police Chief Steve Cropper says the woman arrested for allegedly trying to rob a casino at gunpoint was trying to get money to pay a drug dealer.
April Dawn Wright, 44, of the 300 block of Shane Drive, was arrested Wednesday morning after Captains Marvin Garrett and Dan Weaver, Detective Lt. Chris Cheatham and Officers First Class Clint Smith and Shawn Jenkins got a tip that led to her arrest.
“Around 3:30 or 4 yesterday afternoon (Tuesday), Capt. Garrett got a phone call indicating the truck she was seen traveling in was on Interstate 20 at Dixie Inn coming towards Minden,” he said.
He says he sent officers out to try to cut her off, but they never saw her or the truck.
Later that day, they received a phone call from the truck’s owner saying Wright called and told him his truck was parked at Exacta Inn with the keys underneath the seat.
“He called us and detectives met him out there,” he said. “We recovered the truck she was traveling in, but he had no idea where she might go.”
Recovered from the vehicle were a couple of cell phones, Cropper says, adding they tracked one of the phones.
“Last night (Tuesday night), she called a taxi company from her phone and got a taxi to come pick her up and take her to her residence on Creighton Street,” he said. “On a hunch that she might still be there, officers went to that residence this morning and low and behold, that’s where she was.”
She was placed under arrest for attempted armed robbery and placed on a probation and parole hold.
Tuesday morning, around 7:30 a.m., Minden Police were dispatched to Love’s Travel Center’s casino in reference to the alleged attempted robbery. Cropper says she came in with a note saying she had a gun and demanding money.
The employee refused to give her any money, the chief said, and she came around the counter to the casino office in an attempt to gain entry. Cropper says the employee slammed a door on her arm and hand once, and did it again when she tried again to gain entry.
The second time, she screamed and took off, he said.
“She was interviewed and indicated that she did not have a gun, but she did say she presented the note saying she did,” he said. “She said the reason she was trying to get the money is because she owed money to a drug dealer here in town.”
She was booked at police headquarters and transported to Bayou Dorcheat Correctional Center.
The chief says she was on parole and has not been out of jail more than six months. She has a lengthy criminal history including robbery charges, he said.