Salmon Arm  

Busted for explosive robbery

A 38-year-old Salmon Arm man has been arrested in connection to a pair of armoured car robberies and bank explosions in Edmonton last year.

Justin Byron is facing numerous charges in connection to the 2018 robberies.

“This arrest came about as a result of some excellent police work from the EPS Robbery Section and many areas within our police service,” said Staff Sgt. Rob Mills, of the Edmonton Police Service Robbery Section. “We’re grateful to our RCMP law enforcement partners in Salmon Arm, who also played a key role in bringing our investigation to a successful conclusion.

“We believe the accused was planning another incident, and we’re happy that we prevented another attack.”
On Sept. 19, 2018 at 2:35 a.m., two armoured guards were making deliveries in an armoured vehicle at a financial institution located near 27 Avenue and 141 Street.

As the first employee entered the vestibule an explosion occurred disorienting both employees, who then drew their firearms. The two armoured guards were uninjured, and no deposit money was taken during the attack.

On Dec. 13, 2018 at 2 a.m., a second incident occurred at another Edmonton financial institution located near 81 Street and 160 Avenue. Again, two armoured guards walked into the vestibule of the bank, when an explosion detonated knocking one of the employees to the ground. The second employee retreated from the bank to obtain cover, when a second explosion occurred. 

The male suspect is alleged to have entered the vestibule, grabbed the deposit bag and ran to a pick-up truck parked nearby. The armoured guards were treated and transported to hospital for non-life-threatening injuries. 

An ongoing investigation by police culminated with EPS Tactical members arresting Byron Monday, March 4, at Edmonton International Airport. 

Byron is facing multiple charges including robbery with firearm (x 2), attempted robbery (x 2), using an explosive device (x 4), possession of an explosive material (x 2), aggravated assault (x 4) and disguise with intent (x 2).

Byron is scheduled to appear in court on Friday, March 15.

“The RCMP will continue to work with all of our law enforcement partners to ensure that people that commit crimes in one jurisdiction cannot hide in another. People who do commit criminal acts will be held accountable for their actions, no matter where the crimes took place,” says Staff Sgt. Scott West of the Salmon Arm RCMP. 

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