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Police Nab Suspected Post Office Robber

DENVER (CBS4) -- Law enforcement took a man into custody Thursday afternoon believed to be involved in the "violent" armed robbery of an Aurora post office late last year.

Willie Dewayne Phillip, 54, of Aurora, surrendered to authorities at 4:35 p..m. Copter4 was overhead during the arrest as Phillip stood next to a Denver Police Department cruiser and several officers at the intersection of Franklin Street and 18th Avenue.

17th franklin postal 1
(credit: CBS)

A man dressed in all black clothing entered the U.S. Post Office located at 1074 S. Ironton Street in Aurora on November 8, 2018, and committed, as told to CBS4, "a violent robbery."

Clerks hands were tied with zip-ties, and a semi-automatic handgun was pointed at the head of one of them.

The gunman made off with $5,200 taken from the cash registers.

One customer was inside the facility at the time. No one was injured.

Willie Dewayne Phillip mug
Willie Dewayne Phillip (credit: U.S. Postal Inspector)

Phillip was named as a suspect in the robbery by investigators less than a month after the incident. A U.S. District Court grand jury indicted Phillip on Dec. 4 on a federal robbery/assault felony charge, and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service asked for the public's help in locating him.

Investigators at that time warned he was considered armed and dangerous.

post office robbery
Copter4 flew over the post office in Aurora (credit: CBS)

Less than a week after the robbery, the U.S. Attorney General's Office explained to CBS4 that surveillance video from a nearby restaurant was recovered by investigators, and the license plate of the gunman's getaway vehicle -- ironically, a Ford Escape -- was obtained from that recording. A female driver was seen as well.

Investigators subsequently arrested Joseph and Phelisha Wheeler, a husband and wife, for their involvement in the crime. CBS4 has learned the case against the couple is still in process.

Officers from the Denver Police Department assisted the USPIS in Thursday's arrest of Phillip.

A search of online public records shows Phillip has previous arrests for drugs, assault, and domestic violence.



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