Police arrest man sought in Fort Smith robbery
FORT SMITH — Police arrested a man who was jailed on a charge he robbed a 71-year-old man he followed from a casino and shot at him as he tried to escape.
John Taylor Jr. was booked into the Sebastian County jail on an aggravated robbery charge, according to a police news release.
The release said Taylor was accused of following Ernest Schilinker of Mansfield from Choctaw Casino in Pocola, Okla., about 3:30 p.m. Wednesday. Schilinker cashed out his winnings and drove to the Texas Roadhouse restaurant in Fort Smith where Taylor confronted him.
According to the police report, Schilinker told police when he pulled into the restaurant parking lot, a black man approached him, demanded his money and pulled out a handgun.
The man took $600 from Schilinker and fired two shots at his vehicle as he tried to drive away. The bullets hit the passenger door and the windshield. Schilinker suffered minor injuries to his left hand and wrist, the report said.
Investigators identified Taylor after talking to numerous people at the casino, the news release said. They tracked Taylor to the 2200 block of South 17th Street in Fort Smith where they found the vehicle used in the robbery.
Taylor was arrested in a traffic stop after leaving the address and was questioned by police, during which he said he threw his gun into the Arkansas River. Police recovered the stolen cash from Taylor, according to the release.