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Kansas City robbers may have Columbia connection

Four suspects are behind bars in Kansas City for a robbery spree and now Columbia police are investigating their possible link to local robberies.

ABC 17 News reported on Monday that James Miller, his brother Jamin, Cecil Robinson and Jamon Roberts-Overstreet were arrested in Kansas City for several armed robberies.

James Miller is a teen who was found not guilty two weeks ago for the shooting at Chuck E. Cheese’s in Columbia last spring. Currently police want to ask him about three separate armed robberies that happened in Columbia after he was set free.

Police know Roberts-Overstreet was involved in the Midwest Petroleum robbery after the clerk identified him there. Now police want to talk to anyone he may have been working with to keep more offenders behind bars.

“Definitely investigators want to talk to the other people involved who were arrested with Jamin Roberts in Kansas City,” said Latisha Stroer with the Columbia Police Department.

Police want to know if they men are linked to the two gas stations and one business that were held up only five days after James Miller was found not guilty of the shooting in Columbia.

When ABC 17 News asked police if the men were considered suspects in the robbery, Stroer said “No they are not suspects at this time.” While they are not suspects some are familiar faces cops said they see too often. “(We see) trends that happens, certain families that have been involved in criminal activity as well as friends that they run with,” said Stroer.

“It’s common I think if you have been a prosecutor long enough that sometimes the names begin to become all too familiar,” said Boone County Prosecutor Andrea Hayes. For her, hearing Miller quickly jumped into more criminal activity in Kansas City and is being looked into for crimes in Columbia is no surprise. “I am actually not shocked at all that James Miller has been arrested in Kansas City for robberies and armed criminal action,” said Hayes.

She told ABC 17 News she wouldn’t have taken Miller to trial if she wasn’t confident he was guilty. However, if police and prosecutors know who the criminals are, why aren’t they being sent to prison for good? According to Hayes it is often because the only witnesses are also accomplices, “Of course that makes it very difficult,” said Hayes.

While a conviction is difficult in any case, law enforcement said the community can always help. “More people coming forward when they are a witness to a crime,” said Hayes.

According to court documents, James Miller asked for a lawyer right away and the other men declined to talk to detectives.

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