Two accused in Ontario hostage/bank robbery arrested in Galion


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Crisman                                    Hill

Two suspects who were wanted for holding an Ontario family hostage and forcing the husband to rob his own bank in November were arrested Wednesday in Galion.

Officials from the Cleveland branch of the FBI Cleveland Division of the FBI, Mansfield and Canton resident offices, along with officers from the Ontario Police Department and Richland County Sheriff’s Office conducted a traffic stop mid-day Wednesday in front of Circle K in Galion where two were taken into custody.

Special Agent Vicki D. Anderson of the Cleveland FBI said Taylor Crisman, 18, and Chris Hill, 23, were arrested in the stop.

Anderson said the suspects were under surveillance at the time of the stop.

She added that both suspects were living in Galion at the time of the arrest.

According to the FBI, the armed suspect entered a KeyBank employee’s home on Nov. 5 and held the worker and his family hostage through the night.

Reports indicated the worker was forced to go to his bank, 688 N. Lexington-Springmill Road on Nov. 6, and took an undetermined amount of money before the bank opened.

According to reports, the suspect held the bank employee’s wife and small children hostage until the employee returned home with the money. The bank employee complied with the demand.  The suspect then notified an accomplice to pick him up from the residence.

A composite sketch of the unknown suspect was released to the public via the media on Nov. 23.  Various tips were received. According to officials, based on the composite sketch being shown by various media outlets, on Nov. 28, a tip was provided indicating knowledge of the person that committed the KeyBank robbery.  Investigators worked with the tipster to corroborate the information obtained over the next several days.
“The FBI commends the media and the public for helping to identify the individual who terrorized a KeyBank employee and his young family overnight,” said Stephen D. Anthony, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI, Cleveland Division, Northern District of Ohio. “Crisman and Hill underestimated the collaborative efforts of law enforcement and the community.”
“The one thing that these violent criminals did not count on was the incredible work of the FBI, the Ontario Police Department and the Richland County Sheriff’s Office,” said Steven Dettelbach, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio.   “Now they will pay the price at the bar of justice for that oversight.”
Crisman was placed into federal custody based on a federal arrest warrant obtained this week.  Crisman was transported to Akron, Ohio this afternoon.  Hill is currently being held on probable cause charges in the Richland County jail and will be federally charged tomorrow.
Evidence has been obtained at various locations where these two individuals have recently resided.  Some items of evidence recovered include the fedora hat and bandana believed to be worn by Crisman during the time he held the family hostage in their home.  Also, the .38 caliber handgun believed to be used by Crisman has been recovered.
According to the victim, he told the dispatcher in a 911 call that morning to Richland County Sheriff’s Office, that he took somewhere between $100,000 to $200,000.

The police stop caught the attention of those nearby.

“I was coming down the overpass and I seen three police cars surround a car,” said Rolana L. Smith of Lexington. “I went through the intersection and pulled over and rolled my windows down and turned of the radio and grabbed my phone. I could hear the officers yelling for people to get out of the car and they had their weapons drawn yelling at the driver to get out.

“I seen about three cops with their guns and surrounding the car from the back of the car and yelling to get out and this must have went on for a minute or so then the guy opened the driver door with his hands up and and he put his hands behind his head and got on his knees.”

Galion Police Chief Brian Saterfield declined comment Wednesday, saying it wasn’t the city’s case.

By Chris Pugh

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