Northfield citizens decline to help capture robbery suspect; severe impact on tourism feared

America's Best Value Inn & Suites - NorthfieldWhen the word of this morning’s robbery at America’s Best Value Inn & Suites on Hwy 3 began trickling out via police scanners, most Northfielders were sound asleep.

When KYMN Radio and Northfield Patch began sounding the alarm at around 6 am that one of the suspects had fired at police officers and fled, members of the Northfield Police Department assumed that citizens would respond in droves to help capture one of the suspects who was still at large and believed to be in the Sechler Park area.

By time the Northfield News began covering the story several hours later, gloom was apparent on the faces of the police officers on duty.  “We had extra department staff ready to handle the flood of citizen volunteers by deputizing them and issuing them firearms,” said Taylor Marcus, Northfield’s Public Safety Director. “No one showed up. No one emailed. No one tweeted. We had no choice to but to call other law enforcement agencies for help. It was embarrassing.”

robberWhen the suspect was finally apprehended mid-morning, the Defeat of Jesse James Days and Northfield Area Chamber of Commerce boards of directors were already in an emergency joint session.  “It’s a Category 4 public relations nightmare,” said Chamber Executive Director Marie Schmaltzy. “If word of this colossal failure of our citizens to respond gets out, we’re likely to see a devastating impact on attendance at DJJD next year.”

“I’m not surprised at all,” said Dewayne Reddy, DJJD board member.  “Northfielders have essentially become a bunch of yellow-bellied, lily-livered, milk-toasted, panty-waisted wimp chickens.  We’ve been riding on the courage of the town’s ancestors from the 1876 bank raid for over 100 years and we’re now morally bankrupt, no pun intended. It’s a sad day. I feel like turning in my spur.”

Noting that the weapon used in today’s robbery had not yet been found, KYMN radio’s Jim Friedman, organizer of the annual DJJD Horseshoe Hunt, said he would attempt to mobilize the citizenry in the morning to help find the suspect’s gun. When asked what he would do to motivate people to participate, Friedman said, “I haven’t got a clue.”


  1. Jim Friedman said:

    the robber found in morn I hear
    near hydrants red of yesteryear
    Twas much to this clue writes delight
    He hideth out close to my site

    October 29, 2012
  2. Griff Wigley said:

    Jim! So glad you chimed in here, e-sidewalk poetry not withstanding.

    Let us know if you’re not clueless in the morning, irregardless of whether or not Dewayne Reddy turns his in his spur to which he knows not thereof.

    October 29, 2012
  3. I think if you’ll consult the town bylaws, you’ll find that the citizens only swarm out in droves for bank robberies. Hotels are purely a police problem.

    October 30, 2012
  4. rob hardy said:

    “Grab your guns boys, they’re robbing the America’s Best Value Inn and Suites” is kind of a mouthful.

    October 30, 2012
  5. Susan Hvistendahl said:

    Yeah, you are right, Rob. No way that will fit on a T-shirt!

    October 31, 2012
  6. Lana Denny said:

    Very interesting. Sounds like they were more worried about themselves than anything. What about kids who walked to school that morning while all this was going on?? They failed to notify the schools so we could protect our children?? That in my mind is inexcusable. I am not happy with the NPD.

    October 31, 2012
  7. Robert Palmquist said:

    Hmm, I heard that NPD did notify the schools and that the schools took appropriate action (e.g., locking outside access doors). I wasn’t at the schools that day though…

    In my case, NPD did stop by our offices, explained what was happening, and gave us a flyer with the picture of Forcier and what to do if we saw him. So, I’m giving NPD high marks for thier actions.

    November 1, 2012
  8. Robert Palmquist said:

    Also, in the spirit of your write-up Griff (which was great), next year on Oct. 29th I think we should celebrate “The Defeat of the Forcier Gang Days”. All of us yellow-bellied, lily-livered, milk-toasted, panty-waisted wimp chickens could show up at the Cow and do nothing but drink.

    November 1, 2012
  9. Lana Denny said:

    The NPD did notify schools. TOO late. I did not get an automated message from the principal OR an email from the superintendent until after 8:30am that morning. School starts at 8:20am. My daughter walked to school at 7:50am. If this happened at 2:30am, they had plenty of time to get the word out. Why no one informed parents til after school had started is beyond me. Someone wasn’t do their job. Shame on them for that!

    November 3, 2012

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