Police were searching Thursday for a suspect in an attempted armed robbery at the Memorial Hospital MetroLink station Wednesday night.
St. Clair County sheriff’s deputies and Belleville police responded to the station at 7:30 p.m. to a report from a 20-year-old male who said he believed a person wanted to steal his cellphone.
The man said the person implied he had a gun, but never displayed a gun.
The man told sheriff’s deputies he had walked up a ramp at the station when he was confronted by a black male described as 5-foot-8, between 140 and 150 pounds, with long dreadlocks, and wearing a white shirt and blue jeans.
The suspect appeared to be intoxicated and asked to use the man’s cellphone. The man declined but said he would dial the phone number and put it on speaker.
The man dialed the number, but it was disconnected. The suspect became insistent on holding the phone. When the man again refused, the suspect attempted to grab the cellphone and told the man he had a gun.
The suspect tried to reach into the man’s front pants pocket, but the victim jumped off the platform and ran up the steps on the south side of the station. He called 911, and the suspect boarded an eastbound train.
The victim was not injured and never saw a weapon.
Officers were reviewing surveillance video in an effort to identify the suspect.
MetroLink stations are within the sheriff’s department’s jurisdiction.
Deputies were handling the investigation.