Faribault police searching for robbery suspect

(Faribault, MN) – Faribault police are searching for a suspect believed to have committed a robbery in Steele County before moving on to a fabric store in the city.

On Tuesday, Jan 7  at 8:17 p.m., officers responded to a robbery in progress at JoAnn Fabrics on Western Ave, where two employees were on duty.

According to a press release from Captain Neal Pederson, the employees reported that the suspect walked into the store and said he was waiting for a ride, then asked one of the employees about buying merchandise.  When the employee approached the register, the suspect poked her in the back with an object and told her to open the register, according to the release.

Police say the suspect struck the employee in the back two or three times with a baton-like weapon before he fled the store.  The second employee called police when she heard screaming.  The employee who was hit didn’t suffer any injuries.

The suspect is described as a black male, approximately 6 feet tall, wearing a puffy black coat, black beanie hat, black sweatpants, black shoes, gloves, and a gray scarf over his face.

Investigators say a robbery at the Medford Outlet Center occurred just before the JoAnn’s robbery and the suspect description in both incidents match.

Faribault police are working with Steele County investigators to identify the suspect and to obtain surveillance footage.

Anyone with information should contact Sergeant Matt Long at (507) 334-0952.