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3rd suspect linked to apartment holdups

A third Fort Wayne man has been arrested in connection with a series of robberies last month at Fort Wayne apartment complexes.

Tiron B. Beard, 21, was arrested Tuesday evening on a charge of receiving stolen property, according to a statement issued by Officer Raquel Foster, a city police spokewoman.

Evidence links him to a robbery Jan. 10 at the Island Club Apartments, police said, adding the "depth of his involvement remains under investigation."

Beard was the second suspect arrested Tuesday in connection with the robberies. Corey L. Harris, 21, of the 1000 block of McKinnie Avenue, was arrested on preliminary charges of receiving stolen property and obstruction of justice, and was released on his own recognizance.

Investigators do not believe that Harris, 21, committed any of the actual holdups, Foster said for an earlier story. Rather, she said, they suspect he sold valuables the robbers had stolen.

Police searched Harris' home Jan. 16 and reported finding items that were stolen during a Jan. 8 robbery at Autumn Creek Apartments. In that holdup, two robbers forced a man into his apartment at gunpoint and stole a laptop computer and a video-game system, police said.

Foster said the obstruction-of-justice charge stems from Harris' refusal to share information that could have helped investigators.

The other man arrested in the case was Devonte M. Hamlet, 20, of the 3500 block of Smith Street. He is accused of committing two apartment robberies Jan. 10.

In those cases, Hamlet and another man, both armed with handguns, forced their way into apartments, bound victims, beat some of them and stole valuables, court papers stated.

During one robbery, a victim got a handgun from a closet and fired at Hamlet as he was leaving, court papers stated. Minutes later, they stated, Hamlet was dropped off at a hospital with two gunshot wounds.

Hamlet's fingerprints linked him to both robberies, court papers stated. Arrested Jan. 22, he faces charges of burglary resulting in bodily injury, battery with a deadly weapon, five counts of robbery and six counts of criminal confinement.

Police encouraged apartment residents "to remain vigilant."

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