CHEVIOT, Ohio -- Hamilton County Sheriff's Deputy Terry Harper stopped for a cup of coffee Wednesday morning but ended up nabbing a serial armed robbery suspect, according to the sheriff's office.
Before work at 5:45 a.m., Harper was at the United Dairy Farmer's gas station on Westwood Northern Boulevard in Cheviot when a masked man entered the convenience store and approached a clerk at the counter with a gun, sheriff's spokesman Mike Robison said. The masked man demanded cash.
Deputy Harper then pulled out his gun and told the suspect to drop his weapon, Robison said. Instead, the the suspect pointed his gun at the deputy; Harper then fired his gun, but missed the suspect.
The suspect "was startled," dropped his gun and tried to flee on foot, Robison said. Harper then apprehended the suspect "without any injures or further incidents."
"According to the initial accounts, Deputy Harper showed tremendous bravery in apprehending an armed suspect resulting in no injuries," Sheriff Jim Neil said in a statement. "That’s no small feat and I commend him on an amazing job well done."
Deputies said the suspect is Simeon Thomas, who was charged with two counts of aggravated robbery, one county of assaulting a police officer and one count of receiving stolen property. Thomas is also believed to be involved in another UDF armed robbery, this time on Glenway Avenue in Westwood, according to Robison.
Harper was placed on administrative leave, as departmental protocol allows, but "initial indications are Deputy Harper acted consistently with our policies," Robison said.