At least one of the three armed men who took a half million dollars from the Walnut Creek Amphitheatre on Monday morning left behind a clue for police: a trail of spilled cash that led to a storage shed behind a nearby house.
Witnesses told police that the gunmen had stuffed the stolen cash into backpacks, but apparently one of them did not zip his backpack shut, according to a search warrant made public Wednesday.
Police quickly arrested one man, 22-year-old Adjani Jari Bryant, but were still looking for the other two Wednesday.
Police with dogs began their search Monday in the VIP section of the amphitheater parking lot after finding some of the stolen money in the area, according to the search warrant. The K-9 officers continued their search through a wooded marsh area that led them to a rear fence line at 2505 Friendly Trail, where they recovered a discarded shirt and more cash, the warrant says.
The officers continued walking in the backyard of the single-story ranch style house where they found more money. The home is less than a mile from the Walnut Creek Amphitheatre.
Investigators returned to the home Tuesday and recovered “additional evidence” under a cedar-style shed with a metal roof on the property, according to the search warrant.
The court affidavit did not indicate if more money was found under the shed, but police did find clothing that witnesses said matched the description of what the suspects were wearing.
Detectives did not disclose how much cash was recovered from the trail that led them to the shed.
Walnut Creek employees told police that three gunmen burst into the amphitheater’s business office about 11:30 a.m. Monday, pointed guns at the heads of three employees and forced them all to lie on the floor.
The gunmen then ordered one of the employees to call the amphitheater’s general manager and ask her to come to the office. When the general manager arrived, she was forced into the business office’s cash room and ordered to open the safe, according to the search warrant.
The gunmen ripped open green bank deposit bags and stuffed the cash into the backpacks. The bandits then ordered three of the employees into a walk-in freezer and two more into the cash room before fleeing on foot, according to the search warrant.
Police charged Bryant with six counts of robbery with a dangerous weapon and six counts of second-degree kidnapping. He remains in the Wake County jail in lieu of $751,000 bail, a jail spokesman reported.