LOTHAIR — Members of the Hazard Police Department’s Rapid Deployment Team served an arrest warrant on Bransford Payne Olinger, 37, of Hazard, at a residence on Liberty Street on Dec. 30. He was wanted in connection with a robbery that took place at Allie Gorman Tower on Dec. 24.
Authorities say an investigation indicated that Olinger entered an apartment at Allie Gorman Tower on Dec. 24, and according to the arrest warrant, placed the male resident in a choke hold. Olinger then allegedly stole a small lockbox from the apartment. While in the residence, the arrest warrant says that Olinger kicked the female resident in the right leg. She suffered a bruise on her leg because of the assault, the warrant says.
As Olinger was trying to flee the residence with the lockbox in his hand, the owner of the of the residence tried to stop Olinger, the warrant says. According to the warrant, Olinger proceeded to hit the owner of the residence two times in the face with the lockbox. Olinger then fled the scene, the warrant says.
According to the warrant, the victim, David Spencer, identified Olinger in a photo line up as the person that committed the robbery.
Police secured an arrest warrant on Olinger the night the robbery took place and had been looking for him since, police say. During their search, police say they received several tips that Olinger was in possession of a handgun and had stated his intentions of not being taken into police custody alive.
Olinger was taken into police custody without incident.
He is facing first-degree robbery. Authorities say additional charges are possible as the investigation continues.
Olinger appeared in the Perry County District Court on Jan. 4 for arraignment. He pleaded not guilty. His next court appearance will be on Jan. 12.
A $5,000 cash bond plus home incarceration was set in the case.
TJ Caudill can be reached at 606-629-3245 or on Twitter @TJHazardHerald.