2016-09-29 / Courts

Evidence found of other crimes, but no charge in Empire robbery

Two Taser guns and just under five pounds of marijuana were found in the car and home of the Benzonia man suspected of robbing the Empire Huntington Bank at gunpoint on Sept. 7, according to Leelanau County Sheriff Mike Borkovich.

The evidence will lead to more charges for William F. Minore, 69, who is currently being held in the Leelanau County Jail on a charge of unlawful driving away of a vehicle. His bond is set at $1 million.

However, no charges have been filed for the bank robbery, and law enforcement officials have not said that they had found evidence in the raids directly linking Minore to it.

The Tasers were found in Minore’s vehicle at the Interlochen home where he was arrested, Borkovich said. The marijuana was found in the same vehicle, as well as in his Benzie County home, Borkovich said.

Court records show that a warrant has been issued out of Grand Traverse County charging Minore with two counts of possession/sale of a Taser, though he has not yet been arraigned on those charges.

Minore will also likely be charged with possession of marijuana with intent to deliver and maintaining a drug house in Benzie County, Borkovich said.

As of Tuesday there were no pending charges in Benzie County, according to the Benzie County Prosecutor’s Office.

Police and FBI agents spent two days searching Minore’s home on Higgins Road in Benzonia, Borkovich said. They are also reviewing video tapes and taking information from witnesses to make an armed robbery case against Minore, he said.

Police have not released how much money was taken from the bank or if it has been recovered.

Minore was arrested about 24 hours after the robbery after being identified as the man who allegedly drove away in a Kia Soul parked on Western Avenue in Glen Arbor the same day as the robbery.

The robbery took place at 1:30 p.m. when a man dressed all in black and armed with a silver handgun walked in the front door of the bank and demanded cash. According to reports he then walked out the back door with an unspecified amount of money.

The car was not reported stolen until about 2:45 p.m. It was recovered later that same day.

Minore is being represented by his court-appointed attorney William G. Burdette of Traverse City. Burdette did not return a call to the Enterprise prior to its deadline.

A preliminary examination set for Minore on Tuesday was postponed until Tuesday, Oct. 4.

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