A 38-year-old man was charged Friday in connection with the robbery of a shoe store in Coon Rapids in which two employees were taken hostage, police said.
Benjamin Elmer Flanders, 38, of Minneapolis, was charged in Anoka County District Court with aggravated robbery and two counts of kidnapping.
Police from three agencies responding to an alarm at 8:43 p.m. Thursday saw a man running from the Payless Shoes at 8510 Springbrook Drive NW. with what appeared to be a gun. The suspect then ran back into the store where police later found that he had bound one of the two employees with duct tape, said Capt. Jon Urquhart of the Coon Rapids Police Department.
Officers from Coon Rapids, Blaine and Fridley set up a perimeter and a negotiator got Flanders on the phone. After several minutes, he came out unarmed and peacefully surrendered to officers, Urquhart said.
Authorities are not looking for any other suspects.
Neither of the store employees was injured.