Clerks robbed, money found on rooftop

Published 12:09 am Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Thanks to the watchfulness of an off-duty police dispatcher, an Elba man who allegedly robbed two Andalusia grocery store clerks of a daily deposit Monday, is behind bars.

The incident occurred just after noon when a black male – identified later as 34-year-old Gregory James Goldsmith – approached the clerks as they were walking from the Cost Plus store to Covington County Bank to make a deposit.


Smith allegedly brandished a gun and demanded the money, said Capt. Paul Dean with the Andalusia Police Department.

“The victims handed over the money, and he fled on foot toward College Street,” Dean said. “The victims of this incident remained calm, despite the fact of facing an armed assailant demanding money. They followed his instructions and did not resist his demands; however, they were also very attentive and were able to give an accurate description of the person which was instrumental in his capture.”

Dean said police were also given a break in the case when off-duty APD dispatcher saw Goldsmith and began to follow him while relaying their location to officers.

“(Goldsmith) was last seen around Eighth Avenue, running behind houses,” Dean said. “He was able to avoid capture at that time.”

Goldsmith wasn’t free long before the Covington County Sheriff’s Posse tracking dog picked up his scent at the back door of a home on Eighth Avenue.

“While officers were speaking with (Goldsmith) inside the residence, officers outside made a discovery of their own – a bag on the roof of the residence that matched the money bag taken during the robbery,” Dean said. “ Once the bag was recovered it was found to contain all of the items that were reported by the victims as stolen.”

Goldsmith is charged with fist-degree robbery and theft charges and is currently being held on a $750,000 bond in the Covington County Jail.