Police arrest armed robber who targeted Metro parks

Police arrest armed robber who targeted Metro parks (Image 1)

A man out on bond for burglary and theft charges was arrested after robbing several people at gunpoint.

Metro police said David Smith Jr. confessed to targeting people walking in Cedar Hill and Shelby Parks Saturday morning.

According to arrest records, around 9:25 a.m. Smith was driving through Cedar Hill Park in his red Ford F-150 when he first tried to rob a woman walking.

Police said Smith wore a ski mask and yelled at the woman, “Give me everything you got,” but the woman told him she did not have money. He left without harming the woman.

He then drove up to a husband and wife walking in the park.

Once again he demanded money at gunpoint. The man gave Smith his wallet and his wife gave him her cell phone.

He then left the Cedar Hill Park and drove to Shelby Park, where at 10 a.m. he approached a man fishing at the park.

He demanded the man's wallet and cell phone at gunpoint, but the man ran away without giving him anything.

Smith then approached two men walking along Riverside Drive near Brittany Drive and demanded their wallets.

One of the men complied, while the other told Smith he did not have his wallet.

Smith left and was headed toward Madison when Metro Police spotted his truck. They stopped him on Gallatin Pike near Briley Parkway.

Police recovered the gun and a ski mask.

Smith is charged with three counts of aggravated robbery and three counts of attempted aggravated robbery.

Smith was free on a $39,000 bond for a February arrest for burglary, theft and drug possession.

He also has a previous conviction for burglary and felony theft from 2009. He received a three year prison sentence.

Sarah Pettigrew lives near Shelby Park and often walks her dog there on weekends.

“It is a little frightening, but its not shocking it happens everywhere,” she said. “It is just one of those things, you have got to be alert.”

She continued, “It is kind of surprising because it was broad daylight on the weekend when the parking lot is full down there.”

Pettigrew already carries mace with her when going to the park for safety. She plans to be even more cautious.

“There is nothing else you can do,” she said. “Just hope it doesn't happen again.”

Smith is being held in jail on $440,000 combined bond.

He is due in court on Thursday at 9:00 a.m.

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