FARIBAULT, Minn. - A Farmington man is charged with five felony counts in connection with an armed hotel robbery that led to a massive manhunt in Northfield Monday.
Eric Wade Forcier, age 26, is charged with first degree armed robbery and shooting at a police officer, among other things.
Police were called to America's Best Value Inn and Suites just after 2:45 a.m. on October 29 on a report of an armed robbery. When officers responded to the scene they saw a car matching the description of the getaway vehicle. Inside was a female later identified as Julie Ann Campana, whom police arrested.
During questioning she identified the robber as Eric Forcier.
The passenger door of the vehicle was open, leading officers to believe the suspect had jumped out and fled. They heard several gunshots in the vicinity, which prosecutors say were fired at police.
A massive search was launched with several area SWAT teams and dozens of police officers and deputies looking for the suspect. Law enforcement tracked Forcier to a remote area near the Cannon River.
Eventually they received a call about some suspicious items found in the back of a pickup truck parked at a transportation company in Northfield. Investigators began searching other vehicles and eventually found Forcier hiding in a vehicle under blankets.
A criminal complaint says Campana cased the hotel, asking the clerk questions and observing the layout in the hours before Forcier carried out the robbery.
Forcier told investigators that he was with Campana in Northfield but declined to make statements on whether he owned a gun or carried out the robber.
If found guilty on the most serious charges Eric Forcier faces the possibility of a 20 year prison sentence.
Julie Ann Campana is charged with aiding and abetting an armed robbery, which is also a felony.
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