Police search south Ashland for armed robber

Police are searching south Ashland for an armed man who tried to rob the Relax Inn on Clover Lane this morning.

A man entered the hotel, in a semi-industrial area near Interstate 5, presented a gun and demanded money at about 11:40 a.m., police said.

Minutes later, the man fled on foot across the street — without any cash, said Lt. Corey Falls with the Ashland Police Department. He ran into a parking lot behind Caldera Brewing Company and was last seen hopping a fence at the end of the lot, Falls said.

Officers believe the suspect may still be in the area, Falls said.

He is described as white, between 20 and 25 years old and about 5 feet 6 inches tall with a medium build. He was clean-shaven and was wearing a gray or brown hooded sweatshirt and sweatpants, police said.

Police set up a perimeter bordered by the hotel to the north, Highway 66 to the east, Crowson Road to the south and I-5 to the west. Police were also stationed at the entrance to the Oak Knoll Golf Course off Highway 66.

By about 1:30 p.m., police had dismantled the perimeter but were still actively looking for the suspect and were using a Medford Police Department dog to try to track the direction he may have run. Search conditions were less than ideal due to the rain and, at times, snow, falling over Ashland, Falls said.

When asked if police believed the suspect was dangerous, Falls said: "He tried to rob somebody with a gun, so we're concerned."

Falls said he's not aware of any robberies having occurred at the Relax Inn before, but he said that about six years ago, there was a homicide at the hotel.

— Ashland Daily Tidings

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