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Manhunt fails again

for bank robbery suspect

By JOHN WALLACE

Special to The Messenger

Another place, another manhunt, yet the same story.

The Flomaton Police Department spent seven hours searching a wooded area near Flomaton after the Escambia County (Ala.) Sheriff’s Deputy spotted alleged bank robber Constantine Demetrius Burt entering a manufactured home, but ended up empty handed.

Burt is a suspect in the March 29, 2000 armed robbery of Regions Bank on Park Street in Troy. A manhunt was held in Pike County for several days after Regions Bank was robbed. According to law enforcement officials in Pike County, there were several possible sighting of Burt in the Pike County area, but he was able to elude law enforcement officer and was never caught.

Flomaton Police Chief Bob Hicks said the search began at approximately 2:30 p.m. when Burt was seen entering a manufactured home. Unfortunately for law enforcement officials, Burt spotted the deputy and fled.

"He ran into the woods behind Fred’s Bar, also known as Crow’s Bar," Hicks said.

Officers began pursuing Burt immediately with tracking dogs from the Century (Fla.) Correctional Facility.

"He went into a swampy area," Hicks said. "I think he was trying to get back into the backwoods in Century where he lives."

Hicks said several law enforcement agencies helped with the manhunt including officers from the Flomaton Police Department, Escambia County (Ala.) deputies, Escambia County (Fla.) deputies and an Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms agent.

Burt was spotted several times during the search that required officials to bring in fresh tracking dogs three separate times.

"We had plenty of people over there," Hicks said. "That sucker is pretty slick."

Burt alluded officers until approximately 9:30 p.m. when the manhunt ended. However, the alleged bank robber lost several articles of clothing during the chase.

Hicks said a pair of shoes were found during the manhunt that are believed to belong to Burt. He said an eyewitness reported spotting Burt after he had also discarded his shirt.

"One witness said he saw him and he was down to just a pair of red shorts. So, he apparently had lost his white T-shirt," Hicks said

Despite the disappointment of not capturing Burt, law enforcement officials remain optimistic about eventually catching up to the alleged bank robber.

"The law enforcement effort was 100 percent on all sides," Hicks said. "He’s very unusual. I think he can flat outrun a dog.

"Eventually we will get him," he added. "We’ve caught him before."

Burt, who is described as a 26-year-old black male, standing 6’0" tall and weighing 160 pounds, is wanted in connection with the bank robbery in Troy in March of this year. He is also wanted by the FBI for kidnapping and questioning regarding the armed robbery of Whitney Bank in Century.

Authorities said Burt is to be considered "armed and dangerous." Hicks said anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of Burt should contact local law enforcement officials. He said citizens should not attempt to apprehend Burt.