PNC Bank robbery suspect dies in county custody

A 52-year-old Salisbury man charged with robbing a bank last week – and who was working for the County while on a pre-release jail program – was found dead from hanging.

Erland Edward Roessler III was found in his cell at the Wicomico County Detention Center last Friday, after being arrested and charged with robbing PNC Bank on West Isabella Street on July 28, according to a news release issued by County Executive Bob Culver’s office.

The news release stated the procedure to process Roessler for jail “followed standard protocol and he was being held over for a hearing.”

“There was nothing unusual about his intake or his behavior and demeanor. He was later discovered unresponsive during regular officer rounds. He was transferred to Peninsula Regional Medical Center by ambulance and later pronounced dead,” the press release stated.

Roessler had been working for the County Roads Department as part of the Poplar Hill pre-release work program and, “had performed well,” according to the news release.

“For that reason, upon his release, Wicomico County hired him on a probationary basis to continue working at our Roads Division,” it stated.

On July 28, around 2 p.m., Salisbury Police responded to PNC Bank where, police said, employees told them a masked suspect entered the bank and demanded money.

The man displayed a note implying he had a weapon, police said.

Bank employees gave him an undisclosed amount of money, police said.

Detectives captured still images of the suspect while he was in the bank. Police dog K-9 Hank conducted a track, but couldn’t locate the man, police said.

Police said video footage was reviewed, evidence examined, information obtained and witnesses interviewed, leading to Roessler’s arrest.

The night of July 28, detectives executed a search warrant at the residence Roessler was using, police said.

No weapon was found, but additional evidence was collected, police said.

They said an arrest warrant was issued and Roessler was arrested.


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