Great Mills Man Arrested After Armed Robbery of Hotel in St. Mary’s County County

April 20, 2020
Zachery Ruggerio, 31, of Great Mills

Zachery Ruggerio, 31, of Great Mills

On March 24, 2020, deputies from the St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office responded to the La Quinta Inn on Three Notch Road in California, for the reported robbery.

Police made contact with the victim who advised the suspect entered through the front door of the business and proceeded to have a conversation with the victim, after some point during the conversation, the suspect borrowed a tissue from the victim, he proceeded to blow his nose and throw it into the hotel trash can.

The tissue was collected by St, Mary’s Sheriff’s Office Crime Lab. The victim advised the suspect logged on to the hotel WiFi and called someone. Once the suspect hung up he retrieved a note from his pocket and handed it to the victim. The note was hand written and indicated the suspect had a firearm and would shoot the victim if she did not give him money. The victim stated she pulled the till from the cash register, at which time the suspect reached over and took money and change from the till and fled the hotel on foot in an unknown direction.

The suspect fled with approximately $250, and a K-9 track was completed which led from the hotel towards the rear of the business and down a trail toward Chancellors Run Road. The K-9 track lead officers into the woods behind ABC Liquors and exited the woods in the area of Amber Drive and Chancellors Run Road, and lost the track of the suspect at that point.

Officers reviewed security footage which revealed the suspect was wearing a black Under Armour hooded sweatshirt with a black knitted winter hat, and gloves, possibly orange in color.

Police were advised the hotel used a communications company to run their WiFi network. Police contacted them and requested a log of all phones that connected to the network during the time frame in question. A ledger sent to police revealed at 10:38 p.m., a Samsung cell phone connected to the network.

Two days later an agent from parole and probation informed police they recognized the suspect as a parolee currently assigned to them. The agent identified the suspect as Zachery Ruggerio, 31, of Great Mills, and was currently on parole for a 2015 armed robbery in Baltimore County. During that incident the Ruggerio provided a note to a clerk at a business which stated he had a firearm and demanded money. During the robbery, Ruggerio also displayed a firearm in his waistband. The Agent told police that Ruggerio is currently residing at a residence within walking distance from the La Quinta Inn and in the direction of the k-9.