Lt. Scott Golike of the Alton Police Department was honored by law enforcement peers Wednesday for his work solving a bank robbery.
Golike received a Certificate of Merit award at the 24th annual Southern Illinois Law Enforcement Commission & Southern Illinois Police Chiefs Association awards banquet in Fairview Heights. The award recognizes law enforcement employees who have demonstrated character, bravery, dedication, innovation, compassion and perseverance. Police Chief Jason “Jake” Simmons nominated Golike for the award.
A man disguised in white sunglasses and a plaid hat robbed the U.S. Bank branch at 1520 Washington Ave. March 2. The suspect could not be identified from bank security video, but investigators suspected he could be Joseph Schwank of Godfrey.
Golike, the department’s chief of detectives, made contact with Schwank and his family. He developed a rapport with Schwank, which led to an interview and consensual search of his house. Weak probable cause was established and Golike directed a traffic stop that led to Schwank’s arrest and the recovery of related evidence.
Golike conducted an interview March 4 with Schwank. After approximately 1 ½ hours, Schwank was on the verge of a confession when a federal agency arrived and claimed jurisdiction. Federal agents joined the interrogation and re-introduced his Miranda rights.
Schwank “lawyered up” and the interrogation was terminated. Schwank was returned to his cell.
The next morning, Schwank requested to speak with Golike again. Golike re-engaged Schwank after obtaining a Miranda waiver. Golike interviewed Schwank for four hours, during which he eventually confessed to the U.S. Bank robbery. Schwank also confessed to having committed the Alton Pizza Hut armed robbery on Feb. 23, 2015, and a Bethalto Domino’s Pizza robbery on March 3, 2015.
Schwank was sentenced Sept. 16 in federal court to 7 years, 8 months in prison and three years supervised release.
“Most robberies and other violent crimes are solved using a team approach,” a Southern Illinois Law Enforcement Commission news release states. “In this case, a confession was essential in obtaining formal charges to secure a conviction. Lt. Golike’s efforts, experience and perseverance directly led to these confessions.”
Golike has 26 years of experience in law enforcement, including 15 years in the Investigations Bureau and 6 years as chief of detectives. His reputation of “leading from the front” serves as inspiration and motivation for officers under his command, according to the news release.
“Lt. Golike’s leadership, professionalism, dedication and skill level serves as an example for all officers in the law enforcement profession,” the news release states. “Congratulations, Lt. Scott Golike, for a job well done.”