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Police arrested two women Wednesday afternoon on felony charges after one brandished a knife and stole a woman's purse.
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Juneau police officers responded to a call of an alleged assault at 3:46 p.m. in the downtown area, Sgt. Scott Erickson said.
"The victim in the case was assaulted by two other women, one who pulled a knife and took her purse," he said.
Police arrested Darlene Forthenberry, 32, on charges of felony robbery and assault and misdemeanor assault. Police also arrested Heather Dawn Williams, 37, and charged her with felony robbery.
Both women were lodged at Lemon Creek Correctional Center and are being held without bond.
Three police officers surrounded a red Ford Explorer and questioned Forthenberry and Williams after the pair reportedly attempted to flee the scene of the crime.
"Everyone thought it was a bank robbery," Erickson said. "It wasn't. Basically what we had is a victim that retreated into the bank."
The victim allegedly tried to use self-defense to get away from her attackers, Erickson said.
"Allegedly our victim at one point was trying to get away from the two using pepper spray and was not successful," he said.
Joe Geldhof watched the arrests unfold from his law office at Fourth and Franklin streets.
A section of Fourth Street near Rainbow Foods was temporarily closed, plugging Franklin Street traffic for about 20 minutes, while police dealt with the situation, Geldhof said.
"It was not clear what was going on," Geldhof said. "They did not have drawn guns or anything, but it was pretty intense."
Officers and one of the suspects was shouting as police took the women into custody, he said.