This is a developing story and was last updated Dec. 21 at 6:43 p.m.

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Justin Thurman
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Tamarcus Jordan

Undercover Chattanooga police officers chased robbery suspects across East Brainerd on Wednesday after the suspects followed a woman out of a bank.

Both suspects were arrested at the end of the chase, which began on Gunbarrel Road at about 10 a.m. and lasted about 20 minutes. It stretched from Bonny Oaks Drive to East Brainerd Road and, at one point, dipped out of the city's jurisdiction and into the county.

The chase was prompted by an undercover operation aimed at catching the suspects behind a recent rash of robberies with the same pattern, Officer Rob Simmons said.

In several recent cases, suspects followed victims out of a bank or financial institution and then robbed the victims when they got to their home or business.

To try to catch those suspects, undercover officers staked out a bank Wednesday morning, Simmons said. He declined to name the bank.

During the stakeout, officers saw a woman leave the bank, and when she pulled out of the parking lot, an older model Jeep started to follow her, Simmons said.

The undercover officers then followed the Jeep and determined the Jeep was tailing the woman's vehicle. The undercover officers turned on their lights to try to pull the Jeep over but it sped away on Gunbarrel Road.

After a lengthy and circuitous chase that included stretches on Bonny Oaks Drive, Old Lee Highway and Jenkins Road, the suspects ditched the Jeep and ran on foot near the 1500 block of Gunbarrel Road.

Both were arrested after brief foot pursuits. One suspect, Justin Thurman, 27, was found hiding in a Dumpster, where a K-9 unit "encouraged him to get out of the Dumpster," Simmons said.

Simmons praised the officers who made the effort to stake out the bank.

"They were proactive and decided to do something about the problem," he said. "Their supervisors gave them the whole day to figure it out, and they figured it out before lunch."

Thurman is the suspected driver while Tamarcus Jordan, 24, is the suspected passenger. Police seized drugs from both suspects, marijuana and methamphetamine, according to a news release Wednesday night.

The suspects are currently facing charges of evading arrest and drug possession, but other charges are pending a full investigation.

Thurman has previously been charged with aggravated burglary, evading arrest on multiple occasions and theft of property over $1000. Jordan has previously been charged with assault, evading arrest and theft of property.

There has been an uptick in robberies in the city as Christmas approaches, Simmons said. On Sunday, both a Waffle House on Highway 58 and a Subway on Brainerd Road were robbed at gunpoint.

On Saturday, a man was robbed and shot in East Lake Park around noon.

Staff writer Emmett Gienapp contributed to this report.

Contact staff writer Shelly Bradbury at 423-757-6525 or with tips or story ideas. Follow @ShellyBradbury.

Stay with the Times Free Press as more information becomes available.