Photo of Ken Coutant by

Photo of Ken Coutant by Sheryl Lanzel

Ken Coutant, known a few short weeks ago solely as the polarizing figure at the middle of the Flag Pole Hill trail debate, today is a hands-down local hero.

The avid cyclist, a 25-year Lake Highlands homeowner who recently launched a movement to improve the foot paths over Flag Pole Hill, was cycling Wednesday morning, as he does most days, in the same Flag Pole Hill area neighborhood where two joggers recently were robbed of their iPhones at gunpoint when the same happened to him.

By car, they approached from behind and nearly ran him down. They stopped, jumped out of the car and one man pointed a handgun at Coutant and said “give me your phone,” Coutant told reporters.

Coutant surrendered the phone, rushed home and pulled up “Find My Phone” on his iPad. This time (compared to the first of the series of hold-ups) police responded more enthusiastically. The phone pinged a location near Lake Highlands Junior High; police followed the lead and within 15 minutes arrested two suspected robbers, who were in possession of Coutant’s phone.

Police are trying to connect the three similar incidents. They will put the suspects in a lineup and call in the previous victims to attempt to ID their perpetrators — for that reason, we won’t be seeing names, further descriptions or mug shots just yet.

There was some speculation last week that suspects arrested in a Lochwood neighborhood armed robbery were responsible for the jogger crimes, but now it is clear that at least two duos were committing similar crimes in the White Rock area. At least four of them are now behind bars.