A man held up Spruce Street Video, 252 S. 12th St., at about 3:30 p.m. Feb. 27. Store owner Franny Price said the offender got away with approximately $200 in cash.
Price and one other employee were present at the store during the incident, and neither of them was injured.
Five minutes before the robbery occurred, the alleged thief came into the store, looked around and asked the cashier at the register how much cigarettes cost. The suspect asked when the store closed and, when he was told 11 p.m., he made a comment about coming back to the store later for a video before he left.
A few minutes later he returned in the same clothing, only this time wearing a ski mask, and approached the employee without saying anything. He then pointed a gun at the employee, who ran into the back bathroom.
The culprit broke the gate that separates the store from the counter, and the register. He also damaged the register, as he repeatedly bashed it to break it open.
Price chased the suspect but was unable to locate him. He was a light-skinned black male under 6 feet with a thick build, wearing brown sweatpants and a gray coat.
Police spokesperson Officer Jillian Russell said “there are no arrests, and this incident is still under investigation.”
Sixth District Capt. Brian Korn said Central Detective Division’s Special Investigation Unit continues to look into the incident.
“Unfortunately, no video of the incident has surfaced yet, but we are looking along the escape route to see if there may be cameras,” Korn said.
The store has a camera in front of the register but it was not operating that day. Price is ordering more surveillance equipment.
Spruce Street Video was robbed two other times in its 30 years: in 1996 and 2012.
Price said she does not believe the incident was motivated by any anti-LGBT animus.
“I’m just glad nobody got hurt,” she said.