Convenience store managers concerned over recent robberies - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Convenience store managers concerned over recent robberies

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February 8, 2006

Albany- An Albany store manager fights back against a robber and wins. He's fed up after a string of recent robberies, including a murder at A.J.'s Food Store in east Albany. Monday night, this HomeRun Foods location was the victim of an armed robbery, across town Wednesday, two other convenience stores fell victim to a robber. A quick store manager caught the crook, but owners say they're concerned about the increase of armed robberies.

An average day behind the counter at Rubo's changed this afternoon for manager William Phillips. He says 22 year old John Edward of Pelham reached into the cash register, grabbed money, and bolted.

"He took off out the door and I chased him down to the next block in that back alley and there was a little struggle and one of my ex-employees pitched in and gave me a hand," said William Phillips, Rubo's Manager.

Police say, Edward pulled a similar robbery at the Stop and Shop two blocks away earlier in the afternoon. This time he was caught on tape.

"He turned his head, it looked like he was leaving the store but instead he ran up to the counter and snatched the money off the counter and just ran outside," said Sabrina Aladoui, Stop and Shop Clerk.

Store managers say, they rely on security cameras to protect their stores and clerks are constantly watching.

"The last time when we had the armed robbery, we gave the cassette to the police, but then nothing happened to them and then this is happening again and again with armed robbery," said Henry Patel, Stop and Shop Manager.

To increase protection, the Stop and Shop hired an armed security guard, but remains concerned about the aggressive actions of these criminals.

"Every month, every couple of months these type of things happening, and like last time, a month before there were shots fired in the next store and a guy died so now we are trying to be more safe," said Patel.

Despite catching the crook, Rubo's still lost.

"He said he dropped the money and a customer told me a couple of kids picked it up, I don't know if we can retrieve it back or not," said Phillips.

More than anything, Phillips wants the suspect to pay for his crime.

"I think the important thing is he's on the way to jail," said Phillips.

Convenience Store owners say their business is risky, they've warned their employees to be more cautious and watch customers for any suspicious activity. If you have information about any recent robberies, Albany Police hope you'll call them. You can give tips anonymously.

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