ALBANY, GA (WALB) - Albany police are still working to solve a rash of armed robberies in the city. At least one store clerk has been shot in the past month and business owners are on edge.
"Anytime an individual comes into a store armed that's a great threat," said APD Lt. Keithen Hall. "We take that very serious. Anything could happen."
Last Thursday, robbers hit Home Run Foods on Dawson Road. Two gunmen barge into the store with their guns pointed right at the clerks. One even fired a a shot in to the ceiling.
Earlier this month at a BP gas station, surveillance cameras caught the terrifying moment when a gunman shot the clerk laying face down on the ground.
These are just two of nearly a dozen armed robberies in Albany since mid-September. Police say the number has spiked in recent weeks which is typical for this time of the year.
"We get a slight increase cause as the holidays approach. This time of the year, people are out of work looking for thing," said Lt. Hall.
Police say they're actively searching for any connections. They're also amping up patrols, beefing up surveillance and working with business owners to make the stores safer for employees and customers.
"The buzzer to allow people in at a certain time of night, maybe change your hours, work hours, maybe start closing at a certain time."
But Lt. Hall says their biggest weapon in solving these crimes is the public. That's what led them to catch three men they say are responsible for the city's most recent armed robbery at Oasis convenience store in south Albany.
"You pull up to a store, you see an individual standing on the side, you get those senses that something's not right, call the police, let us know," said Lt. Hall.
He encourages anyone with information on the recent robberies to call APD or leave an anonymous tip by calling Crimestoppers at 436-TIPS.