Armed robber hits two stores
An armed robber stormed into a 7-Eleven convenience store in North Tonawanda early Thursday morning, making off with an undisclosed amount of money before striking again an hour later at another convenience store in Amherst.
North Tonawanda Police Capt. Tom Krantz said a clerk working at the 7-Eleven told investigators the suspect entered the store at 1060 Niagara Falls Blvd. at 2:45 a.m. brandishing a hand gun and demanding cash, before fleeing on foot west on Ruie Road, where he may have escaped in a waiting vehicle.
"We're assuming he had a car there based on the footprints in the snow," he said. "We don't know if there was a car waiting with someone inside or if he was alone."
The individual was dressed almost entirely in black and wore a ski mask that concealed his identity. Krantz said he was white with a "medium build and medium height."
Within in an hour of the first crime, at approximately 3:30 a.m., another robbery took place at a 7-Eleven in Amherst.
Police said the incidents may be connected to a string of robberies, now totaling 15 since Dec. 24, in Niagara and Erie counties.
"We don't know that they are related but we're assuming they're related," Krantz said.
Investigators are asking the public, particularly those who live along Ruie Road near Niagara Falls Boulevard, to call police with possible tips.
"Anybody who has seen anything suspicious in the area of Ruie Road can call us," Krantz said.
Those with information can contact North Tonawanda police at 692-4325.
• BURGLARY: Police are investigating a burglary in the 2900 block of Pine Avenue. Officers discovered broken windows on the front door of a store at 2:10 a.m. Wednesday and three pieces of concrete lying on the floor inside. The store appeared to be ransacked and a manager told police it appeared that 35 cell phones had been taken. The entire burglary was captured by 32 security cameras. The cameras show four suspects committing the break-in. Detectives are now looking for the suspects.
• ARREST: A Falls woman was arrested after a domestic incident in the 1800 block of Niagara Street at 5:45 p.m. Wednesday. Chanel Shaneeka Pinckney, 20, 1805 Niagara St. Apt. 3, was charged with second-degree assault and second-degree harassment.
WARRANT: Paul E. Donoughe, 42, 2625 North Ave., Niagara Falls, was transfered from Niagara County Jail on a warrant and charged at 1:19 p.m. Thursday at the North Tonawanda Police Department with petit larceny, third-degree menacing, petit larceny, second-degree harassment, unlicensed operation and leaving the scene of an accident. He was held for court.