Niagara Gazette — Falls police detectives say they don't know yet if the robbery of a LaSalle convenience store late Monday night is tied to an earlier rash of robberies in January.
Detectives have been hunting for at least two suspects in a trio of hold-ups that occurred just as the new year kicked off. Now they are looking for two suspects in the most recent robbery.
The hold-up took place around 10:44 p.m. at a store in the 6800 block of Buffalo Avenue. A witness saw they robbery taking place and called police, but the bandits had fled by the time officers arrived on the scene.
A store clerk told investigators two suspects entered the store and one jumped over the front counter and pointed a handgun at his face. The victim said the gunman repeatedly told him to "Open the (cash register) drawer."
The second suspect then came behind the counter and grabbed an unknown quantity of lottery tickets.
After the clerk opened the cash register drawer, the gun toting suspect grabbed a handful of cash. He then jumped back over the counter and both suspects ran from the store, heading toward 68th Street.
Between New Year’s Eve and Jan. 3, investigators responded to a trio of robberies with somewhat similar circumstances, but they've been unable, so far, to determine if they are all related.
“There are similar suspect descriptions,” Detective Lt. Mike Trane said. “But in one robbery we have two suspects and then in the others it’s just one suspect. But the (single suspect) looks like one of the guys from the first robbery. It’s just hard to tell and we’re just not sure.”
Detectives have released pictures of those suspects, taken from security cameras inside the stores. Trane said they have not received much help from the public since releasing the photos.