September 19, 2014

Elyria
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3 robberies of shoppers may be linked

Police in Amherst and Lorain are searching for the robber or robbers in pickup trucks who pointed guns at three elderly shoppers and stole money from two of them in store parking lots on Tuesday.
In the meantime, Amherst police Lt. Joe Kucirek recommended that the elderly shop with a friend, walk with other shoppers or seek assistance from store personnel.
“Be aware of your surroundings,” he said. “Amherst and Lorain are beefing up our patrols in the area.”
The first incident was about 10:45 a.m. when a 90-year-old Amherst Township man was robbed of a “very small” amount of money in the parking lot of the Giant Eagle on Kresge Drive by a man in a gray or tan pickup.
“The vehicle pulled up to him and the man inside pointed a gun at him and demanded his wallet,” Kucirek said.
The elderly man didn’t have a wallet, but gave the robber what money he had. He described the robber as a young white bald man.
The second incident happened at about 11 a.m. in Lorain when an 80-year-old Vermilion man was robbed of $18 in the parking lot of the Super Kmart, according to Lorain police Sgt. Mark Carpentiere.
The robber was described as a white man in his mid-20s with a blond crew cut in a light brown pickup, Carpentiere said.
The robber left empty-handed in the third robbery, which involved an 80-year-old Amherst Township woman who was in the parking lot at the Giant Eagle on Kresge Drive at about 8 p.m. when a man demanded her purse.
“She was walking in the parking lot to her vehicle and the pickup pulled up and a man pointed a firearm,” Kucirek said. “She screamed and dropped the things in her hand.”
The man in the dull gray pickup drove off without her purse, Kucirek said.
In that incident, the robber was described as a white man in his early 20s with dirty blond hair.  A passerby said he was driving a Ford extended cab pickup.
While there is some difference in the descriptions, “we believe there’s a relationship between the three of these,” Kucirek said.
The man could have been wearing a wig in two of the robberies, he said.
Carpentiere said police stopped and questioned a man on Wednesday and are investigating whether he might be involved.
Contact Cindy Leise at 329-7245 or cleise@chroniclet.com.