April 17, 2014

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Police say Oberlin boy stole for thrills

OBERLIN – A 15-year-old Oberlin boy told police he took part in two robberies for “the rush of adrenaline,” according to an Oberlin police detective.

The boy acknowledged taking part in the Oct. 28 robbery of two female Oberlin College students and an attempted robbery on Oct. 29 at Oberlin IGA Foodliner.

In the second heist, the would-be robber ran off when the woman dropped a cell phone.

In both robberies, the boy allegedly wielded a BB gun that resembled a handgun, according to Oberlin police Detective Victor Ortiz.

Two other youths are being sought in connection with the robbery of the college students on West Vine Street, in which three males on bicycles approached the college students and ordered them to “drop everything,” according to Oberlin police Capt. Clif Barnes.

One girl turned over $45 and credit cards, and the other girl didn`t have any money with her, Barnes said. The boy was charged with two counts of armed robbery.

In addition, Barnes said, Oberlin police have asked juvenile authorities to consider a charge of possession of a criminal tool in connection with the bicycle he allegedly used in the incident involving the college students.

He said the boy told police he took part in the incidents “just for kicks and a dare.”

Both robberies were a big concern in Oberlin, where people typically feel safe walking the streets, Barnes said.

“If you`re not familiar with guns, then a .17-caliber BB gun looks as big as a cannon,” Barnes said. “We expect people to be relieved.”

After the robbery involving the college students, several hundred fliers were posted warning students about the incident, and warnings also were posted on a computer alert available on the campus.

The teen does not have a criminal record, and he is at home awaiting his first court appearance on two counts of armed robbery and possession of criminal tools.

Contact Cindy Leise at 329-7245 or cleise@chroniclet.com.