September 23, 2014

Elyria
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Police looking for two armed men who robbed sweepstakes cafe

ELYRIA — Two men armed with an AK-47 and a handgun held up an Internet cafe Monday — forcing the customers to stand along the wall while the robbery was under way.

The incident happened about 11 a.m. at the Big Hit Sweepstakes Cafe, 803 Chestnut Commons Drive.

Elyria police Capt. Chris Costantino said the money taken was from the register, not the customers.

“They didn’t take any money from those people,” he said.

One customer, who would not provide her name, described the men as “very big’’ and said they were dressed all in black.

“They said, ‘Put your hands up against the wall. You will all see your children and grandchildren again,’ ” she said. “I’m still shaking.”

Ruth Demyan, a customer at the Internet cafe, said she was walking into the store when the men who robbed the business walked out.

Demyan, who said she was looking at her feet when she walked inside, couldn’t provide a description of them.

“I said thank you while I was walking out,” she said, adding that she believed the men were holding the door for her. “I didn’t notice them.”

During the investigation, an Elyria police detective ran his police cruiser into a guardrail after losing control on state Route 57 and Taylor Street. The vehicle sustained moderate front-end damage, and the officer was uninjured.

Costantino said the officer was looking for the men involved in the robbery.

Witnesses are asked to contact the Elyria Police Department at (440) 323-3302.

Contact Chelsea Miller at 329-7123 or cmiller@chroniclet.com.