ST. PETERSBURG — Police arrested two men Wednesday in connection with last week's armed robbery of a clothing store.
One of the arrested is accused of being one of the five armed men who robbed the store of clothing and shoes — after trying but failing to steal the safe — and also bound and assaulted an employee, police said.
The other man is accused of buying some of that stolen property: Police said he was wearing a pair of Nike Air Jordan Slides sandals taken from the store when they questioned him.
St. Petersburg police are still looking for four suspects, but say that the same group is also suspected in three recent home invasion robberies in the city.
Tyrone Rashard Joseph, 20, of 5040 Second Ave. N, was arrested on charges of armed robbery, armed kidnapping, aggravated battery and auto theft in connection with the Thursday robbery of the M.J. Fashion clothing store, 401 34th St. S.
Terrence Jamal Roberson, 16, was arrested on a charge of dealing in stolen property.
Police said they found both men at 5040 Second Ave. N, where they also saw some of the clothing and shoes stolen from M.J. Fashion. Roberson, police said, also admitted that he bought some of that stolen property from Joseph and others with marijuana.
Police said they also found a silver Dodge Charger there, a vehicle connected to both the clothing store robbery and the home invasions. Detectives are getting search warrants to search both the house and vehicle.
The robbery at M.J. Fashion happened about 11:50 a.m., police said. That's when five men entered the store with firearms — two had rifles, the other three had pistols.
They locked the front door, forced the clerk to strip, then tied him up with shoelaces and put him in a storage room. The robbers then tried to remove the safe from the store, according to police, but failed.
During the robbery, one of the bandits struck the clerk in the mouth with the butt of a gun, police said. They also talked about shooting and killing a bystander loitering outside, police said.
More than an hour later the robbers fled, carrying clothing and shoes taken from the store. They drove off in the clerk's car. The clerk freed himself and called police at 1:25 p.m.
Police also released a surveillance video Wednesday of the clothing store robbery. They ask anyone with information about the suspects to call them at (727) 893-7780. Anonymous tipsters can call (727) 892-5000 or text police at (727) 420-8911.