Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Pasco deputies searching for masked gunmen in convenience store robberies

DADE CITY — Pasco deputies are searching for two and possibly three masked gunmen they're calling serial robbers after several robberies in east Pasco and two neighboring counties.

Authorities released security camera footage of a Friday holdup at the Kwik Pick Food Store/BP gas station at 18232 U.S. 301 in Dade City. The video shows two gunmen, dressed in black, entering the store, ordering customers to the floor and robbing the customers and the store clerk.

Another robbery happened Tuesday at the same store, though only one robber appeared. Video footage of that robbery shows clerks firing on the armed suspect. Kevin Doll, spokesman for the Pasco County Sheriff's Office, said it appears no one was injured, but the clerks had the right to defend themselves.

A Citgo station was robbed Aug. 2 on U.S. 98 in Trilby, though the holdup was not reported until Monday. Doll said deputies believe this robbery is connected to the two at Kwik Pick.

"We think they're all involved in the same robberies, and we're calling them serial," Doll said.

Doll said three similar robberies, one in Brooksville in mid June and two in Sumter County in late July, may have been committed by the same suspects.

Because the robbers were wearing masks and long-sleeved, dark clothing, Doll said deputies do not have full descriptions. He also said deputies cannot be sure whether two or three men were involved in the robberies. He said witnesses described two men as African-American, between 5 feet 9 and 6 feet and 160 to 170 pounds. He said a surveillance video of the robbery in which clerks fought back showed a white suspect. Deputies do not have a vehicle description.

Kwik Pick cashier Yazan Shnablih was not present during the robberies, but he told Bay News 9, the Times' coverage partner, he was shocked when he heard about the heists.

"The cashier started shooting on him," Shnablih said, relaying the story he heard about the second holdup. "As soon as he started shooting on him, the guy shot back one time. There is a hole right there in the wall. Then he started running out. The cashier kept shooting, two or three times. But he missed it all the times."

Shnablih said he did not believe the robbers would return.

"After the second time, they won't think about it anymore," he said.

Anyone with information about these robberies may call the Pasco Sheriff's Office Crime Tips Line toll-free at 1-800-706-2488.

See the robbery

For video of the Aug. 3 hold-up at the Kwik Pick convenience store in Dade City, visit links.tampabay.com.

Pasco deputies searching for masked gunmen in convenience store robberies 08/08/12 [Last modified: Wednesday, August 8, 2012 7:26pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Who's behind the mysterious butt graffiti all over St. Petersburg?

    Human Interest

    ST. PETERSBURG — The first butts, perhaps, appeared in April on some steps behind the Sundial shopping plaza.

    A photo of the butt graffiti that has been cropping up around St. Petersburg in the past several months. [CHRISTOPHER SPATA | STAFF]
  2. During the most expensive mayoral election ever, St. Petersburg City Council wants to limit PAC money

    Blogs

    ST. PETERSBURG — In front of a large group of red-shirted campaign finance reform supporters, the St. Petersburg City Council on Thursday started the ball rolling on an ordinance that would limit individual campaign contributions to $5,000 from political action committees.

    A large crowd gathered Thursday to support passage of a controversial measure to limit campaign spending in city elections
  3. Minority business accelerator launch by Tampa chamber to aid black, Hispanic businesses

    Business

    A "minority business accelerator" program was launched Thursday by the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce geared toward helping black and Hispanic business owners identify and overcome barriers to grow their companies. The accelerator, known as MBA, will provide participants with business tools to cultivate opportunities …

    Bemetra Simmons is a senior private banker at Wells Fargo, The Private Bank. She is also chair of the new minority business accelerator program for the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce. [Photo, LinkedIn]
  4. Peter Budaj loves 'vibe' with Lightning

    Blogs

    Two years ago, nobody was willing to give Peter Budaj a shot, the veteran goalie wondering if he'd ever play in the NHL again.

    Peter Budaj signed a two-year extension with the Lightning, worth $1.025 million per year.
  5. A test the Rays haven't passed

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — I have no idea what to think about the Rays. Not a clue.

    Tampa Bay Rays players celebrate their 8-3 win over the Cincinnati Reds Wednesday, June 21, 2017 in St. Petersburg.