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Man robs Spring Hill restaurant at gunpoint

(ran PW PS editions)

The holdup was the second of a Subway in about a week. Police believe the same man was involved in an earlier robbery, which was videotaped.

A man with a handgun held up the Subway restaurant at 13078 Cortez Blvd. on Wednesday night and made off with $177 in cash.

The robber entered the store a little before 10 p.m. with a taller man, and they went into the bathroom, according to a Hernando County sheriff's report. The clerk, who was working alone, noticed the two men spent several minutes in the bathroom.

When the taller man came out, he walked to the counter where the clerk was preparing a sandwich for another customer and said, "Put more mayonnaise on it." The man then walked away, and the clerk did not see him again.

A short time later, the other man came out of the bathroom and walked up to the counter. All the other customers had left the store. The man showed the clerk a black revolver, told her he wasn't playing a game and demanded all the cash.

The clerk had problems opening the register and then getting the key to open the cash drawer. The robber told her, "Come on, honey, give me the money. I got to go. Come on, honey. I've got 25 seconds," the report said.

The clerk handed over the cash. The man told the clerk, "Don't watch me leave, and don't call the cops," and ran south away from the store.

The clerk, who was shaken up but unhurt, ran to the back of the store to hide and call 911. Two customers came into the store and found the clerk just before deputies arrived, the report said.

The store had a surveillance video camera, but it had shut off at 4 p.m. because of a recording problem. It was the first robbery at that Subway since it opened about 10 years ago, the manager said Thursday.

Last week, someone broke into the Subway on Broad Street in Brooksville after it was closed. That incident was caught on videotape. The man involved in that break-in resembled the man from Wednesday's robbery, the clerk said.

The man with the gun is described as white, with a dark complexion, about 5 feet 7 and heavy-set. He wore a white T-shirt and dark pants. The man had not shaved in two or three days. The taller man was described as white, with shoulder-length wavy dark hair. He wore a dark shirt and dark pants. Both men appeared to be in their early 20s.

Sheriff's spokeswoman Deanna Dammer said the taller man who entered the store at the same time as the robber was likely involved in the incident.

"It sounds as if the other guy was in casing the joint for the guy with the gun," Dammer said. "At this point, it looks as if we are looking for two people."

Dammer encouraged anyone with information about this incident to call the Sheriff's Office at 754-6830 or the anonymous tips line at 797-8477.