***UPDATE 6:29 P.M.***Another robber is on the loose after hitting a Columbia Petro-Mart early Wednesday morning. Police say the man walked into the Petro-Mart convenience store at College Avenue and Paris Road demanding money.This is the fifth Petro-Mart to be robbed in just the last two weeks. Right now police aren’t certain if some or all of the robberies are connected. But ABC 17 News found several similarities by looking at some of the suspect descriptions for a majority of the robberies.Police tell us a man walked into the Petro-Mart and left with cash. They say he never showed he had a gun, but did imply he had one. Police aren’t sure where or even which direction he went.”I would imagine that they are collecting the video surveillance also of nearby businesses if possible, and trying to see if we can get that person identified,” Columbia police officer Latisha Stroer explains.We looked through the descriptions in recent robberies to see if it’s possibly the same robber. Police believe two men working together were responsible for robberies at the Petro-Mart robbery on Stadium and Bernadette and on St. Charles Road. One suspect was described as a medium built black man shorter than six feet, and the other was described as a tall, thin, black male. Police say those suspects showed guns inside the stores. The suspect in the robbery from Wednesday morning is described as a black man about 5’7″ or 5’8″weighing about 155-pounds. But this suspect never showed a gun.Even though there are some similarities in the crimes police aren’t ready to say any of the robberies are connected. Police say a spike in robberies around this time of year isn’t out of the ordinary.”It’s quick, like in a burglary you have to make sure no one is home, you go in and steal electronics and you have to have some way of selling those electronics or pawning them, and this is just instant cash,” Stroer says.Police tell us they are making more of an emphasis for officers to check in on the stores on a nightly basis.***ORIGINAL STORY***Columbia police say a man robbed the Petro Mart at 500 North College Avenue early Wednesday morning. This is the fifth Petro Mart robbery in town within two weeks.Officers say the man walked in around 1:15 a.m., implied he had a gun, and demanded cash. The suspect was able to get away with undisclosed amount of money and K-9 units were unable to track him down.The suspect is described a black male, about 5’7″ to 5’8″ tall, and was last seen wearing dark clothing.
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