Skip to Content

Video shows man shoot into ceiling, thank employee during Columbia robbery


All it took was about 70 seconds for a person to walk into a store on Columbia's Business Loop 70 and walk out with all the cash from the registers.

The management of Passions Adult Boutique sent ABC 17 News video showing an apparent armed robbery that happened at about 8 p.m. Thursday. The robber fires his handgun into the ceiling 15 seconds after walking in. He moves from one register to another as he orders the cashiers to remove the money.

In surveillance video, the suspect is seen quickly moving from one cash register to the other as he worked to grab cash

The man, clad all in black and wearing a mask, never fires another shot and appears to thank the employees as he leaves with the cash in black plastic bags.

Passions general manager James Roark-Gruender confirms that the robber did, indeed, thank the employees as he was walking out the door.

"How weird is it that he thanked the employee?" Roark-Gruender said. "I thank him for not doing anything else to my employees, most people who rob places don't want to hurt anybody, they just need money for either addiction issues or whatever the case may be."

Employees did exactly what they're trained to do and gave up the money.

"I've always told them to ask it they want to carry the cash out. The cash is a super unimportant thing, my employees safety is," Roark-Gruender said. "People come in and they just want quick cash, and just have the perception this is going to be an easy target and like other places 'we don't invest in technology and don't invest in cameras.' And that is just not the case." 

Anyone who wants to report a tip but to stay anonymous you can call CrimeStoppers at 573-875-8477. Police said certain details are being kept from the public to help with their investigation.

Article Topic Follows: Crime

Jump to comments ↓

Author Profile Photo

Chris Bryant

Chris joined ABC17 in April of 2021 as Chief Photographer.
A multi-award-winning photographer whose career has spanned over 20 years in broadcasting from television and radio and included over 60 individual awards for photography, reporting, and editing.
Chris has covered stories from hurricanes to the Super Bowl, the Kansas City Royals’ two World Series runs and stories from Florida to Utah and Arizona.
Chris is married and a father of four.


ABC 17 News is committed to providing a forum for civil and constructive conversation.

Please keep your comments respectful and relevant. You can review our Community Guidelines by clicking here

If you would like to share a story idea, please submit it here.

Skip to content